#‎AGDoCGotY
American Girl, keep giving us Dolls of Color for Girls of the Year.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

AG Complaint Department: Some Children Are Too Young for AG Dolls

The American Girl company was initially created--so the story goes--to fill that empty niche at the time between the baby doll and the fashion doll. A companion that wasn't either focused on mommying or on dressing up. And with some history in the process, to get your learn on. Sure, we had Skipper among the fashion dolls, but she was a teen (and also small of waist). There was no doll the same age, generally, of that 8-12 year age range with an 8-12 year old body shape. I have to admit that Pleasant Company was hella successful in that task, seeing as now there's tons of 18" Companion girl dolls all over the market and new markets tend to pop up all over the place to try and challenge AG. (Some have even folded; Life of Faith is one of the bigger companies to fall.)

However, when American Girl was created, there's no getting around that they were intended for the 8+ crowd. Hence the whole books and encouragement of studying history and craftwork and stuff, and the focus around a girl of the era turning ten at some point in their series. They still stick to that, even. And society does, in many ways, encourage kids to skip past childhood--or, to paraphrase C. S. Lewis1, try to rush girls to get to a certain age and then expect them to dawdle there as long as possible. The fact that someone tried to come up with the term "pretween" says some shit right there. Don't get me started on a store called "Forever 21" or I'll get completely off topic. So with this age skewing, the span for dolls seems to be from age 1 to age 8, and after about third grade you're just too old for dolls. Which is another rant altogether.

So yes, the age for doll play seems squashed in our society. Still. There should be a lower limit for getting a doll for a child--especially an expensive, high cost doll like AG--and that's because they don't treat things right.

"Gently played with" my black ass.

The fact of the matter is that children under a certain age don't take care of things like they should. They might want to, and they might claim they will, but they just don't. They lose shoes, they don't do their homework, they throw things in corners, they forget to walk the dog or change the litter box or not track mud into the house. They can't often remember to brush their teeth or take their baths or any of that. Shit, some kids love the idea of candy for dinner. I once spent four weeks tying ribbons on my off brand Barbie dolls ankles and flinging them off balconies, just to see what happened when they hit the pavement. I likely wouldn't have done that with an AG, but still. Children can be destructive. And they don't care sometimes if what they're destroying costs ten dollars or a hundred and ten.

And under five? Forget about it. Let me show you some examples of super fail.

This is certainly the "artwork" of someone too young to have an AG doll.
That doll up there? Has been markered all over her body cloth and had her hair all torn to shit. And she was Lanie--who came out only three years ago in 2010. I don't even like Lanie and I feel bad for this doll. She was not taken care of at all. Even benefit of the doubt that a younger sibling got their hands on the doll makes me wonder, because that's a lot of damage. That and if the doll was still cherished I wouldn't have found this on eBay.

This doll has seen things, man.
And that's Marie-Grace, who debuted in Fall 2011. And has had her hair wrecked.

Good lord, how do you DO that?
And ripped up one seam--which is likely from being swung or tugged on. This is not careful, respectful care of a doll. This is what happens when someone too immature to care for a doll is given one or allowed to be around one.

And in case you think I'm being a little harsh? I once saw this in action. Before the AG store got up here, I went to one of the fashion shows. And I saw a girl, maybe six or so, swinging her doll by her hair in circles, over and over and chucking her onto the floor.  And the mother was all "She just adores that doll so much! Isn't she so sweet?" I may have shot her a look that said "please don't talk to me any more." Furthermore, my explorations on the internet have revealed that people have give AG dolls--not the Bitty Baby ones, the full sized ones--to children under the age of two. And then wonder why they aren't taking the best care of their toys. Children under two often haven't mastered the fine art of talking, I doubt they have mastered the skills to take care of expensive dolls.

The plain and simple truth is that children who don't have the mental capacity or home training to take care of nice things don't take care of nice things, and giving them expensive dolls is asking for them to tear that shit up. At some point, I personally came up with the formula of How Much I'm Willing to Spend on a Kid:

"$(Age * 10 ) + $50."

