So lately, my daughter has been having issues with the children in her class saying that her hair is funny and that it’s weird. My daughter has no chemicals in her hair, so it’s her natural hair texture. When I wash it and let it out, she has a huge afro. I love her hair. It’s hard to do, being that her hair dries so quickly and it doesn’t hold moisture, but other than that, her hair is beautiful. I put her hair in ponytails, and twist them down. She doesn’t like it. She likes her ponytails loose. She wants to have puff balls. Not that I have a problem with her having puff balls, I just don’t think that looks well kept. So, I do her hair the way I want it and fix it in styles she previously liked. This way we come to an agreement. Whoever thought a nine-year-old would care so much about her hair at this age.
In order for my daughter not to feel left out, I stopped putting chemicals in my hair and decided to wear my natural hair texture. I must say, this has been a rough transition as I reverted back to chemicals earlier this year. I haven’t done it since, so my hair is almost back to it’s natural texture. She doesn’t know that she is the real reason why I stopped putting chemicals in my hair. I want to surprise her when it’s completely finished. I constantly remind her that her hair is beautiful, and that the kids who pick on her are just jealous. They wished they had hair like hers. It is important that I make her feel good about her appearance, mainly her hair because she mentioned to me that she is the only African-American child in her class. Who knew that elementary school would be such a rough time for children. When I was in elementary we were arguing over who’s going to be “it” before we started a game of freeze tag or determining where base would be before a game of hide-n-go-seek.
Parenting these days have changed so much from traditional techniques. It’s so much competition in parenting these days. Kids today aren’t allowed to be children. They are either a fashion trend, or a hair model, or compared to some other materialistic things. Parents today focus so much on what other children have, to they forget to be positive role models. It’s ok to want your child to be in on the latest fashions and trends, but don’t focus so much on that, that you forget to be there for your child mentally. My mom stresses to me the importance of being a positive role model and displaying myself in such a manner in front of my daughter, that she will have something good to look up to. I think parents today have really lost sight of that.
Have you ever observed a group of children playing together? They don’t care about their clothes, or hair, or nails, or any of that stuff. They are carefree. They are concerned about who has my barbie doll, or who has my lego, or something else that children find fascinating. But, when it comes time for them to need advice on something, they want someone they can look up to. Someone who will steer them in the right direction and keep them there. Someone to dispute the negatives they may possibly face. Every once in a while they may want something someone else has, but it’s our job as parents to assure them that they don’t need that. My grandma used to tell me when I was a little girl not to try to keep up with the “Jones”. Don’t want something just because someone else has it. Stand out. Be different. Don’t follow. Lead. That’s what children today need. They need someone to teach them how to be leaders and not followers.