When she wants straight hair... - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 25 Old 09-06-2009, 11:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
MamaEli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


My three year old desperately wants "sweetheart" (straight) hair. She cries--yesterday it was 25 min of weeping--because her hair is curly.
I am white with stick straight hair, and DH is Kenyan with very, very curly hair that is currently in dredlocks. DD1 has very curly hair with a soft, caucasian like texture. Meaning, it needs a LOT of upkeep. It's too slippery for cornrows, gets very tangled, and needs to be styled if not daily, at least every 2-3 days.
I usually let her leave it down for a day, but any more than that and it's knot city. Even with lots of olive oil, coconut oil, apricot oil, or conditioner, it still knots right up. We have to keep it in pigtails and braids so that it doesn't become a big bird's nest.
DH and I tell her all the time that she has beautiful hair. Strangers even tell her she has gorgeous hair. We explain that God made her with curly hair. That he made her just right, that God does everything right. That she has hair that is a little like Mommy's and a little like Daddy's. That Mommy has hair like this because Gramma and Papa both have straight hair, and Daddy has curly hair because Gramma in Kenya and Daddy's Daddy both had very curly hair. She doesn't care, she just wants sweetheart straight hair.
We've read Happy to be Nappy. We point out beautiful women on TV/in books and magazines with natural hair, or curly hair. We talk about friends (including girls her own age) with AA hair. She doesn't care.
I feel so bad. My daughter is a beautiful, very intelligent girl. I've always read this would come up, but not weeks after her third birthday.
MamaEli is offline  
#2 of 25 Old 09-06-2009, 11:54 PM
 
Gunter's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: bali, indonesia & north cackalacky
Posts: 3,108
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
just gonna send you a hug about this. sorry that i don't have any advice or better insight!

recently we saw a little girl with braids and DD asked if we could do her hair like that. so, i said sure and we did. but after we took the braids out, her hair was amazing and huge. she freaked out and DH gave her a bath to tame her hair. who knew it would even matter what her hair looked like after braids?

doula mama to my nov 05 and my feb 08 babes who wrap me in love.
Gunter is offline  
#3 of 25 Old 09-07-2009, 01:23 AM
 
Mamato3wild ponnie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: hopefully close to bliss
Posts: 2,093
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My dd is almost 10, and she wants straight hair too....to the point we straighten it with a flat iron. I tell her all the time...your hair is beautiful and rave over it all the time...but she wants it bone straight.
I would love to hear what other mama's say about this.

Mami to fly-by-nursing2.gifds 4 wks, ds 2yo, ds 6yo, dd 11yo, ds 17 yo. novaxnoIRC.gifwaterbirth.jpg
Mamato3wild ponnie is offline  
#4 of 25 Old 09-07-2009, 02:01 AM
 
Leatherette's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,414
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
When my daughter (AA with highly textured hair/tight curls) was three, she wanted her hair to "look like mommy's" (I am Caucasian with loose curly hair). Could just be that simple. I certainly wasn't going to do anything to straighten her hair at that point, but I got her into beads for her hair, and that helped a lot. Her friends with straight hair get a braid with beads (If they want it!) when they come over.

I am not excited about getting her hair temporarily straightened with a hot comb or flat iron, but she has asked about it, because a good AA friend of hers does this. She also has a very close friend who does beads and twists like hers. She is 6 now, and I may let her get her hair professionally hot combed with her one friend, but she will know that this is a temporary thing. Her friend's hair looks very healthy. Other AA woman friends of the family say that the hot comb is not damaging like chemicals. I know that other people have another story......

We'll see....maybe she won't bring it up again.....I think adults have a hard time with this because it seems like the child is rejecting herself, but I don't think we have to jump to that conclusion (but of course, have to watch for recurring negative opinions of self/characteristics) - it can be as simple as wanting to be like her mommy or her friends because she loves them. She loves that people think her and her one friend are "sisters" because they are both brown-skinned and have twists with beads, and are always hugging on each other and doing the same activities!

Did she come up with the term, "sweetheart hair"? I have not heard of that.
Leatherette is offline  
#5 of 25 Old 09-07-2009, 11:21 AM
 
Marsupialmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: St. Louis MO
Posts: 9,500
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
At 3 I think she wants to be like mom You are not really going to talk a 3 year old out of this notion.

