Thursday, March 19, 2009

Barbie and Ken Got Divorced

posted by Michele Olson
Barbie, yes “the Barbie” turned 50 this month. She became a part of our culture in March 1959. Ken Carson, yes “the Ken” met Barbara Millicent Roberts on a TV commercial set in 1961 and the two began dating. (She was probably there as a result of her first career, teenage fashion model.) After quite a life which included gigs as an astronaut, nurse, surgeon, Olympic gold medalist, and serving in all four military branches…oh and a run for the presidency, she and Ken broke up after 43 years of marriage. They got a divorce.

Whoa, hold the presses. Divorced?

Some news columns said the relationship dissolved because the pressure of being in the public eye became too great — even after 43 years. Others gossiped that Ken's ambiguous sexuality and Barbie's disproportionate figure finally took their toll.

Still others blamed the break on the fact that Barbie's career and popularity continued to overshadow Ken's. Then there were those who maintained that they were just a plastic couple from the beginning.

That was 2004. What does it say about our attitude toward divorce and marriage when the perfect couple calls it quits?
The good news is, they reunited in 2006. They must have found out, just as many couples do, that divorce is not all they had hoped for. In fact, in the real world, 6% of divorced couples over the age of 40 who divorce decide to remarry. I wish we could have gone to the stores in 2004 and bought the “Ken and Barbie take marriage education workshop” play set. Then they might not have had to traumatize all those kids who had divorced forced on them.

Kind of like real life.

Divorce is necessary is some people’s lives. But for the 70% of divorces today that are low-conflict and don’t involve any type of abuse, working on a marriage can bring a couple closer to happily ever after without the pain of divorce.

Kind of like a fairy tale.

If you are considering divorce and have not taken the time to work on your marriage with such tools as marriage education….learn a lesson from Barbie and Ken. See if you can restore what you once had before you call it quits.

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