The Barbie Blues
June 7, 2017 5:46 AM   Subscribe

Barbie talks about feeling blue in one of her vlogs.

"Sometimes I still feel blue. And then I feel guilty about feeling sad because I am supposed to be the upbeat positive one all the time. I mean, I am known as being an upbeat person… But I’m not always. And I started to think, maybe I’m just being really unfair on myself. You know? I don’t always have to be upbeat and positive. And to expect that of myself, it isn’t fair. To camouflage myself to fit into a mold of what I think I should act or feel or think, well that doesn’t help anyone. And it just gets you lost."
posted by Stark (17 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I don't know what I find more unsettling: that Barbie has a vlog, or that in that vlog, she's cosplayed as GLaDOS from Portal.
posted by Merus at 5:53 AM on June 7, 2017 [5 favorites]

if there's one thing I can't abide (there is more than one!) , it's people minimizing depression as "feeling blue"
posted by thelonius at 5:56 AM on June 7, 2017 [1 favorite]

As a father of a six year old girl I'm glad this is here. I see this as a tool I can use to help my daughter develop coping mechanisms for dealing with her feelings. It may not satisfy everyone but it is a step in the right direction. Barbie is more of a peer to my child than I am; I can talk to her about these things, but it comes through as being a message from a parent. Opinions shared by peers carry a lot of weight, and the more times that she can get the message reinforced the better.
posted by WacoKid at 6:16 AM on June 7, 2017 [3 favorites]

if there's one thing I can't abide (there is more than one!) , it's people minimizing depression as "feeling blue"

Bear in mind, the audience for this vlog is children ages about 4-10. Reading the text, I think its clear that this isn't so much about depression as it is about the societal expectation that girls -- especially girls be "upbeat and positive" all the time. For Barbie -- Barbie!! -- to tell little girls that its ok to feel any and every way is, I think, a very positive development.
posted by anastasiav at 6:21 AM on June 7, 2017 [35 favorites]

WHAT IS GOING ON. This is so creepy and so reassuring at the same time.

How can I make videos as an animated character...and do I want to?
posted by amtho at 7:39 AM on June 7, 2017 [1 favorite]

posted by Captain Chesapeake at 8:04 AM on June 7, 2017

This is a huge improvement over my experience with Barbie, which included me comparing my thigh gap to hers at the age of six.
posted by xyzzy at 8:07 AM on June 7, 2017 [4 favorites]

I watched it, and was pleasantly surprised. I'm going to try to get my 16-year-old daughter to watch it.

But the pace thing is weird. I thought it was an acronym but I couldn't find anything appropriate. Is she really trying to say "peace"?
posted by ubiquity at 8:12 AM on June 7, 2017 [1 favorite]

I hope G.I. Joe is able to get mental health coverage from the VA.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 9:12 AM on June 7, 2017 [4 favorites]

You'd be blue, too, if your boyfriend had no pecker.
posted by jonmc at 9:39 AM on June 7, 2017 [2 favorites]

It's true that these tips are too superficial for clinical depression or serious situational depression. But they're good tips for "feeling blue" for girls who are being busily socialized (even if their parents are super-woke, and definitely if they're not) to be cheerful and sweet all the time. And when kids grow up feeling that their emotions are okay, that there's nothing wrong with being sad and there are ways to cope, then (as I understand it) they're less likely to be vulnerable to severe emotional problems in the future.

I was interested that she said that she wrote in her journal, because it reminded me that when I was a kid, I read a 60s-era middle-grade series novel starring Barbie as a journalist. It was powder-puff pink, and roughly as deep as a Trixie Belden (with which it was probably designed to compete), but even then I was impressed by how seriously Barbie took her job in it. That's why I always remember her full name -- Barbara Millicent Roberts -- because she used it.
posted by Countess Elena at 10:02 AM on June 7, 2017 [4 favorites]

This will probably not reach a 16 year old, but I am showing it to my 10 year old relief daughter. It fits her right in the heart.
posted by mumimor at 1:06 PM on June 7, 2017 [2 favorites]

I like this very much and hope it reached many Barbie loving young ones experiencing the same stresses without understanding what they mean.
posted by Hermione Granger at 2:02 PM on June 7, 2017 [2 favorites]

That's great - yeah, kid, sometimes even Barbie feels a bit down, and that's okay! You get to!
posted by rmd1023 at 7:32 PM on June 7, 2017 [1 favorite]

Damn, there is some subtle acting in this piece of animation. Kudos to its performer/animator/whatever.

Also: wow, I like how part of this is basically "here are some coping strategies that help bring your mood up". A little bit of education for the kids.
posted by egypturnash at 11:31 PM on June 7, 2017 [1 favorite]

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