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to not let 11yo dd dye her hair?

(29 Posts)
Heavensmells Fri 19-Oct-12 17:31:54

All three of my dc's have ginger hair which they have inherited from me although I have been a bottle blonde since I was old enough to dye my hair.
I have always told them (along with many others) how beautiful their hair is and how lucky they are have the colouring that they have. I have tried really hard not to project how I always felt about my hair (I hated having ginger hair) onto them and when they have asked why my hair is a different colour I told them that I fancied a change and got used to it being blonde so kept it that way.
Dd is 11 and has just started secondary school. She is much fairer then me and her brothers, we have dark eyes, eyelashes and eyebrows and she has gorgeous blue eyes, ginger lashes and almost white eyebrows. She has not liked the colour if her hair for years now and has felt self conscious about her lashes and brows for a couple of years to the point where she has been pestering me to get them tinted. I have always said no they are lovely, don't be silly.
She has come home from school today pleading with me to let her dye her hair brown. She keeps having lots of other pupils shouting names at her about her hair, it seems to be quite a fashionable thing to bully redheads at her school she says and the name calling is by lots of different children.
The thing is I know that if she was happy with her colouring then she would ignore these kids but she hates it and thinks the whole problem will just go away if she dyes it. That she will be happier in herself and that the name calling would stop. I felt the same growing up and I would have felt much happier in my own skin if I'd have coloured mine earlier although I have NEVER shown this to dd in any way.
BUT I really don't want her to dye it, she's so pretty and it really suits her. AIBU?

Heavensmells Fri 19-Oct-12 17:32:23

Gosh that was long, thank you for reading smile

PinkFairyDust Fri 19-Oct-12 17:37:02

Why don't you take her to a salon and see what they say? Maybe high lights etc I know she is young but if this continues she may start really hating school

Could compromise with her, you pay half she pays half?

bonzo77 Fri 19-Oct-12 17:37:27

I'm sorry to tell you this, but if your poor dd is getting this treatment at school, she'll get it even if she dyes her hair. In fact her dyeing it will probably become another "thing" that she gets bullied for. I think you need to tackle the perpetrators, not her perfectly normal, natural, beautiful hair. Im not saying don't dye her hair, just that YABU if you think it will help. What are the school doing?

nonkybonk Fri 19-Oct-12 17:41:16

Yanbu. I love red/ginger hair. It's beautiful. She is too young to start this regular chore for any reason. Perhaps have a word with school about bullying, if this is what you/she thinks is happening. Show her positive images of redheads like that Mad Men woman (who I think dyes her hair red!) Remind her that dye colour is rarely same as in box/swatch -she might end up with v dark hair which will look odd with fair eyebrows and lashes (been there).

Good luck persuading her though ...

AgentZigzag Fri 19-Oct-12 17:44:11

Just going on your title I would say no straight off, but if it's causing her problems I'd probably think about a compromise somehow.

Yes other children are always going to find something to pick on, of course she should be happy in herself and build up the confidence to brush them off, and I'm sure she is beautiful exactly as she is and letting her dye it is saying she isn't somehow.

But, you can't tell her to get over other people giving her shit, it's not that easy, and I know as a parent you want to everything you can to help them get on and have a great time at school. Dying her hair won't guarantee that happens, but it might make her feel she's got a bit of control over it.

Could she have something less than a full dye? I don't know what's available, but like highlights or similar?

My 11 YO DD has asked the same and I've told her no way jose, (same with make up, heels and false nails grin) but she's not getting flack for those things.

Is she being bullied for other things? Have you been to the school to see what they suggest first?

mumofthemonsters808 Fri 19-Oct-12 17:44:17

Oh this is a tricky one, on the one hand I would say no, 11 is far too young to dye hair, but on the other all you want when you are a kid is to fit in and look like everyone else and her hair being brown would provide this.It really pisses me off that a young girl has been made to feel that she needs to change her hair and appearance, it seems that anyone can say what they like about ginger hair and it's ok.Sorry no magical answer, I'm just disturbed that your girl is experiencing this vile behaviour.

No, you're not being unreasonable.
I'd feel that, by allowing her to dye it, you're caving to bullies and teaching her that if people don't like something about her physical appearance she needs to change herself. When in actual fact, they have the issue and they need to change the way they think about other people.

KateF Fri 19-Oct-12 17:50:49

I managed to hold dd1 off dying her beautiful strawberry blonde hair until this summer (she is 13 next week). She dyed it brown the first day of the school holidays sad I hate it but she is much happier and more settled at school.

AgentZigzag Fri 19-Oct-12 17:52:39

I totally agree with what you're saying Freaky, but I agree with it as a parent and not an 11 YO stuck somewhere they can't escape from with something they were born with but hate (for whatever reason).

You can't minimise the effect this can have on a child.

Remotecontrolduck Fri 19-Oct-12 17:52:46

11 is very young to start with dye. I'd maybe allow some highlights if it was simply a case of her wanting to try something new but this is different. You need to tackle the bullying, not the hair. They'll continue even if she dyes it.

