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Curly Nikki

Have you Ever Felt Pressured to Big Chop?

By January 27th, 202142 Comments

Have you Ever Felt Pressured to Big Chop?

Pressured to Big Chop

What’s up, World?

As a long term transitioner, I’ve gotten used to people asking when I’m going to relax my hair again and why I was sacrificing all of my “pretty hair” to go natural, but once I give them my reasons for making the switch and tell them I like it much better, they let up. Even my mom was against my transition until I showed her that I could manage my hair in it’s natural state, at which point she became my biggest fan (GO MOM!). Now that I am beginning to master some natural styles, I mostly get compliments from natural and relaxed individuals alike…

But a few times, I have received rude comments from other naturals concerning my decision to transition for 24 months. And these aren’t just random people; these are people whom I consider to be friends, which really puzzles me.

It never fails. I inevitably get that natural friend who BC’ed after 3 or 6 months of transitioning who comes up to me, puts her hands in my hair without my permission (strike #1), then says something to the effect of, “Wow, your hair looks so nice today! You know, if you would just cut that relaxed crap off of your head, I guarantee styling your hair would be much easier”.

WHAT?! So, you stick your dirty hands in my hair (which promotes frizz, BTW), compliment my hair, then call it “crap” in the same sentence? Sorry World, you’ll have to excuse my side-eye; it’s only meant for a select few.

Honestly, I never expected to encounter this sort of opposition to my transition, and I’m still quite astonished by it. Every time I see those select few naturals, they usually go through the same routine, ending in a left-handed compliment concerning me cutting off my relaxed hair so that my hair can be “prettier” or “easier to manage”. When I counter with the fact that I am not comfortable with cutting off my relaxed ends all at once and plan to slowly trim them off while my hair grows, I get the most insulting response ever:

“Well, are you insecure about your looks? I’m sure you’d still look OK if you cut your hair off.”

WOW World… just WOW.

Maybe I just know what length I am comfortable with and am willing to work to achieve that length without a BC. Is it really so serious that you feel you need to insult me?

Here are the facts:

Every woman on this earth, including myself, is beautiful, no matter what their hair looks like. Whether you decide to sport a short, sassy, cropped natural ‘do or wait it out and sport a full mane of curly, coily, kinky hair magic- – it’s up to you and only you! Just as you should never allow anyone’s comments to send you back to the relaxer, you should never allow anyone else’s words to push you into BC’ing before you feel it’s right for you. As one of my more mature friends said, “BC’ing requires a big change on your part and should only be done when you are ready’. I couldn’t have put it better myself.

Ladies, when you feel it’s the right time to BC, by all means, BC. I’m not against BC’ing at all… but if you don’t feel it’s the right time or you don’t feel comfortable with that length of hair and you feel as if you can continue with your transition, then continue. No matter what decision you make, whether it be cutting you hair, growing it out and slowly trimming away (like myself), or even returning to the relaxer, be sure that it is done with your happiness in mind. After all, it is YOUR hair, and at the end of the day, YOU are the one who has to be happy with it.

Love, Peace, and Support,


Can any of you relate?


  • Anonymous says:

    I also agree with this topic. Where does a person get off putting their hands in someone else's hair? Whose business is it when/if they ever do the BC? This natural journey is unique to each woman and while it is so very empowering and promotes a sense of sisterhood (just look at the natural blogs), we should use it to say to each and every lady, do as I do or your journey isn't as legitimate as mine. Who are we when we do that? I personally love reading and seeing and speaking about her natural journey. I'm in the process of getting healthy, losing weight physically, spiritually, emotionally and in my gifting. (I'm a singer/songwriter). I didn't have to do a BC. I had been relaxing my hair since I was 13 or 14 years old and I'm 47 now. I stepped away from the creamy crack i February of this year. I was going to relax my hair but, my hair broke off to 1" allover. My hair was as thin as feathers. All I could do was smooth my hair back (and I pinned on a bun hairpiece) and hid my hairloss and threw away the relaxer jar and didn't look back. It's been 6 months and I found out what my hair texture is (4A), I really had no idea what my natural hair looked like–it's been a while since I've seen it. I also have been experimenting with different moisturizers, shampoos, conditioners and oils. My hair is about 2"-3" long allover, and I cut off that inch of relaxed hair. I love the feel of my baby coils. It's thicker than it was when I relaxed it, it takes longer to airdry. (It took less than an hour when relaxed and over 2 hours when natural. But it is sooooo much healthier. I'm so glad I did it!

