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August 10th, 2009 by Dr. Phil

Nursing a Headache? Breast-Feeding Doll Draws Fire

OK, I need your opinion.

A Spanish company is making headlines with the creation of Bebé Glotón, a doll that simulates breast-feeding. According to the instructions, little girls strap on a halter and hold Bebé Glotón to their chest. And a gluttonous baby he is! He wails, and his lips move as he makes sucking sounds. Some advocates say the toy shows little girls that breast-feeding is a healthy, natural, beautiful way for moms to bond with their infants. Others argue that allowing a young girl to have a nursing doll will encourage promiscuity.

So what do you think? They have kicked women off of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace because they posted pictures of themselves breast-feeding, saying it was not appropriate. Now there is a doll for little girls mimicking the act. Should that go the way of the pictures, or is it OK?

Bebé Glotón isn’t available for purchase yet in America, but if it were, would you buy the doll for a young child? Is this an educational toy, or a provocative piece of plastic? Let me hear your thoughts!

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138 Responses to “Nursing a Headache? Breast-Feeding Doll Draws Fire”

  1. Kathy says:

    ….what’s next? Giving little girls mini Maxi Pads??

  2. Marci Williams says:

    I usually don’t get upset with companies who make outrageous toys because companies will do whatever they can to make a buck. Businesses don’t have ethical values, so whatever they can sell, they will. I think it is up to us, the consumer, to have values and we show this by what we will purchase for our children. I would never have purchased such a doll for my daughter (she is grown now) because a child should be a child, doing what children do. They need to learn many more important things before being concerned about how to breast-feed. Learning people skills, how to get along with other children, how to share, how to handle money (save and spend), how to prepare meals, respect for adults, humility, kindness… in other words, life skills. I don’t expect companies to teach our children life skills because that is the job of parents. When a daughter is old enough to have a baby, then is the time to learn to breast-feed…and she will. Somehow we all caught on and it is not rocket science, it does not require prior training or a degree. It is real easy to stop this insanity…don’t buy the product! Its a guarantee it will taken off the market. If this company goes bankrupt, I’ll try not to laugh or applaud too loudly

  3. Ginny says:

    Dr. Phil

    I Think we are pushing our children to grow up too fast as it is. I say let them
    be children while they can. So much of TV has sexual themes…It really bothers me. I grew up in the wonderful 50’s. Too bad we can’t go back…

    Love your program and think it does a lot of good for people with todays problems, sure do wish you had been around back some years ago…


  4. Dianna Sanchez says:

    Dr. Phil,

    I would be curious to find out what the statistics are for teen pregnancy and abortion where this doll is being sold (Spain). Many countries and cultures have a very different outlook on pregnancy, abortion, breast feeding, nudity, sexuality etc than the United States but I personally don’t see the need or benefit for young girls to be exposed to such a doll; as a tool for educational purposes (health or sexual education class) and promoting breast feeding it seems reasonable.


  5. Lonnie Greer says:

    I do believe it could do harm in the way of making these children have more of an urge to have children as they grow older in or out of wedlock and possibly way to early. Even though the main reason for teen pregnancy i feel is because of the economic status in America where both parents have to work and there is little time spent with the adolescent children. They fill in the feeling of being loved with sex. Or not even being loved they just want someone to spend time with them and it’s usually the male or father figure they long for. If my answer to your question has been of any help Dr. Phil i ask you to read my blog on your member site. lonnieg79 is the username i use. i need some help myself.

  6. Amanda says:

    I certainly would NOT purchase this doll for either of my girls.

    I understand that people may want to promote “natural” behaviors–but are we going to allow dolls that show other “natural” behaviors? Sexual intercourse? Masterbation? Periods? Absolutely not!

  7. Jane says:

    Hi Dr. Phil,
    I don’t think I’d buy that doll for my daughter. It just doesn’t seem age appropriate and she’ll learn all that stuff when she needs to. Although I do remember when I was breast feeding her, my 18 month old son had his shirt pulled up and his teddy bear pressed to his little chest!

