Dear Barbie,

Dear Barbie,

I think our relationship has come a long way. You were one of my favorite toys for a while. I remember the days where you were the personification of my imagination. Together the worlds that we could create were limitless.

And then I grew up.

And I looked at your perfection and I realized that I hated you for it. Through puberty, I resented my own body and I was trying to understand what it meant to be a mixed-race girl. I slowly realized that whatever that meant was vastly different from what your life represented. I suddenly knew that I didn’t belong in the dream house.

Honestly, I think I hated you because I wanted to look like you. It’s a cliche but it’s true. You were a symbol of the beauty of the time period. Tall, blonde, blue-eyed, and thin. An unobtainable standard for me. I never would look like you Barbie. Never.

I decided that I had to reject you. And by, extension, my own femininity. I began my, “I’m not like other girls” phase because I didn’t feel like other girls. How could I? There was nobody in media, my classes or anywhere else that looked like me. I would turn my nose up at anything that was “girly” out of spite. There’s an old saying that says, “The child who is not embraced by its’ village will burn it down to feel it’s warmth.”. And I did. I genuinely felt like if I couldn’t be apart of this perfect feminine world then I would actively reject it. You weren’t just something that I rejected. You were something that I actively hated. I argued that Barbie was antifeminist. And maybe you were Barbie. Your beauty standards were like the curved arches of your feet. No matter who you angled them it couldn’t stand. And I refused to stand for something that couldn’t do the same for me.

Then one day, without realizing I think we both changed. With the help of Elle Woods and other feminist icons, I realized that I didn’t have to reject my femininity to become a feminist. I realized that living authentically was an amazing perk of feminism.

One day I came across a curvy barbie and I was absolutely amazed. Here’s a barbie with a body like mine. I felt like I was a little girl again discovering a new barbie doll.  Curious I began to look more into Mattel’s line of barbies. Barbie dolls that comes with a wheelchair and a ramp. Barbie dolls with a prosthetic leg Barbies without hair. There are even Babies that represent historical women. I realized that Barbie was finally living up to it’s slogan, “You can be anything”. For the first time I think it also meant, “You could be yourself”.             All of these examples are just to say you changed Barbie. And I think I did too. I can’t wait until we smash the patriarchy together Barbie.

Love,

Destiny