  • Anonymous says:

    In a nutshell i believe "YOUR" natural hair journey is unique and special for each individual. It is so funny (actually sad) that this natural movement is supposed to be empowering and a sense of sisterhood. Showing the world beauty comes in different shapes, forms, colors, "hair textures"etc. And we still find a way to isolate or shun those away who decided not to BC. I never did a BC and today my hair is totally natural and no one would know if i sported an afro or chopped after a year, i am just considered naturally nappily beautiful and that is what we all want! Embrace your journey

  • Anonymous says:

    I couldn't agree with you more about the transitioning process. After almost three months of having a sew in (after taking it out) I immediately decided that it was time that I transitioned to my natural hair.

    Because I noticed the difference in my natural roots (which are about 2.5 inches now) and my relaxed hair, I was eager to transition. My relaxed hair is thin and weak (not damaged but weak because of the chemicals in the creamy crack). My natural hair is thick, shiny, wavy, curly, etc. etc. etc. I can already tell the difference in the two textures, but I refuse to do the BC. I have a friend who's transitioning without the BC as well and with her help as well as YouTube and various blogs, I'm doing great with protective styles and trying different products that cater to my natural as well as my relaxed hair & I'm definitely STAYING AWAY FROM THE HEAT.

    The only discouraging thing in the beginning was the negative comments from coworkers and family. The good thing is that I'm confident with my transition and this is something I'm doing for ME…I'm making ME happy and at this point that's all that matters. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, however, that doesn't mean I have to change my decision because of what others think I should do.

    With that being said, to those who are on the transitioning train with me…don't give up, stay focused, keep that hair conditioned, and DO YOU! 🙂

  • SDL says:

    Pressure? I was pressured to keep a perm but not chop. I AM NOT MY HAIR. I don't even entertain people. I'm not rude but I just keep it moving. I don't ask them why they wear raggedy weaves, bad hair colors or long musty braids. They don't want me to go there so most hair questions are off limits…

  • Anonymous says:

    I fully agree with this topic. I got the same thing all the time. I had about shoulder length hair when I begain my transition and I got the bc bs all the time. I slowly trimmed until my hair was the same length and got all the relaxer off after about a year and a half. But I am very happy with the results don't ever let any one tell you differently

  • Dejah says:

    I made the same decision as well. The big chop is DEFINITELY not for me and my lifestyle. Dealing with two different textures can be rough though. Right now I'm rocking my hair in individual braids. Not micros or poetic justice size tho. It fits my head shape and personal tatse. =]
    But forget what everyone else says: the decision to go natural is a brave one. Maybe they're internally jelly. Its not for everyone, maybe they belong to that group.

  • BrittBritt15 says:

    I'm confused by this: "It seems some of us are assuming that EVERYONE only has 6 inches of hair. My hair was down my back before I started trimming to transition.". What does the length of anyone's hair have to do with the amount of time they transition? I'm not trying to start anything, I'm really wondering.

  • Anonymous says:

    Great topic! I am currently 7mths post relaxer and I intend to transition until my natural hair reaches armpit length…so about a total of 2.5yrs. My chemically processed hair is texturized and has retained a lot of its natural texture. People who don't know me think my hair is natural anyway because it's so barely processed. I see no point cutting off my bra strap length hair when I can just wear twists until my natural gets to a good length. My hair has shrinkage of about 80%, so even at armpit length, my natural will still look insubstantial.
    I have been natural before and I have no problems with my natural texture. I wore my hair in a TWA for about 2-3yrs of my life and I have concluded that long hair just looks better on me. I don't see what hair length has to do with hair texture. My only issue is not being able to wear wash and gos…but that will just have to wait.
    Being natural is not a brand new experience for some women and they do not feel the novelty of cutting off all their hair for the sake of being down. Everything is not for everybody at anytime.

  • Anonymous says:

    Thank you honeybrown1976, chocolatabeaut-tee and anon 1:59pm.

