Her Body, Her Choice... Period
Start writing a post
Arts Entertainment

Her Body, Her Choice... Period

My 7-year-old daughter's decision to have dreads.

412
Her Body, Her Choice... Period

Imagine you are 7 years old.

You just woke up, ate breakfast, and now it is time to get ready for the day. Society tells you to pick the pink shirt with the matching pink skirt, and maybe those glittery shoes, too. After all, you are a young lady. BUT... What if that isn't you? Instead, you strap on your TMNT onesie with the hood, layer it with the Halloween tutu you refuse to let Mom wash (daily accessory, duh) and a pair of pink rubber boots. When you are done, you head back downstairs to finish getting ready.

"Brush your teeth and hair," you hear your mom remind you from the living room, "We have a few places to go today." You stare at the mirror. To you, this is torture. For one reason or another, you hate brushing your hair. It doesn't feel like you.

This became a reoccurring scenario in our house. I have always tried to be, or at least would like to think I am, a peaceful parent. I know in my heart how important it is to respect the autonomy of my children. When we don't, that is when children rebel and become sneaky to have their needs met. There were days I just said, "Screw the brush" and walked out the door as is. We would not only get stared at by strangers, but some of their comments were vicious, too. The most heartbreaking were the comments from those who "loved" us.

"Doesn't she know how to use a brush?" "You're her mother, drag it through her hair until she learns." It's like at some point in history, we accepted that hurting our children to have them look a certain way to fit in with society was okay. Like we decided that having control over someone was more important than having a relationship with them.

We decided to try something different. My daughter and I sat down and brainstormed. She came up with a brilliant idea all her own to which I was proud. "Mom, what about dreads?" YES! So together we went online to look for videos on how to get this started. What could anyone have to say now? Surely we won.

Haha. It's a cruel world. The judgments poured in. "I thought you were going to work on brushing? It looks even worse now!" and my favorite, "Don't you know that is a good way to get lice?" I'll let you in on a little secret for that last one; lice like CLEAN hair. With the amount of wax and oil we have used to get the dreads to lock properly and not into one jumbled mess, I highly doubt that is an issue. Also, it's hair. It grows back. Worse case is we fail at this and we have to start over. She knew this going in, and it was HER choice to give it a try.

Her body, her choice. I would like to think we live in a progressive time where this is understood, even for children. Childhood is an important time, a magical time, in which one should be exploring who they are and what they like. It is time we embrace our differences.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Rebecca Alvarez

Rebecca Alvarez is many things: founder, sexologist, CEO, mentor, and more — as a Latina businesswoman, each of her endeavors is grounded in the strong principles of inclusivity and diversity, especially in sexual health and wellness. Bloomi is the product of her all of her shared passions, and with it she has fostered a community of like-minded, passionate women.

Keep Reading... Show less

There is not a consistent standard for health education in the United States. There are a lot of variables that go into this — what state a student lives in, whether they go to a public or private school, and the district's funding and priorities. These variables can be argued for any subject, not just health class. But as we continue to grow as a society, hopefully bettering our education system along the way, it's crucial to consider this often-forgotten element of a child's schooling.

Keep Reading... Show less

In March, the whole country shut down. School was online, extra-curriculars were canceled, and I found myself laying in bed all day every day. One day, as I was laying in bed contemplating my laziness, I decided that I wanted to do something to make myself more healthy. I was feeling so down on myself and my laziness so I decided to make a change.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

10 Songs That Made It Onto My September Playlist

September is the month for Los Angeles natives and Australian music fans.

1956

The Neighbourhood, Bad Suns and The Driver Era are three Los Angeles bands that released songs this month. Not only was it a month for Los Angeles bands, but many Australian bands released new music — San Cisco's fourth studio album, Surf Trash single, Skegss single, and High Tropics single. I made new discoveries this month and was pleased by the amount of new music.

Read the listicle below to learn what came out this month in alternative rock music:

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Staying Active While You're Stuck Inside IS Possible, It Just Takes Some Small Steps

I know the last thing you want to think about right now is exercising, but it's time to put down the controller and put on your workout clothes.

121

As someone who has also been living on a bed since March, I can guarantee you that working out has been the last thing on my priority list. It's pretty far down there, along with my motivation and brain cells I used to use for work. However, I have made an effort in the past couple of weeks to move up exercising to at least number three on my priorities list.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Got Clean At A Very Young Age, And It Honestly Saved My Life

At 18, the world looked so much different for me than it did for most other 18-year-olds that I knew.

336
Emmie Pombo

Going into rehab when I was 19 was hands down the hardest thing I've ever had to do in my life. My addiction started when I was around 17 and spiraled and spiraled out of control, as addictions always do. However, looking back, I'm so lucky my addiction started and ended when it did.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

7 Things Your Partner Can Do To Support You When You Have PCOS

Don't be afraid to ask for help or comfort if you need it.

12180

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) may not be totally visible to the eye, which makes it a lot harder for your partner to understand what's going on with your body.

If you are in a relationship, it's important that you communicate your PCOS symptoms with your partner. I say "your" symptoms specifically because everyone's symptoms are different.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Watched 'The Social Dilemma' And YIKES, I'm Terrified For The Next Generation's Mental Health

Millennials can remember a time without online social affirmation, but we may be the last ones.

6479
The Social Dilemma / Netflix

I've been in a media job for the entirety of my professional career. From part-time social media internships to full-time editorial work, I've continued to learn how to tell stories, write catchy headlines, and keep people interested. I believe working in media is a big responsibility, as well as a valuable way to advance our world.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

One Indictment, Three Charges, And No Justice For Breonna Taylor

We can't settle for this decision or a system that is fundamentally broken and unequal.

19135

On March 13, 26-year-old Breonna Taylor was fatally shot in her apartment by police who were executing a "no-knock" warrant. Since then, there have been rallying efforts both in the streets and on social media demanding justice for Taylor and keeping her name known.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments