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little boys with long hair and a rant - Page 2

post #21 of 56

My son doesn't have long hair but I do see a big difference in how local boys are presented. Some of them clearly have hair cuts that flatter their hair texture and face. They rarely get gendered comments. It is clearly a style choice.


And then some of the boys really have no hair cuts at all with weird long bits or short bits here in there. There doesn't seem to be a hair cut involved and sometimes they look plain uncomfortable with random pony tails made from uncombed hair or clips or whatever. Uncombed mullet + random bun on top of the head is just...odd.  Some of it most be cultural because I don't think anyone says would say "oh, that is an attractive look" for a two year old. I guess certain groups don't cut hair before a certain age?

post #22 of 56

As for the comments of facebook, just either say nothing, or say "It's his hair, and he loves it like this".


I think some people assume you just didn't notice he needs a haircut and they are pointing it out.  I had a daycare boy who had a mullet for a long time, it was too thick too long, and too hot.  HE HATED it.. he would try to cut it all the time.  (that's how he ended up with the mullet)  I was mad that his parents chose his hair style against his wishes.  They let him cut it before kindergarten, and said "Shave it".  LOL  But, he didn't want it shaved either.  He wanted it short, with it sticking up with gel in the front.  But, Dad had it shaved.


So, anyway, I told his mom all the time... "Cut the boy's hair... it's a freaking MULLET"  (she's my best friend, so I said it in a bff way)


I think maybe your mother in law just figures you think it looks good, when clearly, it's girl hair... and it's not how he wants it... it's how you want it.  So, tell her it's HIS choice.

post #23 of 56

The Pixie 011.JPGclimbing trees




When my DD had a pixie she got called "sport", "Buddy" and "little guy" all the time. I would simply say "Her name is Ani" and leave it at that. It was my way of correcting them without being a jerk..

post #24 of 56
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all your replies, it made me realize it was really common!

post #25 of 56

My youngest is 3 and, as long as it's humid, he has angelic, soft ringlets from about the top of his ears, down.  I just can't stand to cut it!  This past winter, when the humidity tapered off and his hair was straighter, it was pretty long.  I told my husband when it warmed up and I could get one more REALLY good photo of his curls, I'd be ready to let him get his first haircut.  But, of course, when it got warmer and the ringlets came back...I can't cut it!


To make matters worse (I guess), he has a very pretty face and beautiful eyes.  So, even in his "I get my handsome from my Daddy" T-shirt (or wearing blue trucks...) people tell me what a beautiful daughter I have.  Really?  Who cares?  He'll only be little once!  And anyone who knows him knows he is all boy and nothing, if not confident.  I just don't see him getting insecure, if he realizes people think he's a girl.  He's more likely to call them an idiot (the influence of 3 older brothers) than to have hurt feelings.


My friend has two boys, just a couple years apart.  The younger one is just...cool.  Even at 3, he seemed cool.  His older brother has a traditional haircut, but the younger one likes his hair long.  His Mom lets him have his way - and he just looks great!


More extreme:  there's a kid at our church whose gender my husband and I just can't figure out.  He/she is maybe 10-12 and has waist-length hair, kind of wild and wavy, like boys with long hair (instead of sleek and perfectly-groomed like some long-haired girls).  He/she never wears anything you wouldn't see on a boy.  But he/she has a really pretty face.  So...either a very cute and also very sporty girl, or a really good-looking boy who's comfortable enough with himself to wear long hair.  Win-win!  You just can't find it offensive, either way!


post #26 of 56
Thread Starter 

you're right jeannine, thank you! :)

post #27 of 56

a really gruff, but sweet old man with a moustache and a twinkle in his eye said to my short-haired five year old daughter yesterday "hey big guy!' as he walked past us. she was wearing a blue striped shirt (with pink, red, white and green stripes) a black, 'feminine' hoodie, grey and blue plaid 'feminine' pants, and purple shoes. without observing closely, judging from the colours alone, i can see how her whole image would have presented as male. we laughed our butts off because of the charming way he said it..