It is the grass is geener on the other side of the fence. In time she will learn her hair is most liekly more versital than yours. Also have you talked to someone that braids hair for a living?
Marsupialmom is offline  
#6 of 25 Old 09-08-2009, 12:50 PM
 
Eclipsepearl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 458
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Please don't over-interpret this!

I'm hearing the same thing from my 5 year old. My dh and I are both white (but not "caucasian" since we're not from the Caucasus mountains). I somehow ended up blond (from a very dark family). She wants blond hair.

I simply tell her that she can dye it when she grows up. You can simply tell your dd that she can change it too, when she's older (even though it'll never be super-straight).

Telling her she's beautiful the way she is is technically correct, but it could be undermining her wishes. I would focus on the fact that everyone has something they wish they could change and how something that is more work and care can later be the very thing that could be her proudest feature. Point out something you wish you could change, even if it's something like your fingernails or eyebrows.

I cursed my curly hair my entire childhood. I wanted my mom's straight hair but instead got my dad's curls. Moms with straight hair are infamous for being lost as to what to do with their curly haired dd's, especially with racial mixes but not exclusive to (as I can attest!). My mom today is amazed at the routine I go through with my own dd. "I didn't do all that!" she exclaimes. I want to say "I know and that's why I DO!!!" but bite my tongue. She used to let it get all knotty and tangly. It was so painful combing it out!

All products for my dd are carefully chosen. I comb her hair with conditioner before she leaves the shower. Hair is combed and braided every night and braided for school. If she doesn't agree, she can have it cut. You may need a whole different routine. Consult friends of African heritage and your dh's relatives as to what works well with children and what routine you need to develop.

She may be aware that her hair is causing you extra work and grief, and this may be part of her objection. She wishes she had straight hair so that her mommy didn't have to work so hard! If you find a way to make the whole hair-handling business go smoother, things might relax between you two and you may hear fewer protestations.

Even cutting it short might be (or part of) the solution.

Find a way that works for you but starting at this age, every parent of a little girl starts hearing about what she doesn't like about herself (and it doesn't stop!!)

Good luck!
Eclipsepearl is offline  
#7 of 25 Old 09-08-2009, 05:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
MamaEli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Well, I think we may have found out part of her reason for wanting straight hair.....she wants hair like Amelia, her good friend from church. Amelia is white, and has very long, straight, brown hair. She also wants hair like mommy. I guess that's good, right?

I don't dislike doing DD1's hair, it's kind of fun, actually. I have done a significant amount of research into doing it right, in a way that is healthy for her and in ways that will enhance its natural beauty. She knows that we have to oil it in order to keep the knots out, and braid it for the same reason. I think she just wants to be like her friend.

I remember wanting my hair in lots of braids like a black girl in my preschool way back when, and when my mom did do that I was so disappointed because it wasn't like hers. Guess it's kind of the same thing.

But no parent wants their child, especially a daugher, to feel like there is something "wrong" with her. That's how I was reading it, but after a while, I think it's not a criticism, but a preference (like how I've always wanted curly hair.)
MamaEli is offline  
#8 of 25 Old 09-11-2009, 04:08 PM
 
FullMetalMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: La Push
Posts: 358
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Coming from someone with very NOT straight hair (white dad/black mom), I really hated it when everyone insists that my hair is beautiful, they wish they had it, etc. Just because you believe it is that way, does not mean that is her experience.

People with straight hair have NO idea what a pain the arse having curly/kinky/thick hair is! Everywhere, literally everywhere, a little girl looks, there is beautiful and straight and shiny hair that needs one pass of the comb and it's perfect hair. People with straight hair can roll out of bed and their hair looks normal. Not so for curly/kinky-haired people. I literally would have to wash, condition, brush for 15-20 minutes, rinse out conditioner, towel/air dry, brush again and pull back tightly in a bun to feel like I looked decent to leave the house. I am 28 and I still really dislike my hair and I especially hate it when people say "oh, but it's so beautiful, you are so lucky to have curly hair." I have worn it in braids for years now because it literally takes an hour every day to do if it is out.