Maybe try some brown mascara for the lashes if she's very conscious about her appearance, that could make a big difference and is temporary

That said, I love red hair and dye my own ginger. It's a fantastic colour. Not that it will provide much comfort for your DD. How shit some are so intolerant of a hair colour sad

CMOTDibbler Fri 19-Oct-12 17:55:01

I wouldn't let her. But I might go with some brown mascara and brow tint as a compromise

Heavensmells Fri 19-Oct-12 18:01:07

She only told me about the name calling tonight when she got home. I will be on the phone to the school on Monday morning to make sure her teachers are aware if what's going on. She says its lots of children from different years doing it so I'm not sure what they can do.
Dd told me that in her learning for life lessons (which are equivalent to our old pse lessons) they discussed how calling people for the colour of their hair is no different to racism so I think it sounds other red headed children are having problems with bullying unless its a complete coincidence.

oopslateagain Fri 19-Oct-12 18:12:42

DD is 14 and has had highlights for the past year. Our hairdresser will not dye her roots, she leaves about half an inch of hair natural and dyes the rest as she says the chemicals are too strong for a child's scalp. There are too many horror stories of nasty reactions to chemicals to risk dyeing a younger child's hair.

I agree it's horrible for your DD to be teased, but my DD's friend is a real redhead - frizzy ginger to be exact - and was teased on and off all through the first year of secondary. She shrugged it off. I admire her an enormous amount for simply not rising to the bullies; pretty soon had loads of friends and the bullies had given up trying to get a rise out of her.

Definitely time to raise it with the school so any obvious name-calling can be nipped in the bud and the teachers are aware of it.

honeytea Fri 19-Oct-12 18:18:22

Maybe you should embrace your natural hair to show her that you are proud of it. Even if you never have said to the kids that you don't like your hair they will pick up on stuff like that, the best thing you can do for her is set her a positive example.

HorraceTheOtter Fri 19-Oct-12 18:27:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

charlottehere Fri 19-Oct-12 18:30:41

I was all set to say I wouldn't allow my DD (almost 11) to dye her hair but I think it this situation maybe you should. sad But take her to a good salon if possible. Why are some people so horrible? sad

Heavensmells Fri 19-Oct-12 19:38:14

Honeytea u knew somebody would say that! grin
I do think that you have a fair point but I don't think it would matter to her what colour my hair is. Genuinely.
She just wants to blend in sad

Sallyingforth Fri 19-Oct-12 19:59:29

Dyeing her hair will not stop the bullying.
The proper way to stop the bullying is for the school to deal with it. Speak to the HT and insist it's done.

AgentZigzag Fri 19-Oct-12 20:08:02

Going round with a hair colour you're not keen on won't teach your DD anything OP.

Her wanting to blend in is the key, it's being the 'grey man' until they feel comfortable enough to start doing bold things which they feel says something about the person they want to be.

For your DD that might be something 'small' like deciding she's not going to go through the rigmarole of dying her hair just because of some name calling by people she realises she doesn't respect. She might like and want the attention of people recognising her for her beautiful hair and start drawing attention to it.

But it's not fair to dismiss her feelings as they are now outright to teach the name callers the value of individuality, because it won't make a jot of difference - unfortunately.

AgentZigzag Fri 19-Oct-12 20:09:17

I agree going to the school would be the first step, and probably going back again and again would be the second and third.

Heavensmells Fri 19-Oct-12 20:26:39

I suppose I just feel uncomfortable with her dying her hair for these reasons really. It's just sad. I probably will go along with whatever makes her happy. agentzigzag you talk lots of sense, thank you

marriedinwhite Fri 19-Oct-12 21:05:52

I'm not a primper but I do have a very sensitive 14 year old girl who would find this difficult to cope with.

In your shoes I would speak to the school about the behaviour of others which is the real issue. However, I also think you daughter's self esteem is a very big issue too and I don't think girls of 11/12 can bet more sensitive (depending on develpment and the age hormones kick in). I think I might also do a few minor things to boost my dd's self esteem in your shoes. I might actually, with the help of a very good beautician, let her have an eyelash and eyebrow tint (and reshape). I might buy her a really nice pair of shoes, I might buy her a few wash in wash out shampoo type things. Or, >>awaits flaming<< let her have her ears pierced. BUT I would not devalue her natural hair colour.

I think this is a really tough and vulnerable age. My own daughter (who at 11/12 had had an early menarch and was well covered buy not fat) went into borderline anorexic mode because a couple of brats told her she was fat - she wasn't but it didn't stop her surreptitiously losing almost a stone.

Good luck OP. It's a fine dividing line between supporting your dd's self esteem and helping her feel confident and stopping at letting silliness take over.

shewhowines Fri 19-Oct-12 21:13:08

Are wash in colours any less toxic? I'm thinking of the shaders and toners range that last about 6 washes or something.

Heavensmells Fri 19-Oct-12 21:18:32

Do you wash out ones would work on red hair though?

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