daughterbcAs I was visiting one of the many natural hair sites I frequent, I came across a picture of a beautiful nine year old girl. She had just big chopped and was smiling from ear to ear. She seemed to “own” that hair style and her confidence was shining through. I was so proud of her for doing what many adults can’t seem to bring themselves to do. As happy as I was for her, in the back of my mind I kept hearing that little voice say, “not my baby.”

My daughter, Lauren, is nine years old as well. She is the sun to my moon and has me wrapped around her little finger. There isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for her- except let her cut her hair. She is currently transitioning after having relaxed hair for four years.  I put a relaxer in her hair to make it more presentable (so I thought at the time) and to make her hair more manageable, which was more beneficial for me. Well, since I big chopped on September 5, 2012 and have learned how to take care of my natural hair, I’ve decided to bring her on this journey with me as well.

So far, the transition has been great. However, she has been asking me to cut her hair so it can be like mine. At first I thought; “why not”? If I cut her hair, it would be easier for me to maintain. But again, that would be for my own benefit. I then begin to think about what it would be like for her at school if we cut her hair. Having a career in education, I know first-hand how cruel kids can be. So my motherly instincts kicked in and I told her no. I explained to her that when she is a little older, we can discuss it again but for now her hair was staying as is. I didn’t offer any rationale for my denial; I just told her I no- point, blank, period. I really didn’t think about whether or not it was fair to her. I just want to shield her from unnecessary cruelty and telling her no was my way of doing so.

At her age, telling her she couldn’t cut her hair wasn’t the end of the world. In my opinion, she’s more concerned about the singing group One Direction than she is about cutting her hair. I just hope that I am not sending her mixed messages. As she gets older, I don’t want her to agonize over cutting her hair to please those around her. I want her to be able to make decisions about her hair based on her feelings. I will continue to teach her to love herself and her hair but as for the big chop right now; the answer is no.

Published by BlackHairKitchen

BlackHairKitchen covers all things Black hair care, from the kitchen sink to the hair salon.

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3 Comments

  1. If she has the confidence to handle comments from kids, you should let her cut it. Long, straight hair is an American standard. All over the girls kids wear their hair in a variety of styles. My daughter is 12 and knows that her natural, curly hair is better and more healthy for her. She has to tell other girls this all the time because they believe having relaxed hair is the “natural” state of their hair because that is all they have known. She had it flat ironed earlier this year, but when she want to do sports and swim or just have an easier routine we went back to braids and twists.

  2. As a transitioner and then big chopper, I cannot imagine why you would not let her bc. It was incredibly hard to maintain my three hair types, as I had relaxed hair, texlaxed, and curly new growth. All while in school. I wish I had had the courage to cut my hair earlier. It seems devastating at first but hair grows and kids are cruel anyway. It seems selfish and confusing you are discouraging your daughter against a liberating, and more importantly non-hazardous decision. For what?

  3. I say go for it!!! You definitely don’t want her to get caught up in the length mind games just because of your hang-ups, I think the signal you’re sending may be a little confusing especially if the idea is to be natural , after all…she may be a trooper 🙂 I know someone who has a daughter that is 6 and she asked her mom to donate her hair….so they chopped it off and she was super excited even though mom was a little nervous but everyone ended up so happy.

    I just removed my youngest daughter’s locs last Nov (her hair was mid-back at the age of 2 before locing). She is now 3 and I have been nursing her hair back to health by trimming and cutting a little at a time (just like transitioning) but I am strongly considering doing one last big chop to get rid of the damaged hair after combing out her locs which will take her to a TWA but I am all for health over length! Plus she loves her hair either way…

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