Please do not dismiss your dd's feelings, just because you can appreciate it. Continue to express how beautiful you think she is, but also appreciate that she will have her own feelings on the matter since she is the one who has to live with it.

Rant over!

+ = and .
FullMetalMom is offline  
#9 of 25 Old 09-14-2009, 05:36 AM
Banned
 
Noelle C.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,110
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Throughout life we all want hair we don't have at times. That's why dyes and perms are such big money-makers. We see a style we like and want to emulate it. Think about that bowl haircut in the 70's, the big, Farrah Fawcett hair, Rachel from Friends. It probably wouldn't hurt to let your daughter have her hair straight sometimes. It's not a race thing at her age. She just wants the hair she see and likes. Chances are, at some point, her friend with straight hair will want curly hair. Heh, I remember being disappointed I couldn't get the tight, tight curls in my hair I wanted so bad.

My fiance is a white guy with curly curly hair, and he wishes it was straight too, but I love his curls. Just because I like his curls, and you like your daughter's, doesn't mean they have to, but their hair is theirs, and if they want to experiment with different styles, why not let them?

But your daughter will eventually face the pressure to have straight, smooth hair when it comes to work. Natural ethnic hair doesn't seem to go over well in the workplace. Ugh, it's not like hair determines someone's ability to do a job! But that's another issue.
Noelle C. is offline  
#10 of 25 Old 09-16-2009, 02:51 PM
 
joates's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 43
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaEli View Post


My three year old desperately wants "sweetheart" (straight) hair. She cries--yesterday it was 25 min of weeping--because her hair is curly.
I am white with stick straight hair, and DH is Kenyan with very, very curly hair that is currently in dredlocks. DD1 has very curly hair with a soft, caucasian like texture. Meaning, it needs a LOT of upkeep. It's too slippery for cornrows, gets very tangled, and needs to be styled if not daily, at least every 2-3 days.
I usually let her leave it down for a day, but any more than that and it's knot city. Even with lots of olive oil, coconut oil, apricot oil, or conditioner, it still knots right up. We have to keep it in pigtails and braids so that it doesn't become a big bird's nest.
DH and I tell her all the time that she has beautiful hair. Strangers even tell her she has gorgeous hair. We explain that God made her with curly hair. That he made her just right, that God does everything right. That she has hair that is a little like Mommy's and a little like Daddy's. That Mommy has hair like this because Gramma and Papa both have straight hair, and Daddy has curly hair because Gramma in Kenya and Daddy's Daddy both had very curly hair. She doesn't care, she just wants sweetheart straight hair.
We've read Happy to be Nappy. We point out beautiful women on TV/in books and magazines with natural hair, or curly hair. We talk about friends (including girls her own age) with AA hair. She doesn't care.
I feel so bad. My daughter is a beautiful, very intelligent girl. I've always read this would come up, but not weeks after her third birthday.
I am curious, is she around other children or people who are diverse (i.e., both white, black, and everything in between?) When her hair is styled, it is seen as a burden or made uncomfortable? I ask because I am a black woman, and often than not as children, african american women are told that their hair is a burden, not directly, but my mother used to moan and groan about my hair, which is why you see many with relaxed hair as it is seen as easier to take care of. I'm currently natural, and other black women look at me in amazement in how I manage to deal with my hair, when in reality it takes me at most 5 minutes to do on any given day and 15 extra minutes in the shower on wash days. The sad thing is many black women don't know how to do natural hair, and I find that as a result many white women with biracial children have a hard time with hair as well. I found for me the Lorraine Massey book, Curly Girl was a lifesaver for me. It was written by Lorraine Massey, and ironically the African American section is irrelevant.

At 3 years old, please do not relax or flat iron her hair, if you have a hard time with her hair without heat, flat ironing will be a pain because she will probably squirm around, and I have some scary memories of my ears being scorched by curling irons, hot combs, and flat irons.
joates is offline  
#11 of 25 Old 09-16-2009, 02:54 PM
 
joates's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 43
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Please note also that for a child or woman of color, it goes beyond simply not just liking something about themselves. If white women are told they must constantly improve, women of color are told that they can never ever be improved, we are just as is, and usually that is deemed as unattractive.