  8. Mark says:

    Look, I’ll just be frank: they’ve invented a doll that molests your daughters. That’s how I feel. It is disgusting, disturbing, and it is tiresome for society to perpetuate the stereotype that females are only good for breeding in their adult lives. Would a doll that imitates a crooked Fortune 500 Company CEO that screams at you and degrades & offends your senses and eventually lays you off from your [make-believe] job to give an aspect what they could expect as corporate career women be any better? Personally I think this and the breast feeding doll are equally absurd.

  9. Tsukihime says:

    I have to agree, I would not buy something like this for a little girl. It’s bad enough you have toy dolls that do everything else like a real baby. I think this takes it a little too far. I wouldn’t go so far to say it promotes loose morals though. If we’re going to go there, wouldn’t it be easier to blame dolls like (no copyright infringement intended) Barbie and Bratz that promote bodies that are inaccurate and clothes that no mother would let a young girl wear to school?

  10. Susan Chapman says:

    Dr. Phil,
    I wouldn’t have purchased this doll for my daughter. I also wouldn’t purchase a doll that ate and pooped, or performed many other specific functions. I always viewed a doll as a repository of fantasy and imagination. A child can “pretend” whatever she deems important. She can pretend to breastfeed a generic doll if she wants, pretend to soothe it, pretend to scold it, etc. A doll designed to breastfeed in a specific way (and why is a halter needed?) limits imagination and is just a gimmick.

  11. Rachel says:

    Wow I’m a 24 year old mom and i did breastfeed my children and I did not learn from a baby doll I do agree it is sad most young mothers like myself will not even give thought to breastfeeding but selling baby dolls will not help any its all in teaching our children as they become parents or are around a breastfeeding mother that it is very healthy and natural

  12. sharon says:

    personally, i think its a sales gimmick for the almighty dolllar. I think toy companies like these should leave parenting to the parents.Only a parent knows when its time for THEIR child to know about the “birds and bee’s”!

  13. LeeAnn says:

    I don’t think it is a good idea! A mother nursing her baby is a very natural thing and little girls have been known to pick up their baby dolls and put the doll close and mimick their mommies. That’s cute, because they want to be like their mommies and they are doing it spontaneously. Lets let children mimick their own mommies spontaneously in the sweet moments and not try and fabricate it with this doll that could cause unexpected problems.

  14. Tsukihime says:

    Susan, I did have a “Betsy Wetsy” when I was little and believe me, I didn’t like it cause it got ME wet, lol! And the dolls that you feed? Have you ever smelled it after it came out of the doll? Whatever they used didn’t smell any better than real poop…

  15. Linda RH says:

    I have to admit, this doll gives me a “eewww!” reaction.
    I nursed my two sons, and my daughter, who is older, watched and knew what was going on. I didn’t flaunt it, but it wasn’t a secret either. I made it a point to be natural and calm about it. I never noticed her imitating me with her dolls.
    Likewise my granddaughters. My daughter had 2 girls and a boy, in that order. She nursed all of them and the girls were never seen to imitate nursing, although they “fed” their dolls with bottles.
    So I guess I’m saying that the Bebe Gloton doll is a provocative piece of plastic, in my opinion. If little girls are going to imitate nursing, they can imitate it just as well with a regular doll.

  16. Lauren says:

    Gosh Americans are so hung up on this stuff.
    I am not big into dolls that ‘do’ things. So I wouldn’t buy it. But I wouldn’t buy a doll that burps, or eats either. Let’s just use our imagination.

    I did breast feed, and I did show my 2 or 3 three year old that she could hold her babies to her nipple to feed them. My daughter preferred to bottle feed her ‘babies’ probably because she never saw anyone breastfeed. And I supported her decision. I think as parents we should teach our children that female breasts are for feeding babies. I don’t really think we need a doll that mimics it to get the point across but if that helps American girls grow into breastfeeding mothers who are comfortable with their bodies then it can’t be all bad. I don’t know where the link is from breastfeeding to promiscuity, I would think it would be the opposite.
    Did Robin breastfeed ? What’s her opinion ?

  17. Jennifer says:

    Are you kidding me? I would NEVER buy a doll like that for my 7 year old LITTLE girl. Like someone already said, they grow up to fast as it is why push it?


  18. sharon says:

    Dear Phil,

    I wouldn’t buy it.


