If you have already purposed in your mind to tell me that you grew up playing with Barbies and have no issues whatsoever with your children having Barbie dolls, I only ask that you please just try to hear me out. I grew up with a box full of Barbie dolls too. This is simply my personal conviction, born out of prayer, and based upon a desire to raise a spiritually healthy and happy little girl.
Let me be clear, I am not saying Barbie is intrinsically evil. When I was little, I had Barbie dolls and I played with them on a daily basis until I was nearly 13 years old. So if you have Barbies and if you're okay with your children having Barbies, I'm not throwing rocks at you. However, we won't have them in our house for several reasons which I will share with you now. :)
Reason #1: Barbie is an adult. My daughter is a child. The Britannica Encyclopedia says that "Barbie is a plastic doll, 11.9 inches tall, with a figure of an adult woman that was introduced in 1959 by Mattel Inc." When people ask me why I don't want my daughter playing with Barbies, I usually give them my basic, surface answer: I don't want my baby girl playing with a grown woman. I want her to play with babies. It's age appropriate.
Reason #2: Barbie has an unrealistic body that my daughter can not (and should not) achieve. If Barbie was a real woman, she would be 5'6" and weigh 120 pounds. Her body fat percentage would be so low that she would not be able to menstruate. Her measurements would be 38-18-34. The average woman's measurements, on the other hand, are about 41-34-43. Only one in 100,000 women actually match the Barbie body image. This is unhealthy! Girls and women already have a hard time being happy with the way God created them when our culture slams skinny, overly busty, photo-shopped supermodels in our face. Handing my little girl a completely unrealistic doll for her to love and play with is adding fuel to the fire. Children are influenced by the toys they play with.
Reason #3: Barbie conveys a materialistic appetite that I don't want my daughter to have. I had more Barbie clothes than I knew what to do with. Shoes, accessories, houses, cars - Barbie has it all. She has everything in an endless supply. And truthfully, I believe it teaches greed and an insatiable hunger for more. The Bible says to be content with what you have.
Reason #4: Barbie is a maturely developed woman. My daughter is immature and innocent. Barbie is an oversexualized toy. She is fully developed and usually found with the Ken doll. When I was younger, Barbie and Ken went on dates, they kissed a lot, and they lived at the same house. To be honest, I'm going to have a hard enough time fighting the world's tug towards sexual sin and impurity without having to additionally fight my daughters' Barbie doll too.
Reason #5: Barbie does not teach Godly womanhood. My daughter will be what she is taught. Every little thing we allow into our homes shapes our children and their character. According to God's Word, my daughter must be led and trained to be what God created her to be. It's my job to teach her to be holy and pure; to be obedient, spiritually mature, and honest; to love her future husband and to care for and nurture her future children. God has designed her to be a woman - a feminine, nurturing woman. It's my job to lead her and train her in this. By placing a scantly clad, busty and sexually provocative doll in her toy box, I am sending a message that Barbie and everything associated with her is okay. Her image is appealing, her body is desirable, and her glamorous lifestyle is to be pursued. But by giving her baby dolls, I am teaching and training her for motherhood. I believe this is God's intent and purpose.
Call me old fashioned if you want, but we have set a standard for our family. My goal as a mother is to be intentional in how I raise my children and to raise them according to the principles of Scripture.
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. ~ Proverbs 22:6