Basically, before the age of ten, the most expensive thing a child can say they own or that I will buy for them to have as theirs is the cost of their age times ten, plus fifty bucks. This means if you're five, the most expensive thing I'm buying you is going to be $100--and that's really pushing it. I have to either really like you or have birthed you myself, and as of right now I have no kids. Before then, that shit belongs to me and if you misbehave or mistreat it, I'm not getting you a new one. But some people don't give three fucks about how much they spent on a child or how they treat their toys and playthings. I can guarantee that in this world someone too young to have an AG doll tore a nice doll up, and then Mommy and/or Daddy went out and got them a brand new one and they only learned the value of a dollar by being given so many.

There's a reason the dolls came with books initially and the Historicals and GotY still do--it's assumed the child can read enough to understand the book coming with them, and maybe ID with the character that the story is about. All the AG characters are in that 9-10 range. Yes, my gang skews older, but that is my head thoughts, not others. Also I'm a grown ass woman. I'm not going to scribble Crayola all over my doll's face and rip her leg off--and even as a kid, I wouldn't have done that, Barbie bungee jumping notwithstanding.  If your child won't take care of her stuff, don't give her more stuff to tear apart and then wonder why it keeps happening.

The books say 8+, and I'm a bit of a hardass about that. My thought is that the characters have books for a reason, and it's a good test of if your child is ready for an AG doll. Give them one of the character books--not the paper dolls, the actual books, like a Meet book or one of the Girls of the Year. And have them read it, and tell you the basic plot and answer some questions, a la mini book report. If they can do that, they might be old enough to have an AG. But If your child can't read an AG book enough to tell you the bare premise of the story, don't buy them an AG. A Bitty Baby. Maybe. Or a cheaper doll. Go to Target.

And if your child isn't even enrolled in preschool? You might not want to buy them a $100 doll to tear up, because they certainly will. 

Now I've got to snap as many pics of the black doll up there as I can, since she is now being cared for by the Doll Whisperer. AKA me.

It's okay. Miss Nethie is going to fix you right up.
--Neth

1 I have a lot of issues with C. S. Lewis, but I agree with that sentiment. Broken Clocks, and all.
2 This might change when I actually, you know, have a child. But for now it's a good formula when figuring out what to give as gifts to other people's kids out my pocket. 

45 comments:

  1. That poor dear is lucky to be in your capable hands! Can't wait to see her when you're done.

    And that poor Marie-Grace just breaks my heart. How can... how... why... and the that...

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  2. ACK. NETH. DON'T GET ME STARTED ON LITTLE KIDS WITH AMERICAN GIRL ABUSE. My 5 year old cousin treats her Kaya like shes made out of glass. ONLY because shes seen me take care of mine. BUT. When I worked at Chuck E Cheese, some 7 year old g-cunt. Prances in with her like 3 dolls and then drops them on the floor. I was taken back and said..to myself, whatever ya know. Not my kid. THEN THE LITTLE SPAWN OF SATAN COMES UP TO MY COUSIN (who at this point handed me her Kaya in fear of getting her ruined or lost in the tube thing) AND STARTS BITCHING HER OUT THAT MY COUSIN DOESN'T LOVE HER AMERICAN GIRL DOLL LIKE SHE LOVES HERS. I then bitched her the fuck out...and thats why I'm not allowed back...good times.....GEWD times.

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  3. I never liked Samantha's books, but one thing that always stuck out to me was in "Meet Samantha" - the scene in which Samantha asks Grandmary about the expensive doll and Grandmary explaining that if Samantha wanted the doll, she had to learn the value of a dollar.

    While back then Samantha had to earn the doll through various tasks (piano practice, helping with the household staff) and today kids might have to earn their allowance through chores or do volunteer work, the message is still here: whether rich or poor, if you want something, prove to your parents/grandparents/guardians you have what it takes to use, let alone own such pricy toys.

    It's a shame that lesson seems to have been lost on parents all too willing to just throw money down the toilet when they give such pricy toys to children who lack the responsibility to take proper care.

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    1. I agree. When I was growing up in the 80's, I treated my My Little Ponies like vinyl gold, since I did not come from money.

      Now that I'm a doll collector, I have to keep my Ever After High and other dolls hidden from sight, since I have nieces under the age of 10.

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  4. And even 8 is too young sometimes. I got my first AG right at the age of 8. I took damn good care of her, although I did have to have her rewigged eventually because I was, y'know, EIGHT and not good at hair.