    It seems some of us are assuming that EVERYONE only has 6 inches of hair. My hair was down my back before I started trimming to transition. I always wore it back in a bun and its working for my transition. I rinsed and conditioned my relaxed hair BEFORE the term co-wash was even fashioned. I had proper hair care maintenance BEFORE beginning the transition so I do not have 3 scaggly ends of hair. I learned the SKILL to care for my relaxed hair just the same way as I am educating myself on natural.

    Some people say they dont have the face to wear their hair back in a bun. I could say its just a bun and its your face I see every day, but thats rude.

    Hair frames a face. Its a pretty accessory.

    Side-eye? Thats negative. And not nescessary. Why are you not trusting me or looking at me like I'm crazy? Its ok sis, ease up. Relax. Trust me. I know some people actually do need to let it go. But I would never assume its my place to tell them so.

    Its like we hear you but you don't hear us.

    Great Post.


  • Anonymous says:

    I wanted to add to my comment above. It's one thing to disagree with someone, but again, when you belittle someone with comments like hanging on to "pretty hair", that's when people think it's more of a jealousy thing involved than concern. If you were truly concerned it could have been said in more of a way like hey, you know your ends will do better, your hair may hang better, but you are more concerned with her length and "pretty hair" than the positive aspects of being completely natural.

  • Anonymous says:

    I also have to make a comment about anonymous who commented at 8:16. Contrary to popular belief, your hair will grow whether you cut the ends. Ends have nothing to do with what grows out of your scalp. And not everyone who is a long term transitioner has always had really long hair. My hair has been long but I love short cuts. I've shaved my hair off twice before I knew what a BC was. Been there done that got the t-shirt. If someone is really that concerned with someone else's hair they need a hobby. If someone wants to keep their hair long so what?! What's wrong with that. Just because someone doesn't do something the way YOU want or think they should doesn't mean they are wrong, or that you are wrong either. My hair has been VERY healthy with a relaxer so why cut off healthy hair? Just because someone else thinks so because they assume that it's not healthy? And what exactly is wrong about wanting length again????????? It seems like that is a bad word….

  • Shannon Elle says:

    I thought I was the only person who felt like this!

  • Anonymous says:

    Wow. I think that a few of us may be stuck on just the “journey” and forgetting that this is also about style, we all want to look good. I would love to hold hands with everyone sing kumbya and say that we would all look gorgeous with any length hair but it is not true, many do but some don’t – or just do not feel comfortable.

    I would like to be able to wear high waisted trousers but they do not look good on me so I let it pass and have to watch my sister strut around in a pair that look great on her. She would love to not have to deal with two textures, but she tried a short style years ago and frankly it was not attractive, so she chose to transition while I BC’d. She gets to wear high waisted jeans and I get to wash and go with my pixie coils.

    We all of us are different, assuming that someone has self confidence issues because they make a different choice to us is patronising, presumptuous and rude.

  • honeybrown1976 says:

    Side-eye all you want. Why the heck do you care about what is going on with someone else's hair? It's not yours.

    Some people seriously do not have enough to do with themselves. Get a life and move on.

    Long-term transitioners do you and no one else. While others are following the pack, follow your own path.

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm side-eyeing at everyone agreeing that transitioning for YEARS makes any kind of sense. After a year, your hair is fully natural and there isn't any reason to keep the relaxed ends unless you really are just that hug up on length. Why go 2, 3, or more years? You won't be learning how to fully take care of your real hair cause youre babying relaxed ends. Long term transitons just seem like insecurity to me so that if your hair isn't the texture you want you can go back to the creamy crack without breaking a step. Long term transitioning = stretching a relaxer.

