I have shared custody of my kids and my nine-year-old old is asking to cut her hair just under her shoulder blades it’s currently down to her bum. It’s beautiful strawberry blonde hair.

She has been wanting to cut it for over a year now. And her dad and step mum are refusing to let us do it. They ask if I’m drilling it into her head. Her father also said to her that only pretty girls have long hair. Don’t know what to do, do I just take her or do I respect their decision?

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  • I think an open communication with all involved would be good, whereby the daughter should be heard

  • My daughters Dad used to say the same thing to her and she was afraid to get a hair cut, I had to reassure her that it was a trim. It took until she was 11 to feel like she had the confidence to step out and do what she wanted with her hair. Hair grows back, if your daughter has her heart set on cutting her hair – I’d say let it happen and tell your ex that if he makes those comments, he is literally saying his own daughter isn’t pretty without her long hair. Sometimes it is so freeing having shorter hair! Sometimes we can’t wait for it to grow back, but either way she deserves the chance to see what she likes.

  • It’s her hair.
    Also, he needs to stop with the ‘pretty girls’ narrative. It’s setting an unhealthy precedent for when she’s older. There are more important things in life than the length of her hair, or her looks.

  • I think you all should talk and make decision which will be good for your daughter.

  • Respect your daughter’s decision and cut her hair. It’s hair it will grow back if she doesn’t like it. And as for her father or step mother not liking it… Well… Too bad…. You should not be worrying about how pretty your daughter looks anyway? Isn’t she beautiful no matter what!?

  • It must be so hard with decisions like this with custody issues. I don’t know what you should do.

  • Um that’s pretty bad the father saying she’s only pretty if she has long hair. I’d say let your daughter decide how she wants her hair and get it cut professionally before she cuts it herself

  • How about you/they respect your daughter’s decision? She’s old enough to say how she wants her hair. Take her, let her have the haircut she wants, and make very clear to her that she has more value than “pretty” and that hair length is irrelevant to value or pretty.

  • How rude her father saying that. Shes nine and should be able to have her hair cut

  • At 9 years old she is old enough to speak and say what she wants. Mum or dad’s opinion shouldn’t matter.

  • That’s an awful comment that only pretty girls have long hair.
    If it’s the girls wish to cut the hair so be it.

  • Her dad’s comment isn’t helpful. What about a discussion of how she could donate her hair for other children to be made towards a wig and involve her father in the discussion. That way her beautiful hair is going to something useful and she is getting what she wants.

  • It’s awful that your daughter is stuck in the middle here. I agree with the previous poster – a discussion with everyone and maybe a neutral mediator could help.

  • Maybe a round table discussion with all parties?

  • At that age, your daughter should be able to make her own decisions. If her father won’t allow her individuality, it will come back in a far more rebelious way. I tried to stop my teenage son from cutting his beautiful long blond hair, so he used his friends hair-clippers to shave his head to #1! Had I just agreed to his requested ‘short’ haircut, I’m sure that it would have looked better than a shaved head. Lesson learned for both of us, hair is easily grown back and you should listen to your children when they express what they want.

  • That’s a tricky one! The last thing you want is to cause a stressful situation for your child. Perhaps have an amicable discussion with your child present – hopefully then everyone is on the same page and your child can explain what they want.

  • It’s a tough situation, although it shouldn’t be. All I can suggest is speaking to your ex and trying to reach some sort of agreement.

  • Children are individuals with choice and being able to decide on the look of hair is important. Shorter hair is so practical when you are younger and active. I shudder at definitions of pretty. Stereotypes need to be shelved along with pretty! Respect for children and their choices is so important for all members of families. This is a tough one and good luck with further communication and trying to get your message across.

  • I think it boils down to what your daughter wants, not what you or the dad wants. It’s her hair after all

  • It’s her hair. At 9 she’s old enough to make that decision. It is after all only hair and will grow back. If you don’t want to make the decision because it might cause trouble let her know where the scissors are lol. If she takes a big chunk out if it you’d have to get it evened up.

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