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AIBU and too lax to think "well, it's her hair..."?

(72 Posts)
Stinklebell Mon 10-Feb-14 09:18:19

Had a night out with a group of friends Saturday.

We've all got a mix of kids, ranging from 3, with mine, and another friend's daughters the older ones at 12, we were chatting about how our kids were, and the friend with the other 12 year old asked how mine had got on starting high school, just general chit chat really, which moved on to them discovering make up, and messing about with hair, etc.

Other friend mentioned that her 12 year old had been nagging to get her hair dip-dyed and she wasn't sure, I said that my 12 year old had also been asking and I had agreed that she could do it over the school summer holidays - DD wants to dye the ends of her hair red which will involve bleaching it first as she has quite dark hair, so we'll then cut the red ends off before she heads back to school. Friend said she thought it was a good compromise

Another friend was listening to this and said she felt I was far too lax to even consider it, let alone allow it and that she decides, and always will, what her daughter does to her hair, what clothes and shoes she wears, etc

Now, as long as my DD's hair is clean, brushed and a normal colour for school, I don't really care what she does to it. It's her hair. She chooses what she has done at the hairdressers, she has hair chalks which I'm happy for her to mess about with, etc. My only rule, is no perm or semi-perm hair dye - only that wash-in/wash-out stuff. She has quite soft curls which she loves and rarely asks for it to be straightened so she doesn't damage it with excessive heat styling or anything like that.

With clothes and shoes, they're to be age, weather and occasion appropriate, within budget and correct uniform for school, beyond that, I couldn't care less. We go shopping a few times a year and my only real input is the debit card. I help her out and make suggestions but I don't choose her clothes or lay her outfits out for her to wear each day - I might treat her to something if I see something I think she'll like, but they're her clothes, she has to wear them and feel comfortable in them so I think they should be her choice

Is that really terrible?

MyNameIsKenAdams Mon 10-Feb-14 09:20:01 long as it was suitable for school when she is there, then YANBU. I dont know how expensive somethibg like that would be, but if its only going to last 6weeks Id expect dd to pay half out of her poclet money.

LittleBearPad Mon 10-Feb-14 09:20:23

Nope. It sounds ok to me. The hair will look perfectly appropriate for school when she goes back in September.

Stinklebell Mon 10-Feb-14 09:21:34

Oh, yes, sorry, I forgot to put that in my OP

She's saving her pocket money to go halves

BrunoBrookesDinedAlone Mon 10-Feb-14 09:21:36

No, quite the opposite.

Your boundaries take care to respect, where possible, her feelings and autonomy.

That is good (and will almost certainly ensure compliance for longer!)

MyNameIsKenAdams Mon 10-Feb-14 09:22:17

Perfect! grin

LadyGardenersQuestionTime Mon 10-Feb-14 09:22:25

Nope, although there may be some outfits in the future that stretch your tolerance and lead to some angst. But that's going to happen anyway, all part of the joy of having teenagers.

How old was the other mum's oldest child/dd?

LookingThroughTheFog Mon 10-Feb-14 09:22:45

No, I don't think it's terrible at all. You recognise your daughter is her own person and not a possession; that's a good thing.

bodygoingsouth Mon 10-Feb-14 09:22:48

ha ha ha how old was this friends dd? good luck there then.

hair, clothes, makeup all fine. pick the important battles.

BertieBottsJustGotMarried Mon 10-Feb-14 09:25:14

She hasn't met my 5 year old DS then grin He has STRONG opinions on clothes! I just let him choose now.

Littleturkish Mon 10-Feb-14 09:26:17

I was going to make the school point, but I see you have accounted for that.

When parents allow their children to have inappropriate hair for school, and when their child is excluded argue it isn't their responsibility as it is "their hair and they did it" it makes me quite angry.

What you've done is set clear boundaries, and allowed her to make choices within them. Personally, I hate all hair dye as I think it damages hair in the long term, and dislike the look of flat hair of one colour- but this is on myself, I wouldn't extend that preference to others.

