Monday, August 29, 2011

The Itch to Touch

As I felt the vibrations of the plane landing on the tarmac in Tampa, FL.  I said a little prayer of thanks and was so relieved.  I hate flying but I can bear it as long as I have a good book, music and/or crochet needles with a skein of yarn stuffed in my purse.  MadiMelzCurlz loves flying and watching her DVDs
(Keeps her quiet). 

10 minutes later, I'm pulling my carry-on from the overheard compartment and I hear MadiMelzCurlz say..."You can't touch my hair because..."  I looked down and see this young woman pulling her hand back with a look of offensiveness.  I asked confused and shaking my head, "What are you doing?" and kept my gaze at her.  She said, "Her hair is so cute...I just wanted to look at it."  Right then, I wanted to remind her that looking doesn't constitute touching.  But smiled and calmly said, "Sorry, but I rather you not touch her hair, it's still a part of her body and I have to protect her."  She stood there looking appalled and then cut her eyes at me...I chuckled a bit and shook my head.  We were stuck there standing in our same spots because we were waiting for the passengers ahead to move it along down the aisle.  Still standing by my and my daughter's seats, I was hoping the woman would let us cut through....yeah right...(laughing)!  Of course she didn't...then looked back and cut her eyes at me again. I extended her the same courtesy this time, glancing to see if MadiMelzCurlz caught my bad side.  It was wrong...but the bad side of me knew it felt right :-)

I have had people at times that tell me that MadiMelzCurlz' hair is adorable and they reach to touch...and I gently pull her back.  Then I get the looks as if I didn't have the right to do that.  But she's my child...I can't have strangers just come up and touch her.  I have had others who would compliment and then ask me if I wouldn't mind because they wanted to feel how soft her hair is.  It's also good practice for my daughter so that she knows people have to ask permission before they just do something.  If I never said anything to anyone when they wanted to touch or grab her hair and succeeded, she would think that it is okay for randomn people to touch her.  So, I was proud when she told the young woman that she couldn't touch her hair, something I constantly tell her.

What are your views on strangers wanting to touch your Curly Gurl'z hair?  How do you approach the situation if and when it is about to happen?  What attitudes have you received when you respond?  What do you tell your Curly Gurl in regards to people wanting to touch her hair?  And share ways to approach a situation to diffuse it from the start.

Thank you so much for reading!

-Sdestra (BCG mom)


  1. I'm not sure how I would have handled the situation but I think you did a great job of doing so. I never thought about their hair is still a part of their body so no stranger should be able to touch it...its a matter of respect.

  2. You're absolutely right, respect is important! And we also want our children to understand that they need to be respected too :-)

  3. I agree with you on the way you handaled that situation. I in fact tell my daughter that it is not acceptable for people to touch her hair or any part of her person without permission. My reactions have gotten a little better but being the military mom that I am, I still have that side of me. I fell that when you explain this to your daughter and she realizes the importance she learn more about the value of herself.