    P.S. Just clarifying the other “sharon” a few posts above is not me and, while I respect all opinions, because I’ve posted a few times on your blogs before I didn’t want someone else’s future thoughts/posts to be mistaken as being from me. I didn’t realize identical names could be used on here for more than one individual. Like you, I’m not computer technically advanced and am still learning. ;) Oh well.

  19. RuthieD. says:

    HMMMMMMMMMM…….You know maybe this would be appropriate for first time mothers or teen mother’s prenatal demonstration for education purposes, but definitely this is not appropriate for children. Being a nurse I am open to many forms of education but this is not IT. I am with letting our children be children. Let’s not destroy their innocence.


  20. MJ says:

    eh..I watched the ad on youtube, and it looks like any ole doll out there that makes sucking motions with his mouth. However the only thing that makes it questionable is the little cloth thing that simulates nipples. That I would not give a child. But the doll, no big deal. The dolls out there that make that motion w its mouth come with little bottles…if a lil girls wants to simulate breastfeeding like mom, who cares…but do away with the little fo nipple bib.

  21. TINA says:


  22. Cmd130 says:

    Hi Dr. Phil.
    I think this is really crazy, what will they come up next? I’m a teenager, but I think that giving these to a real young child is kinda stupid, they have more important things to do like be a kid & not try to grow up so fast. Like one person already said was that they have to first learn people skills ect, when they’re older & they have a baby they still wouldn’t need a doll to figure out how to breastfeed. I would never buy one nor would I buy one for my daughter if I had one.
    Btw love your show, Can’t wait till the new season!

  23. Nadia says:

    What have we come to??? Is the toy industry so out of ideas for toys that bring out the creativity and innocent fun of a child’s imagination that they need to make toys that replicate every aspect of adulthood?

    Barbie gets divorced. Toy guns make machine gun sounds (even those allowing some toy guns for their children have been appalled at the realistic AK47 sound effects in some toys), and now a young girl is encouraged to put on fake breasts to nurse a screaming doll!!!!!!

    How long before some girl decides to see if the doll will accept her own still childlike anatomy? Will children be sent home from kindergarten for lifting their shirts to feed their dolls – be it this one or just mimicking their friends who have this horrid new toy….

    It is appalling and destructive. Minds mature and body mature at certain rates for a reason – hurrying the process inappropriately causes disturbance within the child and perversion in society at large.

  24. courtney says:

    I don’t think it is necessary to purchase a doll like this. Children mimic what they see and if a younger sibling or family member is nursing they will ask and then mimic the behavior… don’t need to spend $ on that!

  25. Christine says:

    I think the doll is a good idea. because it’s what is realistic. less people breast feed, because of embarassament, and feeling dirty when they need to feed in public. There’s nothing wrong with nourishing your baby, no matter where you are.

    Having a doll, and realisticlly feeding it is a great way to show children the natural way of taking care of a child. Baby dolls pee, burp, and do other bodly functions, but aren’t allowed to be fed the way the human body purposes? What’s the purpose of breasts now? for show? We dont produce milk after giving birth for show, it’s to feed babies. Why not have a baby doll that is realistic, than teaching a child the only way to feed a baby is by giving it a bottle? When a baby doll can be bathed naked, it’s diaper changed, and more?

    It’s doesn’t make sense for people to be bothered by it. If my son is older, and I have another child, am I supose to hide my breast feeding from him, because it’s “disgusting?”. Or should he learn, it’s just a part of life, and it’s nothing to be embarassed about, and that he shouldn’t ridicule a woman doing it in public?

    Are we teachign our kids to hate the choice to breast feed? by makign a big deal about a baby?

    I definitely feel that baby dolls, dont make kids want to have kids, they just like to nuture them, and they learn how to be, caring, and understanding by understanding how to take care of something. Why not start by teaching them one of the other options? The healthier, natural way?

  26. Becky says:

    I don’t agree with the majority of the comments here thus far.
    While I wouldn’t buy this doll for my child, I would not buy or provide a bottle with a doll. How is feeding.a baby – a child mimicing what she sees her mother do – something sexual? I do not understand why breasts are considered to be only a sexual thing. The intent is for feeding babies, regardless of what you think they should be for.
    The reason I wouldn’t buy this doll is because I wouldn’t want my daughter thinking she needed an attachment (the halter) to feed her child.
    I think the intent of the doll is good – but I’m not crazy about the halter. I do not think that a child mimicing how her mother feeds children will make them more promiscious. I’m interested to hear why allowing a girl to pretend to sustain a life by using her breasts will make her have sex when she is older. Won’t it show her that her breasts are more than a man’s plaything? If anything, I think it would have an opposite effect- self esteem and self worth.
    I’m interested to see what you think, Dr. Phil.

