Please Don’t Insult My Son By Giving Him a Ken Doll

Nana Grab Bags really screwed up this time.  And, C.J. has to remind her at regular intervals so that she doesn’t forget her mistake.

Yesterday afternoon she arrived at our house with two Easter baskets overflowing with ridiculousness, one for C.J. and one for his brother.  C.J.’s basket had more chocolate than the city of Hershey, Penn.; colored bubbles that, I’ve been warned, stain; a Little Mermaid kite; toys for summer; and a Ken doll.  How could she.

Handsome Ken doll comes casually dressed in jeans, pink plaid shirt and a grey tee.

When C.J. caught a glimpse of the familiarly-shaped pink box buried in the basket, he got excited.  His excitement was premature.  He pulled the box out and his smile quickly turned into a hard straight line. 

“Nana, what is ‘dis?” he asked with attitude and his head cocked, knowing full well what “it” was.

“That’s Ken,” said Nana, exuberant as always.

“I don’t like Ken. I like Barbie,” C.J. insisted.

Poor Nana Grab Bags.  She tried.  She tried to see if C.J. could like a Ken doll as much as he likes Barbie.  If maybe Ken could be a gateway drug into the dirty world of boy toys, much like Barbie was a gateway drug into the fabulous world of girl toys.  Not that Nana Grab Bags really cares.  Well, C.J. was offended.

C.J. continued to look at Ken with confusion and disgust.  I would have the same reaction if someone gave me an auto part, chess set or computer manual.  I encouraged C.J. to be thankful, but he was so flabbergasted by the gift choice that he couldn’t play nice.  Kids are so lucky that they don’t have to pretend.  According to C.J., the gift sucked and he couldn’t help but let Nana know it.

It wasn’t just any Ken doll.  It was Shaving Fun Ken. 

“Girls can help Ken doll "shave" his facial hair!” -- Mattel

To add insult to injury, Nana Grab Bags bought Shaving Fun Ken two additional outfits; a pink tuxedo and an outfit for the beach. 

“I thought you would have fun changing his clothes,” she explained.  C.J. said nothing; he just shook his head no.  C.J. loves to dress his Barbies and Disney Princesses, how could he refuse to dress and undress Ken?

We all tried to stifle our laughter and smiles.  It really was cute.  C.J.’s attitude is cute on a four-year-old.  If you’re older than four, don’t try this at home, unless you’re with your Nana.  A good Nana will forgive just about anything, especially on Easter.

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8 Responses to Please Don’t Insult My Son By Giving Him a Ken Doll

  1. gabrielle says:

    i grew up playing with barbies…and at 34 I still collect them (actually I buy old used and abused ones and restore them) and I always had fewer kens than the rest of the bunch, said that…I always liked them, kens I mean, they gave more possabilities of roleplaying (and yes I grew up thinking I wanted a smiling ken as a bf lol),,,and I had the first shaving ken doll, the one from the early 80’s it was so much fun !! first the beard then the mustaches then goatees, so many variations and everytime a different character….I forgot to mention I am a trans girl, and I grew up in a very understanding family that let me express myself since I was a kid, my dad always bought me a Barbie each time he would come back from a trip, very fond memories and looking back my god I was lucky 🙂

  2. Janis says:

    This post made me laugh and that isn’t easy. What a wonderful report into the events that happened, that fateful day.

  3. Mibo says:

    I realize kids are brutally honest but I don’t see any I’ll intention in Nana getting CJ a Ken doll & don’t feel like she was trying to assert his masculinity with the gift (especially since she included the pink tuxedo). Although there r times kids brutal honesty is a breath of fresh air, I think regardless if Nana got him Ken or an Iron Man action figure, it is our job as parents to try to instill in our kids the feeling of gratitude. My son hates receiving clothes as gifts but I always make sure he says thank you with a hug before moving ahead. This post made me feel very sorry for Nana because it sounds like you were just as disappointed with her as CJ was with the gift 😦

  4. Mitch says:

    Perhaps Nana Grab Bags wanted to get C.J. something she knew he didn’t already have without crossing into the “boy” toy realm. So he doesn’t love ken dolls? If he wants to play house with a mommy and daddy (as opposed to two Barbie doll mommies, since I’m sure he has more than enough barbies to have several lesbian relationships going on in his doll house neighborhood amidst the new, awkward straight couple dynamic that Ken will bring hahaha), now he can fictitiously torment boys all he wants with his doll. Who knows? He may even grab a marker and pretend to “accidentally” cut Ken’s face while shaving! (Is that too violent for C.J? haha)

  5. justamom says:

    once time ago, when I was on refusal, I bought my daughter a ken doll so his brother could play with her, without playing with her barbies…. i thought i could cure or change him…
    before pink boys blogs it was hard accepting such thing, and a blog like yours make me feel not so lonely in this struggle of acceptance!

  6. Cluttered Mama says:

    Dude. I had that Ken. Someone gave me it for my 8th or 9th birthday.
    While I get CJ’s horror, i think Nana deserves a break here. People give girl Ken dolls all the time as a way to complete the ‘set.’ Not to say that CJ is a girl, but that was more likely what Nana was thinking, not “how do I get CJ back to boys’ toys?”
    Those of us who loved/played with Barbie as a Kid, know the gift of a Ken doll is accepted with false gratitude, then quickly relegated to the bottom of the Barbie storage and only pulled out when barbie ‘needs’ him… Ken just sucks as a gift in general!!

  7. Sometimes people struggle to fit others into their paradigms.

  8. Cami says:

    I had one of those shaving Ken dolls when I was kid. I remember getting it for Christmas and I was seriously like “WTF?” I put the shaving cream on and wipe it off? Um. No. First of all, boring. Second of all, I had already thought of inventing laser hair removal, so the shaving thing was negated anyway. Third of all, why any child would want to pretend shave is beyond me. They’ll soon learn that they’ll be shaving enough as it is as an adult. No thank you.

    Just wait until C.J. puts his little eyes on the breastfeeding doll. LMAO. Google it if you’re interested.

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