Parenting

s/o Hair

Char tends toward tomboy things. She likes SpiderMan, is very active/sporty, often chooses boyish clothes vs girlish though she does like pink, etc. She tells me occasionally she wants to be a boy, she doesn't like her vulva and wants a penis, but I suspect she'll probably grow out of that. If she doesn't and she is transgendered, I will support her, I just don't know if I believe she is at this age as I had similar feelings and am not transgendered. I try to shield her from traditional gender role issues where boys get to do fun things and she doesn't, but she may be picking it up at school or through observation. She's pretty observant.

She went with me when I got a haircut, and now she says she wants a haircut. Specifically she wants "boy hair". For some reason I have a problem with this. I COULD handle a bob I suppose, but I adore her long hair. And when she wears boy jeans and a SpiderMan shirt, I like that her hair pretty much lets people know she's a girl. She even wears SpiderMan trunks and rash guard when swimming and I am fine with it, but something about "boy hair" pushes me past my comfort zone. She has asked specifically for "boy hair" twice now.

Thoughts? Let her? Compromise? Stall? Refuse

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Re: s/o Hair

  • I think I'd start by trying to compromise. Could she go early Justin Bieber? lol

     

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  • Her hair is also pretty curly. I think we would have to be cautious about the cut.

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  • IDK. I guess it will always grow back, if she is jumping on the Shiloh train. I don't personally like short hair on girls, but not for the reasons one might think. IDGAF about gender roles for the most part. I just think long pretty hair is, well, pretty. But if she is sure that is what she wants, let her make that decision, and then if she is unhappy, it will grow back.

    Buzz cut? No way. I would side eye that on a girl, and I have no good reason for it.

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  • Could you stall for a while, then try a bob as a compromise? If she was still asking I would probably just do it. Summer is a good time for short hair anyways. 

    DD is little so I'm not attached to her hair yet, but I would only have her hair short if she asked for it repeatedly. I had a boy haircut [well, more of a bowl slash bob cut, really] as a kid I hated it! My parents thought it was convenient because we were outdoors and camping a lot. Jerks!


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  • Have you asked her why she wants "boy hair"? Does you know any boys with longer hair?

    I try to respect DS's wishes around sartorial choices even when I would choose something else. He's rocking the world's most pathetic goatee right now and I hate it. But it's on his face even if I have to look at it. 

  • image auntie:
    Have you asked her why she wants "boy hair"? Does you know any boys with longer hair?I try to respect DS's wishes around sartorial choices even when I would choose something else. He's rocking the world's most pathetic goatee right now and I hate it. But it's on his face even if I have to look at it.nbsp;
    Yeah a really good friend has a 3 year old boy with long hair. She is waiting until he asks. Apparently I'm doing the opposite lol.

    I think I've decided to wait until she asks a third time and then explain about it not growing out quickly and that people might call her a boy and see what she says. I am pretty firmly in the camp of body ownership, her body, her choice, I just fear the repercussions of the choice before she really understands it.

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  • Hmm, it wouldn't bother me, but I guess I'd want to make sure she thought through it and wouldn't give you grief about it later. Like having second thoughts and wanting her long hair back or getting sad if people mistake her for a boy or tease her about it. If you think she has the confidence to rock it, then I say ok (hair always grows back so it's not forever).

    You could also look at some cute female celebs with short hair and see if she could select some short hair that is still girlish.

    FWIW, I had super-short hair in the second grade (and again in my senior year of college). It's so nice and easy to care for, but I did get mistaken for a boy a lot as a kid and get a lot of snotty comments from girls in college, so you really do need to be confident when you wear it.

    ETA: Just saw your response to auntie. Sound like we're on the same wavelength.

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  • SpookoSpooko
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    I think I'd let her...based on my own experience, where my mom insisted on me keeping long hair when I was younger and me hating it. When I finally wore her down enough to let me cut my hair, I went crazy with it and did end up with a boy cut (that I didn't want). I'd be afraid of letting her go to the extreme with it, or her deciding to take matters into her own hands (she is a bit of a spitfire). I think especially since her hair is curly, you have a better chance of it coming out nicely.

    image 

    Something like this would be cute and short enough to be boyish while still being girly enough for strangers who would use the wrong pronoun.


  • image fredalina:
    I try to shield her from traditional gender role issues where boys get to do fun things and she doesn't, but she may be picking it up at school or through observation.

    You lost me here.


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  • My friends 4 year old daughter kept asking for short hair, but her dad didn't want her to cut it. She is also a tom boy and really likes wearing super hero clothes and things like her 3 year old brother. One day she decided to cut her own hair. My friend got home from work and found her daughter with an uneven mullet. They took her to the salon and now she has a cute pixie cut that she loves. But, she does get called a boy a lot because she looks alot more like her younger brother than her older sister now.
    image

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  • image mbenit4:

    image fredalina:
    I try to shield her from traditional gender role issues where boys get to do fun things and she doesn't, but she may be picking it up at school or through observation.

    You lost me here.

    Yeah, this was the only part I didn't understand. Why dont' girls get to do fun things? This must be a part of 'traditional gender roles' that I never learned about.

    Other than that, I get what you're saying, Fred, and I think you're doing fine by waiting for her to ask again, but letting her do it if she insists.

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  • Brangelina gave an interview once about how Shiloh wanted boy hair and that is why she was walking around with this hair cut:

     image

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  • Also I sort of lol'd at vulva.  You guys don't just call it vagina?  Is that not all encompassing enough?

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  • image mbenit4:

    image fredalina:
    I try to shield her from traditional gender role issues where boys get to do fun things and she doesn't, but she may be picking it up at school or through observation.

    You lost me here.



