Bullies and Boys With Long Hair
A candid examination of bullying, gender norms and selfless acts of kindness
It Started With Arthur
We were completely unaware of this topic when we started The Longhairs, or how important it would become.
For us it started with Arthur, whose mother Mae wrote us a letter about how he would get picked on by kids and harassed by adults for his long hair. But it was only after he was diagnosed with the rare Kawasaki Disease, and fought from life-threatening fevers, that his mother allowed him to grow his hair freely, after which he stormed through physical therapy and grew into a healthy, flourishing, talented boy with long, flowing locks.
Her letter was so heartwarming we were compelled to publish Arthur’s story on our website in our first article on boys with long hair, Little Guys With Long Hair.
Since then we’ve had a lot of moms write us. Some ask for tips and advice for dealing with their sons’ hair, but many have told us about their little boys being bullied and harassed.
They’ve turned to us looking for guys who are “cool,” to show their sons that lots of regular guys grow their hair out, and show them there’s a supportive community where it’s ok for boys to have long hair. Many of their comments can be found on Arthur’s post, but some were sent in direct emails or messages.
For all the moms who have written in, we know there are many other parents facing the same ordeals, the helpless feeling of knowing their little guy is out there getting bullied for being different.
This topic goes far deeper than bullying, from kids, adults and external expectations of parents, to forced cutting, gender norms, kids who grow their hair for donating to charity and much more.
In this feature we go beyond the bullies and boys with long hair, tackling these issues head-on, highlighting some of the key layers on the topic and showing what’s happening out there. Citing comments from moms who have written in, interviews, curated content from around the internet, outside research and our own experiences, we aim to shed light on this subject, open a discussion, and show all the boys out there they finally have a place to go.
Our goal is simply this: to help boys with long hair, their parents, outsiders, and the rest of the world see that it’s ok to be different.
Bullied For Their Long Hair
As we all know and many have experienced, kids can be cruel.
Here we’ve compiled a number of instances of boys getting bullied for their long hair.
Bodi, Adin and Isaac
Our first example is from a March 2017 video that went viral when a young boy, Bodi, describes how kids make fun of him for his long hair. His father Isaac, who posted the video, asks him how it made him feel, to which Bodi replies, “It makes me sad,” but, “I let it roll off my back.”
Isaac goes on to explain to his son how lots of people get made fun of, including himself for his tattoos, but that just because you’re unique and don’t look like everyone else, doesn’t make you weird, or that being different is a bad thing. Bodi concludes that being different is a good thing, it means you think different from other people, to which his dad warmly encourages him.
In an interview with CBS News about the video, Isaac is quoted, “I want Bodi to understand that he can affect the way other people act as much as he can effect the weather, so don’t place your emotional well-being in the hands of other people.”
Turns out Bodi has a twin brother, Adin, both of whom are growing their hair to donate. You can visit the original Facebook post with over 200 comments here.
In her original letter to us, Arthur’s mom Mae describes his experience with bullies:
Kids who are his age and younger are fairly easy going about it; they mistake him for a girl no matter what he is wearing, but when he corrects them they move on with their day. Everyone plays, has a great time, and forgets about the hair.
Unfortunately, older kids, even if they’re only a year or two older, have a much different outlook. Some kids think it’s funny to keep calling him a girl, some insist only girls can have long hair so he must want to be a girl, and some tell him they are ‘creeped out’ by long hair on guys.
Fortunately, Arthur has a few responses when other kids harass him:
1) He reminds them that this is his body and he likes his hair the way it is. If they don’t like long hair, they don’t have to have it.
2) He reminds them that popular characters like Thor have long hair. And if they’re really rude, he reminds them that religious figures like Jesus had long hair, so either they’re just being rude or Jesus creeps them out.
She goes on to explain the difference when adults make comments to Arthur, including a specific instance we’ll come back to shortly.
In a comment on our website, ‘Mommy of Samson’ wrote to us:
There have been times he has gotten upset, because kids will relentlessly argue with him about his gender (I know, right?). But I remind him that both girls and boys can have short or long hair, and to use it as a reminder to not judge others by their appearance, but to get to know them for who they are on the inside.
Mica, another mom commenting on our website, writes:
The most annoying part for my youngest is not when they mistake him for a girl, which they almost always do, but when they then profusely apologize for getting it wrong. He’s like, “Got it, now we can all move on without all the apologies [insert eyeroll from him].”
