Thanks to Mommyshorts for giving me the motivation to finally write how I feel about my boys’ long hair. There’s nothing more #likeaboy than just being yourself.
“She is so cute!”
“How old is she?”
“Does she want a sticker?”
These are common statements I hear on a daily basis. But as you know, I don’t have a girl…just boys. The reason I hear this is because of my boys’ hair. Two of them have long hair, and to many people, long hair = girl. It doesn’t matter that they are clearly wearing “boy clothing”, and many times playing with what most consider as “boy toys”, they get mistaken as girls so often I can’t keep track.
When my oldest, Jackson, was a baby, I loved his baby hair curls, and let his hair grow out. As he got older, the comments started to come in…as I am sure they do with many moms of little boys. “When are you going to cut his hair?” That’s a valid question…
Boys are stereotyped to have short hair. So to many it is just assumed that at one point boy babies/toddlers will get their haircut #likeaboy. The question was, when was I going to get Jackson a hair cut?
Well, he did finally get a haircut, but to my family’s dismay, it was still long.
And throughout the years, we kept it that way. Sometimes longer than other times, but nonetheless, it was always longer than the traditional “boy” haircut.
I mean….what even is that? “A boy haircut”
We live in a time where people are allowed to be whoever they want to be. We are free. And although there are gender stereotypes, they are being less and less followed everyday. Except, it seems, for what is an acceptable length of hair. (And yep, it goes both ways – just ask any mom who has a short hair cut.)
To me, my kids do have “boy” haircuts.
My Jackson still has long hair till this day. It is his choice, and he likes it. With every visit to the salon, I ask him if he wants his hair cut shorter, and he says no. In fact, one time, we did cut it a little shorter than usual with pressure from others, and he didn’t like it, it was uncomfortable for him, and he grew it back.
Two more sons later, I now also have Kyle (who likes his hair short) and Vann, who has the longest hair of the bunch. He’s my blondie…(who knows where that came from?) But as his hair finally grew in, I decided I wasn’t going to cut it short. I love how he looks with long hair. He’s my little surfer dude. But apparently, many do not like this style.
Why do people feel it’s okay to tell me “he needs a haircut?”
What does that say to me?
It tells me that they don’t like his hair…that they think it would look better cut “LIKE A BOY”
How is that okay?
It’s not okay to say that to my boy directly…making him question his choice (or mine) to have long hair. It’s not okay to tell him he has “sissy” hair…or “girl” hair. It’s just not.
They probably wouldn’t feel comfortable telling an adult to go get a haircut. Or if their friend got a cut that looked bad, they would probably say it looks great. So why is it appropriate to imply to a child that there is something wrong with his hair?
It hurts…just a little….knowing that certain friends and family don’t like how your child looks. Because I love how my boys look. And I can brush it off, mainly because I know some people are just stuck on stereotypes they are accustomed to.
I think it’s silly that boys are expected to have short hair. That schools can sometimes require boys to have short hair. Why does it matter?! Why aren’t boys allowed to have the same rules as girls. If they like long hair, they shouldn’t have to feel bad…or feel like they are different. I hate stereotypes. To me, my kids do have “boy” haircuts.
Angela cried when she gave into peer pressure and got her youngest son’s hair cut.
I always kept my older boys’ hair short because that’s how they liked it. With my third, I just loved the soft wavy blonde curls that he rocked every day. After countless times correcting people who called him a girl, and the comments from my family about how he desperately needed a haircut, I caved in. He was squirming and difficult the whole time. I should have taken that as a sign that he didn’t want to do it. How much more clear is the word no? I asked her not to cut it too short, but even then I was so upset at what I had done, and a little traumatized myself after forcing him to sit still for the trim. I don’t know if it will ever grow back curly like it was before, but I’m not touching it unless he asks me to.
Now she lets it grow wild because it fits his personality. Meet Morgan, he’s wild and crazy #likeaboy
Sharon of Cupcakes and Cutlery shares how her oldest boy loves his long hair.
