Friday, January 20, 2017

Splitting Hairs

I've reached another one of those unpleasant autism-parent decision plateaus...where I have come to a realization that something I've been pushing with Lily, something that was really important to me, was in truth, only important to me.  Not to her. 

Lily is a beautiful girl and I love her long hair.  And Lily doesn't give a shit.  And I have fought against cutting it shorter for years and years and this morning, as she clenched her teeth in frustration, biting down hard on her sweatshirt in anger and screaming through the material, I realized that it's all been because of my desire that she have long hair, and not for any other reason.

Hair styling with Lily has become increasingly harder through the years, and lately when her mood declines she lashes out more and more vehemently...spitting, biting her hair or shirt, screaming NO!  kicking off her shoes, throwing her hair clip and glasses...and hair styling rapidly puts her mood in that sort of decline.

This morning, for probably the third time this week, I loaded Lily onto the bus with a warning to the bus aide to be careful...Lily is very frustrated this morning...then watched helplessly through the window as she attempted to snatch the glasses off the face of her bus aide and hurl them across the seats.  This morning the aide dodged back quickly, looking up at me beseechingly as if I had the power to do anything other than stand witness. 

She was pissed (Lily...but maybe the aide too), and me trying to put her hair in a pony to keep it out of her face is what put her in that place.  Once she's in that place it's probably ten to fifteen minutes of solid rage before she processes and settles back into the happy little Lily she usually is.  But I put her there.  Again.

During the morning routine I cut up her poptart and placed it on the table.  She wasn't sitting down at the time and I didn't really give it a second thought.  While I talked to Emma and Lily watched TV she eventually wandered over and sat down, popping a piece of poptart in her mouth before I noticed that her hair was in her mouth too. 

I pulled the long strands of hair out of her mouth (it doesn't really bother her that she's swallowed the hair with the poptart, I grabbed a napkin to attempt to strip the poptart goo off her hair.  I gathered it up and made a messy partial pony on top her head, trying to finish quickly before she started getting upset.

I made it.  It was later though, when I tried to straighten it up, brushing it back off her face neatly and gathering it in my fist to wrap and rewrap with the pony tail holder that she spiraled down, cratering into the place where she remained as I loaded her onto the bus. 

Not for the first time I thought...I guess I need to cut her hair. 

Those kinds of decisions are the hardest ones for me.  It's stupid really, because it's an easy decision...Lily hates her hair being styled.  I need to style her hair when it's long...cut her hair shorter.  But it comes at the end of a long battle to NOT cut her hair, so it makes pulling the trigger that much harder.  But it's done.


I'm going to contact the family hair dresser today via text with a few pictures to consider.

My requirements for Lily's haircut:

1)  cute (obvi...)
2)  stays out of her face without a clip or a pony
3)  doesn't require "styling/curling/etc" in order to look good
4)  won't get in her mouth if she bends over her food when eating. 

I was going to post a picture of Eleven from Stranger Things as my first cute haircut example, but I couldn't find one that was obviously marked as shareable.  Look her up.  Millie Bobby Brown...she shaved her head for the show.

The sight gag isn't nearly as funny without the sight part. is purely coincidence that every single cut I found (and maybe one or two are the exact same) happen to be labeled "short haircuts for asian girls".  I had no idea they were so ethnocentric.

Here they are:

This is by far my favorite

This has some sort of weird unkemptness vibe that I probably won't be able to reproduce

On Lily the back of the hair will just hang straight down

This is probably my least favorite, and I can see her getting her hair in her food

What do you all think?  Leigh?


  1. I think this is a great idea, and not just because we took the plunge with Abi last week. You might want to go with tapering the bands into the rest of her hair a bit, or leave it one length if she will tolerate a hair band. Bangs require more upkeep. Abi looks totally adorable with shoulder length hair. I bet Lily will too.

  2. Any other options Jimmy? ;)..If not I'd go with the first...

  3. Did you check out Pinterest for girls hair cuts? My daughter insisted on short hair after having long, beautiful hair. A stacked bob, with or without bangs, will give you short hair in the back for ease in the morning, but leave it longer around the face (you can have it chin length, longer or shorter...there are good samples on Pinterest). Lily's hair will not be "fluffy" like the pics you choose -they are teased and sprayed ;) - she has nice shiny hair, so a good cut will swing nice for her. Look at key words "kids stacked bob haircuts" for more samples.[]=kids%7Ctyped&term_meta[]=Stacked%7Ctyped&term_meta[]=Bob%7Ctyped&term_meta[]=Haircuts%7Ctyped

  4. The first one! I went through the same thing with my girl. When it was cut shorter, like the first cut but without bangs, it became so much easier to deal with, and much of the upset was gone. She is 15 now, and still keeps it about that length, but now with a few longer layers to perk it up a bit.

  5. Go for a pixie. That's sort of like Millie's.

  6. The first one is cute, the second one required product and blow drying to achieve that look.