1. She exists.
That's really the only thing that matters to me. She exists. That sounds obvious, but often times, the most obvious reason is the point. Prior to today I knew she existed, but I'd never seen her in person. Then today, I was walking through Walmart and there she stood on the shelf. Being that it's Limb Loss Awareness month (More to come on this!) I am hyperaware of all things amputee and immediately pulled a hard brake on my own prosthetic leg to stare at Barbie's. Here are some of the other things I liked about Barbie as an amputee.
Barbie has a whole line of dolls with disabilities includes Barbie and Ken who use wheelchairs (They have hinged arms and knees, so the doll can realistically push their chair. They even come with a ramp!), a doll with vitiligo, alopecia or hair loss, and non-gender conforming dolls. If you're looking for a Barbie that represents your child, you can find them at most retailers or on their website.
To be clear, this isn't a post promoting Barbie. This is a post about representation and why it matters to people with disabilities when it's done right. It has taken too long to find a toy on a shelf in a store like Barbie's new line and while they will have their triumphs and setbacks, they realize that all kids deserve to see themselves in the toys they play with. There are many other companies out there doing the same, and I hope that one day, we will see them all on the shelves of our local Targets and Walmarts the way they always should have been.
Katie Mettner wears the title of 'the only person to lose her leg after falling down the bunny hill' and loves decorating her prosthetic leg to fit the season.
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