  • chocolatbeau-tee says:

    I couldn't wait to get home to comment on this. I think the person above is just plain wrong. I transitioned back in 2001 before natural hair had this big of attention and there wasn't all the acronyms, blogs, you tube videos, etc. and before it was "normal and cool." You just decided to do what works for you. I have always had longer hair, its always been thick, and it has always grown fast. I wanted to transition because I saw my natural curls and fell in love. At the time I also had natural friends who pressed their hair regularly but you would never be able to tell that it wasn't relaxed. So I started my transition. I didn't do a BC ever, I just slowly cut some off when I wanted. Not because I was scared of short hair (I have always been of the mind set that its just hair and will surely grow back and have cut my hair every length and style you can think of) and not because I was scared of my curls (I loved them). At the time I was comfortable with how my hair looked and how it was growing out. I transitioned with weaves, really because I want my hair to have a rest above anything else. And when I wore it out in curls (with the help of rollers and rods) I loved the texture. With all that said, not everyone is the same and expecting someone to BC in your time frame is the same as shoving other societal "norms" down another person's throat. Effectively its the same as someone saying one should have a relaxer to be pretty. It is also possible to have healthy relaxed hair with proper maintenance. Relaxers weren't for me but I had healthy hair and I've others with healthy hair. All I can say is do you and ignore the opinion of all others. You know what they say, opinions are like a**holes….

  • Anonymous says:

    I totally believe in supporting my natural sisters and those who are transitioning, but I think in an effort to support everyone we are dishonest. The fact is no one needs to transition for 2 years. Your hair would grow faster and be healthier without all the relaxed, dead ends. Just be honest with yourself – you prefer long, "pretty hair". But don't pretend that it is healthier, because it is not. Also, I'm tired of everyone assuming people are insulting you or are jealous. Just because you ask someone when are they going to BC doesn't mean you are jealous of their "long" hair. It's just a question, and you are just trying to inflate your ego by believing that it is jealousy.

    Reality is that relaxed hair looks good on very few people. It is usually damaged, dry, full of split ends, and not maintained well. It's just not "natural." Black women look significantly better with natural hair. There, someone said it.

  • JazBNatural says:

    everyone has to learn from their own mistakes and experiences and go at their own pace.

    I think people are just curious when they ask "when are you gonna cut the rest off" but that isn't pressuring someone, its just a question. If you tell someone you are transitioning, thats obviously going to be the next question you can expect. But when people start telling you how long or short you should transition, that is crossing the line.
    I would have been so upset if I cut my hair when I wasn't ready, so I can understand.

  • Ms.Fenty says:

    Wonderful Post!

    I agree with so many of you ladies. I'm six months into my transition now and when I first started my journey I felt SO bad for wanting to keep my length. A lot of posts and sites I read made it seem like if you don't accept having short hair, then you are simultaneously not accepting your natural hair. It seems like a lot of naturals want you to hate your relaxed ends, and quite frankly I don't. I mean I don't see anything wrong with a woman who decides to BC after 1 or 6 months, I think its courageous and a beautiful thing, I am always so proud of them when they post their BC pics and I try to give my support because its usually not easy to cut your hair off.
    But its just not for me, why should I feel bad for wanting long hair, what is so terrible about that. My relaxed ends are super healthy, especially since I've started to truly take care of my hair. I'm not holding on to my relaxed ends because I'm scared of my natural hair, I'm so over that phase, I love seeing my coils/curls, but I also want long(ish) hair, why can't I have both. I don't want to be one of those women who chop their hair too soon and end up w/braids for years because she is uncomfortable with the new look.
    Don't get me wrong, sometimes, you do see that girl with just a few inches of relaxed ends that look terrible and she hates them too, and maybe she should be gently encouraged to BC, but no one should be told that she would look better if she chopped that "crap" off, whats the difference between that and someone telling you need to perm that "mess".
    Right now, I am simply accepting my hair for what it is. Yeah its difficult but I don't think I'd have it any other way

  • Anonymous says:

    Although I was a short-term transitioner, I can definitely see your point. People have to do what is right for them WHEN they are ready. That's the only way to stick with a decision like this in my opinion. And no they didn't put their hands in your hair! That's wrong/inappropriate whether you're transitioning or natural. ~KF519

  • Anonymous says:

    I think telling someone that they need to cut their relaxed ends off for whatever reason (easier management, hair health, whatever) WITHOUT BEING ASKED is pretty self righteous. It's like walking up to a an overweight stranger or even friend and letting them know that if they just lost weight…… you get the point. If the hair is unhealthy enough that you can observe that in passing then they already know that. If they are not complaining about managing the two textures then just maybe they find it easier than you ever did. Giving that advice unsolicited is putting yourself in a place of authority or knowing what's best for someone else and that takes a lot of nerve regardless of why you felt prompted to speak. Cut when you want and if that means a 5 year transition…it's YOUR hair.

