Saturday, January 2, 2010


We spent a lot of time this weekend with my husband's parents. They are super good people and I enjoy them very much - however differently Michael and I were raised, we agree that both sets of parents are good people.

I told my mother-in-law about my blogs and she was especially interested in this one, wondering what it was about. I explained that it sort of started as a commentary on my haircut and how that was affecting my life - aside from the fact that I felt I had a lot to share on the subject of femininity and adolescent development etc etc. She was really curious as to how it might be affecting me.

When I explained the people treated me differently since the hair cut she was sort of confused. Why in the world would anyone treat me differently?

I didn't get to talk to her much about it, but I did want to say a few things I've noticed in the past few months.

People here, in my area, don't treat me as differently anymore.

I think that, at least in the places I frequent, most people have seen me around, and it's not so surprising. I thought for awhile that I was just more used to people staring blatantly, but I've realized that that's not really the case, since when we went on vacation to Niagara Falls I had several people staring (not in Canada, mind you, but in Northern PA and upstate New York). I even had a girl stare at me for the entire duration of our trip to McDonalds in New York City - and you'd think that would be a place where people had seen everything...

Apparently this is just that strange.

What's really weird is that it's sort of trendy in Hollywood, or at least it's had stints of trendiness in the recent past. Heck, even Britney shaved her head - granted people all decided that she was a complete nut job at that point... so maybe that says something about our American culture...

Either way, the point is, there has been some progress.

There are still stares in one key place: the pediatrician's office.

I think that parents are so afraid that their children will grow up to be weird, or gay, or trans, or anything out of the ordinary - they absolutely don't want them to be exposed to this out of the ordinary person in a place that ought to be "safe" from such people.

That place aside, there has been actual progress. People don't stare anymore. People don't giggle behind my back. People don't make comments. The clerks don't avoid eye contact at the store. It's really... nice.

Maybe there is hope for humanity. Maybe people can actually change, accept something new, add it to their paradigm or shift their paradigm and learn. I hope that's the case and I'm not just oblivious.

And I hope that eventually, if I can be strong enough and keep this thing up, maybe the parents at the doctor's office will embrace the whole thing. Hey, my kid can be different and that's OKAY. I can still love them if they shave their head or get a tattoo or decide to be an actor... That whole unconditional thing? Yeah, this would be where it applies.

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