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Represent all "American Girls"

Posted by on Jan. 8, 2014 at 12:47 AM
  • 11 Replies

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get notification emails from Change.org, and this one touched me today, because in so many ways it hits rather close to home.

A little girl named Melissa is petitioning American Girl to release a "Girl of the Year" that has a disability. (For those who don't what they are,) American Girl dolls (and the books that tell their stories) are beautiful dolls that represent girls from history and today. There is s historical line, a "Just Like You" customizable line, and a "Girl of the Year" line ("Girls of the Year" are only available for the year they are released). They come in multiple races and from all parts of the US. They are dancers, artists, horseback riders, writers, athletes, activists…etc. Their books tell stories about growing up in their time periods (or today), and overcoming life's obstacles.

Melissa has Muscular Dystrophy, and has petitioned American Girl to release a "Girl of the Year" with a disability. Some of the American Girls' stories have included disabled friends, but never has an American Girl herself been disabled. Melissa makes a point that American Girls should represent every kind of girl overcoming every kind of obstacle.

I think this shows a remarkable amount of responsibility and forward-thinking on her part, and happily signed the petition. In addition to my dd's food allergies, we deal with visual impairment (me) and cerebral palsy (dh). I know my daughter would love to have an American Girl that represents someone truly "just like her" or other people with disabilities.

Here is the link to Melissa's petition:
https://www.change.org/petitions/american-girl-release-an-american-girl-with-a-disability?share_id=PvHnSmQxSH

(Sorry, I'm mobile and can't make it clicky, but it will copy/paste easily into a browser window, and Change.org has a mobile site.)

If y'all could sign the petition, it would be awesome. And I am cross-posting this in some of my other groups, so if you see it again, my apologies.

Thanks!

(Pictured above is my daughter at a sci-fi convention this past weekend with her American Girl (sans glasses, they are stowed away), Molly.)
by on Jan. 8, 2014 at 12:47 AM
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Replies (1-10):
tinybluemoon
by Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 5:20 AM

I think it would be great to see but they finacially can not afford to make a distabled girl of the year. History has proven in the american girl company that only a certian type of 'girl' sells well for girl of the year doll. Because the doll is only for sale for 12 months, as opposed to an average of 10 years like the other dolls, the girl of the year needs to be a character that is going to make a big profit quickly. The dolls that have not made that quoter have been, shamefully, the few colored girl of the year dolls they've had and I suspect it will be a while before we see another colored girl of the year let alone anything else more diverse. 

I think the closest we will ever see will be an My american girl doll option, like the chemo doll, or perhaps a best friend doll.

mommy053008
by Maria on Jan. 8, 2014 at 8:10 AM
That's awesome!!!
coolmommy2x
by Platinum Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 8:19 AM
It's not Girl of the Year but AG does have wheelchairs for their dolls, casts for broken legs (maybe arms?), glasses, braces to make the dolls reflect their owners. While I think a DOTY with a disability wouldbe great, it's not AG is denying disabilities or imperfections exist. Good luck this girl...kids aren't too young to affect change.
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wakymom
by Ruby Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:49 PM
1 mom liked this
CalicoMeezer
by Bronze Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 2:51 PM
snowangel1979
by on Jan. 8, 2014 at 3:09 PM
Is the girl of the year based on an actual person or is it just a made up story?

I would think if someone could come up with a story about what the girl overcame, it would be great. A story lossly based on Helen Keller or a great historian like that would be great.

I hate to say it but I kinda agree with the P.P when she said it wouldn't be profitable to make a girl in a wheel chair, not just the fact that the market just wouldn't be there for a lot of sales but, they would loss money because it would have to come with the chair.
Maybe a better idea would be a girl with cerebral palsy with crutches would be more profitable. (but I don't think it would end up as a girl of the year.)
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StephanieSH
by on Jan. 8, 2014 at 3:26 PM
It's not based on a actual person and the store does sell wheel chairs, crutches and things like that to tailor the doll to the girl.

Quoting snowangel1979: Is the girl of the year based on an actual person or is it just a made up story?



I would think if someone could come up with a story about what the girl overcame, it would be great. A story lossly based on Helen Keller or a great historian like that would be great.



I hate to say it but I kinda agree with the P.P when she said it wouldn't be profitable to make a girl in a wheel chair, not just the fact that the market just wouldn't be there for a lot of sales but, they would loss money because it would have to come with the chair.

Maybe a better idea would be a girl with cerebral palsy with crutches would be more profitable. (but I don't think it would end up as a girl of the year.)
kmrtigger
by Kandice on Jan. 8, 2014 at 4:05 PM

Best of luck. I agree that there should be a AGD in the stories with a disability and a doll sold to match.

my4littlegirls
by and 1 boy on Jan. 8, 2014 at 5:10 PM

I do agree that maybe a type of impairment would be nice. My dd has turners and has no real visible affects from it. So maybe if the doll is still "perfect" they can at least Taylor a story towards a disablilty.

CalicoMeezer
by Bronze Member on Jan. 8, 2014 at 5:44 PM
Exactly. Things like food allergies, dyslexia, Tourettes…the dolls wouldn't even "look" abnormal (though I think this would defeat the purpose the petitioner had in mind).

Quoting my4littlegirls:

I do agree that maybe a type of impairment would be nice. My dd has turners and has no real visible affects from it. So maybe if the doll is still "perfect" they can at least Taylor a story towards a disablilty.

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