Last night our 4-year-old son and I were sitting on the sofa together. I reached over and ran my hand through his long hair and asked jokingly, “How about a hair cut?” He promptly stood up, raising his right knee to his chest, and said in a very loud and stern voice, “No…I…put…my…foot…down…right now!” and stamped his boot on the floor with as much power as he could muster. My husband and I looked at each other for a moment and immediately broke out in laughter. Through his laughter my husband replied, “I don’t think he wants his hair cut.” “You think?!?!” I answered.
Normally, I am the one defending our children’s choice for long hair, not the one inquiring about cutting it. It was purely for fun. Personally, I find that anyone beyond my husband and myself does not hold the right to inquire on such things. These are our children and we raise them to our standards and as we see fit. Frankly, I do not see what invokes such an outburst in people when it comes to little boys with long hair. It isn’t a new trend. The way I understand it, men have sported long hair since the time of Jesus. Long hair was certainly the fashion in the 70s and has made a return with a modern spin over the last few years. Everywhere I look there are little boys with long hair. Most of which are handsomely styled and cared for. Why then do we find ourselves victim to being verbally accosted while grocery shopping or at family function? I just don’t get it. Whats the big deal? Is the fact that our son’s hair touches his neck really a reason that warrants someone literally chasing us down (in a wheelchair no less) to yell at him for his haircut? I think not. Situations like these make is hard as a mother to teach through example. When someone is attacking our child, be it verbally or otherwise, it is my genetic duty to attack them back. I really have to exert all of my restraint when a perfect stranger is telling our child that how he looks is wrong and somehow offensive. I think as children, the choice of your hairstyle is very much self-validating. They actually get a say in what they look like. As parents we can monitor clothing choices, langauge, education, friends, priveledges….basically everything from the moment they wake to the moment they sleep. Giving them power of their hairstyle is a VERY big deal.
You know what else I find funny? The fact that no one has ever asked them why they have long hair. Our 4-year-old would tell you, “I want to look like Jesus.” The fact that their father has long hair, might be a contributing fact also. Funny, no one has ever ran after my husband to tell him he need a haircut. If someone were to actually ask, they might find out that our family donates hair to Locks of Love. Anyone who has donated to this wonderful organization can tell you that there is a length requirement. I’m not saying that is the only reason they sport long hair, most of which is due to their fashion choice. Donating hair is just something we do. Why not right? Cherish the little things.