  • Danica says:

    It's a personal decision and everyone should do what makes them comfortable. When I started transitioning I didn't have an goal in mind and I ended up going for a little over two years before cutting. I gave myself the time I needed to mentally adjust. Now that I'm loving my natural hair I wish I would've BC'd a lot sooner. : /

  • Unknown says:

    Amen and Amen!! I totally agree with what you are saying. I don't think anyone should be pressured to do something just because someone else thinks it would be best. I am at the other end of the spectrum. I transitioned for 8 months and than I BC'd. My family is long hair obsessed and although I only had barely shoulder length hair at the time when I cut it, they take every opportunity they have to chastise me about cutting off my hair. They keep telling me how I could have just pressed my roots and grew it out, or use a different perm. Strangers on the street were giving me more support than my family.

    And you are right. A BC is a big change, it was hard without the support I was looking for. But I got to the point where I said I'm going to do what I want to do because I want to.

    You do you girl!

  • Anonymous says:

    I also think that's a very personal decision. And it's a myth that natural hair is easier to care for, mainly for those who have been relaxed for a long period. It takes time to learn how to deal with the new texture, find out products and styles. It is not wrong to be attached to the lenght and insecure about the look, take your time and do the thing when 200% ready. We all know that the other side of the road is not that easy, there will be some opposition, so more conscious this desicion is made, better to the newbie.

    BTW, I was one of those who felt so bad that want everybody around me became natural too. Shame on me.

  • Anonymous says:

    I don't think there is anything wrong with encouraging people to cut off their relaxed ends. Especially if they haven't been taking care of them. Sometimes the relaxed ends are extremely broken and damaged.
    I have encouraged friends to chop, simply because their hair would actually look a lot healthier.
    But in the end it's your hair.

  • haleighpaige917 says:

    Much needed post! I am a longterm transitioner at almost twelve months. I plant to continue my trtansition until I can no longer take it! I think that the amount of time one chooses to transition is a personal decision that depends on YOU and YOUR feelings, as well as the health/condition of your hair.

    As for me, to be completely honest, I have always been more comfortable with longer hair, and hair length is definitely subjective. I am still attached to my hair, and it ain't even all that long! LMAO

    Anyway, you do what you are comfortable with and keep working it! Amen!

  • Anonymous says:

    I agree with Anonymous @ August 9, 2010 1:45 PM. The only time I've seen a transitioner get frustrated at hearing the words "when are you going to chop" (now this is WITHOUT the touching. I would never in my life…) is when they are holding on to their ends because they aren't emotionally prepared.

    Be honest with yourself, after a year most naturals hair basically looks the same after shrinkage sets in for the next 6 months/year. So, length usually isn't the issue.

    transition as long as ya want. But if you're walking around with a head full of natural hair and 3 scraggily inches of relaxed hair hangin there people are going to ask you when you're going to cut.

  • Anonymous says:

    Great post!

    I have experienced a plethora of comments about my transition so far, negative, positive you name it. As far as this situation goes when I announced to my friend (who has been natural her whole life) that I was going natural, she pressed me to just cut it all off and then braid it up. Mind you I was three months post and doubt that I would have been able to get braids to stay in with the length I had. I can only imagine what I'll hear when I reach 1 year.

    I completely agree that you should do what make you comfortable. BC'ing is overrated in my book and unless you are unsure about your decision and may fall back to relaxing I say transition as long as you like.

  • Anonymous says:

    I can totally relate to you on this. I'm always thinking, why can't people be happy that the person has decided not to relax their hair anymore? Isn't that really the best part of it all? As long as the woman is no longer chemically altering her hair, why should what she does with the remaining hair matter? And not all women go natural for the same reasons, so it's silly to assume that all women should take the same path.