In terms of natural hair in the workplace, I have not had an issue with that, and I actually get more compliments about my hair, than nay sayers, ironically the most criticism I get comes from other people of color.
joates is offline  
#12 of 25 Old 09-16-2009, 08:07 PM
 
Cascadian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 892
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Like FullMetalMom, I also have wildly curly non-caucasian hair, and I always hated it. NOT NOT NOT because of a race thing, but merely because I could never do it properly and it always looked like a mop. If I could do it properly, I'm sure I'd love it a ton, because straightening my hair with a flat iron is a HUGE PITA.

My point here is that I was like your DD, yearning after friends with stick-straight hair that never seemed out of place or messy, and always looked perfect in pictures. I also had people tell me that my waves/curls were gorgeous - I thought they were from Mars.

Can I suggest that you allow her to have it straight to maybe get it out of her system? There are products like the Caruso steam rollers to straighten hair that actually makes hair healthier - people use them on their kids. My SILs DD also has wildly curly hair, and for the first time she let her straighten it with a flat iron - it looked cute, then she got bored of it.

FWIW I married an Asian person and both DDs have slippery straight hair. My older DD asks me to make curls for her once in a while, and I do. She LOVES it merely because it's different.
Cascadian is offline  
#13 of 25 Old 09-18-2009, 11:07 PM
 
KristaDJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 1,500
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have a son that is 1/4 black, myself my husband and two daughters are white. My son has asked me to straighten his hair and made comments about wanting it to look like other people's hair (blond and wavy). I try to expose him to people with hair like him. Positive, cool people that he can look up to. Your daughter has a mama and a friend with straight silky hair, does she see anyone with hair like her that she can look up to? I wouldn't try to change her hair, she's only THREE, the way her hair looks should be so far down on her priority list at that age Work with her when she gets older but for now just deal with it (her hair) as easily as you can and try to show her how beautiful her hair can be.

Krista; blessed mother to four earthly beings and three non-physical. Basking in my beautiful rainbow. 
 
 

KristaDJ is offline  
#14 of 25 Old 09-20-2009, 06:34 PM
 
midstreammama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Crazytown... Population: 6
Posts: 2,168
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have three AA/white daughters. They have been saying for a very long while that they want their hair to be straight. What I did was buy a steam straightener. Yes, they have to sit for a while...but even my 4 year old understands and does so if she wants it done. They know that if they can't sit on that particular day, it doesnt' get done. I'm to afraid of hurting them with the steam...

That said, they only ask once in a blue moon now. They are 4, 6, and 10. Especially the 6 year old, I think she likes it best. That steam straightener is so awesome though. It doesn't take very long to do. And it works on all three of their hair. They all have different textures...the 10yo being the curliest, and the 6yo being much like you've described your daughters hair.

Mama to 14yo, 9yo, 7yo, and babe born 9/2012
midstreammama is offline  
#15 of 25 Old 09-20-2009, 10:59 PM
 
bobandjess99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Northern IN
Posts: 5,912
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
She probably does just want to be like mom, and less to do with what her hair looks like per se.
Some things we simply can't change, and we do have to learn to love certain things about ourselves. Doesn't matter what i do, I get to be 5 ft tall, not an inch taller. I get to have awful hair. I get to have zillions of freckles.
I think sometimes, kids just have to learn to deal. Like with sitting in a carseat - there's no other option. Or kids who have to have a daily medication or something. My bio kidsand I (so white we're nearly transparent) get to slather on SPF 50 for a 5 minute exposure to the sun through the car windows. My adopted son who is Indian (subcontinent) doesn't. We're all different. We all have our own unique challenges and issues we have to deal with and overcome. (We also, of course, all have strengths and beauty.)

I think we get caught up with not wanting our kids to "feel bad" or be disappointed, that we fail to acknowledge reality at times.

CPST
bobandjess99 is offline  
#16 of 25 Old 09-24-2009, 11:10 AM
 
sh0rtchica's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Virginia
Posts: 118
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
as a 1/2 black/white daughter of a mother with stick-straight hair, i appreciate your hard work with your daughter's hair! my mother eventually gave up with mine and cut it all off. i second what a PP said about telling her she can do whatever she wants to her hair when she's older. that's exactly what i did!

