Disappearing Stripper Boots . . . or Why Barbie Can Stay

When my mother asked me what Katie might like to have for Christmas this year, I gave her a list of ideas: books, furniture for her dollhouse, her very first Barbie.

I loved my Barbies as a little girl. I treasured each and every one of them … Barbie, Malibu Barbie, Skipper, and Ken. I even had a Cher Barbie (it was the late 70s, okay?). I had the powder pink vinyl closet that held all of her outfits and shoes. I’d have done anything for Barbie’s Dream House. I took Barbie very seriously.

I’ve always looked forward to the day when Katie would take an interest in Barbies just as I had, and I planned to buy her a Barbie as soon as she asked for one. I was thrilled when she opened all of her gifts from my mother and amongst them was her first Barbie.

I’ve never believed that Barbie alone causes body image problems in little girls.  Yes, she does present unrealistic standards. I won’t deny that.  Her proportions are skewed at best.

But, I’ve always felt that Barbie isn’t powerful enough to warp a child’s body image on her own and I found the arguments against Barbie rather absurd.

Then, I removed Barbie from her packaging, one long, giraffe-like leg at a time.

Katie was brimming with excitement and, brush in hand, couldn’t wait to brush Barbie’s long golden hair.

As I removed the bits of plastic holding her in place, I couldn’t help but notice the length of her dress (super short), the backless top of the dress, the black knee-high stripper boots, the heavy eye makeup.

I immediately felt a twinge in my stomach.

I was uncomfortable.

Barbie was … well … perfect. As I helped Katie to undress her, I caught myself wishing that I had Barbie’s body.

I’m a rational adult and I thought it.

I panicked a bit and planned to put Barbie away for a while until I could figure out how to ensure that Katie would never think the same thing, especially not in these early years as she’s figuring out who she is and what being a girl means.

So, I sat and watched her play.  And I waited.

As she struggled to dress Barbie in her other outfit, a sweet and appropriate nightgown, with a perplexed look on her face, she looked up at me and asked:

Mommy? Why doesn’t Barbie have nipples? How does she feed her baby?

And I was so proud.

She saw Barbie’s body for what it is…strong and purposeful.

We talk a lot about healthy bodies. Katie knows that when she picks a snack, the first thing that we do is measure out a serving size.  She knows why we eat a variety of foods and she’s understands the importance of “eating the rainbow.”

We’ve talked about the food pyramid. She knows how to identify hidden sugars and make nutritious choices.

We tell her that she is smart, funny, kind, and generous. We’ve talked at length about being beautiful on the inside.

We’ve told her that she’s important to our family and we’ve listed the reasons. Her physical appearance is not on that list.

I don’t speak negatively about my own body in front of her.

I’ve helped her to build a solid foundation for a lifetime of healthy eating.

A doll can’t undermine a solid sense of self.

I’m going to let her keep the Barbie.

But I’m thinking the stripper boots might just disappear.

89 comments

  1. Tim

    Very cool that you are teaching her about healthy bodies. Installing self esteem and giving her a positive sense of self for life is fantastic. As for barbie she needs to head to subway for a sandwich.

  2. Alexandra174

    Those boots are unbelievable.

    Seriously, who would design them? And how'd they pass through a focus group?

    Either way, I loved Barbie growing up.

    I knew I'd never be her…she was blonde.

    So, there was that. xo

  3. Carolyn thistalkaintcheap.com

    When I was a kid, my mother never let me have Barbie Dolls. My grandmother bought me some for one of my birthdays and my mother went ballistic. I don't know if it was the body image she didn't approve of, or the fact that she just didn't want to start me on the whole "have to have it all" kind of Barbie Doll collection I might want.

    With my girls, I was determined to let them have their Barbie Dolls. And they do. Tons of them. They have never once… not once… mentioned how perfect her body is. They never once mentioned how they want to look like her… be her. They are dolls. DOLLS. They play house with them, they play school with them, they play veterinarian with them. I love the way they use their imaginations when playing… that is what a doll was intended for.

