I only had a quick glance at the latest range of Barbie dolls that have been revealed, before leaving it open in my tabs to look at later, but I have to say my instant reaction was a positive one. About time crossed my mind.

The new dolls are much more inclusive and realistic than their former counterparts. Barbie dolls have been produced by Mattel for 50 years, and this new line-up of dolls features four different sizes including petite, curvy and tall as well as seven skin tones and twenty-two eye colours and are ready to pre-order under the new Fashionistas Line. The aim of these new dolls is to be diverse.

I think it’s good. It’s needed. These dolls play a much larger role in how children grow up to view women’s bodies, and their own, far more than we can understand. If these dolls only reflect one body shape, they are promoting that shape as the “ideal”, as the norm, as the way you should look. By bringing in these new dolls the brand will be showing children a much more realistic image and challenging this notion of the perfect body.

If you don’t realise how ridiculous the traditional Barbie doll is, take a look here. It is clear that these new dolls are at least making some kind of step forward. I was feeling pretty positive about it. But..then my friend comes in and states that it annoys her because everything seems to offend someone and the only reason they’re doing it is because they have to make people happy. I get her point, I do. However, the potential impact the traditional Barbie doll has on children’s body perception means that yes, people get “offended” by the unrealistic body of standard Barbie dolls, and yes, we have to do something about it. Barbie has received a lot of criticism over recent years from the public, and the fact they have responded to the public’s concerns with this new range makes sense – it’s good for their company image, it’s good for their public relations and it’s probably going to be very good for their profits.

I’m not saying this is by any means the solution to low self-esteem and poor body image in young girls, but it is a small step in making a difference and hopefully it will inspire others to challenge the “ideal” body we seem to look up to within society, and stop people being judged on their appearance.

(But what about Ken?)

To read other peoples thoughts on Twitter look at #thedollevolves


Pushing help away

I haven’t posted my Christmas photographs yet (don’t fret, I will!). It has been the most chaotic 48hrs of my life. My psychiatrist literally told me she is angry with me. That I am frustrating..in fact, soul destroying was the term she used, and I didn’t enjoy hearing that. The guilt has been killing me. It all started because I spoke about something to my support worker, and she told the head of student services, and he contacted my psychiatrist and then my GP got involved and I cried my eyes out in the doctors surgery, and everyone was bringing up the idea of a hospital admission.

I can see why people were worried, are worried. I’m not stupid. I don’t want to say anything that may trigger others, so without saying too much, my self-destructive behaviours manifested in a new way that was potentially much more dangerous. I get it, but I honestly had no intention of telling anyone. I only told my support worker at the end, when she questioned me on something. And I don’t know.. I trusted her, she made me feel like I could tell her. She says she has had no part in anyone contacting my psychiatrist, and she thinks I should be able to talk to her without fear of repercussions.

I think a lot of it has been me fighting with everyone. Fighting against everything that they say. I should be seeing this as a battle I am fighting with my support, rather than a battle against it. I don’t know why I do it, because I hate it. It leaves me with nothing but guilt, shame and this feeling of unbearable aloneness.

I think the solution must lay in being able to remember that my support is on my side, and I should trust them more than my own head. But it’s hard to get myself into that frame of mind. And half of me still wants to destruct. Maybe I need to discuss a plan with my psychiatrist to contact her  in these situations, rather than telling my support worker first, but that just isn’t always possible, and honestly, there’s some times things I don’t want my psychiatrist finding out. Surely that is my choice?!



Happy New Year!

I had such a lovely time at home for Christmas. I saw just how lucky, and loved, I am. I have such a wonderful family, and despite all of the struggles, we all stick by each other.

I’ve been practically glued to my sister. We spent all of my time at home together, and then when I decided to come back to Leicester early, she came with me until yesterday. We went out for a meal on New Years Eve, I had a pizza from Pizza Express, and sorbet. It was lovely.

I’ve spent far too much money, been on the ferris wheel which was 110ft!, booked to go to Scotland to see my friend who is basically my second sister, booked to go to Disneyland in May with my sister and now I am considering going to Italy as soon as I get my passport, if I can afford it, to meet up with a guy from college who I barely spoke to!

I’ve had some pretty bad days too, but my family and my psychiatrist have supported me and I am so very fortunate to have the support I have. I’m doing EMDR treatment, and I am maybe going to start a body image group which lasts for ten weeks, and is for people at a healthier weight, to help you accept the weight gain. My psychiatrist said I am at a turning point.

I am also 46 days self-harm free. I cannot believe it. I never thought I could do it/would do it.

This real recovery thing is shit a huge amount of time, and I’d rather not go through it. Coming back to university is hard, because I have less support around me, and there is a lot of stress with work, but I wouldn’t go back to the girl who couldn’t even walk up the stairs because she was so weak, or the girl who was bandaged up like a mummy and couldn’t move her arms because of the pain of staples, for anything.

P.S. I am going to do another post later with lots of photographs, so sorry in advance! But I’ve had too many fab times lately to not!