So you have decided to go natural. Good job! It is a big decision to make. I always maintain that you have not known true fear until you step out the house for the first time with your wash and go, nary a straightened strand in sight. But you put on your adult pants and walk out anyway, hair flowing wild and free. It’s not too long before you start feeling pretty free yourself 🙂 You keep thinking to yourself: “Why didn’t I do this sooner?”
Then something happens to remind you why this didn’t happen sooner: a wild hater appears! #evenworsethana10CPZubat #PokemonGOawayplease. Like Satan, they can adopt many guiles that fool one into thinking they are normal people with normally functioning brains. Alas, they are the type who catch feelings on public Facebook posts and is strangely affected by the hair on your head. As a natural who is part of many online communities, I’m used to hearing words of support and just all-round coolness (you guys know who you are!) 😀 Haters however, speak in tongues of negativity and passive aggressive “compliments”. The hater comes fully equipped with an arsenal of generalisations, assumptions, judgements and condescending advice about what you should do to your hair to make them happy. When challenged by this I urge all fellow natural comrades to stay strong and stick to your guns. It’s good for some people to learn that they cannot control everything in the world 😉
For the newbie natural it’s overwhelming to be confronted by the “I like your hair better straight”, usually followed by “You should let me straighten it for you, I’ll make it look nice”. Now I understand why you would want to be all “I like your mouth better shut”, I really do, but you must understand that all they’re trying to do is help. In my experience I find that it’s best to respond in the same helpful manner. Suggestions include “I see you have split ends characteristic of heat/chemical damage, you should let me do a deep conditioning treatment for you.” It should be fine, because all you’re trying to do is return their “helpful” favour right? 🙂
The sneakiest of all haters though come from within the barracks :O I’m talking family members and friends who seem to think their opinion still matters XD When accosted by their “I don’t like this hair” or “This is just a phase”, I find it’s best taken with a pinch of salt. Techniques like mentally saying a prayer for the damage on their heads usually make me feel pretty good about my journey to healthy hair 😉 Now I know it’s hard to fight alone-especially when there seems to be no end to them- so you need to find yourself some allies 😀 I have amazing friends and a great mother, brother and father who have only ever supported my decisions. I know some naturals may not be so fortunate though :/ So in addition, I’ve found incredible support in the Cape Town Naturally, South African Naturals and It’s All Natural facebook groups- I do recommend a natural acolyte join them 🙂
Fellow naturals don’t be discouraged by the narrow-minded few who can’t see the joy in your journey. I don’t blame them; it must be hard to see through the hair iron smoke burning their hair and/or the eye-watering relaxer chemicals XD Julia Duminy (a lovely fellow natural) reminded me that the bigger the hair, the harder they stare 😉 Mostly they’re just upset because their opinion holds no weight in your life anymore. It’s difficult for people to see someone being free while they’re still imprisoned, so it stands to reason they would be bitter.
Now that you’re armed with the combat skills necessary to take on the haters, don’t let anyone stop your natural journey 😀 And when the haters start making noise, just turn up the volume and drown them out 😀
PS- Let’s try and embrace the different women in our life, it is Women’s Month (although that should be every month but that’s a post for another day 😛 )