Ever since I have cut my hair short, I have felt liberated. It was something that I had wanted to do for a long time. I couldn’t stand my long hair, it felt awkward and the majority of the time I wore it up. There were times I would wear it down, but I always felt that I should out of obligation. It just felt wrong. So, finally, I got the courage to go super short in March 2014 and I haven’t looked back since.
The funny thing is I keep having these dreams where I wake up and my hair is long again. It is normally when it is has been a few weeks since my last hair cut. My subconscious speaks to me in my dreams and I get totally upset and frustrated thinking that my hair is long again. Every time I wake up and I realize it was just a dream, my hair is still short, in the need of a trim, but definitely not the length I saw in my dreams. I think this speaks highly to how I felt having long hair. It bothered me so much, that I literally have nightmares that it is long again, probably due to the fact of my feelings of masculinity versus femininity. My short hair helps me feel more like my true self. However, I am completely aware that this also fits into societal norms of me feeling more masculine and I am kind of contradicting myself. I don’t believe there are words to accurately describe why I like my hair being short, other than it feels right.
DISCLAIMER: The below paragraph speaks about Caitlyn Jenner before she introduced herself to the world as Caitlyn. I wanted to acknowledge her as she is, despite her having a different name when the scene was shot.
It got me thinking about one time I was watching Keeping Up with the Kardashians. It was an episode in which Rob took Caitlyn to get her hair cut short. This was around the time she had been keeping her hair long, to try and hold onto some part of her real self, much to Kris’ and the rest of the family’s dismay. I remember thinking “Wow, Caitlyn looks so good,” but I could tell that Caitlyn didn’t feel comfortable. In fact, she looked as if someone robbed her of something. It didn’t matter that Kris and Kim and the rest of the family were praising her on how great she looked. She didn’t feel great, she lost her hair, the one thing that was helping her hold on to her true identity. Thinking back on that scene now, I realize that is exactly how I have felt in the past when I have had to dress feminine for any event, wear my hair down or put make-up on. I would get praise of how pretty I looked or how beautiful my hair was. All those comments felt wrong. They didn’t make me feel good, they felt that I only am attractive when I fit into societal norms of how I should look and dress. I know the people who gave me these compliments meant nothing by it, they truly were just being nice. However, that is exactly what I was doing when Caitlyn cut her hair. I was complimenting her based on societal norms, and with her long hair, she wasn’t fitting in that box.
I know I have been talking about Caitlyn a lot lately. I think it is mainly because of my thoughts about my gender and she is in the center stage right now. I seemingly have been able to relate to her in a lot of ways and felt the need to express it.
If you take anything away from this post, understand that something as simple as hair can make or break the way a person feels about themselves. It doesn’t need to be a certain way or a certain cut because society deems what is appropriate. Hair is a way for someone to express themselves however they want too and that is the way it should be.