For me Barbie is conflicting. At once she is the most beautiful friend I had and at the same time she is hyper-heteronormative reflecting everything that challenges me about traditional gender roles. As a young boy I had the largest collection of Barbie dolls and accessories among my group of dominantly female friends. More than understanding this time in my life as simply being a young (gay) boy playing with dolls (and being allowed to pay with dolls) for me Barbie represents a challenging of expected gender roles. Knowing I was not prepared to conform to societies expectation of my biological sex the act of asking for, playing with, and sharing my collection of Barbies with my friends was an early form of gender activism in my life. While I can’t say that I conceptualised it as such when I was 9 I know now that I wasn’t prepared to submit to the idea that I should be playing with trucks, riding my bike, and getting my hands dirty. I chose to ask my parents for the dolls and play with them unashamedly. Such decisions for a young boy are not made lightly.