    The one thing, though, was that even AS AN EIGHT-TO-TEN-YEAR-OLD I was shocked at the way my friends treated their dolls. For some reason, everyone I knew had Kirsten, and I began to feel very sorry for the poor little pioneer. My cousin swung hers around by the leg like she was a lasso; my friend's was lying face-down, naked, limbs tangled, with matted hair about a month after she got her; and OH GOD THE MARKERS. And I was all like YOU ARE DOING IT WRONG.

    Now, I am all for kids going all Destructor on their cheaper toys, but yeah, if you're getting an AG doll, it's an investment. Maybe stick to scribbling on your Skippers.

    -padparadscha (it won't let me sign in ...)

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    1. My youngest niece (2 years old) received two dolls of Anna and Elsa as little girls, and one of them had marker all over her face (I got rid of all the crayons at my place and bought Color Wonders!)!

      Like a classic car on cinder blocks in the garage, I keep all of my dollies secured in plastic storage boxes, and out of sight!

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  5. This is the best thing I've ever read about American Girl dolls. This blog is the mother of all doll blogs.
    I agree to every word of this. The BIGGEST pet peeve of mine in the world is underage doll owners. It's just as bad as drinking underage (but I'm a very over dramatic person!). It'll take all my strength not to punch the parent and an underage child of a doll, if I see them. I think AG needs to be much firmer at their stores. They should be able to refuse to give a 3 year old an American Girl doll, and not let the parents purchase her. I know I certainly would. I don't give a fricken two-hoots if the kid starts crying. The spoilt brat can wait until she's 8. Unless the kid is dying and won't make it to 8, they can bloody wait. I know I'll be making my kids wait for their first one. I don't give a flying-fudge if kids their age are getting them, they can wait. Parents can say no, they are the kids parents, not their friend.
    This, is coming from a 14 year old, Athiest, Aussie girl, just in case you were wondering.

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    1. Hi Erin..... Your are 14, Atheist, and Aussie, and your name is Erin. I found this blog by luck, and now I see that you know it. If this is the wrong person (Which I doubt it is.) Then I must ask you a question, were you a member on the AGFMB? ;)

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  6. the other day, I was walking around and I saw a 2 YEAR OLD GIRL holding an AG doll. The poor doll had the MOST HAIR POSSIBLE. the kid also was holding her by her legs, and she looked like the kid bit her. I heard the mom say to her friend, "She just adores that doll! Don't you see how much she loves it?" I was about to faint. Then, yesterday, at Panera, I saw a six year old girl with Saige she was in PERFECT condition, her hair was in a neat rope braid, and it looked like she just got her but she didn't. The doll the little girl had was SAIGE. I was sssssssssooooooooooo upset. The mom thought it she was "loving her". Sure she was. more like throwing a $110 doll down the drain. I agree with Erin.
    XOXO,
    McKenna

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  7. I got my first doll Josefina at eight, and even though I had to take her to the doll hospital to get a new head (I've never been into doing hair and stuff like that, I'm 12 now) but I still treated her well.

    I used to live in Florida from ages three to 11, and last summer we moved. My parents and I decided to take an auto train station (for those of you who don't know, it's when they put your car in a train, then put you in another one. They hook them up then you go to your destination). I had to use the bathroom and I saw two girls with AG dolls, I couldn't see the dolls' faces! That's how messy their hair was. I was confused, then really mad. So fast forward the next day, we were all waiting for our cars and I saw the dolls' faces. They were #27 and #24. At that point I had six Ag dolls of my own and even though their hair wasn't super curly and shit like that, they would never look like that (unless I was making a funny video)! I felt like taking the dolls, brushing their hair and keeping them as my own. Also, these girls were seven and eight! You'd think they'd know better by then! Then that September I started a new school, and I was in a AG book club. Oh, my gosh. Me and this girl named Chloe were THE ONLY ones who kept our dolls in nice condition! That's right, only 2/10 girls kept their dolls nice. I mean, yeah, my dolls hair was somewhat messy from being in a bag for four hours, but this was, oh my goodness...