  4. I've never really understood the whole Barbie body image thing. I don't remember ever thinking about Barbie's body and wanting to have it when I was a kid. I just liked to find a friend with a Ken so I could make them make out. ;)

  5. Morgan B. thelittlehenhouse.com

    I adored Barbie growing up. I had about a dozen Barbies and one Ken doll. Needless to say, Ken got around.

    I don't think Barbie has any lasting impression on a young girl's body image. If a small child has an unrealistic body image, then perhaps the parenting needs to be evaluated. Not Barbie's wardrobe.

    That being said, those boots have got to go! :)

  6. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Oh, Tim, you made me giggle tonight.
    Yes, Barbie does need a sandwich!
    With mayonnaise. And bacon.

  7. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Those boots are so many kinds of wrong.
    I much prefer the sensible slippers she came with!

  8. Mad Woman behind the Blog

    Screw the boots, come talk to my daughter about eating the rainbow!

    Call it a sheltered upbringing but I never longed for commercial toys, not Barbie or Cabbage Patch dolls. I'm doing my best to minimize my daughter's exposure to such things…more for my own protection than hers.
    And yes, I may or may not be jealous of Barbie's wardrobe.

  9. andygirl

    hell, at least it wasn't one of those hooker dolls, aka Brats. I'd lose the stripper boots too. yikes. and I'll bet you can find cute Barbie clothes on Etsy that don't look like they were made for hookers.

    I loved Barbies as a kid too. and I never, ever compared myself to one of my Barbies. in fact, I was always disappointed that her hair wouldn't do what I wanted and her feet weren't like real feet and I couldn't make her arms go straight. I was disappointed my Barbie wasn't like me. I think that's what Katie did too. she saw that Barbie is not real. that's an awesome thing.

  10. Ya know…remember those Brat Dolls? The ones with more make up on than Ru Paul where's in his entire lifetime and less clothes than Brittaney Spears has worn in her lifetime…those make Barbie look like Mother Theresa.
    But those boots? Really Matell?!
    I would have been so overjoyed to hear your daughter say that. Totally. She has a good sense of self and Barbie makers a.k.a Heidi Montag's plastic surgeon can suck it ;)

  11. Nancy C npoj.blogspot.com

    You did it just right. If you made a big deal about the Barbie's figure, you would have helped her see that it pushed your buttons or you would have planted a seed that didn't exist.

    "Why doesn't she have nipples?" Perfection. She knows what female strength is all about.

    And I, too, would like lessons on how to feed my kids the rainbow. I know about nutrition, but I love how you're making it so kid-friendly.

  12. jessb27

    So glad she thought Barbie's purpose should be nursing rather than hanging out in stripper boots. I have recently succumbed to the need for Barbie with my own daughter. Like yours, she seems to ignore Barbie's traits and only fret over getting her into her next outfit. My son is a different story, he enjoys Barbie while she is getting changed a bit too much, I'm hoping there is not a girl with those boots and that body in his future.

  13. cricket5033

    Oh, your little Katie brings a smile to my face! There's hope for the woman of the next generation! For her to immediately recognize Barbie's lack of nipples (a necessary body part for any woman planning on nourishing their children naturally) is just beautiful. She's a darling child, and you mama are doing a great job.

  14. Carrie viewsfromnature.com

    Too bad she didn't pick up the Toy Story themed Barbie. At least those versions are fully clothed!

    I was never into Barbie as a kid. And I definitely never had a body image complex because of it. She was a doll, pure and simple. She walked about my room, talked to other toys, got hairdo's and makeovers.

    Both my girls have Disney Princess themed Barbies from Christmas. Neither one has really played with them. I'm not sure if dolls will ever be their "thing"

  15. I had numerous Barbies as a kid. And really? I only thought about putting them in cute outfits. I did have a pair of white high-heeled boots that were my favorite…but maybe a 3 inch heel & no platform. Def. not stripper boots…those things? Are just ridiculous.

    I never thought about her proportions or that I wanted to look like her. My body image issues? Had nothing to do with Barbie. I may have had some wardrobe envy…but certainly not body envy. Honestly? I never even realized how out of proportion she is until I was well into my 20s. Never even thought about it. Because she is not real. She is a doll.

