The 15 Stone Babies review: This absorbing & sometimes disturbing documentary looks at the strange world of adult babies

by Matt D

This year I’ve watched my fair share of Channel 4 documentaries and often found that they shed a light on some very engrossing and intriguing stories. Their latest offering is The 15-Stone Babies which looks at grown adults who appear very normal on the outside but at home like to wear nappies and be treated as infants. As the opening narration tells us the adult baby phenomenon is one that has often been kept behind closed doors however with the dawn of social networking sites such as Diaper Book and Diaper Space those who live their lives as adult babies can now connect with like-minded folks.

The documentary follows two couples the first being truck driver Derek and his wife Maxine who act as baby and mummy respectively however they have also found a way to turn the adult baby market into a business by setting up a nursery. The nursery runs an hourly rate of £50 with Maxine working as the mummy a job that sees her change nappies and put the ‘babies’ to bed while Derek works as her helper by preparing the baby food and making sure all of the Hello Kitty crockery is properly displayed. Their business though is under threat as the recession means that people are cutting out luxuries, such as attending their nursery, so the pair head off to the States hoping to run a yearly event for American adult babies in Orlando. Though bookings are low they do attract one client in ex-pat Ashley, a builder with a wife and a two year old child, who finds security in wearing a nappy and up until now has had to live life as an adult baby in secret therefore finding a mummy in Maxine in something new for him. Ultimately though the American nursery is a failure and back in Britain the pair branch out by having Derek become a daddy something Maxine isn’t too keen on when she discovers that one of his clients is a 19 year old who is a size 10. Later we learn that Derek has allowed the nursery to become home to those who use their adult baby lifestyle as a sexual stimulus, something that Maxine refuses to take part in, however he does say that if they can get the nursery turning a profit again he’d stop doing the sexual stuff as it isn’t something he’s particularly interested in.

Though Derek and Maxine don’t see a sexual element to their adult baby business I personally believe it isn’t the same for 27 year old Cat and her 37 year old boyfriend Justin who act as child and daddy respectively. Cat, a psychology student, met Justin through an adult baby networking site and since then the pair have enjoyed both a sexual and father/daughter relationship. For me the most disturbing part of their relationship is that Justin would like Cat to behave younger than the six year old she sees herself as and later it is revealed that he would like her to be either two or three years old. Cat embraces every aspect of her younger self by having a secret nursery in her basement full of toys and full size baby accessories while she is also a regular client of Auntie Viv a dress-maker who specialises in outfits for adult babies. Later on in the documentary we see Cat hosting a party for other adult babies an event she wants to make as fun as possible by having pillow fights and later having her guests make pizza. As some of the guests are interviewed I get the impression that they see their adult baby lifestyle as something of a sexual fetish which Derek and Maxine would be appalled by.

It is these two different worlds which make The 15-Stone Babies an odd and somewhat disturbing programme to watch as at times I felt I understood the adult baby world and at others I was utterly disturbed the whole thing. It appeared as if most of those adult babies we met had a psychological reason for doing it such as harsh childhoods or the fact they felt more secure when wearing their nappies. John, another of the adult babies, also cites not knowing his father as a reason as dressing up as a baby girl however unfortunately he looks more like a pantomime dame than anything else. Maxine’s motives for playing mummy are also explained as she has suffered several miscarriages with her and Derek recounting how the last girl she lost would’ve been eighteen by now. Similarly Cat also had a harrowing childhood living with her bipolar mother and later being abused in care her adult baby lifestyle allows her to have the experiences she never did when she was young. I can’t help but feel though that Justin is exploiting this somewhat has his role as Cat’s daddy seems slightly more sinister than Maxine’s mummy persona and the fact that he’s always trying to make his girlfriend/daughter act younger than she is made me feel fairly uncomfortable.