  27. michelle says:

    Little girls mimmick, teenage girls mimmick, I worked with behavioral teenage girls and you know I was back to back pregnancy’s my husband had returned from Iraq, so YOU KNOW!! The girls that I had on my behavioral unit, most of them now have back to back pregnancy’s, and you know I feel partially responsible for this. I rarely let them see my kids because they get all ‘ahh, i want one” and my response would be trust me it is not all easy and cutsie, OH DR. PHIL, I can hear you now, you can NOT make yourself feel responsible for their actions! I know , I know,, but I DO! I was the one on that unit, and the girls that have been pregnant back to back were the ones that were so very scared for my safety when I was kicked three months along in the pregnancy although I looked like I was SIX months pregnant. I dont know I think this will glamorize having a baby more, when it doesnt show the other side, lack of sleep, when their sick and they cant tell you whats wrong, when they are vomiting everywhere, or pooping out of their diapers, those kinds of moments, enough about all that. I definitely wouldnt buy a doll or recommend it, and I sure can NOT believe that a company would make this doll let alone finance to get this product going is really SICK!

  28. Amanda says:

    Um, maybe if it was like a breast-pump collecting milk for breast-feeding Mom’s, for times you’re in public, and can’t breast-feed. (Another debate). BUT NO, the person who just said; “What’s next? Mini-maxi’s?” is right. Sure it’s good for kids to learn/while playing healthy adult responsibility? But I strongly feel, that getting young girls ‘adjusted to the feeling’… is seriously concerning! I wouldn’t want my 9-18 year old…. attached to a doll suckling at her teet like a cow, in public or private, for that matter! Mom’s (even teen Mom’s) have plenty of time to get used to the ‘real thing’ after the baby is born…and if they can’t, then hey, maybe that’s why God created Similac!?!

  29. Megan says:

    I have to say that I am absolutely disgusted in the fact that this thing was actually created. I mean come on, where do we draw the line? Why to little children have to learn about this sort of stuff. I am all for breastfeeding. I breastfed my two children until they were two years old, but it doesn’t mean that I am going to go out and buy a doll for my child so that she can ‘pretend’ to breastfeed. We are making our children grow up too fast. Next you will be having sex education in grade one for crying out loud.

  30. Is this a joke??? I would never subject my child to such a thing!!! I know some women are comfortable breastfeeding, but this has gone way too far!!!!

  31. Carolyn De Shazer says:

    I think realism is being carried to the extreme in this case. Children don’t need dolls that poop, wet, and need to be breast fed. Let them enjoy the more pleasant side of playing with dolls. They will grow up fast enough.

  32. Helen Austin says:

    how ridiculous. I’m all for breast feeding ( I have the saggy boobs to prove it!)… but what will this achieve. Someone is trying to think up a new gimmick to make money.

  33. May I quote you from your home page Dr. Phil, “Yuk Yuk.”

    I think the definition of insanity is when a danger to self and others. That irresponsible spending of government in your previous blog and describes the OCD production of junk ending up in our landfills.

    All that melamine tainted dog food and those lead tainted toys from China are ending up in the dump and… God only knows what toxic heap that all is becoming. Has anyone tested cooking pans for lead being as most all metal pan sets are from China even in the finest Mall stores? Well, that’s what I see in the bigger baby picture of Bebé Glotón is more pure d’JUNK.

    We’ve been politically corrected into incorrectness. Thank God you are speaking up about the utter nonsense of it all or should I say udder in this instance. If I hadn’t had a hysterectomy at age 30 and I’d had children I would have nursed just because a good way for children to get their immunities. You said on Twitter people need to think. As per Bebé Glotón, I think child abuse in every aspect including, but not limited to, more junk to end up in landfill.


    Sincerely, SEA


  34. Christine says:

    I’ve commenter previously, and wanted to respond to some of the comments.