  • skittledittle11 says:

    i was pressured to big chop before i was ready. My old roommate big chopped after 3 months, she's not the type of person to consider the feelings of others, so she kept calling me a scardy cat (among other things), for not being ready to cut my hair off. I had been managing it well, but it was a little bit more difficult than all natural hair. I eventually big chopped after 8 months of transition instead of 12 like i had planned. At first, i didn't like the short hair, but it grew on me and I haven't looked back since 🙂

  • Anonymous says:

    I agree with your post up to a point as well; I absolutely agree that you have to do the BC when YOU are ready, not when others tell you, but I also think that you have to really look at the reasons why you are holding on to those relaxed ends. Is it because you truly are willing to deal with the frustration of having two textures & the extra time & maintenance that goes along with that or is it because you dont think you will "look right" or have enough confidence with shorter hair? If you are willing to do the extra work with two textures, good for you & no one should fault you for that, but for a lot of transitioning women that is not the case; whether you BC now or later you will still have to go through something. I know that was the case with my daughter who just BC'd after transitioning for 6-7 months. She planned on transitioning for a year because she did not want to cut her relaxed ends because she didnt think she would "look right" with shorter hair. Me, I didnt transition at all, I made the decision to BC and shaved it all off LOL, but I didnt push my daughter to do what I did, that was me and she was clearly not ready mentally to let go of her length. Now when I started to see how frustrated she was becoming and how damaged her ends looked compared to the rest of her hair, yes I did start to gently "suggest" that she BC, but again I didnt push. About a month ago she called me at work & told me she did it and I was sooo proud of her because she did it on her own & when she was ready & she finally faced whatever reasons she was holding on to those ends & let them go and she is rocking her hair with pride, attitude & fierceness LOL. Oh & she is beyond thrilled in not having to deal with two textures anymore! – Onebyd41

  • laceebia says:

    Wow… at times the entire transitioning process can become a bit overwhelming. I want to BC, but have people telling me that I should wait. I've only been transitioning four months, but I'm already tired of dealing with the two textures. I haven't used any heat on my hair since deciding to grow out my relaxer, which means I have to wet and cornrow my hair every night if I want it to look presentable the next day. Everyone says not to cut, that it looks fine.Decisions decisions…

  • Shante says:

    OMG! I wish this article was up before I bc'd my hair. Its three months later and I realized " I wasnt ready to do this". I had people telling me " you might as well cut it off styling will be easier"…. now far as styling being easier , yes it was. but my options of styling are very limited. I wear alot of half wigs while Im in the process of growing it to a comfortable look…

  • Stephanie says:

    My daughter is transitioning, and it's only been four months so far. She usually leaves her hair "up" in a big puff, but this weekend, I noticed that her hair is looking dry. To try and help her out, I was putting in flat twists and I noticed that her hair is several lengths and especially short in the back. She admitted that she's been cutting off her relaxed ends in small bits by herself!! Her coiff isn't looking it's best these days, but she's keeping it real. Mistakes and all. I feel really bad for her struggle and I will encourage her the best that I can. Gently and patiently. She's only 15 and the pressure to relax is strong. She doesn't want to BC and your post reminded me to allow her to make the mistakes that will inevitabley come during her hair journey. She uses the word journey very often when referring to her hair. I'm pround that she's transitioning. Thank you for the encouraging post. BTW I BC'd in March, and a good friend of my daughter and I transitioned for 3 years.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am SOOOOOOOOO glad I read this. I just did this to a coworker this morning! (minus touching the HAIR). I never thought that I may be offending her, I am just so excited that she is going natural and can't wait to see that beautiful head of hair. From now on I will continue to give her tips (when asked) and support but lay off the "when are you going to cut your hair"

  • Anonymous says:

    Right on "Anonymous August 9, 2010 12:34 PM!" I have encountered MANY sisters who didn't appear to be transitioning because they truly wanted to, but because it was more of a "plan b" after chemicals had taken their toll. And as a result, of not wholeheartedly embracing their kinks, coils, and curls, they were prone to projecting their insecurities on to others.

    I think however one chooses to where her hair is a PERSONAL decision. One is not a "self-hating negro (yes, I've really been called that)" if she chooses to relax, no more than natural sisters have the game locked on authenticity (don't even get me started on the natural hair nazis I've encountered who thought they were "keeping it real" because they didn't relax, yet carried around a ton of emotional baggage, bad attitudes, etc.)

    The bottom line is do you, and respect others as they "do them."