Lisa mama to Adrian born 3/09 by unnecessarean
#2 is coming in May 2011! planning for a home vbac.gif
sh0rtchica is offline  
#17 of 25 Old 09-29-2009, 01:48 PM
 
Diyan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Bartlesville, Oklahoma
Posts: 176
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eclipsepearl View Post
Please don't over-interpret this! Telling her she's beautiful the way she is is technically correct, but it could be undermining her wishes. I would focus on the fact that everyone has something they wish they could change and how something that is more work and care can later be the very thing that could be her proudest feature. Point out something you wish you could change, even if it's something like your fingernails or eyebrows.

I cursed my curly hair my entire childhood. I wanted my mom's straight hair but instead got my dad's curls. Moms with straight hair are infamous for being lost as to what to do with their curly haired dd's, especially with racial mixes but not exclusive to (as I can attest!)....
I agree! This is me also - very tightly curled hair, that my straight-haired mom didn't know what to do with. Random people would stop me in the store and tell me how beautiful my curls were, and I resented it because I wanted straight hair. Sometime around junior high I figured out that almost everyone wants something they don't have - straight hair, curly hair, blue eyes, brown eyes, taller, shorter, et cetera - and knowing that helped me accept my curls.

My mom used to occasionally set my hair in big rollers. It didn't make it straight, but it made it straight enough that I could comb it without it frizzing, and if the weather was dry it stayed until I washed it. It was nice for a change.

Edit: Now I love my curls!

Married to C August 2007.  Son Ian born October 2008.  Son Owen born December 2010.  Daughter Naomi born October 2012.

Diyan is offline  
#18 of 25 Old 10-03-2009, 03:27 PM
 
Bad Mama Jama's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Locale so Secret that I Don't Know
Posts: 4,977
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
i am sorry. i have always told my dd how beautiful her curly thick hair is. but i know that someday, she may ask to straighten it. since her hair is close to the texture of my sister's hair, i've already got the flat-ironing tips, but i don't wanna get that monster unhinged just yet. i am glad that she doesn't too much bring it up. but straightening with the ceramic flatirons is an option but it just seems so involved for a little person.

Former dreads.gifwearing, treehugger.gifing, pole dancing, read.gifpushing, ribbonpurple.gifsurvivor & single mama extraordinaire to energy.gif.  

Now that's a mouthful!!! computergeek2.gif & follow it!   

 

Bad Mama Jama is offline  
#19 of 25 Old 10-16-2009, 05:16 PM
 
terrordactyl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: western slope of Colorado
Posts: 2,624
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by FullMetalMom View Post
Coming from someone with very NOT straight hair (white dad/black mom), I really hated it when everyone insists that my hair is beautiful, they wish they had it, etc. Just because you believe it is that way, does not mean that is her experience.

People with straight hair have NO idea what a pain the arse having curly/kinky/thick hair is! Everywhere, literally everywhere, a little girl looks, there is beautiful and straight and shiny hair that needs one pass of the comb and it's perfect hair. People with straight hair can roll out of bed and their hair looks normal. Not so for curly/kinky-haired people. I literally would have to wash, condition, brush for 15-20 minutes, rinse out conditioner, towel/air dry, brush again and pull back tightly in a bun to feel like I looked decent to leave the house. I am 28 and I still really dislike my hair and I especially hate it when people say "oh, but it's so beautiful, you are so lucky to have curly hair." I have worn it in braids for years now because it literally takes an hour every day to do if it is out.

Please do not dismiss your dd's feelings, just because you can appreciate it. Continue to express how beautiful you think she is, but also appreciate that she will have her own feelings on the matter since she is the one who has to live with it.