The other mum sounds like she's going to have a lot of battles on her hands. "Because I say so" will stop working at a point.

AwfulMaureen Mon 10-Feb-14 09:26:42

Yanbu I would allow this at 12. It sounds lovely and funky.

OddBoots Mon 10-Feb-14 09:26:48

If you're too lax then so am I as this is exactly what my dd did last summer holidays. It's hair, it grows and doing it this way doesn't break any rules he has for school.

WilsonFrickett Mon 10-Feb-14 09:30:09

My DS is 8 and I let him make his own choices about his hair and clothes, within the boundaries of school appropriateness that you suggest OP. To me it's part of teaching bodily autonomy - it is his hair, not mine so he can do with it what he likes. YANBU

GlitzAndGiggles Mon 10-Feb-14 09:31:08

I love the red dip dye but I only think it suits girls under 16 I wouldn't be brave enough to do it even though I've had a full head of bright red hair. Let her do it it's fun

minouminou Mon 10-Feb-14 09:32:47

Yup,I think the fact that you can cut the ends off before she goes back to school is great and makes for a brilliant compromise between your DD expressing herself and experimenting and following da rulez.

A good lesson, I think.

Stinklebell Mon 10-Feb-14 09:32:53


I've found navigating this age harder than the toddler tantrum years, I end up doubting myself all the time.

School are v strict about hair colour and she knows that, so as long as she sticks within school rules, I don't care. Any damage from the bleach will be cut off anyway. Hair grows, I just can't get worked up about it

WorraLiberty Mon 10-Feb-14 09:33:54

There's nothing wrong with your parenting choices or the other Mum's choices.

Just different parenting styles.

Stinklebell Mon 10-Feb-14 09:34:14

Oh, and her daughter is coming up to 11 - April time, so will be starting high school in September

Idespair Mon 10-Feb-14 09:37:29

I think I'd be ok with this as it's the ends of the hair and all the dye and any damage will be cut off before school starts.

teenagetantrums Mon 10-Feb-14 09:40:01

I think you are right, my Dd is 17 now, she started dying her hair at 12, it wasn't permanent, no harm done. I cant get to worked up about non permanent stuff, piercings, hair dye. I have had no say over what my DD wears for years. I think your friend will be in for a shock when her DD starts high school.

MrsDeVere Mon 10-Feb-14 09:40:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WooWooOwl Mon 10-Feb-14 09:41:55

I think you have exactly the right attitude to your dds hair, and I can't understand why some parents get so worked up about things like that. You are sending the right message by saying that she has to wait until the holidays and by making sure she has a plan to make her hair suitable for school again in September. Surely it's got to be better to get her to do it properly than to oppose it completely and then have her do it anyway, and probably not very well.

There's no harm in a young girl having red hair during the holidays, so why does it have to be an issue?

Stinklebell Mon 10-Feb-14 09:54:27

so why does it have to be an issue?

I don't know, I don't have a problem with it. I pick my battles and red tips on someone else's hair just doesn't feature.

It's her hair, not mine, and so long as she follows school rules, I don't think I have the right to impose my tastes on her

Same with make up, her friends all wear it and I'd rather compromise with her and show her how to use it properly and sparingly

She's growing up, making choices, getting opinions, I don't want to say no all the time.

I tend to end up feeling like I'm fumbling around in the dark with DD at the moment, I'm always doubting myself, whether I'm doing the right thing

PowderMum Mon 10-Feb-14 09:57:25

OP I agree you have the right approach and good luck to your friend as her DD becomes a teenager.

As a mum of 2 teenage DD now 14 & 17 I can't imagine telling them what to wear or how to have their hair cut. However the have strict school uniform rules and understand that they need to keep to them and out of school they understand what is acceptable to wear when as this is how they have been brought up.

My DD first dip dyed her hair in the summer of Y8 but as it's blond she didn't have to bleach it first, it looked really good. She also used to gave highlights once a year. Now at 17 she has chosen to go an amber colour using a semi permanent colour, it really suits her.

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