however, when my son was young he had long hair too for a few years and was frequently called a girl.. and yes, i have noticed, with both my kids, that the way people treat the same child dependent on what gender they are assumed to be, the most unnerving of all. i actually PREFER the way my daughter is treated when she's assumed to be a boy overall (an imparting of and encouraging of confidence as opposed to focus on prettiness or other 'girly' traits), with the exception of how boys or assumed-boys are discouraged from showing their emotions.


i cannot stand gender roles in the least and comments like these can be annoying IF there is a rigid adherence to gender-role expectations.. my daughter has had her hair cut short three or four times in her life and sometimes has long hair too. she has a very balanced personality with many traditionally 'male' mannerisms and just as many 'feminine' ones. people often react to her short hair with as though it offends their sensibilities.. but rubbing up against someones biases doesn't bother me as long as they are not rude to my children or make them feel that they are wrong to be who they are regardless of what gender based non/sterotypical preferences they may have.

post #28 of 56

yes!  I wish this statement could be copied and pasted on every newspapers front page in the country! It would be so great if we could stop playing out the gender roles

Originally Posted by elevena true View Post


      i appreciated the diversity in the way they were treated. really, the gender types make me ill, and in my experience the quality of comments for a little boy were a littler smarter, not at all focused on looks or princess talk, and actually had some gravity to them. a little girl or little boy could be implored to help their mother with the groceries, or complemented on talents, or something in that arena. in my experience, those comments were given to my "little boys" 90 % of the time, while my "little girls"  got comments about their appearance 90 % of the time. i realize that gender types hurt everyone, boys and girls alike.



post #29 of 56

 Then it really messes people up...a boy with long hair and a girl wearing trucks.

Edited by Magali - 6/3/11 at 6:40pm
post #30 of 56

SoulJourney- I love that even in a pink ballet outfit your son is just so clearly a boy, its so cute and NaturallyMommy your son totally has the surfer look going i would not worry one bit especially if he loves it.


post #31 of 56
Thread Starter 

aw thanks!  sometimes he looks like he belongs in like longbeach california in the early 80s. heh.

post #32 of 56

Here's my long haired little guy.  He just turned 3 last week.  He's never had a hair cut, but I think we're going to get it trimmed sometime soon.  The ends are really tangly, but we're not really going to take any length off.  He loves his hair.



post #33 of 56

My son had long hair up until 2 months ago. We finally had to cut it because he having recurring eye irritations that were getting worse because his hands were always up there brushing his hair out of his eyes. He now has a shaggy, shorter cut.


He was always being mistaken for a girl but it didn't bother him. The funny thing is, all the kids his age knew he was a boy. The adults always got it wrong. shrug.gif


Anyway, this was his hair at it's longest length:


post #34 of 56

My longhaired son occasionally gets indignant when he's referred to as a girl.  It's nothing to do with gender assumptions and everything to do with the fact that he is really a dinosaur/steam engine/racecar.  lol.gif



When rude people ask me what "his father" thinks, I typically show them a picture of DH.  


post #35 of 56

My son has always had the same thing happen to him.  He has had long hair all of his life and he is now 13 going on 14.  We have never cared because he likes it and is in fact a surfer dude.  Besides, being called a girl is nothing bad really, there is nothing wrong with being a girl.  You can see him here  http://www.mothering.com/community/gallery/album/view/id/8214/user_id/171845 

post #36 of 56

As mom of kids who have never gone against society's gender standards I feel awkward when I don't know if a kid is male or female.  I KNOW it shouldn't matter and it really doesn't but we don't have gender neutral pronouns so my language is all convoluted in order to avoid any pronoun use.    Imagine being at the public sandbox and needing to say "Perhaps that child doesn't want you to play with the structure that child is creating." vs "She doesn't want you to destroy her castle."  


And no child under about 10/11 years has, imo, masculine or feminine features. 

post #37 of 56
Originally Posted by ians_mommy View Post

My son has hair way past his shoulders and my daughter is bald (and often dressed in brother's hand-me-downs). People frequently get them mixed up. I usuallu just say, "No, the big one is my son and this peanut here is my little girl".