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  8. dead @ "this doll has seen things, man" XD --mermeanie

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  9. mental maturity comes into play as well. an 8 year old can have the mental maturity of a 13 year old and vise versa. a perfect example of this is my little cousin. she is 8 and has about a million barbies and like sized dolls.However, she can't take good care of dolls to save her life. she has a off-brand American girl doll( not ourgeneration, it was ordered from a catalogue.) her hair is a mess, her hair has been cut into a horriable looking bob and her bangs were also given a trim and now look obscenely askew. her body is ripped.(she was playing surgeon) it makes me want to take that doll home with me and do a wig swap and stitch her up, pronto.

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  10. Thank you so much for this post, Neth. Let me tell you a little story.

    I was always always a mature kid. But even I tore up a doll once, and that doll's still around. She was my mom's Drink N' Wet baby from the sixties and my gramma let me play with her, which I was too young to even know what a doll was for really, just old enough to walk, let alone talk.

    So, these days I go on eBay looking for dolls and bait My Little Ponies, and all that sort of stuff, to fix as best as I can the damage that's been done. I can't always do it, but the doll/pony that I pick up will always have a home and will be loved and cherished.

    And yes! The doll play age range is squished in this society and I hate that. Also, I saw on eBay the other day, an AG doll one of the JLY/Girls of Today/whatever the heck they're calling them now, with pink makeup all the hell over her face, and the dude wanted $250 for doll and clothes. "Oh, it'll come off with water!" he said. I doubt it. I bet it stained the crap out of the vinyl. But anyhow, I'm glad you got this doll. And that Marie-Grace up there really upsets me. I'd love, love, love a Marie-Grace, even one as messed up as that one.

    I have no little siblings. But I do have very young cousins, and two who are in the actual AG age range. Even so, they are not allowed anywhere near Addy, my collection of CPK or my ponies, ever. Also, I totally agree with your formula. Saw my five-year-old cousin with a $300 iPad the other day and nearly cried.

    And one more thing. If I ever swung or threw a doll, my mom would have disciplined me for it. She taught me to treat my dolls and toys with as much respect as I do people, and also that things cost money and that money is limited.

    -Rhymer, because blogspot is being a boob. Again.

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    1. Totally agree with you there.

      My main focus is Ever After High, and I treat them with the same care I I did with my My Little Ponies. In fact, I have collected most of the doll lines from that time (Rose Petal Place, Herself the Elf, all of my Strawberry Shortcake dolls), and my nieces are NOT allowed near them! They are somewhere between the family's first VCR and a classic car on blocks in the garage in my book!

      As much as I hate being the "bad auntie", I have to draw the line somewhere!

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  11. Enjoyed and agreed with much of the expensive doll abuse.

    Suggesting people sign up for the free Joann fabrics store mailer. When that 40 or 50 % off coupon shows up. Buy a Springfield 18 " doll for maybe $12 or so. There are other higher quality 18" dolls out there. Madame Alexander bought for about $30 from WalMart...my current favorite.

    Order a $20 dollwig from Madame Alexander..and get a doll which many think..is better looking than AG.

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  12. Ps...I was a young abuser of dolls...but I later learned responsibility.

    Still wish my mom had not let the too young me...destroy her Shirley Temple doll.

    Happy to say I got better. Both my children are doing just fine.

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  13. I am still pretty young (11) and I love dolls. I have something to say. I got my first AG when I was 8. Of course, when I was 8, I was very careful around my doll. Then I got back into dolls around the time I was turning 10. My first dolls hair is a little wild, but I think my parents made sure I had a doll with straight hair so it's pretty fine. My friend, who is younger than me by, 2 and a half years got her first doll in 2012 when she was 7. It was McKenna. My friend's then 4 year old sister gave her doll a haircut. She cut a little bit and then some how got it stuck in the front like bangs that have been cut too short. Her sister then got a doll for Christmas, and traeted her like crap. Her sister took the doll, also because her mother told my friend to show her sister how to take care of a doll. I of course, was terrified and I didn't let her touch my dolls. I still am very mad at my sister for getting her Bitty Baby's arm chewed off.

