I am Barbie Millicent Roberts, otherwise known as Barbie. I was born in 1959 and I have been one of the most popular toys of all time.
I have also been involved in numerous controversies and blamed for giving women body image issues. I have been called a poor role model. I have been attacked about my size and how girls perceive me.
Yet, no one ever asked me what I think about myself. Because if they did, they would know I have body image issues as well.
Let's start with the obvious: I have no vagina. You probably know this already (I know your perverted younger brothers know this as well). This is one of the hardest things for me to live with. People tell me that I am perfect and they wished they looked like me. Well, how can I even be taken seriously when I do not have parts that every other woman has?
My body is not perfect either. If you were to put me in "real life," the chances of someone having a body like mine would be one out of 4.3 billion. I wish I looked more like She-Ra or Wonder Woman. They always go to Crossfit together and never invite me. They think I am a snob because of the way I look. They do not realize that I am so jealous of their bodies. What I would do to have some muscles! What I would do to go workout with them! Yet every time I ask, they ignore me.
Ken and I have had a rough relationship for many years. He does not have a penis. I have been strong, but I am tired of being with someone who is not happy with himself. I am better than that. I know that society looks at me like I have it all. Why, because I have small hips? Please. I cannot even keep a job. I am smart as well! I have been an astronaut AND a doctor.
I have friends, though. Teresa, Midge and Christie have been there when the BRATZ and others have bashed me. They help me and they know that although society looks at me as perfect, I am not. I do not eat much because I am usually in a box, and then there is that whole being made of plastic thing. Besides, there is rarely food at a 5-year-old's tea party. I am not as wanted as an American Girl doll and each year they make better toys for girls.
As a doll who is over 50 years old, I will tell you that I do love myself. I love my imperfections and I do not want to change. It has taken me a long time to mentally get to this point and I truly can say I am happy now.
Please do not blame me for body image issues. I have always had my own. Making a doll that looks different than me with my name is not the answer. Everyone has their issues and that is what we need to teach our children. My body might not be realistic for most, and that is OK. That is actually better than OK. Because I am sure that some young women have talents that most do not have. Some have sparkling eyes that most others do not have. We should teach young women to find the positive things in themselves instead of focusing on comparing themselves to others.
At the end of the day, you can point your finger at me. You can point it at magazines, Photoshopped pictures and Hollywood. But when my younger sister Skipper comes up to me and says, "At school today they told me I am not tall/short/light/dark/pretty/ugly/fat/skinny enough..."
I will tell her that she is perfect the way she is.
Because I am perfect the way I am.