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Author Topic: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?  (Read 1974 times)

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Offline xTic_Tac_Toex

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Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« on: December 18, 2017, 08:23:45 PM »
This is something I think about a lot, and I'd love to know what other people think  :)

I feel like society we're conditioned to believe we should behave in certain ways and like certain things based on our age and gender. Surely this starts from before we even know what is happening: girls are dressed in pink and boys are dressed in blue.

In a similar way, we're told that we should 'grow up' and stop liking toys at a certain age. In fact, I recently bought a Gazelle (from Zootropolis) doll from an eBay seller, who told me she was selling it because her 8 year old got it for her birthday but she was 'too old for it'  :shocked: Personally I was very surprised at this, because I was still physically 'playing' with my toys until I was probably 12.

Now toys have a different purpose and meaning for me. Part of it is nostalgia but a lot of it is aesthetic. I suppose in the same way that someone might want to display a collection of antiques or collect spoons, I like to collect and display certain toys.

Throughout my life I have been made to feel like this is bad/weird by several people because I'm 'too old'. Toys are not my only hobby though - I also love vintage/antique clothing, sewing/making (which I do for a living now as a professional doll maker) and I also see caring for my two rabbits and playing with them a hobby, as it takes up so much of my time  :) Renovating my new house has also become a hobby and something I invest a lot of time in. Sometimes toys will only get a fraction of my time per week or month compared to the other things I like doing, but the point is I always come back to them. They will always bring me meaning and enjoyment.

I'd like to know how other people feel about this topic, I'm sure similar things have been discussed before but it has been on my mind a lot lately so I'd like to open a discussion about it  :)


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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2017, 08:43:29 PM »
There was never really a period of me not doing anything with toys, so my family is used to it by now. People are usually very interested when I tell them that I collect ponies and I haven't had anyone demean me for it. I usually add in that I sort of rescue old ones with matted hair and clean them up, they tend to think that part more than anything is interesting.
I have sort of grown out of playing with them as toys, but I still make little headcanons for my ponies based on which ones I bought together or where I bought them. People do ask me if I play with them like toys if I just make mention that I collect them and don't clean them.
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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2017, 08:48:16 PM »
The pressure to act more grown up in today's society is very strong. My niece was done with toys by the time she was 7. The only things she cares about are her ipad and iphone. I think that tech has altered the game a lot--provided that parents allow this, of course.

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2017, 09:17:13 PM »
Objects do not have age limits. The concept is yet another thing made up by people who feel the need to control others in menial ways. It’s kind of sad actually, I think we’d all be much happier in general if anybody could enjoy the happier things in life!
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Offline Luxrayx

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2017, 09:25:39 PM »
I'd love to know what other people think
Oh honestly, who cares what other people think? If you enjoy something and it doesn't harm you or anyone else, then go for it. Yeah, there will always be people who think toys are something you outgrow, and for some people, that's true, but for other people it's not. We're different. Everyone is different. No one has to question their hobbies or qualify them with their other hobbies ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2017, 09:51:11 PM »
I think it does depend on the child.

As a collector, I aim to experience the joy I felt as a child. Do I play with them? I wish I did still have capacity to play, but I enjoy the collecting instead.
I wish there wasn't the huge pressure to "grow up" for kids.
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Offline Pokeyonekenobie

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2017, 10:16:30 PM »
It's interesting.  A few years ago some of my nieces informed me that they were too old for Disney Princesses and only wanted Monster High dolls.  Last year they wanted dolls from Frozen.  So I think a lot of "too old" comes from what their friends are into and where their personal interests lie.  My nieces and nephews know that while I am considered a "grown up" I play video games, collect My Little Ponies, color (I colored before the internet made it cool), and watch cartoons.  They also know that I work full time, drive, pay my own bills, and pay taxes.  I also have them convinced that Cinderella Castle at Disney World is my Summer Home.  Their views of "adulthood" are varied because I am thrown into the mix.  They see that they can be "grown up" and still like whatever they want.  And they know that if they like something they can talk to me about it and I won't tease them for it or make them feel bad for liking it.  My 14-year-old nephew and I have had some good discussions about how he can spend the money he made last summer working on a ranch.  We've discussed putting away money for college and a car as well as buying the 2DS and Pokemon game he wanted.

Offline xTic_Tac_Toex

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2017, 10:25:16 PM »
I'd love to know what other people think
Oh honestly, who cares what other people think? If you enjoy something and it doesn't harm you or anyone else, then go for it. Yeah, there will always be people who think toys are something you outgrow, and for some people, that's true, but for other people it's not. We're different. Everyone is different. No one has to question their hobbies or qualify them with their other hobbies ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I totally agree with you Luxrayx, I don't think anyone should have to justify why they collect what they collect or why it is interesting to them/makes them happy. When I said I want to know what other people think, I moreso meant that I'd like to hear other collector's experiences/opinions/points of view on the subject :)


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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2017, 10:36:36 PM »
I think it does depend on the child.

As a collector, I aim to experience the joy I felt as a child. Do I play with them? I wish I did still have capacity to play, but I enjoy the collecting instead.
I wish there wasn't the huge pressure to "grow up" for kids.

^^this!

if a grown adult wants to sit and make their toys talk to each other like they did as a kid, hey good for you!  but I think most of us just can't do that ;) 

honestly I was playing with toys later than my peers.  I played with my stuffed animals (I was a teacher and they were students!) into 12 years old.  now I work in a toy store and when I recommend a stuffed animal for a kid over, like, 4, the customer is like, "oh they're too old for that" and I just???
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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2017, 10:48:13 PM »
Objects do not have age limits. The concept is yet another thing made up by people who feel the need to control others in menial ways. It’s kind of sad actually, I think we’d all be much happier in general if anybody could enjoy the happier things in life!

