This Viral, Fruit-Headed Doll And Its Tiny Penis Is Everyone’s Emotional Support Crutch

Attendee Judy Gao, 20, said she met Saito in the dorms of NYU. Gao moved from Singapore to New York in 2021 and quickly experienced isolation in the new school, new city, and new country. She said handling her fears of COVID and rampant Asian hate crimes was overwhelming. “The worst was I moved to New York by myself,” she said. “It was just so lonely.” 

Things changed when she met Saito, who had moved from Japan and was feeling many of those same emotions. One day, Saito brought back a Sonny Angel for Gao. “It reminded me of home,” Saito said.

Cynthia LaForte, a psychotherapist with an attachment-based and object relations–based approach, told BuzzFeed News that items can offer a tangible form of security. “When children have a doll or blankie, what we call a transitionary object, the object helps the child. And as the child grows up, the object becomes internalized,” she said. “There is a lot of discussion about how things like phones are transitionary objects, giving us a personal sense of safety, love, peace.”

The meetup is sort of about the dolls, but not really. People hugged longtime internet friends, finally meeting up IRL after chatting on Discord, or traded social media handles with new ones. Some said hi to their favorite Sonny Angel influencers, offering up their bags of tradable dolls.

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