Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Zack is very picky about his hair in a totally no-maintenance kind of way. He hates haircuts, won't "do" his hair, and wants no one else to fuss with it. He's sweaty in the summer so we usually just shave his head or, for years now, have let him sport a mohawk. It gives him a bit of personal expression and is no muss no fuss. He doesn't even care to spike it.

Yesterday I kidnapped him, literally right out of our driveway, and forced him to go get a haircut. I figured he'd transition from the summer mohawk into the winter regular boy cut but he had other ideas. Then he begged that I buy him some of that color glue, in red.

I left early for work this morning. This is the text I got from Matt from the bus stop:


I posted the pic to my facebook page and got a whole bunch of positive responses:

Barbara: Love it!!!!! You rock as a Mom for letting your kids express themselves!!!!♥

Rachael: Love it!

Carrie: LOVE LOVE LOVE it!

... and more. Then we got commenting about expression.

Me: Expression is easier than listening to whining. It hurts this Gap/Lands End Mom a little but, they're happy.

Ashley: I, too, am a Gap/Lands End mom and I HOPE I have the courage to allow this when my time comes.

Jonathan: you are ruining this poor boys childhood by allowing him to do this stuff. Dying your hair red is supposed to be a meaningless act of rebellion which makes all the sense in the world but your mother doesnt understand. i hope you realize that he will probably grow up to be well adjusted as a result of this and that will be on your head.

After reading what Jonathan (my friend from high school who wrote the book on rebellion through self-expression) I went to run errands at lunch thinking "yeah I'm the cool Mom". Then I got stuck inside my head a little bit and got to wondering... "If I let him express himself this way NOW, what will he choose as a rebellion?" and "Do kids who are able to express themselves NOT rebel or do they perceive that they must rebel one step further?" GAH. I went round and round with that one and I'm really not sure.

Being a Mom is tough. I guess you just go with your gut, pick your battles, and hope they don't feel the need to one-up whatever it is you do allow them to do. How much worse could hair get than a red mohawk? Right? RIGHT?


  1. I am so frieghtened of my son's future rebellion...simply because I know how I was (v. v. rebellious from about 8 - 13, then I mellowed out). Except, my mom was very laid back and let me do pretty much what I wanted and I turned out fine. My sister and I were just talking the other day that either my mom was lucky with our personalities or that she perfected the balance between letting us make our own mistakes and guidance. It's hard to know!

  2. IMHO, he might rebel, or he might not. He might end up not feeling the need to 'rebel' because he's been allowed to express himself from a young age. Granted there will be other ways he could 'rebel' (I never 'rebelled' through my looks...), but all the people I knew who rebelled by doing illegal substances, including myself, had major issues going on at home. So I have a strong feeling that you won't have to deal with that aspect. :)

  3. I've thought that same thing from time to time. My seven year old has had a blue mohawk he sported last year during his baseball playoffs (blue was their team color). I've had many good comments about that and few what are you thinking's.

    So I've thought he'll get it all out his system now and then the other thought oh no! What will he do to top this?

    Right there in the boat with ya! Thanks for stopping by my blog.

  4. If D wants to rebel, he'll have to become a young republican, Christian, sports star.

    Dh and I have already discussed this. lol

  5. Love Lil Zeke's new "do". No worries on the rebel stuff. My Mom imagined all kinds of things her "little cherubs" would do and she never even came close to what we came up with. What will be...will be.

  6. Oh, my gosh! I would have never thought of it that way. I was thinking nice, sweet kid wants crazy hair, no biggy! If that's as crazy as it gets you're lucky. Then I read your post & thought your friend has a point. Hmmm....

  7. Amanda, I think you & Matt are doing a great job, kids will be kids, expressing themselves in many different ways. I don't think the red mohawk is rebellion or even a form of it. He's just finding out who he is & what he likes. Don't worry what may not be, be involved in their daily life, enjoy his expression of himself and take lots of pictures. I love it & I give you both credit for allowing his expression.
    Love always, MOM


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