  16. I was quite the Barbie addict as a young girl.

    And I cannot blame Barbie for my distorted self-image. Barbie was just a toy. My round headed, giant eyed dolls didn't either. We need to have a chat with TV and magazines for THAT problem.

    And given how beautiful Katie is, I bet it's hard to not let her appearance take center stage. But I have a dear friend who's absolutely stunning daughter had the world focus on her loveliness and it turned into a huge problem.

  17. Nina Badzin

    Oy vey- those boots are crazy!!! I love your daughter's question though. Wait until she wonders why Ken is missing his crucial parts. ;) (BTW, Found you on Twitter from GDRPempress's RT this morning!)

  18. Bwahahahaha!!! Too funny…I have all boys, so we don't have to even broach this subject. But, I have to tell you I loved Barbie when I was a little girl. LOVED!! I had tons of them. And I don't ever remember thinking that my body would never be as perfect as hers. I just liked to play with her. I think it's the insecure adults who raise these questions/concerns..ie: make a big deal out of NOTHING! Just my opinion. But, well done, on teaching your daughter. Actually, when my oldest was 4, he watched me nurse his little brother all the time. He desperatley wanted a baby doll. Daddy wouldn't comply, but I bought him a Care Bear…which he happily nursed as I fed his baby brother !!!

  19. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I couldn't agree with you more.
    I plan to buy Katie some of the career specific clothing so that she sees some options for Barbie.
    She plays with such a variety of toys that I'm not going to worry about Barbie unless I see any sign of body image issues.

  20. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I did have Ken and his friend. Or was it just that I had two Kens? One with blond hair and one with brown?

  21. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    We have days when she'd prefer to eat beige only, trust me. But, for the most part, once I start talking about why we need variety, she gets back on board.

    I would say that 75% of her toys are more open ended…she loves to play in her kitchen, with her trains, and her legos.

    Keep fighting the good fight. ::giggle::

  22. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Those Brat dolls don't even look human.
    They are on the Do Not Buy list, for sure.
    Too funny about Ru Paul and Brittney Spears…giggle.

  23. kate b twitter.com/2bkate

    I'm so bookmarking this for when Ava is older… good things to teach her (things I was never taught).

  24. Nichole, are you suggesting my taste in footwear is skanky?

    'Cause there's nothing wrong with some boots.

    Oh, who am I kidding, my calves are too fat for boots!

    Wait, that might have some deep meaning in relation to this post.

    Maybe with a nipple tie-in.

    I'll think about it.

  25. I struggled with the Barbie issue this Christmas and made my peace with myself by buying princess dolls for one more year (A will be three in February). I had to remove the high heels because my son is quite interested in eating them! I don't, however, have an overwhelming issue with Barbie as a toy and bought her doll house hoping she would be able to transition her Barbies into it one day. I just wasn't ready quite yet.

    You have done an amazing job with Katie, and I hope that I will be able to instill such a sense of self esteem. We talk about kindness being more important than appearance, and I am very careful about what I say about my own body, yet I worry desparately for her. In some ways, our society seems so very cruel to our daughters.

    PS The princess dolls are built like Barbie anyway. I make myself feel a little better by telling myself they have more clothes. Although Sleeping Beauty obviously has some seriously long lasting make-up, because she looks like she's ready to wake up and go to the club.

  26. Christine Marie

    So funny because my daughter has had the Princess dolls for a while now, and while she loves them, Barbie was the obvious next purchase. We soon had to buy clothes because she strips them all naked…thankfully the new clothes helped.

    My personal difficulty was in the short dresses. I tried to put one on a princess doll and it didn't even cover her butt! And just barely did on the Barbie! What is that?! I'm not asking much…even mid-thigh would be nice. Geez.

  27. My daughter is 11 so we are now past the Barbie stage – but I did worry about the "basket of perfection" (she ended up receiving almost every incarnation of Barbie and countless accessories over the years from friends/family. including stripper boots).

