Natural Socialite

Natural Hair & the Generation Gap | The Natural Socialite

In Natural Hair, Self Help Series, Socialite Says on July 6, 2011 at 11:35 am


Ever since I completed my transition process and became natural, I have received mixed reviews from different people in reference to their opinions about my “new do”. When I first did my big chop, I was definitely not  1) prepared to deal with being COMPLETELY natural & 2) prepared to deal with having SHORT, completely natural hair. If I could have done it over again, I definitely would have transitioned more than the 10 months that it took me to grow my mini fro.   I have since grown to love my hair & its unpredictable nature, but since 2009, neither of my grandmothers have gotten accustomed to the beauty of my “nappy hair”.

I know that I am the only one who has to love my hair, and quite frankly…. I do & could care less what people though.  My experiences with some of my “elders” however have caused me to stop & think twice about the generational gap that exists when it comes to natural hair. Going against someone else’s standards of beauty can be challenging, but nothing beats loving yourself for who you are.

Have any of you witnessed the generational differences that exist when it comes to having natural hair?  Did you get any opposition from your family members when you decided to transition?  If so, how did you deal with the “pressure to perm”?

  1. I have experienced the same thing with my mother…. she hates my natural hair. The way she pronounces the word “nappy is so harsh. I understand and realize that her generation comes from a time when nappy hair was considered to mean that your were ugly, poor, uneducated etc…… this reaction to my hair is her issue with the constant move that you have to look white in order to survive this world. I have been natural for 4 months and I will not but a perm in my hair again. All the women in my family with perms have short, thinning hair. I just love the way it feels and I really don’t care if they like it our not, it is my hair so i will wear it anyway I choose to wear it. I love the freemdom and self acceptance that comes with it.


  2. When I was natural my family HATED it! And they were never shy to let me know that they hated it….but I LOVED it!! I loved all of the styles I learned to create with my hair. I think good/bad hair debates contributes to the reactions. Even though I know there’s no such thing as ‘good’ hair, i still found myself guilty of saying it.

  3. When I went natural I got mixed reviews from my mom and dad’s side of the family. My mom’s side…the more “free” thinking side, liked it…including my grandmother. She’s even gone natural a couple of times. My dad’s side of the family,the more conservative side, however, didn’t like it. I wore two-strand twists…my grandmother referred to them as “dem twigs in yo head.” My dad didn’t like the way they looked, but one day he touched my hair and sweetly said…”Man, your hair feels like it did when you were a little girl.” I have to admit, even though I was close to 30 at the time, I think he went back in time for that moment. Really sweet!

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