In an interview for this piece, MeMarie explains what happened to her nephew:
My nephew wanted to be Captain Jack Sparrow [from Pirates of the Caribbean] when he was little, and he insisted his mother let him grow his hair. But when he got to grade school he did a complete 180 because of the bullies, and came home ready to cut it. No more long hair.
Then there’s Christian McPhilamy, a 6-year-old who was inspired to grow his hair by an advertisement for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, so he could donate it to kids with cancer. Despite being bullied about his hair for 2.5 years, he reached his goal of donating 10 inches to make wigs for children. More on donations later in this piece.
Adults Making Comments
Kids may be kids, but it’s an entirely different story when adults harass boys about their hair.
Here we recap cases of adults, strangers and even family giving kids grief about their long hair.
Mae tells us about her experience with a man at the grocery store:
When adults heckle him, I step in immediately. No kid should be confronted by rude, antagonistic adults! I remember an event that happened in 2014 that still burns me up. An elderly man was complimenting Arthur on his good behavior in a very long grocery line. He mistook Arthur for a girl and I quietly and politely corrected him. Most people just make an honest mistake – they’re so used to the overwhelming majority of long hair wearers being female that they jump right to that conclusion.
But this man…this man was so rude. He heard me, looked right at Arthur and told HIM, “tell your mom to cut your hair so you’ll be a real boy.”
You can read her response in the full post, but she wasn’t happy! She adds:
That jerk of a man was one of many, both men and women, who have taken it upon themselves to put their gender bias onto my son, but thankfully most people keep it between me and them. And I have no problem pointing out the utter ridiculousness of their bias.
In an interview for this piece, Shayna told us about her son Liam:There was an older gentleman in the grocery store who called him a little girl. I didn’t pay much attention and we went about our business, later I asked Liam if he had noticed. His response was simply, “I know I’m a boy,” and that was the end of that.
‘Mommy of Samson’ shared her story:And ever since the beginning of his life, he had been mistaken for a girl every opportunity anyone had to address it. Including people that had been told previously that he was a boy. At first I didn’t correct anyone, and he was too little to understand anyway, but as he got older, I became bolder with how I handle the comments, and now he handles the situation himself.
Even grandparents and family. In a comment on our website, Brittany related to us:My in-laws have made plenty of inappropriate comments. That he looks like a girl, that he NEEDS a haircut, etc. His own grandparents. Most everyone else either ignores or compliments his hair – except the receptionists at my husband’s work who point-blank ask me, “Why does he have little girl hair?”
From another comment on our website, Mark’s grandson gave in to the pressure:The last time I called my grandson, I wanted to tell him about my day of being harassed at work about my hair, by a fool and how I handled it. I thought it might help because I knew he was catching his own grief and I wanted to reassure him and help him stick to HIS desires and no one else's. I was about two days late, because my 8-year-old grandson had just caved a couple of days before for the same reasons: peer pressure and relentless harassment, and was now in the throes of “buyer's remorse.” Like many of the other [commenters on the blog], even his “great” grandfather was taking his name and turning it into a girl's name. So my little guy will wait for another day to express himself the way he feels is right, if in fact he really still feels he is a longhair.
In, 8 Things That Happen When Your Son Has Long Hair, Michelle Horton describes the comments she constantly hears with her son:
"Oh she's so pretty!" a wide-eyed man stopped me in the grocery store, genuine and sweet. I looked at my boy, dressed in a blue Transformers T-shirt and jeans, smiled and moved on.
My eye doctor looked at him and asked, "How old is she?"
The cashier at a local deli remarked on how adorable "she" is.
I've found that having a long-haired boy means struggling with whether to correct a stranger and engage in some awkward explanation/apology/reassurance, or to hope the person stops talking and moves on.
What we found interesting about these cases, is while we thought kids being bullied by kids would be the most pervasive problem, by far adults making comments to parents and their kids has been the most common scenario parents have told us about.
Boys Forced To Cut Their Hair
Bullying is one thing, but there have been many instances of kids having their hair cut forcefully against their will.
This is a horrifying video of a kid apparently named Dillon Grims, who is forced to cut his hair at a barber shop. It’s difficult to watch the agony unfold, but worse is how everyone in the room is treating it. The kids filming the video and the barber repeatedly antagonize him throughout the ordeal, unmoved by his pleading cries.