    I have to say she never seemed to compare herself. She was more inclined to cut off all Barbie's hair. or color on her face with Sharpie. Or tie her to a ceiling fan and spin her around the room while she and her brother danced beneath her flying body (not disturbing at all).

    You've been doing your job. She knows what makes a woman valuable and worthy of love. And she will continue to learn. Do not worry.

    I promise you. She knows.
    JCG

  28. mommylebron

    I know lots of moms get in an uproar over the Bratz dolls. Honestly, they're just toys. My daughter is not a big Barbie fan (not for a lack of trying, I adored Barbie) but she has always loved Bratz. I thought of forbidding/avoiding them in the beginning but it was something she would actually sit and play with, and if you follow my blog you know that anything that will get her to sit still for a bit is awesome in my book. That being said, we talk a lot. We talk about the make up, the clothes, what's appropriate what is "fresh" (read: hookerish). This Christmas she got her first Moxie girl and she loved her! Her first words were, "Look how beautiful she is and she doesn't even have so much make up or fresh clothes!" Win?

  29. Efloraross thewriterrevived.com

    I have always hated Barbie. Even when I was a little girl. If someone gave me one, I defiled her. Now that I am the mother of a young girl, I am seriously considering banning her from our home. Forget the potential body image issues (which you can't, because I believe they are real and huge). Barbie teaches kids that life is all about obtaining "stuff." The more stuff you have, the cooler you are. The big house. The fancy car. The perfect man. The wardrobe. God, I'm getting pissed off just writing this! I *really* hate that frigging doll! ;)

  30. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I will be crossing my fingers for you! ;)
    Today, she's playing with Barbie in her Playmobil animal hospital. Barbie looks like a giant with all of those little people!

  31. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I was so proud of her! I love that she noticed that and it makes me nearly cry when I see her nursing her babies or her stuffed kitties.

    Thank you so much for your kind words. As parents, we always hope that we're on the right track, don't we?

  32. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Thank you for the kind words about Katie. :)

    We try not to focus on Katie's external beauty too much. We tell her that she has really pretty eyes, a lovely smile, and things like that. I want her to feel confident in her appearance.
    I think that, like in all things, moderation is key.

    Barbie is about to get some new clothes. :)

  33. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I am so grateful to my mom for the Barbie. I love that she listened to what Katie most wanted.
    I'm certain that my mother was remembering that I needed no fewer than 80 outfits and she knew that Barbie would have more clothing options soon! :)

    Katie has never (gasp!) watched a Disney movie. Not for lack of trying on my part, however! We bought her Tinkerbell last summer and she's not interested. We bought her Toy Story 2 for Christmas and haven't tried it yet. I'm hoping she'll like it. :)

    I'll be on the lookout for that Toy Story Barbie.

  34. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I swear that I had those same boots! How did I forget about those? Like go go boots, right?

  35. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Yes, TV and magazines are huge influencers. Huge.
    We really try to avoid continually telling Katie that she's cute.
    When we do compliment her, we tell her that she's smart, or funny, or kind, or that her eyes are pretty. Things that are within her control. Does that make sense?
    I don't want her to tie her self-worth to her appearance. I'd determined that she will grow up valuing her internal beauty and that of others.

  36. Hope hoperoth.com/blog

    Those boots are just plain old UGLY.

  37. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Those boots are out of control!
    You couldn't see them when she was still in the box.
    Ken's missing parts aren't something that I want to talk about anytime soon! ;)
    The Empress is so amazing, isn't she?

  38. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Okay, the image of your son nursing his Care Bear is a million kinds of awesome! What a little sweetheart!

  39. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    It's tough to know what to focus on and when to not freak out.
    I'm trying to figure it all out, day by day!

  40. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Giggle.
    I've yet to find calf-friendly boots.
    And nipple tie in sounds painful. ;)

  41. gigi

    Barbie has indeed become a hoochie. But I agree, it's nothing that cant' be overcome by involved parenting.

    Of course, some kids won't eat the rainbow if you serve it to them on a pink platter with unicorns.

    I have two of those kids. :)

  42. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I've noticed those princess dolls, they are so cute.
    You made me giggle about Snow White's makeup!

