Technically, the toy’s name is “Midge Hadley,” but everyone knows the doll as “Pregnant Barbie.” The doll was first released in 1963 by Mattel. Midge was released at the same time as “Skipper” to avoid criticism. Midge Hadley is Barbie’s best friend (as advertised by Mattel). Due to controversy, Mattel stopped manufacturing the pregnant Barbie after the 1960s until 1988 when Midge was released back into the “happy family line” where she has a boyfriend, Alan Sherwood, and three sons: 3-year-old Ryan, Newborn Nikki and (age unknown) Cassandra. Midge Hadley came loaded with a magnetic tummy and a baby Nikki that could be inserted into her stomach. Because Alan was not packaged with Midge and she did not have a ring, this “Happy Family Line” again received criticism claiming that it promoted teenage pregnancy, was inappropriate for children, and promoted the birth of children out of wedlock. Parents criticized the toy saying it “looked too young to have children”, prompting retail stores to pull the Happy Family Line from shelves.
Not everything is negative. Later, Midge was packaged with a picture of Alan and Ryan on the packaging. Midge was also redesigned with a ring! However, Mattel took advantage of the production once again, only releasing a special edition of the old version of Midge in 1993 and 1998. Mattel decided to reintroduce Midge in 2013 as Barbie’s best friend, but single and childless. Midge Hadley is one of the most controversial toys.
Now, at present, the only thing close to finding a toy like Midge is buying a generic or finding the vintage doll online. The average price of a vintage Midge Hadley is hundreds of euros. The doll is a classic and is packed with years of controversial history. The generic version of Midge Hadley usually comes with a shirt/dress, shoes, detachable pregnant belly, baby, and doll. Sometimes you can find a stroller and crib with the generic version of the doll depending on where you are looking for the doll. The generic pregnant doll comes with a detailed face and the same hair material that Mattel uses. The generic version can be a “quick fix” for finding a pregnant doll worthy of your child’s playtime. The doll is educational and could promote children’s learning experience. Arguably, these pregnant dolls can be a great educational tool for children with a pregnant mother expecting a new child.