My mother is an excellent mother. She was protective of me, but let me loose when I needed it. It is because of this, that I am happy with how I am today. When I was about 15 or 16 I went through a bit of an emo phase, and wanted to dye my hair black. I’m very pale, with natural ginger/blonde hair. As you can imagine, this would not have been a good luck. My mum said no, and I wasn’t going to go against her.
Her saying no did make me want to do it more, however. The want died down a little, until I went to university. There, I experimented with some semi-permanant hair dye. I told my mum what I was doing, and what made me go through with it is that she allowed it. She didn’t think it was a good idea, but she let me make up my own mind. I think that the fact it was semi-permenant (i.e. temporary) helped a lot.
Last week I felt brave enough to go to a salon and have permanent orange and red dye put in the ends of my hair (a dip-dye). If I’d done this when I was 15 or 16, I would have hated it. It would have been too much, and students at school would have commented. However, because my mum sort of guided me through making my own choices, and only said no when what I wanted to do would have been a disaster, I’m really happy. I’m glad I waited, and now I have the confidence to pull off the hair style.
I think this can be applied to most situations, barring tattoos. They are a bit more permanant, and I’d suggest a NONONONONONO!! approach, especially if they want someone’s name or something else disgustingly gooey and stupid. If, however, they want a celtic cross or something which has ACTUAL meaning to them, it might be no harm to go with them to the parlour, discuss where might be the best place for them to have it done and suggest a SMALL area. That way, if they really do hate it, it will also be cheaper and easier to remove!
You may completely disagree with my idea that a bit of free reign should be given in these situations, but from my own experience, having the responsibility to have to make that decision on my own meant I did end up making the right decision about these things more often than not. Just remember that a teenager really isn’t a child! I was one only a few years ago. I had my own, definitive opinions and ideas, and I knew what I liked, what would be appropriate and what would suit me. Sometimes, all that’s needed is a little trust.
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