Banning Barbie

by Priscilla on July 12, 2013

This was originally written somewhere around 2007/8.  I’m sorry to say I’ve succumbed to Barbie and her gal pals over at American Girl, but I did put up a long, courageous fight. 

I am not going to be popular with this one, but, like every cross dressing, who’s- the- daddy, ship-my kid-off- to-boot- camp guest of the Maury Povich Show, I am going to air my dirty laundry in public. Here it is…

Barbie isn’t welcome in my home.  Don’t ask me if Skipper or Ken can come over to play either.  They are banned for life.

It’s not because I am a feminist who believes Barbie is the root cause of the body image problems young girls experience. It’s not because there is no Barbie that correctly represents my children’s ethnicity.  (Anyone see Filipino/European Barbie?)  I don’t even care that Barbie lives in a nicer house than I or insists on walking around on her tip toes all day.  It’s all the stuff that little chippie drags around with her.

Barbie comes with 1,000 pairs of tiny heeled shoes that make their way into heating ducts and bathtub drains.  Barbie has purses.  She’s the Imelda Marcos of purse hoarders. I’m not even going to discuss the clothing.  Then there’s Big Headed Barbie.  You know the one – just the head so young cosmetologists can practice their trade. Big Headed Barbie includes 45 barrettes, nine styling combs and 18 makeup brushes.  Makeup not included.  Pilfer your mother’s bathroom drawers, the instructions read.

“Mommy, why can’t we have Barbies?” is the constant question on my little girls’ lips.

“Well, it’s like this,” I try to explain. “This place has dogs.  This place has a vacuum cleaner. This place has a mother who doesn’t need another ‘Core’  workout video because she averages 2,389 toe touches a day picking up your clothes and toys in order to vacuum and/or wrestle doll parts out the dogs’ mouths. If Barbie and her entourage move in here with her wardrobe and accessories, Mommy will throw her back out, and we will have to make numerous visits to the vet.  Trust me.  I can see the future.”

Despite the absence of Barbie in their every day lives, my girls know her intimately. She shows up everywhere we go. The blonde bombshell hangs out with them at their cousins’ houses.  She’s got a big residence at Nana’s, and she flaunts her shiny pink convertible in my face every time we go to their friends’.  But I’m onto her, and she is not going to win. This mother will prevail.

I do have one question though.  What’s the scoop on these American Girl dolls? They seem innocent enough.

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