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The sign said: Long-haired, freaky people need not apply

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My son has long hair.  Really long hair.  Like, Jesus long.

So does Captain Jack Sparrow, Steven Tyler, Rambo, Troy Palamalu of the Steelers, and El Mariachi in Desperado.

Do kids tease him?  It has happened.

Is he ever mistaken for a girl?  Sometimes, yes he is.  In fact, he was consistently called “she” by one particular member of the hospital staff during his recent stay making me wonder if there was something amiss on his records. **And really, his name was on EVERYTHING; it’s not a crossover or gender neutral name**

Why would we let our ten-year-old son have such long hair?  Why would we willingly let our son do something that isn’t ‘normal’ and makes him stand out from others?  **Anyone who wonders this has clearly never met me. I’m the one with the ‘Support Zombies’ ribbon on my van and mother to the 6 year-old who think she’s a werewolf**

As parents, we could force him to cut his hair against his wishes: Wishes that he has made very clear since he was 4 years old.

What would that teach him?  I think the lesson would be clear, “Change yourself, conform to the norm,  and avoid disapproval… at all cost!”  Then in high school when his friends are pressuring him to do something dangerous, or against his personal values, he will know that his social standing is to be a lemming- right off the cliff.

How dangerous is long hair on a boy?  Does this mean he is destined to be gay? Maybe.  Maybe Steven Tyler, Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Shaun White, David Beckham, and Tom Brady  are all gay. They all are, or have, dabbled in the long-haired lifestyle. **Gasp, look at all the boys with haircuts that look like Neil Patrick Harris, Elton John, and Anderson Cooper**

And here is where someone pulls out this fallacy of logic saying, “So, if he wanted a tattoo (or insert other extreme example) would you let him?”  Long hair can not give him a blood transmitted disease, long hair isn’t permanant, and a ten-year-old having long hair isn’t illegal… this is playing the “what if” game, and what if long-haired aliens take over earth; then he might be one of the only boys allowed to survive.

Why do I allow my ten-year-old son to have long hair?  Because, I’m not raising a 10 year old.  I’m raising a future man/husband/father/friend and his individuality, style, calm strength, and heart of gold will carry him farther than he could get riding on the back of a Lemming.  If he wants long hair (or green hair, a mohawk, or no hair) during the process of growing up, so be it.

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6 responses »

  1. I can relate to this, I had long hair from 11-17 year old. My friends and family were a little counter culture, so it wasn’t a problem. School was a whole different story. I got called a “rocker”, “freak” and all kinds of exploitives for “gay”. It also helped me develop my fierce sense of independence and to know who my real friends were. Now I have 3 boys and yes, we have given the 3 year old a few haircuts, but if he decides to rock it long, so be it!

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  2. Emily Filmore

    I love long haired freaky people! And I love your sense of humor. Sage, 6, has had purple, pink, blue and green hair (to match mine) and purposely mismatches her clothes on a daily basis. She plans to have a nose ring by 14 and a tattoo by 19, coincidentally the age I got my tattoo. But I think she, your werewolf and your long haired freaky person might be the free thinkers who cure cancer, invent fully sun operated cars, and broker world peace! Brava mama! I’m proud to call you friend!

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  3. He looks gorgeous! I’m always in a battle with my husband over letting our kid’s locks grow or buzz them (he bought clippers and went home early once to achieve his ends – doesn’t that sound like a horror movie??? It kinda felt like one.) Lots of people love boys with long hair (we just aren’t as verbal I guess)

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  4. He’s such a great kiddo Delaney… handsome to boot!! Loved the article, girl!

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  5. I really like your attitude. I believe we have to let our kids make decisions (with guidance of course – more depending upon the severity of the issue). This is the only way to prepare them for adulthood when they will be making all of their decisions.

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  6. Pingback: Mother’s Day: The Rhea Way | The Maniac's Menagerie

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