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  14. I got my first American Girl doll at age 5. I have always been a doll-loving kid, and that Kirsten is still with me today, but only because I was(and still am) an overly cautious doll fanatic. However, I knew a girl( my friends younger cousin) who had a My American Girl #47. The doll was wearing a pair of jeans and her hair looked like it had been mauled by a tiger with a pair of safety scissors. I actually cried. I recently rescued a Samantha (who needs some of your braidspray by the way), and after that I have had increased feelings of affection for used dolls. I wanted to re-wig that doll, get her a shirt, and introduce her to the AG family. My friend was equally anguished, even though she has not bought a doll in years.
    Thank you for this blog. This post needed to be posted.

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  15. Poor dolls. God, some moms are idiots. YOU DONT BUY A AG DOLL FOR A 5 YR OLD.

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  16. I have two AG dolls (Two 8" inch and one bitty baby) I got my first AG doll (the bitty baby) when I was four and took the best care of it. Honestly, it's so sad to see kids treat dolls like that. And i always wonder why they ruin something their parents spent like all their money on.

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  17. I got my first AG doll, Nicki (GOTY 2007), and she came with a defected wig. Ever since she came out of the box, her hair was frizzy. I treated (and still treat) my doll (now with 8 other dolls) like GOLD. Those girls that treat their dolls like that don't know what they are doing, and when those dolls are retired (for the historical dolls, very soon, AG is dying), they will be worth a lot of money. What were those parents thinking?

    - Rach

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  18. I remind my daughter all the time that her dolls are expensive and that she is lucky to have them. Its a parents job to teach their children to respect all of theirs and other peoples things. I couldn't believe it when a classmate of my daughters' came over for a play date and ransacked her bedroom, the dolls clothes and shoes thrown all over the place. She took the Saige outside even when I told her that my daughter doesn't take hers outside on the playground. I took her back inside and that girl came back in the house 5 minutes later and snuck her back outside, where I found her lying in the grass! If my daughter acted like that at someones house her little behind would be bright red

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  19. Mostly I agree about young kids and AG dolls, but the temperament and personality of your child is really the most important thing, just as it is in making decisions about when to get a pet. My older daughter was 5 when she got her first AG doll Mckenna. However she is a quiet, sensitive, imaginative girl who has always been very particular about neatness and her toys. I just knew that she would take good care of her. However, I also made sure to teach her how to take care of her, to never use anything but the doll brush, and supervised her alot in the beginning. Now that doll is still beautiful and she has gone one to get many others, all gorgeous. Now my younger daughter.... no way is she getting her hands on one for a looooong time. She has a very different temperament. She actually has an Emily because she looks like her and she was being retired, but she is up on my older daughters doll shelf and has only been allowed to hold her under my direct supervision. Since we are a doll lover family, she will have to learn and me and her sister will have to teach her.

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  20. BTW my older daughter reads at a 3rd grade level and we read the books together. Again, as a parent you have to put the time in. If you aren't willing to then buying your child this kind of stuff is just indulgent and wasteful. We had an AG birthday party this year and all the girls brought their dolls. only 3 other girls besides my daughter looked like their dolls were taken care off. The rest were not. They weren't drawn on or anything terrible like that, but I have never seen so many unfortunate Saiges in one place. Clearly no one showed them how to care for the hair. Maybe AG should have hair care demonstrations going on regularly in the store so girls can learn as they leave. If it were up to me they wouldn't be allowed to leave the store with a doll without a doll education certificate!

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  21. Oh, ebay finds can be the best, and by best I mean "you've got to be kidding me" examples of "those kids did WHAT to that doll??" dolly horror, haha. I've actually saved a couple pictures from particularly, er, remarkable auctions. The all-time winner is a bald AG with wispy tattered remnants of wig just around her hairline, and no eyes. (Likely Molly in a former life.) Sleep tight, kiddies. Muahaha. (btw, I love to repair dolls and plush animals too. I just wish I had more talent with paint than I do.)

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  23. there are other AG things younger kids can play with the pets are great. My 3 yr old plays with my AG dolls and is very nice with them, I am considering getting her own but it will be under a lot of supervision and I will be caring for its hair etc. If she is too rough it will just be put up until she is older, no biggie.

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    1. There are things that a 3 year old can play with. They're called Bitty Babies.

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    2. actually you shouldn´t give her one of her own, in my oppinion

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  24. Jazz-The line is EIGHT AND OVER! Did you bother to read the post!? Nobody gives a shit is she's " nice" with them. Those damn dolls are $115! Neth was too nice to you. Go buy some knockoff at walmart if she really wants one. Hell, those knockoffs are cheaper than bitty baby and bitty twins. Pets are eight and over. Mini dolls I suggest could be six and over. This is a biggie! Ok my rant is over.