    I just think that it's dangerous to blame things completely on society. My job as a parent is to lay the groundwork for how my children process external messages. If I don't remain mindful of my job, then sure, things like Barbie could be more impactive than I want them to be.

    She is still at an age where her father and I have the biggest influence on how she views the world.
    We only have that power for so long!

  43. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Mid-thigh is starting to look good.
    But really, what's wrong with mid-calf? ;)

  44. I so wanted one of those Barbie heads! one of my friends had one and I was SO jealous!

    I saw one last fall used as a model: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thecrazylady/4939385

  45. Christine Marie

    NOTHING!!! LOL!! How about ball gowns?!

  46. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I am dying over the image of Barbie spinning from the ceiling fan. Dying! ;)
    Thank you for your kind words.
    I'm really, really trying to do right by her.

  47. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I love that she was thrilled with the Moxie doll. Her response makes me want to go look for one!
    Win!

  48. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    You make me smile, Elizabeth!

    We buy Katie very little throughout the year.
    My mom bought her a dollhouse last year and she has only gotten additional pieces for her birthday and for Christmas.

    We purposely don't buy her much because we don't want her to think that the world works that way.

    So I shouldn't mail your sweet girl a Barbie for her next birthday? ;)

  49. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I was relieved that Katie much preferred the slippers that came with her Barbie! :)

  50. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Yep, involved parenting is the key.
    And trust me, just because she understands the importance of eating the rainbow doesn't mean that she is always thrilled about it. ;)

  51. CDG

    I loved my Barbies, too! And that pink vinyl closet/suitcase thing. (I maybe still own it.)

    And I'm so glad I have a son, whose idol is a bucktoothed, animated, rusty, tow truck. No body image issues there.

    I would buy my son an actual rusty tow truck if he would eat the rainbow.

    Katie is wonderfully parented, and I wouldn't worry about a hoochie dress or two, but maybe invest in a pair of tiny leggings to keep her "hoohah" (points if you know I'm using that term ironically) from getting chilly.

  52. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Do you think that Barbie impacted your body image?

    And how can I get Katie to be interested in Cars? I've tried, to no avail.

    Thank you for your kind words about our parenting. One day at a time. :)

    You know what helped us most with the eat the rainbow thing? A book called "Eat This, Not That." It has gorgeous photos of foods of each color. We looked at it when we first talked about the concept and she could make her own choices from each color. I even had a chart. Yeah, a bit over the deep end with that. ;)

    Off to buy leggings. Hoohah…giggle.

  53. CDG

    You know what I remember thinking about my Barbies? Her skin (the late 70's/early 80's style flexi-skin) was a little sticky. And it bummed me out that her eyes were always blue or green or violet (I know, what?). But I never remember wanting a huge rack (yeah, I actually got that) or nine mile long legs and a Scarlett O'Hara waist. I remember wishing I could *wear clothes* like she did, though. The perfect fit and drape and swish and sparkle.

    And here's what I learned, twenty some odd years later. You *can* wear clothes with perfect fit and swish and sparkle, no matter what size/shape you are.

    Can I borrow that chart?

    My kid eats edamame and raw carrots, pears and apples. Dried cherries and apricots. End of story.

    Drives me batty. I'm a trained chef, for crying out loud.

  54. Natalie mommyofamonster.com

    Dear Lord, the designers at Mattel are clearly NOT thinking about the image they are portraying for Barbie! Those stripper boots definitely need to go. I'm so glad you are doing this all before me, so that when my girls get to that age, you'll have all kinds of helpful words for me :)

  55. Cheryl @ Mommypants mommypants.com

    I always loved Barbie, and even as a child I thought the toes were ridiculous. That, and the way the knees crack and pop when you bend them (altho, these days I can totally relate).

    I don't think kids get their self-esteem from Barbie. That being said, I was a little appalled at all the slutty Barbies I saw. Also, did you know that Wedding Barbie has "underwear" as part of the plastic?

  56. ~*Jess*~ straighttalkjess.com

    That is awesome. And I was pretty disappointed when Ava's doctor barbie had totally hooker heels.