I have a personal experience with my hair being cut against my will.
When I was a freshman in high school I was on the JV football team. At the time I had a peculiar long hairstyle where most of my head was shaved, with the exception of the bangs in the very front, which were permitted to grow down past my chin, forming a “tail in the front,” of sorts. A curious choice perhaps, but it was my hair and I was into it.
I was a pretty small kid, 100 lbs with rocks in my pockets, maybe the smallest on the team. They called me Flea, an endearing nickname, but not one you’re gonna feel too fond about nonetheless.
One afternoon before a game, the older guys on the team surrounded me in the locker room, several grabbed me and physically held me down. As I fought and screamed in protest, one guy produced a pair of shears and ceremonially cut my tail off. They taped it above the exit doorway and everyone slapped it on the way out for “good luck,” and to them it was all in good fun.
Ok, it was only three or four inches of hair, but it wasn’t fun for me. I remember choking back tears as guys walked by callously reprimanding me to “suck it up Flea, it’s for the team,” and further antagonizing me now for my emotional response.
Trust me, when you’re 14 and having enough trouble as it is, the LAST thing you wanna do is cry in the locker room. I tried to hold it back, but it was a feeling of complete powerlessness, being physically restrained while having something taken from me that couldn’t be given back.
Longhairs Respond to "Stop the Knot"
Then there are these guys who went around cutting people’s hair off. Turns out it was just a publicity stunt, the men whose hair they cut were in on it. In any case, we didn’t know that nor did we think it was funny, and we issued a response.
In all fairness they did publish an apology video, demonstrating how the “victims” were in fact friends and it was all an elaborate hoax, and the guy even cut off his mustache in apparent reparation.
Nonetheless, at the time we believed it to be true, and along with these instances there are surely others.
Gender Norms and Boys With Long Hair
If we haven’t gotten deep enough yet, there’s another thick layer on this issue.
Boys should have short hair, play with trucks, GI Joes, wear blue, hunt, fish and play sports.
Girls should have long hair, play with dolls, tea sets, wear pink, cook, raise kids and take care of the household.
In a comment on our website, ‘Mommy of Samson’ reflects:
Now besides the journey of having a little man being called a girl almost on the daily, I myself as an adult, mother, and member of society, have learned a lot about our culture in general.
My son has gone through many phases during his little life of things he is into, such as Dora the Explorer, cooking, babies, and even a short lived My Little Pony phase. Now for some strange reason, those are a few of many things that are very much only manufactured for a specific gender, being female. And it makes me wonder, who on earth decided which gender should enjoy what? Why is pink only meant to be enjoyed by girls? And very obviously splashed all over everything that is meant to only be enjoyed by girls?
Who decided that little boys have to buzz their heads in order to be seen as masculine?
Or play with monster trucks?
Or with “action figures” instead of dolls?
Why does my little boy have to defend his masculinity because he has a long braid down his back?
Just questions I have asked myself and maybe we as a society should be asking. In my opinion [this] needs to be reevaluated, considering from the beginning of human existence men didn’t cut their hair, but somewhere along the line we have decided that it is no longer acceptable.
In January 2017 National Geographic published a special issue: Gender Revolution, an excellent collection of articles, studies, scientific research and interviews with children from around the world.
Without diving deeper than we need to here, there are a few notable articles in this special issue relevant to our topic.
In, “Girls, Boys and Gendered Toys,” Natasha Daly cites a study in which Sociologist Elizabeth Sweet analyzed more than 7,300 toys in Sears catalogs from the past century. Her findings showed that gender-targeted toys have ebbed and flowed since 1925. “Toy ads from the 1920s to the 1950s pushed traditional roles: the ‘little homemaker’; the ‘young man of industry.’”
The 1970’s saw a major decrease in gender-specific toys, attributed in part to the “second-wave feminist movement in full swing,” with “only 2 percent of toys in the 1975 Sears catalog marketed explicitly to boys or girls.”
In the 1980’s, however, with deregulation of toy advertising and the advancement of ultrasound technology, “gender distinctions resurged in children’s goods, especially clothing.” By the end of the 20th century, “the roles were simply more fantastical: The homemaker was the princess; the carpenter; the action hero.”