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    1. I will say here that I agree..to a point..I have a four year old who will be five in a few weeks..She has an older Uneeda doll that I have no CLUE where my mother purchased her, but we rehabbed her and she is BEAUTIFUL and we gave her to my daughter as a "training wheels" type doll..to see how she does..I have two AG dolls, and my Daughter and I will do their hair and do their clothes..we take care of her..she wants a bitty baby for her birthday this year, and i think that will be better, but I will say that for the past year My baby has done well with that doll..but she doesnt play with her unattended...:) Just my two cents

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  25. I think age compression plays a bit part in younger girls getting dolls. Many 10+ (right in the middle of AG's "target age range") year olds I knew were no longer interested in dolls at all, and preferred iPhone games, preteen stuff like "make your own spa goodies" kits, etc. They wanted to be more grownup, and AG doesn't fit in with that. It also means that, intentionally or otherwise, AG has to push down the target age range of the dolls in order to sell product. This means clothing being easier to put on dolls, more plastic accessories when many of us dinosaurs remember things being made of glass, and more emphasis on the modern dolls, with marketing geared towards younger kids (the Isabelle cardboard cutout girls can pose for a photo beside looks like it's about as tall as an 8 year old). And unfortunately the historical line sees a decline in sales as well, because many of the children receiving these dolls now cannot read or understand the stories tied in with them. It's a bit difficult to say whether the "be forever" revamp is going to help this problem to be honest, but I hope it has responded to a changing consumer base enough to keep the line going. Also I don't like how the consumer base has changed, because there is now less time for kids to be kids it seems, before they become "pretweens" (ughhhhh I hate that word so much for what it represents in our society) and are expected to grow out of toys. I also wonder how Bitty Baby sales have been doing, especially with the introduction of several new Bitties, since many parents seem comfortable with buying their 3-year-old a regular AG doll. If I had a 3-year-old, they would be getting a Bitty, because that's age appropriate, and I think regular AG dolls should be saved for kids who can read and understand the stories behind the dolls first.

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  26. I have a friend who has six AG dolls and lets her young daughters play with them. The poor dolls look in horrible shape as the two girls have already tried multiple times to rip off their wigs and limbs.

    The dolls have already gone to the doll hospital and once they were returned the girls would destroy them again.

    There's no way I'd let any kids of mine play with my AG dolls until they proved they were more than capable of playing with the dolls without damaging them.

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  27. This is why my mother didn't let me have an American Girl doll until I was ten. I drew on my Barbies' faces and cut their hair off. My dolls aren't in perfect condition today but their bodies aren't ripped and purple.

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  28. Here is the thing. I got my first AG doll back around 1988, when I was around 7 years old. I still have her. No, I won't let my daughter, now almost 3, around my beloved Kirsten for YEARS. But 7 was a great age for me I think, because I got a good 3 to 4 years of hard play out of that doll. Let's face it, by the time most girls turn 11, they are out of or nearing the end of doll play. I teach junior high, and I have never met a 6th grader that admitted she still played with her dolls. So much money on a toy that will get only a year or so of play seems kind of a waste to me. I'd rather end up with a doll that needed to visit the AG hospital after years of play and love, than a pristine looking one that spent most of its time on a shelf.

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  29. Here is the thing. I got my first AG doll back around 1988, when I was around 7 years old. I still have her. No, I won't let my daughter, now almost 3, around my beloved Kirsten for YEARS. But 7 was a great age for me I think, because I got a good 3 to 4 years of hard play out of that doll. Let's face it, by the time most girls turn 11, they are out of or nearing the end of doll play. I teach junior high, and I have never met a 6th grader that admitted she still played with her dolls. So much money on a toy that will get only a year or so of play seems kind of a waste to me. I'd rather end up with a doll that needed to visit the AG hospital after years of play and love, than a pristine looking one that spent most of its time on a shelf.

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  30. Sometimes I want to slap people who mistreat the dolls. Honestly. Don't get a $100 doll if you're going to rip its ass out!