“My oldest son’s hair didn’t grow until he was almost 2 years old. And then we just kept letting it grow. Of course, all the family had a lot to say about his long hair. But it didn’t bother my husband and I and we always asked my son for his opinion as well. At this point, it is his decision to keep it long. While we trim it before each school year and maybe once during, he prefers it long. People mistake him for a girl all the time and he is ok with it. He always politely corrects them. We talk to him about why people make that mistake and gender roles and such.
In this past year he started to articulate a little bit more about why he keeps his hair long. He told us that it is his “trademark.” And we respect that. But others do not. I’ve learned to not let it upset me and just continue to support my child. I understand when a person’s actions affect someone else it can be a negative. His long hair doesn’t affect anyone else. And so we let haters hate and continue to encourage his self expression. It is surprising how hard it is for people to keep their opinions, no matter how outdated, to themselves. And they don’t think about how what they say in front of the child could affect them later. I am sure at some point he will decide to cut his hair, and the people will rejoice. But for now, my boy has long hair and we love everything about him. “
Meet Oliver, he rocks the long curls #likeaboy
Pattie of Living Mi Vida Loca told us how is it culturally expected that her boys have short hair.
“It’s not uncommon in the Hispanic culture to shave your child’s head before they turn one. In fact, it’s pretty much expected – especially if your child is a boy. Two years into my youngest’s life and he still hadn’t gotten a haircut. Part of me was being rebellious by holding on to his long locks of hair. The other part of me loved how his hair looked with its natural wavy curl. I took the backhanded comments by family and friends in stride when they would see him and his locks cascading in front of his face before he tucked them behind his ears. I didn’t care, and I still don’t. My baby is very much a Latin boy – he just has a bit longer hair than most.”
Meet Luca, he has soft long locks and rocks a piece of carrot cake… #likeaboy
Donelle, a mom of two rockin’ boys tells us…
“Since my boys were babies I have always loved the idea of growing their hair out and leaving it long for as long as they wanted it that way. My oldest son has curly hair so we embraced it and let it be. He loves his curly hair and keeping it long. People that call him a girl react funny when I correct them, most of the time they say the curly hair threw them off (as if boys don’t have curly hair). My younger son has straight hair but likes it long too. Occasionally I get the “why don’t you cut their hair” question but my response is that they like it and so do we. We live in a beach community and our boys are total beach boys which is where we spend most of our time! They also love to go fishing, play baseball & soccer and ride bikes. Long hair isn’t just for girls! Boys can rock it too. Just like some girls rock short hair. It’s all about expressing each child’s personality!”
Meet Tre, he rocks the baseball field with his curly locks…. #likeaboy
and Koa with his surfer do loves to fish at the lake…#likeaboy
Jess from Million Moments shares about her son,
I get tons of “oh, what a pretty little girl!” remarks day in and day out. He will be wearing SO obviously boy clothes, and people see the hair and their mind just sees “girl”. We have taught him to say that he’s a boy to strangers who call him a girl!
Meet Judah, who rocks a ponytail #likeboy
Valerie from Glittering Muffins doesn’t want to force her son to do anything he doesn’t want to do.
I don’t cut them cause I just can’t bring myself to do so and he doesn’t want me too, he’ll scream if I have the scissors near his hair and say I will cut them (I tried once). I frankly don’t want to wrestle my child with scissors in my hand, the boy is freakishly strong!
Meet Nico… he’s strong #likeaboy
And my little Vann, he rocks a concert with long blond hair #likeaboy
And finally Jackson, the kid who has rocked my world and has shown me that is is okay not to go with the flow of what others perceive as what things “should be”. And despite being called a girl a thousand times over, he has stuck to what he loves.
He rocks his long hair #likeaboy
The fact of the matter is, it’s just hair. It’s a part of your body, and there’s nothing wrong with having at a length that you are comfortable with. Should we cut their eyelashes shorter because they are too long and girly? Should we try to bulk them up if their frame is too feminine-looking? Of course not!
Little boys are too busy to worry about whether or not their hair pleases everyone they meet. They just want to live life and have fun, just #likeaboy should do.