Behold, further proof that I, as a mother, cannot control everything:
I hate Barbie. Hate her. Flat out can’t stand her. Chopped off her hair and chewed her feet, so my mother forbid them.
I was pleased that Vivian had absolutely no desire for this type of toy, and still doesn’t.
Rosalyn however, has yet to meet a Barbie that she doesn’t like, and manages to see them on the days I’ve decided to buy her a new toy and they’re 40% off.
Yes, I’m a sucker.
I used to worry about the potential effect on her development as a woman. And to a degree, it is worrisome-even this morning realizing that Barbie ALWAYS has long flowing, slightly wavy hair, regardless of her ethnicity. I worry that I’m not necessarily setting the best example in front of her.
But then I remember that I AM setting the example-by trying to show her that real women come in all sizes-that some are round and bumpy and squishy like Mommy, with crazy hair, and yes, some are slim and pale with long hair. That it’s ok to be either one-that it’s a spectrum, not an either-or equation. I set the example by reminding her they are Queen’s, NOT princesses, and that Queen’s kick ASS.
I am still amused that she absolutely refuses my offer of a Ken.
They’re toys. I’ve learned this since being pregnant the first time. The Ben 10’s, the snakes, the Barbies, the ponies-they are things we love. I love Holly Hobbie as a child-and I can’t think of anything problems I can attribute to that. I have had body image and self esteem issues-and I owned all of 2 barbie’s in my life. I learned, or didn’t learn, from my mother, and from the world around me, presented without a filter or explanation.
We talk, my girls and I. We watch real women and I comment on their beauty, their talent, their power and smarts. And mine, my future women, they hear this, even as they clutch what once I found so frightening.