Rant over!
this is how i've felt my whole life especially cause my mom never did anything for my hair an doesnt understand now why i use a straightening iron all the time

cold.gifme + headscratch.gif him and one littlecat.gifPaco the Taco hoping for one of these  makebabe.gifin the near future

 

 

terrordactyl is offline  
#20 of 25 Old 10-16-2009, 07:23 PM
 
ChristaN's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Colorado
Posts: 3,234
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm white with reddish-blond very curly hair. My dh is much darker than am I (Italian) with wavy black hair, dark skin, and dark brown eyes. Dds are both very dark haired with brown eyes. They both want blond hair -- probably b/c they see mine and all of the other Aryan kids around here with blond hair. I, too, hated my curls when I was younger and I, honestly, think that my mom's straightening my hair wasn't helpful in getting me to like my hair. It just reinforced that there was something wrong with my hair that needed changing.

Is there an adult woman with whom she is close who has curly hair? Getting advice and bonding from an adult woman with similar hair might be a good thing for getting her to appreciate the beauty of her own hair. My younger dd, despite being much darker than me and not looking much like me in features, does have somewhat curly hair that it appears will get curlier at puberty as mine did. That has been a really nice thing for us to have in common b/c I know what to do with her hair and can commiserate with her about having different hair as a kid. That seems to be helpful in her accepting it.
ChristaN is offline  
#21 of 25 Old 10-17-2009, 01:02 AM
 
EdnaMarie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 6,148
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
a little girl looks, there is beautiful and straight and shiny hair that needs one pass of the comb and it's perfect hair. People with straight hair can roll out of bed and their hair looks normal.
I don't have curly hair or kinky hair, so of course I can't speak to that.

But this is a myth, that straight hair is easy. Straight hair also gets frizzy. It also gets tangly. I can't braid my hair. It won't stay in braids- it falls out. (I mean, falls out of the braids, not out of my head.) It gets weird when I sleep on it wrong. It falls in disgusting clumps when dirty. I have a neice whose hair is so fine that it gets knots when the wind blows it, knots that take ten to fifteen minutes to untangle.

I have no idea if it's easier or harder than curly or kinky hair but I do know that all girls deserve to know that the grass is always greener on the other side. We don't know other people's experiences.

So while I can't answer the OP directly, I can assure all the kinky-haired people out there that there are very, very few women who can do anything but a ponytail without a lot of work.

(And I can't curl mine, either- the curls won't "take". Lucky for me, I was never told that this was abnormal or somehow a hardship. I do feel sad for little girls who are taught that their hair is a hardship!)

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
EdnaMarie is offline  
#22 of 25 Old 10-17-2009, 04:11 PM
 
Ms Apricot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Sydney, Aus
Posts: 139
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Has anyone seen Chris Rock's documentary Good Hair? He was inspired by his daughter, who asked why she didn't have good hair. I've read good reviews, but haven't had a chance to see it yet.

Here's one interview with Rock.

Sometimes it happens the other way too. When he was a small child, ds had straight, fine, almost blond hair. He asked me when it would become thick and curly, like his best friend's. FWIW, I think there is a difference in that the cultural subtext isn't there for children who have fine hair and want it to be thick and curly. It may be easier for them to accept what they have eventually, and learn to appreciate it.

If anyone has seen the movie, I'd enjoy hearing a report about what you thought of it.
Ms Apricot is offline  
#23 of 25 Old 10-18-2009, 12:35 AM
 
WC_hapamama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: California
Posts: 1,672
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by EdnaMarie View Post

But this is a myth, that straight hair is easy. Straight hair also gets frizzy. It also gets tangly. I can't braid my hair. It won't stay in braids- it falls out. (I mean, falls out of the braids, not out of my head.) It gets weird when I sleep on it wrong. It falls in disgusting clumps when dirty. I have a neice whose hair is so fine that it gets knots when the wind blows it, knots that take ten to fifteen minutes to untangle.

(And I can't curl mine, either- the curls won't "take". Lucky for me, I was never told that this was abnormal or somehow a hardship. I do feel sad for little girls who are taught that their hair is a hardship!)
My DD is 3/4 Japanese, 1/4 Northern European. Her hair is stick straight, curls won't take w/out a lot of styling products, and it tends to slip out of braids and pony tails. It's very frustrating as she wants to be "girly girly" with curls or braids every so often.

