Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Wake Up!





Surprising to some but common to many, hair is still a taboo subject in the African American community. Black women judge each other by their hair and single ladies wonder if a natural style is limiting their dating potential.

My freshman year in college, I came up with this half permed/half natural curly afro thing that I tied a scarf around; I kinda became natural by accident. There wasn't an epiphany one day to connect with my African roots as a byproduct of my HBCU experience. It wasn't that deep.
 
I wasn't confident in my new 'do and allowed certain people's comments to dictate how I wore my hair. Several times, I went from getting a virgin perm one month to cutting it all off the next. Finally in November of my senior year at Clark Atlanta University, I cut the relaxer out for good!



There are so many issues connected to this natural hair debate-
 
-What is good and/or bad hair?
 
-Have the tables been turned and now people with striaght hair are being shamed by people with natural hair?
 
-Are you really natural if you straighten your hair?
 
-Why does Chris Rock call relaxers creamy crack?
 
-What is a faux natural?
 
Too much to explore in one blog post. Stay tuned for the rest of the discussion and weigh in!
 
 

5 comments:

  1. That makes me sad women feel it limits their dating pool. My husband is white. He doesn't understand my hair *at all* but it wasn't a hindrance. He didn't even ask questions about it. He just accepted it. I think if a man really cares about you, your hair doesn't matter at all.

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    1. It makes me sad that I feel it has actually hindered my dating life or I'm just making excuses

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  2. I love my natural hair, but at times wondered how men view it, and thought it may be hindering my dating life. Now, I feel like if a man can't accept me the way I am, with my natural hair, then that is just his loss. There is more to me than just my hair. "I am not my hair...." I had a perm most of my life and I don't think it's a bad thing or look down on people that have one. Natural hair is just my preference now, and I love it. I don't care what people say. I finally became comfortable with it, especially at work. However, I have older family members that don't like natural hair, but that's their choice, and I respect that. It is sad though. Why should we feel bad about our hair? I struggled with it for a long time, but I've come to realize that all hair is good hair. God gave us our hair, and it doesn't matter if we wear it straight or curly. I think the fact that we can wear our hair in so many different styles (whether it be natural or permed, or long or short) is what makes us so unique.
    -Great topic for discussion. Keep up the good work Alison!

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    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I was speaking to one of my friends about that phrase "I am not my hair." The phrase sounds like its something wrong with my hair. I also don't like the phrase, "I don't see color" for the same reason

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    2. I wanted to put a music note at the end of "I am not my hair" but couldn't figure out how to do it. When I was typing up the comment I started thinking of the song by India Arie. We will always be who we are within no matter what we do to our hair or how it looks. I just wish that other people would realize it, and not treat us differently because of it. When I first went back to having natural hair I was so worried about what people thought of me. I was the same me on the inside, but I looked different on the outside. It just so happened that during this time I began interviewing for a new job, and I struggled with whether I needed to get it straightened or not so that I could "fit in". I didn't think employers would accept me with natural hair. Now when I go on interviews I am proud of my hair. I love that natural hair is becoming more accepted, we are seeing it more in the workplace, and we are seeing more women with natural hair in the spotlight.

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