My children often bring me “baby dolls”. I carefully accept them, taking care to treat them just as I would a real baby. I cradle them gently in my arms and hold them. I’ll even wrap them in a blanket to “keep them warm”.
I hope that my children see me holding and handling a “baby” the way a baby should be held. Even if it’s pretend.
Children pretend to practice what they’ll do later in life. I want them to practice treating a baby gently, and with all the respect that a living being deserves.
Some might say it makes me a “sissy” to be “playing with dolls”. I just see it as proper parenting — and when my sons see their dad “playing with dolls”, they’ll hopefully see (and remember) that dads take care of babies. They protect them. They keep them safe. Babies aren’t just a “mom’s job”, and if Dad is that concerned about treating a baby doll safely, he must care even more about the real thing.