After watching The 15-Stone Babies I’m still not sure how I feel about the adult babies phenomenon because while it’s a completely bizarre process the majority of the people who practise it seem to feel happier when they’re wearing their nappies. For most living like babies is a way to experience a childhood that they were deprived off or to be more comfortable than they are in their normal everyday lives. I did like Derek and Maxine’s attitude to the whole thing that they didn’t want to make it sexual, even though they were later forced to, but instead didn’t want people feeling ashamed and wanting to commit suicide because of those feelings. At the same time the sexual aspect was made fairly prominent in the American scenes involving Cat and Justin and I personally found these disturbing with Justin in particular coming off as fairly sinister. I think though in terms of the documentary itself Channel 4 has once again successfully shined a light on an area that most of us are not familiar with and has gone out of its way to present both sides of the story. Even if The 15-Stone Babies did make me feel uneasy at times overall I found it a well-made and fascinating insight to those who live a completely different life behind closed doors than they do in the outside world.

What did you think to The 15-Stone Babies? Did you find it as unsettling as I did? Leave Your Comments Below.


  1. Anna cole on December 14, 2012 at 10:05 am

    I found the whole thing disturbing, whilst we all would like to go back to being babies, in an aspect of living our life’s again, feeling secure, is a massive part of all our lives, if we’re all babies again, think of all the things we could change, things we have done, that have place us with negativity, things that have happened to us. I know it most be very difficult for the adult babies to over come their fears their past experiences, given all that I still can’t help thinking that this is in anyway normal, and their in real need of some form of counselling, I would of been quite happy not knowing that this sort of behaving didn’t exist, behind closed doors or not. The sexual side out of the running, this is not a normal process to deal with whatever has and will happen in their life, and disturbs me greatly!! The sexual side of it sickens me to my stomach, even with the knowledge of knowing that perhaps these are people who have suffered some sort of abuse in the past. These people need professional help, to deal as adults the effects of life that is sometimes thrown at us. I personally didn’t find it to be an insight I’m sadden and appalled that somewhere in the world this takes place. They are people who have suffered negative effects in there life, effects that maybe some have not suffered, an hope never will, that said, I still find it wrong on many levels.

  2. Sue Moses on December 17, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    Been aware of the Adult Baby/Diaper Lovers fetish for many years. I see it as just a sub sect of the BDSM scene. Most people who indulge in it, are very intelligent and articulate people, who perhaps want an escape and relaxation from our hectic modern living. They might well be people who are used to being in a position of authority, and for a sexual thrill like the idea of giving up control to someone else. Classic S&M relationship stuff. They will also like indulging on their own, wearing nappies and adding humiliation aspects to fantasies. For example, lots of stories focus on being caught by a wife/girlfriend/partner in napppies. The other party is seen as dominant, and decides that if they like nappies so much, then they will force them to wear them all the time and be reliant on the other person for changes, feeds etc. There may be blackmail elements ie threat of telling colleagues/friends that they are an Adult Baby etc. Basically, it is no different in my mind to those who like to dress as school girls, or indulge in spankings, being tied up etc etc. It’s all about power and control games and trust – the fabric of S&M. It may not be to everyone’s taste, but then there is such a wide plethora of sexual fetishes and tastes in the human condition. Some girls like hunky guys, some like nerdy looking ones. Some like fat girls, small girls, big breasts, small breasts, high heels, etc etc. It’s just one of those fascinating things that makes us all different, and apart from being a bit strange to most, it is a harmless pursuit to be an Adult Baby. I’m sure after a session, people probably feel as relaxed as having done a meditation session.

  3. Otter on December 19, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    I am an AB myself and I was not completely happy with the documentary. It does not completely explain the lifestyle and the people shown were not your average, every day adult babies. I did not have a bad childhood and I have no history of abuse. This is the lifestyle I am most comfortable in and I have no choice over it. It upsets me that people see this as “sickening” and disgusting because it is completely innocent and because it is such a difficult thing to explain, most ABs keep it a secret. Hopefully, this documentary raises a bit of awareness and helps the ABs in hiding to feel more comfortable with themselves.

  4. Gemma on January 4, 2013 at 11:51 am

    In a nutshell, AB’s need professional psychological help and cognitive therapy to help them happy to be adults, not these ridiculous sickening AB classes. However you look at it, however AB’s justify it, is it wrong, disgusting and bordering on insanity! These people are not right in the head, they need help, and as I say, not help as in being looked after as babies, help as in therapy to deal with any hang-ups they have. There are many other ways of feeling secure, this is just an excuse IMO! The whole thing turned my stomach! Seeing a grown man sat in a high-chair, having his nappy changed and being fed, oh my God, it was just so wrong, I had to turn it off!

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