Michele Zipp has an adorable 4 year old son named Hunter, with curly long blond hair past his shoulders. According to her, he has always liked it that way, until one day when he came home from school and stated he wanted his hair cut, like his friend (a boy who had short hair).
This surprised Michele because he had never enjoyed getting his hair cut in the past.
Hunter then proceeded to tell her that girls on the playground were teasing him, saying he looked like a girl. It crushed his little 4 year old heart.
Michele shared with thestir.cafemom.com, “adults, too, mistake him for a girl sometimes. We were apple picking recently and the woman at the farm said something along the lines of “The girls can also pick from these bins.” Hunter’s feelings were clearly hurt so I politely corrected her. Then I thought that made me sound like a jerk. But in my son’s eyes, I stood up for him and that was what was important.
At school, some boys called Hunter a girl. He said they were mean to him and didn’t listen when he told them he was a boy. Again, I’m not certain of the details, but what I do know is that suddenly, the boy who never liked getting his hair cut, wanted very short hair.”
Instead of giving in to his wishes, Michele encouraged Hunter to keep it by reminding him that lots of men have long hair. She showed him pictures of Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Jared Leto and the like…she reminded him that some women have short as well, and that it doesn’t matter.
She let the subject rest. Later, on another night as she was brushing his long locks after a bath he said how much he really did like his long hair and that he didn’t want to cut it anymore.
What are your thoughts on little boys with long hair? Is it unfair to expect them and their peers to overcome gender stereotypes at such a young age?
image via Michele Zipp