Funny thing is, that naturally wavy hair runs on both sides of my family, both DH's grandfather (Japanese) and my father and grandmother (European). When my hair is longish, it gets a lovely natural wave/curl thing going, but if it's too short or too long, it just looks frizzy as heck. When I was a teen, I wore my hair in a "page boy" style cut, and the frizzies made me envy my mother's very typically Asian hair.
WC_hapamama is offline  
#24 of 25 Old 10-23-2009, 03:31 PM
 
honeybunmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Midwest
Posts: 1,714
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
My dd will be 4 next week. She's AA (from me) and PR (from dh). My hair is hella kinky and wooly soft, but hers is silky straight at the roots ending in spiral curls that extended to the small of her back when wet until 1 week ago when she had her first professional hair cut.

She'd been asking all summer since L, a caucasion play mate at school, got her hair cut at the beginning of summer. She kept saying she wanted hair like L's. I told her that even if it were cut, it would not look like L's. L has a passing wave in her hair. Finally, I remembered my stylist of years ago, before I went natural, was a PR woman. She would know what to do.

DD loves her hair cut! Much to my mom's chagrin, who even suggested I relax it! At 3!!! It's still past her shoulders, but it has been thinned/layered to take out some of the bulk and now I can actually let her wear it out because I've been given the right products for it and it's less bulky.

All that to say, as much as I cannot believe I actually took my 3 year old to a professional for a cut (since I had to beg, borrow and steal for my first visit at 12), it was worth it. She is happy to have had her hair cut like her friends and, most importantly, happy with her OWN hair. And it didn't cost me an arm and a leg!

Now, she has also asked to have her hair in twists like mine, or a puff like mine. I've told her I'll buy her a puff - LOL! And I'll employ a professional again if she pushes for the twists. They just won't hold in her hair if I do them, but, I'm sure something can be done so that she is happy with what she has on her head.

Mama to add 10/05; ds 3/09, and two angels
honeybunmom is offline  
#25 of 25 Old 12-02-2009, 10:58 AM
 
nativa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 4
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by FullMetalMom View Post
Coming from someone with very NOT straight hair (white dad/black mom), I really hated it when everyone insists that my hair is beautiful, they wish they had it, etc. Just because you believe it is that way, does not mean that is her experience.

People with straight hair have NO idea what a pain the arse having curly/kinky/thick hair is! Everywhere, literally everywhere, a little girl looks, there is beautiful and straight and shiny hair that needs one pass of the comb and it's perfect hair. People with straight hair can roll out of bed and their hair looks normal. Not so for curly/kinky-haired people. I literally would have to wash, condition, brush for 15-20 minutes, rinse out conditioner, towel/air dry, brush again and pull back tightly in a bun to feel like I looked decent to leave the house. I am 28 and I still really dislike my hair and I especially hate it when people say "oh, but it's so beautiful, you are so lucky to have curly hair." I have worn it in braids for years now because it literally takes an hour every day to do if it is out.

Please do not dismiss your dd's feelings, just because you can appreciate it. Continue to express how beautiful you think she is, but also appreciate that she will have her own feelings on the matter since she is the one who has to live with it.

Rant over!
FullMetalMom,

Thank you for this. My children are biracial (I'm black, dh is white) and we have had lot of very stressful discussions over this same subject. My daughters hair sound like yours- her hair is incredibly curly, but we usually braid it for school. When its not braided, she can wear it down for 2 days- 3 max, because after that, it becomes one big twisted, dredlocked mass. She is extremely tenderheaded to boot, so washing, conditioning combing her hair brings on a LOT of blood, sweat and tears. She broke my heart a year or so ago (when she was 4)- I called her 'princess' and she told me "I cant be a princess because princesses don't have hair like mine!" She said it so matter-of factly, I could've cried. After that, I bought her tons of books (by Jump At The Sun) with black princesses, as well as other books featuring black heroines (Thunder Rose is one of our favorites!!). When she cries about her hair, I find myself saying a lot of the things that you've listed in your post. I'd like to know what WOULD make you feel better? She's only 5, so Im nt going t put chemicals or flat iron her hair, and she is SO beautiful, I don't want to cut her hair short...I really don't have a solution...As someone who's grown up on the "other side of the fence" so to speak, what do you suggest we do to help our girls feel good about their hair? Thanks so much for your advice!
nativa is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off