  57. Such a great post!!! Yes, today's Barbie is sluttier than the ones from our childhood. I'm unsure how to approach the Barbie/princess thing with our daughter. I do tell her she is beautiful everyday because I struggle with that myself, but stressing the importance of inner beauty over external beauty is key.

  58. You will def win over Barbie! Sounds like you are an amazing parent! I am so impressed with how you are instilling in her such positive eating habits! This world needs more parents like you in it!
    Def throw out the hooker boots!:)

  59. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I could use some multitasking tips from YOU!

  60. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Sigh. Mine crack and pop too. I'm geriatric Barbie, nice to meet you.
    Katie's Barbie has panties on too. I was pleasantly surprised.
    I hope they threw some on Ken too.

  61. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Appropriate on top and slutty on the bottom.
    What message does *that* send? ;)
    Although, I'm certain that if I was on my feet all day long, I'd love nothing more than to torture my feet with hooker heels. Nice choice, Barbie. ;)

  62. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Finding an healthy balance between inner and outer beauty must certainly be the goal.

  63. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    We do the best that we can.
    I'm probably missing some other thing that I should be focussing on and she'll end up in therapy for that one day.
    Sigh. ;)

  64. Bad Mummy

    I'm anti-Barbie. I don't allow them in my home, but my 5-yr old daughter has a number of them at her dad's home.

    What I prefer to give M are Groovy Girls. They're soft and have changeable clothes, little pets and hair that can be styled, somewhat. Plus, they are GIRLS, not women. Her most recent GG acquisition was Starletta, a superhero Groovy GIrl. I also made sure that she got a doctor outfit for her GGs this Christmas. Bonus…no tiny shoes or big stripper boots!

  65. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    So, you're covering green, orange, red, and yellow, right? That's not too shabby!
    If you can get him to eat blueberries and pomegranate, you'll be even better off.
    When Katie was little, I used to do a ton of smoothies and sneak in all sorts of things that she was certain that she didn't like.

  66. beforethebabywakes

    I was completely obsessed with Barbie's when I was young. My sister and I had an entire closet worth. And the older I got I started migrating away from actually playing Barbie's and making clothes for them out of old clothes and the stapler. Best times of my life. I'm only 23 so my Barbie doll playing years aren't that far behind and I remember them vividly. But what I don't remember is ever feeling like I wanted or needed to have Barbie's body and I never noticed are incredibly inappropriate clothing. I think kids are a lot simpler then we know and I think *we* see all of the potential risk & subliminal messages but I don't think our kids do.

  67. Holy shit!! Those are some big ass stripper boots!!! Barbie has changed a lot…the little slut. By the way

  68. seriously disturbing – you see how far apart her thighs are? Barbie is anorexic. and I never noticed all the eye makeup. yucky! But sounds like your daughter does not care :) good job, momma!

    I love the whole eating the rainbow thing too – someone shoulda taught me that so I could pass it on!

    ~thirstymagnolia

  69. The brunette is his friend. I think Barbie was more interested in tall dark and handsome, hence their notorious breakup, ;)

  70. otownmommy

    Ya- those boots have to go!
    I am glad to see you are showing your little girl the importance of eating properly and how to make good food choices. We are at the stage where Loveliness isn't interrested in eating supper at all unless its pizza. She loves Spinach, tofu and (vegetables if they are handed to her away from the table).
    thanks for the posting and the chuckle

  71. Sherri

    I was so concerned about the Barbies and how perfectly NOT normal they are when my daughter was little. And you know what? I really think it made more of an impact on me than on her! I wanted that tiny waist and those hooters. And the cute clothes. Heck, I might even have liked the stripper boots now and again!

    I do remember my daughter saying things about Barbie and how unrealistic her shoes and body was. And no nipples? Come on, people!

  72. 30ish Mama 30ishmama.com

    I love the way you are teaching your daughter about being healthy and self worth. I agree with you, Barbie can't undermine that on her own.

