potty mittsNow, I love buying stuff. What can I say? I'm a consumer at heart (before you bash me, I'm making it a personal goal to stimulate the economy one adorable pink thing after another). So when I had kids, I had more fun picking out each delicious product. I'd spend hours -- literally -- perusing websites, finding products, and comparing each of them, before happily settling on one. It was the very best thing about pregnancy. Made every swollen foot worth it.

But in my search for awesome kid gear, I was often floored by the stuff that was clearly marketed toward parents. Specifically, neurotic parents. It kinda made me a little mad that these companies were preying on new parents. So today, I bring you some of the most baffling parent products I've ever seen.

Disposable Potty Mitts. Great! A sweet, charming way to cover your baby's hands while she uses the bathroom! For all those grimy truck-stop emergencies! And here I was, thinking that encouraging OCD behavior in a kid is a BAD idea.

The Time-Out Pad. I'm all for removing a child from a situation and making them sit in time-out. It's the most effective punishment I've found in my 10 years of parenting. But a light-up, sound-making pad that doesn't chastise my child: "NOW DO YOU SEE WHY WE DON'T POKE OUR SISTER IN THE EYEBALLS?" Um. Now it's a game. And PS: the couch works just fine. Thanks.

time out pad

Zaky Infant Pillow. Okay, so, pillows shaped like hands that carefully cradle the baby on its side? Now, first, babies are NOT supposed to be on their sides (SIDS risk), and second, are we TRYING to scare the shit out of everyone? Trying to give our new babies creepy hand fetishes? I think no.

zaky pillow

The Tinkle Tube. A test-tube sized receptacle for little boys to put their pee so they don't accidentally spray it everywhere? There are so many problems with this. First, why can't the little boy just learn to pee in the toilet? Second, why do you have to have a special tube for it if you need somewhere other than a toilet? Third, what. the. fuck is wrong with people? A little pee never hurt anyone.

tinkle tube

Placenta Teddy Bear. Now, to preserve the once-lifeline of your child, you can cut, cure, emulsify, stuff, and sew it before setting it out for all to see. Because THAT'S not creepy. Not even a little. To all my pregnant friends: you can totally expect THIS adorable kit from me at your shower. You're welcome!

Safety Harness Leash. Now, it's really scary when your kid runs away from you, into traffic or in a crowded store. How about instead of leashing him up like a dog, you simply grab his hand? Or throw him in the cart? Or carry him? Anything anything but make him look like the beloved family pet.

kid on leash

Stuffed Pee and Poo Dolls. Now, we all know everybody poops (and pees!), but really, do we need to personify them? I'm all for a good poo joke, but this is too creepy even for me.

pee and poo doll

But, maybe it's just me that's squicked out by these must-have parenting items. Perhaps I have no sense of style or humor. Maybe I'm missing the point.

Or maybe, just maybe, they've got it ALL WRONG.

What's the weirdest parenting product you've ever seen?