Thursday, October 7, 2010

Hair and the Menz

I'm trying to remember when in my life I realized that hair was an important attribute to getting the attention of males. I remember my hair always receiving a lot of attention in both aggressive and curious ways (is all that real? you don't have a perm?) and I remember the first boy I actually "dated"always wanted to see my hair out and loose but that's about as far as it went. But I always knew who got the boys attention and who didn't; the girls who had long hair straight hair, or with the "acceptable" curls, whether it was truly their texture or not. Even though guys (both friends and interests) have told me my hair was cool and they liked how different it was, it usually came from those who weren't Black. If it did  I was considered the "exception." Like, usually I prefer straight hair but yours is nice (oh, cuz you're doing me a huge favor, *shrugs*)

I'm in a long-term relationship now (4 years) with Mr. Smooth who is Puerto Rican. I hardly consider that inter-racial but I suppose it depends on who you ask. Anyway I do remember wondering if my hair was pretty to him, considering the women in his family had a very different texture than mine. They seemed to have more manageable hair. I was so self-concious about it actually that I admitted to him that he may find lighter skinned, straighter haired women more attractive. (and oddly he in turn thought I'd find a darker skinned male more attractive, just self-esteem issues I guess.) He told me he loved my hair the way it was, and when I almost relaxed it (because I thought my hair was ugly, not because I wanted to try something new!) he convinced me not to. I thought things like that didn't matter to him and I think in the end it doesn't, but it did make me realize that he loved me for who I what I looked like and why on earth couldn't I?

I've only had natural hair so I don't know how it must be for transitioners or those who are newly natural. But I do believe that if you don't like your hair (or yourself for that matter), then how can you expect someone else to? I know I've heard of some stubborn spouses, and you better believe Mr. Smooth doesn't always like the way I style my hair. I prefer a little messiness and he likes things to look neat. I do ask him whether he likes a particular style and unless he can pin point something specific about what he doesn't like, I keep it moving! I do know that I can never go wrong with twists, it's his favorite style. That's about as much people-pleasing I do with that.

Hair enthusiasts, chime in: How does your significant other view your hair?

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