Wednesday, 14 December 2011
This is my view. The natural hair community does exist online but like many families it is quite dysfunctional. You will always have
1. The matriarch - The person who tries to take care of everyone, generally very positive and wants you to achieve whatever goals you have with your hair. Also a peacemaker, discouraging fights.
2. The boastful one - The one who has to chew your ear off about how perfect their hair is and how your hair could never be as cute as theirs.
3. The drunk uncle - The person who says they are not high but you are not really convinced since half the things they utter do not make sense.
4. The drama girl - Rude, loud, obnoxious, likes to be in and provoke drama for the sake of it.
5. The stirrers - Work in conjunction with the drama girl to drive arguments further instead of stop them. Generally enjoy prolonging drama..
6. The normal ones - Focused on getting information on techniques or hairstyles. Usually, polite and courteous. The ones who comment are generally supportive.
7. The know it all - The person who knows what is good for your hair and if you do not take their advice you will be bald tomorrow.
8. The more natural than thou - You know the story - natural hair is the best, relaxed hair is selling out, colouring hair will give you the mark of the devil, one pass with a flat iron will lead you to hell and damnation.
9. The jealous one - Makes spiteful comments about other people generally because they are insecure with their own hair/appearance.
10. The indecisive/'whatever' one - Natural today, relaxed tomorrow, natural the day after. Throws away all the rule books, happy to experiment with 'whatever!'
11. The liar - The one who is always running some type of con game whether it is trying to convince you that the weave is their hair or that something they mixed up grew their hair.
In truth a good 90% of people fall into the more positive categories (normal/matriarch) spiced with a little of the others. You may not see them because they do not comment on the madness, just shake their heads and keep sailing along.
The natural hair community does exist but it is not perfect. It is not always supportive, empowering and kind. Some places mostly have these attributes but intermingled you will find the characters who you would rather did not exist. We have to accept that online, people say and do things that they would never do in real life......don't take it personally.
In real life, some places are just not welcoming at all (whether it is a meetup, a town or even a whole country). The truth is if you have a purpose and reason for being there, don't let the blank stares or rudeness prevent you from getting whatever it is you went to get.
What is your view on the natural community? Should we just peg back our expectations?