  73. Kelley kelleysbreakroom.com

    Yeah, no need for the stripper boots. I like the way you approached Barbie with your daughter. No daughters here, but still important for me to think about. I probably talk too much about how I want to lose weight in front of my sons. The other day my 6 y/o was playing Wii "Just Dance 2" and said, "Look how skinny I am after finishing that one, Mom". I thought that didn't sound quite right.

  74. wow barbie has sure changed in the past 25 years or so!
    Good for you for being confident in YOUR influence on Katie trumping Barbie's influence. Good work mama.

  75. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    I love Groovy Girls. They are so cute.
    I had forgotten all about them.
    I'm off to do a little online shopping! Thank you. :)

  76. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    That's one of the things about parenting that no one really tells you…that you will see dangers where you never saw them before.

    How cool that you made Barbie's clothes!

  77. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    She's a little trampy now, isn't she?
    I'm on a mission to find some more conservative clothes and footwear!

  78. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Yeah, what's with that gap between her thighs?
    I don't have the best eating habits and it is so hard to change.
    I'm hoping that I can give her a solid foundation so she makes healthier choices.

  79. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Isn't it funny how kids will eat strange foods if they're offered in a different way (i.e. away from the table)?
    And yes, the boots totally have to go!

  80. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    That was the hard part, Sherri!
    When I looked at Barbie and actually thought about how much I wish my body looked like hers, it made me panic.

    The need to make a breastfeeding Barbie, don't you think? They'd have to give her nipples.

  81. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    Barbie is just one of the many societal influences that she'll encounter in her life.
    I could ban Barbie from our home, but I won't always be able to protect her from those influences.
    But, if I give her the tools that she needs, she'll take them with her through life and be able to process all that she encounters.
    Thank you so much for reading!

  82. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    It really is so important, regardless of gender isn't it?
    I hope to also teach Matthew that bodies come in all shapes.
    Then, when he's in high school and college, he'll be kind and accepting of all women.
    They listen to everything we say, don't they?
    Except the stuff we WANT them to hear, sometimes! :)

  83. Nichole inthesesmallmoments.com

    She really has changed, hasn't she?
    I don't remember her wearing makeup.
    Do you?

    Thank you for your kind words, Grace!

  84. Lyndsey

    The boots must disappear! Seriously!

  85. katie sluiternation.com

    I was a total Barbie girl myself. I have no idea what kinds of clothes they made for Barbies then because my mom made all my Barbie clothes. They were really cute–and sensible and covered all the correct parts. And I never put shoes on my Barbies. They didn't stay on anyway.

    That being said, Katie never ceases to melt my heart, which I can only imagine makes yours about burst with pride.

    You are doing so many things right with her…so many things I am not sure I would think to do…which makes me so glad you are my friend. If I ever have a girl? I am RUNNING to you for help!

  86. My daughter had Barbies, but she was too busy make believing they were mountain climbing or sky diving to notice their impossibly perfect bodies as I had feared she would. I've tried very hard to help her have a good body image-she's 15 now and is at the age when girls risk becoming anorexic or bulimic if they sense they are not perfect. I never made food an issue-I never made Amy clean her plate if she was full, and I always stressed the importance of a healthy body over a perfect one. So far, so good:)

  87. Kristy pampersandpinot.com

    I LOVED Barbies growing up. I had all sorts of Barbie stuff and I played with them for years beyond what is normal probably. But, I must agree with you. That Barbie doesn't really look like the Barbie's we're used to…you know, like the Barbie on Toy Story 3. With bangs and a ponytail. And not as much make-up. For crying out loud. I shudder to think what little Skipper looks like nowadays. A surly tween!

  88. I was not a Barbie girl, but a lot of my friends were and I don't think I was affected by her body image as they claim! But my mom, like you, gave me a healthy sense of what beautiful was! And I don't think little girls think about that body image until about 6th grade which Barbie is no longer a part of their "play"!

  89. diana hampo hampoland.com

    And stepping on Barbie shoe in the dark is pretty horrible too. Great piece though. and your blog is pretty. Thanks, Diana

Add a comment

(required)
(required, won’t be displayed)
(optional)

About this post