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  31. As an age doll enthusiest it makes me sad to see these dolls being torn to shreds. I've let my niece play with them before and thankfully she did nothing to them. But I saw her our generation doll with crayon marks on her face recently -_- now I don't let her even see them. If you can't take care if an off brand doll even then why spend 135 dollars or more?

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  32. We allowed our daughter to get an AG doll for her fifth birthday only after watching her carefully manage the Bitty Baby that someone gave her for her second birthday for three full years. That being said, I would never let another girl her age play with her AG doll because I would not trust them. And my daughter is not allowed to brush her doll's hair yet. I would not hesitate to take the doll or any toy away that was not played with properly.

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  33. We also watched my daughter play with her aunt's 20 something year old Pleasant Company doll for a full year before we bought her her own.

    Bratty kids destroy all manner of items, not just dolls. But not in our house!

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  34. I got my first AG doll when I was six, #21. She is still with me today. I think it is mostly up to the parent's discretion, but kids under 4 should not have an expensive doll. If the parent REALLY wants to give their child an American girl, get a knockoff first (I got Our Generation Audrey-Ann when I was 5).
    ~N~

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  35. I'm just here for the cussing and the very well thought out comment policy. Oh and dolls are supposed to represent living beings to a child, right? Why a parent would let a child destroy a friend is beyond me. I say, if your child is a heathen to their dolls, they'll be heathens to their breathing buddies too. Does no one else see the correlation or am I thinking too hard about this. Not that I care if I am...just saying.

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  36. I just stumbled across this blog. My daughter is 8 and is getting her first American Girl doll. She's had a Madame Alexander Tinkerbell since she was 3 that her grandparents bought who is in pretty decent shape. Her dress was misplaced when we moved but the doll itself is fine. She also has a doll from Germany (I think) that is the size of an American Girl but her face is porcelain. Her aunt gave it to her this summer. The doll is 22 years old. She got it when she was adopted from Romania at age 2. I can't read the box so I'm guessing on the language. I decided to go with one of the cheaper wellie wishers. Ashlyn has the long hair that Emma liked but she isn't as pricy as a full sized doll. I guess if it goes well than next year she wants Addy or Melody. She also has a lot of my dolls from childhood. She's a messy kid but her dolls are all good. Her monster high dolls unfortunately have had their hands come loose and no matter how gentle we are they fall off. Other than that they still look new. Emma's cousin is 11 and has damn near all of the American Girl dolls and they are pristine. She got her first one at 5. Depends on the kid. Now I know girls about as bad as the ones in your post that are like 13 lol

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  37. Funny story:

    My girls both have AG dolls at 6 and 8 years old. They have been trained and supervised by me to treat them lovingly, otherwise they don't get to play. Mostly, they ask me to change the clothes, and my younger daughter asks me to do their hair.

    My 6yo also loves Bitty Baby. She has her own and has inherited her sister's. One day, she took BB out to sister's gymnastics class and while we were waiting, another same-age girl who has 2 AG dolls wanted to play with BB. I offered to put BB in the car, but my daughter decided to let the girl play with BB. Her eyes bugged at some of the things the other girl did with BB. As soon as we got home, my 6yo undressed BB, asked me to wash the clothes, and got out the wipes to clean BB of any germs, sticky snack fingers and harsh treatment. (I've seen the other girl with her own AG dolls, and my heart drops when she rips through their hair dry and swings them around and puts makeup on their faces. The mom doesn't care. That's what she thinks they're for, I guess. Not me. I love the dolls and believe they deserve to be treated with care.)

    I'm so glad I can enjoy AG with my girls and trust that they will keep their dolls beautiful for many years.

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Trolling, pointless bigotry, and hating for the sake of hating will be removed, as will any post screaming "first" because no one cares. Cursing is fine, as I curse myself. I still expect you to act like you have home training. This is not a Free Speech Zone. I reserve the right to delete comments or tell you to piss off. You post, you stand by your words, and all the consequences of those words, even if that consequence is getting your ass handed back to you. Don't come in my space, spit on my floor, and expect me to call it a swimming pool. I can and will cuss your entire ass out. If I told you not to comment, and you comment, your comments will be deleted.

If you are under 13 your comments will be removed; you're too young to be on the internet unsupervised and you know it.