    I dont really think the intent of the doll is to teach kids how to breast feed, nor is it to teach them how it feels.

    What is a purpose of a baby doll? Alot of people say this will make them want kids, or make them prone to be more sexually active.

    Not true…

    then just having a doll would do the same thing. Why give your kid a doll if you think she should be imagining she had a baby in the first place?

    The truth is, if a girl tries to breast feed a baby doll, she’s going to do it…. if a breast feeding mom doesn’t agree with bottle feeding, she should be able to buy her daughter a breast feeding doll?

    I bottle fed, not because I wanted too, but because I had no choice. But I strongly support breast feeding. I think that it’s not something to be embarrased about, I dont think you should turn a child away from another woman breast feeding. I dont think there is anything sexual in any way about breast feeding.

    I think pepole who find breast feeding sexual, have fetishes. Should people not wear pumps, because it excits someone who has a pump shoe fetish?

    Breast feeding, is as natural as going potty… and everyone should read the book….everybody poops. Well at one point… every female breast fed… and breast feeding is the choice for many pediatricians.

    So, if you’re going to hand yoru child a baby doll, are you saying this baby doll will make her want a child prematurely?

    or are you saying, here play with this doll, and learn how to nuture it. Put on fake diapers, feed it, push it in a carriage, and swing it in a fake swing….

    Whats’ the difference? Having a baby doll is the same, wether it’s being breast fed, or bottle fed….

    Just teach your child the difference from pretend, and reality. Giving your child a water gun, wont make them go shoot people when they grow up. Just like giving your kids stuffed animals, isn’t going to make them want to be a veterinarian.

  35. Bernice Schuberg says:

    Childhood innocence is long lost; this is just another example of why. Children need to exercise their imaginations; reality comes soon enough.

  36. Blgspc says:

    NOW, YOU KNOW!…..There are some Toy-Making Spaniards who JUST GOT WAY TOO MUCH TIME ON THEIR HANDS!!! AND, probably FAR TOO much alcohol involved in THAT particular decision making process, as well!

    I mean, I’m just sitting here trying to imagine WHAT kind of environment/situation leads to the belief that the world SO needs yet another deviant child’s ‘toy’?!? I came up with a few scenarios that would produce that kind of bizarre brainchild but I can assure you those folks- in EVERY instance- NEEDED a designated driver!!!


  37. Marcie says:

    I’d leave it on the self myself, not something I’d buy for my daughter.

  38. SinTor says:

    In some countries, such as Italy and Spain, the low rate of adolescent pregnancy (6 births per 1,000 women aged 15–19 in 2002 in both countries [3]) may be attributed to traditional values and social stigmatization. These two countries also have low abortion rates (lower than Sweden and the other Nordic countries[7]) and their teenage pregnancy rates are among the lowest in Europe. Portugal, however, has a relatively high percentage of teenage pregnancy (17 births per 1,000 women aged 15–19 in 2002[3]).

    The teenage birth rate in United States was 53 births per 1,000 women aged 15–19 in 2002[3], the highest in the developed world.[6] If all pregnancies, including those which end in abortion or miscarriage, are taken into account, then the total rate in 2000 was 75.4 pregnancies per 1,000 girls. Nevada and the District of Columbia have the highest teen pregnancy rates in the U.S., while North Dakota has the lowest. [10] Over 80% of teenage pregnancies in the U.S. are unintended;[11] approximately one third end in abortion, one third end in spontaneous miscarriage, and one third will continue their pregnancy and keep their baby.[12]

    Hmmmm, maybe someone should take a look at what the society does over there.

  39. Paradoxis says:

    I have no idea why, but this doll and the halter just really creep me out.

  40. Sheila says:

    Breastfeeding is as natural as walking. I think this is only showing little girls that it is ok to breastfeed. We have shown them for years that bottlefeeding is the way to go. Girls now a day think their breast are for something other than what God intended them to be used for! Breast milk is the very best for ALL children and is so much more cost effecent. America makes something so natural seem un-natural.

  41. Fatim says:

    Dr Phil,
    Seriousily I don’t see the big deal. Each to his own. If you don’t like it don’t buy it, plain and simple. I wont buy toys that mimic violence for my son, and if I had a daughter I wouldn’t buy her toys that prepare her for “motherhood” seriousily when your child is ready to become a parents than they will do all the reseach themselfs, hopefully their old enough.