  • Anonymous says:

    I agree 100% , natural hair has kind of started to become much more political . Sadly a few months after my BC I texturized my hair and I am still debating wether or not i should cut them off. Lately I have realized that hair is hair and I do not need to cut it off to join your hair club. Some of my natural friends are all into starting a natural hair revolution and forcing everyone to chop off their mane and join in . Going natural has soo many definitions , it can be for natural hair products , no perms , no heat a plethora of things . We just need to support each other and understand that to each his own and everyone's journey is not going to be like yours.

  • npmoore04 says:

    I was also a long term transitioner. In 2001 i decided to not get a perm anymore. My stylist was very support and I just continued to get light presses and flat ironed and trimmed my hair every few months. I was never keeping track of how much permed ends I had left since I always wore my hair straight. After a couple of years I noticed after my hair was washed there was no more permed ends. But I never considered it a BC or kept track i just knew i no longer wanted a relaxer. I actually didn't get the rude comments until this year when i decided to wear my hair it natural state and stopped using heat. But being 8 months in of using no heat the nay sayers have backed off because I have told them where they can go and my hair doesn't concern them. That i am happy with the versitility of my hair if i want to straighten it I can when i want to. Not because it makes you happy when you see me. In my opinion it was not difficult for me to work with to two textures, maybe because when it wasn't straightened i kept it in a bun 80% of the time. So whether you BC or not for what ever reason, if you like I love it! Just do you!

  • Anonymous says:

    As a long term transitioner, I really do understand. My hair has never been shorter than shoulder length. I like it and the look. I do not have a need for a drastic change. I do however, respect anyone who chooses to go that route.

    Unfortunately, some aren't going to want to hear this but I think some of it stems from jealousy. I think some are envious that they couldn't muster up the patience to deal with textures, some want the playing field even as far as length.

    Its been MY experience that the negative comments come from people who were never able to achieve length with a relaxer and went natural because they were unsucessful with relaxing. That situation is completely understandable but its was not mine.

    I am not saying people are intentionally trying to level the field, its the issues they may not even realize they are dealing with. Back-handed comments tend to cover over the outright nasty comment they want to say.

    Those few don't want to accept that, in my case, I am going natural because I want to, not because I was unsucessful with chemicals.


  • Whitney B. says:

    I am completely with you. I always had long hair growing up, and could not fathom the idea of cutting it all off. I transitioned for about a year and a half, and by then my natural hair was as long as the permed hair had been, so I cut it off.(To be honest, I went natural in the 90s, and none of my middle school friends even knew what a big chop was. It was enough of a statement that I didn't have a perm anymore.)

    I think you have every right to be irritated. Those friends are no better than the perm pushers. The idea that someone else has the right to force their opinions of what you should look like on you is ridiculous. Keep doing you, and cut it when it's right for you.

    And as a sidebar, I've known a few women (not all, but some) who were like this to others, and it stemmed from insecurities about how they looked. It was one of those "I want you to look as bad as I feel I look" hidden under the fake confidence kind of thing, if that makes sense.

  • Unknown says:

    So this is the thing for me — sometimes I think *my* attitude/demeanor leads people to believe they can touch me or say things to me about my hair. Eight years ago, people came up to me (seemingly) all the time when I was natural, both with and without locs, and they would be so nutty with backhanded compliments, complaints, touching my hair, etc. But more recently (within the past three years or so), this has hardly happened at all. What changed? The answers could differ widely.

    Just something to think about.

  • Carla-Carl says:

    I agree to an extent. I get your frustration and I'd be pissed too if people were constantly commenting on something like my hair. I will say that I think the BC is one of the most overrated experiences in the natural hair world (to me).

    Maybe it is because I never had hair down my back that I didn't have a particular attachment to my relaxed hair. I had neck length hair that I was flexi rode setting my entire 11 months of transition. Once I cut it, I was a little self conscious but once I retaught myself how to handle my hair again, it was smooth sailing. No matter how you put it, to me, if you are holding out from cutting because you are worrying about how bad you may look or how people may respond, you have bigger fish to fry then worrying about some hair.

    If you want to transition for years and years, do you. Don't let any natural,relaxed, texlaxed, or bald woman tell you any different. Even though you want to wait, I will say that it is a hell of a lot easier dealing with one texture of hair.

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