Most girls remember playing with Barbie dolls as children and having the ability to change the look, background story, and essential personality of those dolls. We let our imagination come to life in those dolls and used them to enact how we saw our future relationships occurring. We dress them up and essentially make them into what we picture ourselves as adults and dream up a perfect situation for Barbie with Ken, the perfect guy. And when we grow up, some of us move from plastic to human dolls.
Now when we think of the “human Ken dolls”, we usually associate them with the type of guys who date rich girls and need just a little polishing to fit into her scene. But it goes far deeper than that, “human Ken dolls” aren’t just for the rich girl, virtually any girl can have one for the price of a title: boyfriend. I imagine I sound scornful of the girls who date the “human Ken doll types”, but I will defend some of them because I can’t judge those who I used to be like. I used to be one of those girls, I dated the fixer uppers for pretty much one reason: they would always be grateful and loyal even if it was initially for the need of acceptance more than out of love. Not all women who pursue and date the fixer-upper types do so for their entertainment or for the challenge; some do it because they would rather create the type of person they want to be with because they don’t think they exist and have to be made instead. Some do it out of fear of putting themselves out there for who and what they really want. Others do it because of the specific picture they have in their heads of how their perfect romance would be and find the person who more or less fits the bill but needs a little tweaking to be perfect. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve seen the error in my ways and have ceased being, “that girl”, but only after I started to really see the pattern and how badly it ends. When we were children and made Ken fit into a perfect life with Barbie, it stuck because we could make Ken do whatever we wanted. But let’s face it, he was plastic, had no brain, no feelings, and couldn’t actually get away on his own. A human boyfriend is an entirely different animal. He has a brain, free will, moveable legs, and real emotions. If you let your relationship become a “Barbie and Ken relationship”, I promise you it will end badly. One or both of you will have loads of resentment and one of you will walk either emotionally, physically or both.
If you want something to train, get a pet. If you want something to mold into whatever YOU want it to be, get some clay or keep playing with dolls. If you want a real relationship, grow up, realize that there’s more to consider than looks and what one person wants. Open your eyes to reality and step away from the dollhouse.
In closing I’m left with this thought: In the world of relationships, did we ever grow up or are we still “playing pretend”.