    If you want to get on your high horse and critise this new toy, then think about all the toys you have brought your kids in the past. Did you buy your little girl a baby born toy, why is it ok for her to feed a toy baby and change its nappy but not ok to pretend to breatfeed, afterall there all “natural”. Did you buy your son a gun why, it encourages violence. Did you buy your children play station games that where M15+ rated even though you shouldn’t or let them watch a movie that isn’t age appropiate.

    I ask, are you any better than the parent who buys a toys used to breatfeeed?

    In my opinion, NO. Would I buy the toy NO, but I dont buy violent toys etc for my son, even if he was “normal” I wouldn’t.

  42. karen says:

    you know, if a woman cant show that stuff, then why are these toy companies making such a doll for sale, breast feeding dont bother me , i watch my friend do it a few times, no biggie. i would never buy such a doll for a child of any age, its fake, let the mothers who love their kids explain that to them.

  43. Terri says:

    Absolutely RIDICULOUS! You couldn’t PAY me enough to buy this piece of crap for my daughter!!!

  44. Anja says:

    That’s a difficult question Dr. Phil, I think it’s not okay to confront little girls with these issues and a doll like that should not be part of education… On the other hand I am pro breast feeding, but parents can tell their children about that in another way. We don’t really need dolls for that do we! How many of us who have children and do breastfeeding have had a doll like that as a child? Nobody I guess…

    Pictures of teen girls “working with this doll” are definetely not okay! That attracks perverts and other sick minds so face book did a good job to remove them and let’s hope they keep using their common sense!

  45. Anita says:

    I think that this is the one of the silliest things I’ve heard in a while. I think that a young girl,perhaps in high school, could be taught that breast feeding is good for a baby, but eventually that will be a choice for a pregnant woman to make. And, along with that choice, she should find out all she can about breastfeeding and have some sort of support group to talk to as she begins the process after the baby is born. Also, women who don’t breast feed shouldn’t feel like failures. My first child had colic, I didn’t talk to anyone about breast feeding because I had it in mind that it would be very easy. I had no information at all. It didn’t work out for me and my daughter so I switched to formula. When my son came along 5 years later, I successfully breast fed him until he was 10 months old. When my daughter got pregnant and decided to breast feed, I told her to get all the information she could and then some. She did and learned a lot of things that I never knew in the first place. She has successfully fed her daughter for over six months and is slowly going to formula now, mainly because she is going back to school in the fall. I don’t necessarily think that giving a young girl these breast feeding dolls is going to cause promiscuity. But, it is just make believe. I’ve never been real impressed with the dolls that they have the kids carry around to simulate a baby. Unfortunately the only way for a teen to really know about caring for a baby and nursing is too end up having one. I am for teaching about birth control in the first place. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

  46. Tiff Bell says:

    Oh, Dr. Phil… This is just plain RIDICULOUS. Are they TRYING to get younger girls to get pregnant? If you think about it, those little girls that have these dolls are OBVIOUSLY interested in having kids already, why encourage it continuously at such a young age?? Oy vey. =)

  47. NM says:

    I personally think that people who sees controverse with something so natural as breastfeeding, really has a problem. Probably in the US is more natural for a 5 year old to have a dolly with a bottle, or even a weapon!!! Really don’t understand the polemic…
    When a little girl plays with her dolly, does not think to become a teenager mom, the doll just pretends another situation of our life.

  48. vince says:

    ok i dont have to watch the video on this one doc common secnse works best here lol thats just too damn much for ANY CHILD TO LEARN AT THAT AGE,EVER WONDER WHY GOD DID NOT SEND WOMEN INTO THIS WORLD ALREADY WITH CHILD?

  49. Donna says:

    the success of a product does involve the public purchasing it. This doll sounds like a stupid creation. I would never buy it and wonder who would. A child can pretend if they want with any doll. Breastfeeding is a wonderful thing but kids don’t need a doll that does it to teach them it is a normal thing to do.

  50. Maria McGeorge says:

    This doll is not in Australia and i hope it never will be. I saw the ad on a tv show recently and i wonder what mother would buy this doll for their daughter? What’s next, i shiver at the thought. I will sum it up with one word, creepy.

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