Very well said!

I really don't get why people feel the need to judge others for enjoying toys (or anything for that matter, but staying on topic...) other than towing the societal line, but fortunately I've managed to mostly get past bothering about what narrow-minded people think. At the end of the day, my little bundle of toys makes me happy, and that's all that matters. Also, when you get right down to it, how is toy collecting any different from collecting ornaments or anything else? Choices are still made based on personal connections and aesthetic tastes, they're just made of different materials.

My collection in a way kind of provides a little relief from the needless pressure of adult life in general, as it brings back memories of the carefree times I had as a kid and also acts as a little touchstone to remind me just to take off the doom-tinted spectacles every once in a while. Some of my favourite toys also have associations with my other interests, like a Beanie Boo grim reaper called Suzanne; I took her to a Creeper concert (she was peeking out of my jacket pocket the whole time, seemed to amuse the ticket checkers in a nice way) the band played 'Suzanne', so for me she relates to my love of music (spooky and otherwise!) I reckon she might have caught some lucky vibes from being there when her namesake song was played; she certainly brings back some great memories and that is a million times more important than what some judgemental snot might think (y'know, not to put too fine a point on it.) ;)
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Offline nessa16

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2017, 11:04:29 PM »
This is something I think about a lot, and I'd love to know what other people think  :)

I feel like society we're conditioned to believe we should behave in certain ways and like certain things based on our age and gender. Surely this starts from before we even know what is happening: girls are dressed in pink and boys are dressed in blue.
Interestingly, pink used to be for boys and blue for girls.  Blue used to be considered too feminine for boys.  You can see an example with this in Disney's Lady and the Tramp, and its sequel.  At the end of the original, which was done in the 50s, the little boy was dressed in pink pjs at the end.  I was always confused by this as a child and thought that the baby was a boy.  In the sequel, which is much more recent, the baby is dressed in blue pjs.  I didn't really think of this until my sociology teacher told us about these colors, and I then remembered L&tT. 

When I was a tween, I started to get the feeling that I should be "too old" for toys and actually gave my younger cousin my MLP collection for a few years until I came to my senses, lol.  Some people have made comments regarding my toys over the years which I am now happy to brush off.  My family does not make comments anymore, in fact my mom brags when I find toys that I can sell for a profit.  My friends take it in stride, of course.  They have their own niche interests too.

My nieces were not into toys very long either.  One is just turned 11 and the other is 7.  It's all about sports and tech now.  The only toys that they really have stayed interested in is Barbie.  They have also always been more into clothes than I ever was at their age.  It was always really difficult to shop for them for gifts.  My husband and I will be making a point to not have our kids addicted to tech.
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Offline lockette

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2017, 11:09:46 PM »
I really don't get why people feel the need to judge others for enjoying toys (or anything for that matter, but staying on topic...) other than towing the societal line, but fortunately I've managed to mostly get past bothering about what narrow-minded people think. At the end of the day, my little bundle of toys makes me happy, and that's all that matters. Also, when you get right down to it, how is toy collecting any different from collecting ornaments or anything else? Choices are still made based on personal connections and aesthetic tastes, they're just made of different materials.

years ago when I told my aunt that I collect ponies, she was basically like, "but they're useless, what do you even do with them?" and my answer was basically that I enjoy them.  then I pointed out that she collects coffee mugs from everywhere she goes and she said that those had a purpose.  THEN I commented that it's very common to collect dolls, and she said, "well I think that's silly too." 

whatever though.  I can see if people don't "get it" but to be so close-minded that you think it's completely stupid, I just don't understand that.
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Offline MightyRose

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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2017, 03:16:24 AM »
I honestly feel very insecure sometimes about my collection, especially as I do not just collect ponies but I also have dollhouses, stuffed animals, stickers and hair bows! I think that it is not only a hobby that brings me joy, but it also helps me cope with my anxiety and stress -just like video games or wood carving do for other people.
I think that C.S Lewis really said it best:
“Critics who treat 'adult' as a term of approval, instead of as a merely descriptive term, cannot be adult themselves. To be concerned about being grown up, to admire the grown up because it is grown up, to blush at the suspicion of being childish; these things are the marks of childhood and adolescence. And in childhood and adolescence they are, in moderation, healthy symptoms. Young things ought to want to grow. But to carry on into middle life or even into early manhood this concern about being adult is a mark of really arrested development. When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”
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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2017, 03:22:59 AM »
Of course not! The idea of "getting to old" to love a thing that you like (show, toy, game, etc) has always been such an odd concept to me. Why let your age get in the way of you enjoying collecting something or getting enjoyment out of shows or games? It's ridiculous.
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Re: Should we 'Grow out of Toys'?
« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2017, 05:35:22 AM »
I agree that the pressure to grow up is extreme in today’s society. We are pressured to stop liking things at certain ages. Stop liking your soother at age X, stop liking toys at age Y, get a boyfriend/girlfriend at age Z. Look, I’m a 16 year old girl who has been mistaken for a 25 year old. I still play with toys and still collect stuffed animals. My great grandma did this! And she was 90 when she died! Collected old toys and stuff until she died! Just because someone tells you to grow up doesn’t mean you have to. Go at your own pace and treat others with the same respect that you would want.
Sure, you have to stop behaving like a rude little child at a point and be responsible, but you don’t have to stop liking something because you’re too old.
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