    When I was a kid, I wanted to be a boy because boys got to do all the fun stuff. Boys had Boy Scouts and went camping and learned to make fires and stuff like that, boys got to be cowboys and ride horses, and firefighters which was exciting...back then they were called firemen lol. They got be professional athletes and, generally speaking, rock stars and other famous people. My parents would say I couldn't do certain things because I was a girl, as did society in general.

    The comment you quoted was that I have tried to keep that from happening with her, so she doesn't feel left out of fun things due to her sex or get told she can't do things because of it. It is possible she has kids at preschool telling her she can't do whatever because she's a girl, or that she has seen that men tend to be the ones doing "fun" things on tv or in other places, and she is observant and could figure things out like that.

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  • image HilarityEnsued:
    Also I sort of lol'd at vulva.nbsp; You guys don't just call it vagina?nbsp; Is that not all encompassing enough?
    We call it what it is. Vulva on the outside, vagina on the inside.

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  • image HilarityEnsued:

    Also I sort of lol'd at vulva.  You guys don't just call it vagina?  Is that not all encompassing enough?

    SO almost died last night cause DS said penis. LOL!!!


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  • image fredalina:
     When I was a kid, I wanted to be a boy because boys got to do all the fun stuff. Boys had Boy Scouts and went camping and learned to make fires and stuff like that, boys got to be cowboys and ride horses, and firefighters which was exciting...back then they were called firemen lol. They got be professional athletes and, generally speaking, rock stars and other famous people. My parents would say I couldn't do certain things because I was a girl, as did society in general. The comment you quoted was that I have tried to keep that from happening with her, so she doesn't feel left out of fun things due to her sex or get told she can't do things because of it. It is possible she has kids at preschool telling her she can't do whatever because she's a girl, or that she has seen that men tend to be the ones doing "fun" things on tv or in other places, and she is observant and could figure things out like that.

    I know. When I was in college my then BF and I used to sometimes play board games. His old version of Battleship had artwork on the front that showed father and son playing Battleship while mom and daughter did the dishes. By hand. Just WTF?

     

     http://1000awesomethings.com/2013/01/23/847-old-classic-board-games-3/

  • image fredalina:
    image mbenit4:

    image fredalina:
    I try to shield her from traditional gender role issues where boys get to do fun things and she doesn't, but she may be picking it up at school or through observation.

    You lost me here.

    When I was a kid, I wanted to be a boy because boys got to do all the fun stuff. Boys had Boy Scouts and went camping and learned to make fires and stuff like that, boys got to be cowboys and ride horses, and firefighters which was exciting...back then they were called firemen lol. They got be professional athletes and, generally speaking, rock stars and other famous people. My parents would say I couldn't do certain things because I was a girl, as did society in general. The comment you quoted was that I have tried to keep that from happening with her, so she doesn't feel left out of fun things due to her sex or get told she can't do things because of it. It is possible she has kids at preschool telling her she can't do whatever because she's a girl, or that she has seen that men tend to be the ones doing "fun" things on tv or in other places, and she is observant and could figure things out like that.

    I guess I still don't understand what would she see and observe and think she could not do that men do that was "fun?"

    I guess because I wasn't raised thinking I could NOT do something because of my gender. I thought there were things I couldn't do cause my family didn't have money but not cause I was a girl. None of the things you named did I ever didn't think I could not do when I was a child. All of them DD has already seen women doing. It is a very different time.


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  • It is a very different time. It's a time when megacorporations intentionally market their products to girls ages 3 to 5, when every product has to be offered in pink and primary colors, when stores segregate toys by the color of the wall in the aisle. If she views traditional boy things as "fun" and sees boys almost exclusively doing those things, because while there are SOME women in skateboard competitions or at skate parks, there are not many of them, then an observent child may determine that boys have more fun. Add in an octogenarian grandparent or two or a preschool classmate making comments and IMO it's very possible she could have come to that conclusion.

    And really, how often do we hear of dads unwilling to let their sons have a play kitchen or paint his toenails or wear a dress? Is our society really that equal? I don't see it.

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  • DD's hair is long per my preference right now, but I plan to let her do what she wants with her hair as soon as she shows a preference.  I think hair is one of the few things a kid actually "owns" that they can use to express their individuality. And it's not something I think I'm going to choose to fight with her about.  It always grows back and comes in it's original color so she can't do permanent damage.  

    DD also likes monsters and cars and dinosaurs.  She loves her monster t-shirts and blue Curious George t-shirt which are all boys clothes.  I would probably feel sad if she wanted to cut all her hair off but just because I love her hair, not because I would worry about what other people would think or that people may think she's a boy.  

    If Char gets a boy cut and people actually mistake her for a boy, she may like it or it may upset her and she'll want to grow it out again.  Either way, it's valuable information for both of you on this question.  I would show her a bunch of pics of boy hair cuts and see if she picks the longer more feminine cuts or the traditional barber cut.  She may just think short hair is boy hair and pick a feminine bob.  And better to get her a "boy" hair cut now so if she doesn't like it, there's time for it to grow out before school starts in the fall.

    I give up trying to get a ticker.  I have a DD that is 2.5 years old and is awesome.  Maybe I'll add a quote to distinguish myself.  Hmmm.  How about...

    "It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn't use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like "What about lunch?" - A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
  • I just don't see a boy wanting to wear a dress the same as a girl thinking she can't ride a horse sorry. I get your whole own your body thing but I feel that at this age, no, when it comes to clothes that I buy and hair that I have to deal with, it will be how I pick. When you can manage your hair yourself then you can pick.

    For me, it has nothing to do with roles etc. Your kid, your rules. I still don't understand the whole boys can do "fun" things issue. So, I will just have to not get it.


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  • SpookoSpooko
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    If you give her pictures to choose from, I'd google images of little boys with longer hair so she can see that boys wear whatever style she picks.

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