Black girls' hair

That first week of the London Olympics 2012, when I wasn’t watching, the primary storyline apparently was about Gabby Douglas’ great accomplishments in the Olympics. And her hair. Yawn.

As long as I’ve been alive, how black girls and women wear their hair has been “an issue” with someone. Processed or natural – “proves” how “black” someone really was, at least when I was growing up. Dyed or not – hey, do they “want to be white”?

In large part, I’m less upset by it than just sick of it. When the Daughter was about three, we were figuring out the best way to deal with her hair. At some point, we were experimenting with letting her hair go natural. Several black people I saw – who I didn’t even know, BTW – acted as though we were committing child abuse. “Hey, what are you DOING to that child?” Or “You get her to a stylist – NOW!” And these were some of the more reportable responses.

Back in 2009, Chris Rock made a movie called Good Hair which addressed his own daughter’s frustration with her “bad” hair.

Do you recall that poor white teacher in NYC who lost her job for READING the acclaimed children’s book called ‘Nappy Hair’ to mostly black and Hispanic third-graders “after parents complained and threatened her”? Sheer silliness.

I have, on LP, Whoopi Goldberg’s Broadway Show from the mid-1980s. She wore a yellow shirt or sweater over her head, and talked about her being a kid pretending to have long, luxurious blonde hair, just like she was “supposed” to have.

Seriously, I wish there was a moratorium on hearing about black females’ hair, especially by other people, but I’m not counting on it.

0 thoughts on “Black girls' hair”

  1. Not too long ago a woman I know who manages a hair salon told me the straight facts about black women’s hair. I was shocked, partly because of what she told me and partly because I had no idea. She told me about the Dominican hair straightening… yikes! “You do not touch a black woman’s hair,” she told me. “Every black guy knows this.”

    I have to say I am very distressed to read that people threatened you when you let your daughter’s hair grow naturally. Personally I would have told those people to go xxxx themselves. What happened to “Black Is Beautiful?”


  2. I wasn’t aware this was a common theme. First I heard a complaint about Gabby’s hair, I thought it was a Daily Show-like farce…apparently Fox News was serious. The trivial things people become infatuated with never ceases to amaze me.


  3. Ok, I definitely suprpot people who wear their hair natural. I tried to wear it natural but I have a lot of hair and the only way I could wear it and have it look nice is if I cut it (my beautician told me this) but I love my hair so I could never do it. Plus, it’s a lot of work since my hair is really thick and it’s long My mom wears her hair natural and it’s beautiful and looks amazing on her. But I hate when people say to wear it any other way but natural is self-hating and it’s unnatural. So are white people who bleach their hair and curl it or straighten it everyday self-hating ? Or the term only apply to girls who wear weaves or perm their hair?i meant to say, it’s, well, unnatural Isn’t it unnatural for white girls to alter the look of their hair, too?White girls wear weaves too what do you call those clip-on things? That’s not real hair.A lot of white actresses wear weaves too!WINTER BLOSSOM you are the same girl who said that you don’t like when black women wear weaves because it’s unnatural so my question for you is why do you care about how black women wear their hair?yeah sunshine same here!


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