Depending on whether you’ve seen me @ some point in the past year or not, you may or may not be privy to the fact that I’m growing my hair out. It’s funny to think that now I spend half or more of my time in the shower on my hair where as 18 months ago it was probably 30 seconds or less (though I try to turn off the water when I’m shampooing to save the earth a little bit — you should try it, too!). It’s down to my shoulders now, and it’s finally about the point where I can put all my hair — including my “bangs” — into a pony tail, and in general it’s about down to my shoulders, or a little past. There are a lot of people currently in my life who didn’t know me before long hair, and it’s just funny to realize and recognize that, knowing how much that “first impression” has on someone.
Now as a guy, long hair is definitely not the standard. I definitely took some slack from people when I decided to just let it grow and grow, but after time most people got used to it. However, I think the only reason some people really accept it is because I’m “doing it” so I might get a pony tail to cut off and donate sometime in the future. If I was just growing it this way because I felt like it (which, hey, may happen after I end up donating), would that be so wrong? The female “business” haircut has become short, so what’s so appalling about a man with long hair?
It’s interesting the gender stereotypes and requirements we’ve created in our society and how we perpetuate them (something I’ll talk about in another blog soon). One day in the fall I put my hair up in pig tails, which I thought looked kind of funny, but since my hair wasn’t long enough to all go in a pony tail, it was the best way to keep it all out of my face. Sharing that story with others, some thought that was a totally unacceptable way for a male to style his hair. But why? Who has told us this?
It’s true that I sometimes want to shake things up, but it’s not for no reason. I love to question the reasons certain things are in place. Why is it that a guy and a girl can hold hands in public, but if two guys hold hands, it’s a huge deal? It feels good to hold hands, so why can’t we just do it more often with our friends and not worry about all the people who might stare and gawk (my second love language is touch)?
Let’s all think about why certain “normalcies” have been created in society and how we can work to get rid of these stereotypes, because no matter what it is, it stifles a person’s freedom to do and act as they wish.