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14 November 2007

Comments

Jamie

Ha Ha! You're getting advice from the mom that FINALLY cut her 3 1/2 year olds hair this summer and likes to keep both her boys hair longer.

For D we are keeping it shorter now b/c it is easier to manage on him. I like it when it has some curl to it, and it looks so cute but it does take work and i hardly have time to fix my own hair these days!

I don't have an answer for you though. :)

linzi

I think when it comes to hair on a toddler, the best way to think is about the day to day issues rather than the big ideas... he is small, I'm sure he would rather spend time playing and snuggling then having his hair braided, combed or fussed with, as any toddler is! When I was that age, my mom always bobbed my hair in an easy style...

I think that bigger issues like identity, race, etc will be more of as a concern when he is older and more aware... for now I would say.. go with what is easy n relaxing... and save the style statements for his choices as he gets older! :)

Wendy

I (obviously) don't have any advice, either, but know that struggle even though Finley doesn't have a different hair type than me. All the hair on the top of her head wants to go straight forward, she has a heckuva cowlick on the back side, it isn't really curly or completely straight, and she doesn't like to keep it confined with barrettes or ties... She usually looks unkempt. And I feel insecure in public with her that way at times. I had a cute (short) hairstyle on her for a while, but now she wants long hair. (Does Small Son have an opinion on the issue?)

Dawn

I'd go with the cultural conventions around me, which I think is unfortunately more rigid with boys than it is with girls. Still it varies so much region to region. (And around here, neighborhood to neighborhood.)

Amie R

Refreshed and rejuvenated over here as well! By the way..Exasperate? Conduct Disorder? AntisociaI Personality Disorder? Sociopath?

Back to the topic at hand..I must say that with Small Son and Jamie's Little Boy, I am DIGGING the shorter hairdos. I especially like Small Sun's when you do the pomade thing...very nice.

I guess I lean more toward trying to make my kids look as "clean cut" as possible with the understanding that they are still toddlers.

I don't really know why this is coming to mind. BUT, recently I was at an outlet mall and there was a group of African men shopping there. They were dressed in nice church-like clothes (it was Sunday) and had close cuts. When I saw them, I thought..."Well, that's a good way to not get followed around in the store as if you are going to steal something." It was one of light bulb going off moments for me as a transracial parent.

I think that represents where I am on the issue though. I will probably be dressing my kids in traditional (preppy) clothing with shorter cuts, and then they can choose to rebel whichever way they feel appropriate (much to my dismay) when they become teenagers.

Also, I feel like we get less novelty type comments now that B's hair is short. There were a lot of strangers feeling his hair when he had twists and braids, which I think would be uncomfortable for even a young child.

So in a nutshell...my vote is keep it short until Small Sun is ready to rebel. :)

Heather

I also struggle with whether to let my son's hair grow. I love it long but it's hard to keep him looking put-together -- especially now that it is hat-wearing season and his hair isn't quite thick enough for braids.

I've decided to defer to the black women who care for him at daycare and I'm letting it grow out again (I also didn't cut it until his first birthday) with regular haircuts to shape it up, even it out and edge around the hairline. So far, so good.

I'd love to join you and Amie for coffee sometime!

HCP

Heather

I also struggle with whether to let my son's hair grow. I love it long but it's hard to keep him looking put-together -- especially now that it is hat-wearing season and his hair isn't quite thick enough for braids.

I've decided to defer to the black women who care for him at daycare and I'm letting it grow out again (I also didn't cut it until his first birthday) with regular haircuts to shape it up, even it out and edge around the hairline. So far, so good.

I'd love to join you and Amie for coffee sometime!

HCP

caro.d

There's a couple at our church that has their son's hair in braids and I made the mistake of asking what "her" name was. When I had Big E's hair longer he got that a lot too. I finally decided to keep it short in the winter ( he loses his curl from lack of humidity ) and then grow it out in the summer. As silly as it sounds, I go by the models in circulars that we get. I wasn't sure if it was appropriate to use product on kids hair but it looks good on Big E.

cloudscome

I like the idea of keeping a low profile and I think there are real advantages to looking "clean cut", as much as I wish it didn't matter. When he gets older, as others have said, he will have more of an opinion and he will probably want it longer at some point. I say keep it short while he's young, and let it be less of an issue. But I think you have to go with what makes you comfortable too, as you are taking care of it for him at this point.

Stephanie

This is my first time on your blog, but I am the one who wrote my initial post on Bethany's transracial adoption board yesterday. (:

I can share my experience with my son's hair, but it may be somewhat different as he is of African (Sudanese) descent and as far as I can tell, culturally their boys keep short hair. Which is good for me, because I am hairstyle-challenged! (:

I also keep his hair short because right now it stays cleaner (think sandbox) and doesn't involve extended grooming time (think wriggly 2-year old) and in hopes that it won't invite so many unwanted head rubs from strangers (that isn't working so well here in Chile, where he is quite the novelty.)

But in the end, I think culture and comfort are the most helpful deciding factors.

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