LOVE the onesies! I spotted those before I even looked at your adorable kids...sorryshy.gif


As far as gender typical or whatever, DH has hair that is way past his shoulders, DD is almost 2 and has short curly hair, I dress her in blue ALL the time. She looks cute in it and it's my favorite color. She gets called a boy a lot. I laugh when it happens, primarily because people get so uncomfortable like they have made a major faux paus. It's not a big deal. She can look like a boy at times. 


If we had a son I would be letting his hair grow and grow and grow. We aren't big on haircuts in this family. I'm sure I'd get questions about it all the time but it's just hair, there is way to much emphasis on this kind of thing and I have better things to do than worry about what gender strangers might refer to my kid(s) as.


post #38 of 56

Seems like most of you have younger kids - the older boys around here are growing their hair longer .. think 70's cuts - some bowl cuts, lots of longer shaggy stuff, etc.  My ds is growing his hair out now for the first time in years - many of them are going for that 80's surfer look that NaturallyMommy's little boy is wearing so well!


As a baby/toddler he would get confused for a girl if I did the slightest thing, like put him in saltwater sandals. I thought it was funny/cute and really didn't care.  He's got huge beautiful eyes and long eye lashes and yes, he's pretty. :)



post #39 of 56
Originally Posted by jocelyndale View Post




When rude people ask me what "his father" thinks, I typically show them a picture of DH.  


biglaugh.gif  That is great!! 


My middle son is almost 8 yo and has been growing his hair out for a year now (he wants to look like a rock star).  He used to have a mohawk, but now wants it long.  I admit I am worried about how he will feel if people start to mistake him for a girl.  He has always been very pretty.  My OB actually said, within moments of his birth, "wow, he is all boy, but he sure is pretty!"  He has "delicate" features and long long lashes.  It turns out his hair has a bit of curl to it now that's it's longer.  He loves his hair long.  His piano teacher is a man with hair down to the middle of his back, and that is kind of his goal (piano teacher is quite flattered).  My dh has a hard time with it, he is very traditional (he hated the mohawk too.  he thinks all boys should have military crew cuts).  The lady who cuts my boys hair is a friend of mine and knows my boys were all bald til 2 and based on family history will be bald again by the time they are 20.  So she says, "You tell your dh that these boys have a very small window to play with and to leave them alone".  To his credit, dh is keeping his opinions to himself as he realizes that allowing them some independence is crucial. I am working on my own conservative/gender issues as well so that I can allow my boys to just be who they are.


As far as your mother-in-law goes, I would reply to her comment on facebook with something  like "well we can't all be conformist".  but that's just me and might not be worth any fall out.


post #40 of 56
I have two little boys with longer hair. My eldest was also called a girl many times because he was "too pretty to be a boy." eyesroll.gif His hair wasn't cut till he was 18mo and it was wispy and a little wavy at the ends. But his younger brothers got progressively curlier, and I just have NOT been able to cut off their curls. love.gif

My 6yo has now had a number of trims (and is due for another), though only one somewhere other than at home, and the first one wasn't until he was 3? 4? The 3yo had his first trim of any sort this past December, when I cleaned up some of the less healthy, thin ends of his curls. Oh, and then he cut off the curl on his forehead. greensad.gifmecry.gifgreensad.gif Some people then suggested that it was time for a haircut to even it up... Umm.. NO! I was heartbroken and crying over ONE curl - I can't lose them all! His curls are really tight, finger curls (especially with humidity!) so his hair is much longer than it looks.

The 6yo gets called a girl from both kids and adults with some frequency. I think it bothers him some (he's super shy and also super black-and-white in his view of things) but he doesn't want his hair short. I need to trim it, and he's agreed that I can do it at home, but he wants just the tiniest bit cut off - like a millimeter, he sometimes says. lol.gif

Here are all the kiddos at Easter:

This was before J cut off his curl (which now is bangs), but it was pretty long so it was swept to the side.
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