Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Disney Princesses

The Disney Princesses have invaded my life. My kids wear Disney princess underwear, eat Disney princess crackers and lug Disney princess suitcases. When I go to Wal-Mart little hands stop me every five feet when they see a new product with the princesses' syrupy smiles on the packaging.

I have mixed feelings about this little obsession my children have. Half of me is disappointed that my kids couldn't choose better role models (Susan B. Anthony? Mary Fielding Smith? Harriet Tubman? Come on!), but the other half of me is grateful to have another "lever" to pull when things get out of hand. ("Cinderella is a hard worker--she always takes her dishes to the sink." "Do you think Sleeping Beauty gets out of her bed after bedtime? Are you kidding?" )

But really, do they HAVE to have the princesses EVERYWHERE? Is there any way out of this? Is there any way a mother can steer clear of mass marketing that elbows its way into the lives of our defensless five-year-old girls? Why can't they sell Susan B. Anthony panties, anyway??
I would welcome and appreciate your opinions on this. Is marketing for children getting out of hand, or should I go with the flow? Will my girls become preening snobs if I indulge them in their princess fantasies or will this just be a harmless phase?

Your thoughts? The floor is yours for comments.


  1. Chelsea, you are hilarious. You are such a fun writer. My daughter is barely past one, so I have not reached the Princess phase although we are trying to let her know that she is a Queen (she was named after Queen Sarah, Abraham's wife).

    Anyway, we missed you so much at the Bagley Reunion this year. Your name came up often and we love you. Your family made a great showing. They are so extraordinary. Anyway, I love your princess woes. Continue on being a supermom.

  2. Disney princesses--don't get me started. I tell Chloe she's a princess all the time and I don't mind the idea of princesses. I am really annoyed by the fact that you can get ANYTHING with those Disney floozies printed on it. Have a little self-respect, ladies!

    I read your unedited post where you listed each princess and her attributes. I'd never really thought about Sleeping Beauty, but you're so right! Philip's horse has more personality!

    My favorite princess is Giselle from Enchanted.

  3. Well, the alternative would be to have girls that are into Barbies. My sister and I got into Barbies way too early. My mom tried to keep them from us as long as she could, but adventually we were given one for a birthday gift. We never turned back.

  4. yikes I feel your pain. Trying to stop the addiction is even harder unless you provide an alternative and really is the alternatives any better? Elmo, Dora or Diego. I also read the unedited thoughts on their dressing standards. Thanks for reminding me to pay attention to the dress.

  5. Grandma bought Rylee some Ariel panties (let's not remind the twins that one of Ariel's attributes is that she CAN actually breathe underwater:)!). Anyways, ever since Rylee wants to listen to the soundtrack Grandma let her borrow. You know in the song "Out of this World" when Ariel says "I want more" (in addition to the all of the whose-its and whats-its galore she already has)? Well, Rylee asks me one day..."Mom, why does Ariel want more?" I felt like telling her "because she is ungrateful"!
    Nevertheless, I echo what Natalie said about Disney princesses at least being better than Barbie.

  6. I totally agree with you! But I'd rather see my girl in Princess crap than Bratz crap. That's just begging for a kid to grow up to be a tramp. It just seems to me that there's a Diva-I'm-better-than-you quality about the whole princess thing. And Dora can't even match her clothes. Have you noticed the colors she's wearing together? Could we get some sort of happy medium, folks?
    I haven't given in yet and bought the girl anything princess. She got Curious George pajamas for her birthday. He's a good role model. A monkey. Please post your unedited list of princess attributes again. I missed it.
    By the way, we moved.