Mom Refuses to Let 8-Year-Old Cut Her Hair

Gillian Sisley

How much individuality should children have?

While parenting isn't always easy, it can get especially tricky when parents are trying to figure out how much freedom to give their kids, and how much to encourage their sense of self and individuality.

With that said, psychologists agree that it's incredibly important to teach children to be responsible for their choices, and to recognize that there are consequences to actions. And while parents might have different parenting styles, their children must achieve some form of freedom eventually in their lives.

These realities were highlighted in a recent online post in which a mother refuses to let her daughter cut her long hair, despite the daughter's personal preferences.

How much individuality should children have?

A Reddit post published on April 24th, reported on by Alice Gibbs from Newsweek, has gone viral with an impressive 24,100 upvotes and 4,300 comments.

The author begins his post by clarifying that he and his wife have a little girl named Anna. Their daughter has beautiful thick, blonde and curly hair that the wife absolutely loves. Ever since the daughter was a toddler, her mom would spend hours doing her daughter's hair everyday, such as braiding it and styling it.

With that said, the father explains that his 8-year-old daughter doesn't like having her hair done. Her hair reaches past her waist, and while it looks very nice, she hates having it brushed every morning. She's been asking recently for a shorter haircut, but the wife refuses to entertain the topic at all.

The 8-year-old then went to her father and asked to have her hair cut, and upon seeing how excited she was to have a shorter and more manageable hair style, the father decided to take her to get her locks snipped off. He drove to the hairdresser, and let his daughter flip through the magazines to choose a picture of a very short hairdo.

It was at this point that the author realized that his daughter wanted to cut off all of her hair, and he was going to be in trouble with his wife. But by then, he felt it was important to respect his daughter's wishes when it came to her body. After the haircut was finished, she was incredibly excited, and she couldn't imagine her mother not loving her hair cut as much as she did.

Body autonomy must be taught to young girls early on.

Everyone has the right to decide what can and cannot happen to their bodies. And while children need adults to create healthy boundaries for them, it is also an adult's role to respect a child's choice when it comes to their self-expression and comfort levels.

The author concludes his post by stating that once his wife returned home from work, things took a real turn. The wife was so upset by the haircut that she refused to look at her daughter, and instead locked herself in her bedroom and cried. The mom then got in the car and drove off. The father says that it's been a day now and she still hasn't come back.

While he expected for her to be upset about the haircut, he wasn't expecting her to take it so badly that she would actually run away from home. Even worse, Anna is now incredibly upset too, and no matter how much he tries to reassure her that she's not in trouble, she feels like she's in big trouble with her mom for getting a haircut.

What do you think? Was the father doing the right thing by respecting his daughter's wishes and letting her get the haircut she wanted? Or did he completely cross a line by going behind his wife's back and cutting his daughter's hair despite the wife's refusal to do so?

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