Real-life Barbie says she has 'no time to be friends'

Tatiana “Tanya” Tuzova, 32, has spent years becoming a ‘real-life Barbie.’ She says she prefers not to hang out with other people. Photo: East2west

Forget Ken, Midge, Skipper, and the rest of Barbie’s crew. For Tatiana “Tanya” Tuzova, 32, becoming a “real-life Barbie” doesn’t leave any time for hanging out with your friends. 

“I don’t have friends. I have no time to be friends,” Tuzova said. “I like being alone, no-one interferes my thoughts, I like my world. I have a husband, he is my best friend.”

Tuzova has a collection of over 1,500 dolls, and has spent just under $157,000 on her mission to become a real-life Barbie doll. But Tuzova says her passion goes far beyond just a professional calling.

While she originally wanted to be a nursery school teacher, she found she couldn’t survive on the salary, even when she supplemented it with a cleaning job.

“Barbie is [not my job, it is] a lifestyle,” Tuzova said. “When I am insulted on the Internet, I tell people, ‘I don’t drink or smoke or swear. I instil a healthy lifestyle to children.’”

Tuzova now does a variety of things to make money. “I work, record songs, do gigs, receive awards, produce clothes for children and grown-up girls, and rent out a photo studio,” she said.

Photo: East2west

However, Tuzova says people are “not interested” in building friendships with her.

“They are not interested how many kind and good things I’ve done,” she said. “They have to know my age, how many times I was married, what surgeries I had, and the colour of my underwear.”

Tuzova isn’t entirely alone, however. She says her husband, a physician, keeps her company.

“He is a doctor… We met at his work and then I conquered him with my karaoke voice. Now he makes me Barbie-style presents — recently it was a pink Mini Cabrio,” says Tuzova.

Despite her lack of friends, Tuzova says it’s important to stay true to who you are, no matter what.

“The most important thing is to have your individuality,” she continued. “Everyone is the same now. But it is hard to copy me. I’ve been working on my style for many years and invested a lot of money into it.”

Photo: East2west

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