You can read Daly’s full article, where she considers the potential consequences of gender-targeted toys, but also offers signs things may be changing. It’s posted under an alternate title, “How Today’s Toys May Be Harming Your Daughter.”
In “Color Code,” Catherine Zuckerman describes South Korean photographer JeongMee Yoon’s “Pink and Blue Project,” where Yoon aims “to show the extent to which children and their parents, knowingly or unknowingly, are influenced by advertising and popular culture.”
“Blue has become a symbol of strength and masculinity, while pink symbolizes sweetness and femininity,” Yoon is quoted. Her polarizing photographs depict boys and girls, including her own daughter, in their respective bedrooms amongst all their clothing and possessions. For the girls it’s overwhelmingly pink; for the boys, blue.
The article asserts the United States has played a significant role in the gender-color identification, “fueled by the pervasive color palettes of Barbie, superhero movies, and other staples of American childhood.”
You can find Zuckerman’s full article and Yoon’s project under the alternate title, “Pink and Blue: Coloring Inside the Lines of Gender.”
While neither of these articles speak directly to boys with long hair (or girls with short hair, for that matter), the themes are easily linked, and this groundbreaking special issue in NatGeo thoroughly and fearlessly tackles these and a full spectrum of gender issues.
In other examples of parents questioning traditional pre-established gender norms, Michelle Horton writes:
Having a long-haired little boy means inevitably explaining gender norms and why, exactly, people think he's a girl. It highlights how young these gender stereotypes and identities start, and how effortlessly they're drilled into our littlest kids' minds.
On our website, Brittany commented:
My five-year-old daughter’s hair is the exact same length [as my son’s] and no one ever says it should be cut “to get it out of her eyes.”
I was at the store with just my nine-month-old daughter and an older lady came up and said, “What a cute girl. She is a girl, right? Nowadays, you can’t tell.” I nodded and smiled, fully aware that she was talking about boys like my son.
He is happy, he is healthy, and he is loved. He doesn’t need his hair cut to match his genitals for the sake of people in the grocery store. They don’t need to know. It doesn’t bother me. I’m not offended when they can’t tell. I’m not offended if they guess incorrectly. It only bothers me when they tell him or me to cut it.
A family known by the lovable moniker, ‘Chloe and Beans’ created a notable Facebook page and YouTube channel featuring their family’s fun yet hectic lives with six kids.
On Facebook the family posted, ‘LITTLE BOYS HAIR 101,’ a list of various observations and comments about having three boys with long hair. A few of it’s points:
Sometimes people tell us it needs to be cut off because it's too heavy, uncomfortable, too hot or unclean when it's long; if that's the case, I'm just wondering why we shouldn't shave girls' hair off too? Is it because boys are allowed to be more comfortable than girls? And girls should sacrifice comfort for aesthetics?
Imagine your daughter says "I want to grow my hair!" And then you say "TOO BAD" And shave it off while they scream and cry. Would that be nice? I don't think it would be.
I have no problem with people simply assuming wrongly that my boys are girls. It happens 99.9% of the time when we are out and I just say, "oh, they're actually boys" and the kind people say "oh okay, oops!" and the [jerks] say "BOYS? ARE YOU SURE?" ...Yes I'm sure.
Whatever your disposition, the comments and the information presented raise questions, some of which are answered in the research, but many which aren’t:
And maybe the most important question for us, from ‘Mommy of Samson,’
Why does my little boy have to defend his masculinity because he has a long braid down his back?
We don’t have the answer to that one. But I know some guys who’ll be willing to help.
Whose Choice Is It?
The question that keeps coming up. Should kids be allowed to decide their own hair length? Or should the parents decide?
On one side we have seen people questioning parents for letting their boys grow long hair. And of course there are many parents who simply won’t allow it.
There may be plenty of good reasons why. Every parent has their own upbringing, biases, experiences and beliefs. In most instances, parents just want what’s best for their kids.
Mae even said before Arthur grew his hair out,
I didn’t want him to have to face bullies, to be questioned by adults, to be judged for his choices…
Who can’t respect a parent who wants what’s best for their son?
On the other hand, there’s the camp who believes it is their kids’ hair, and therefore it is the kid’s choice.
Brittany feels it’s her son’s decision:
I haven’t cut it because it isn’t my body/choice. When it comes to healthy, safety, etc. I step in. But just stereotypical aesthetics? I absolutely allow autonomy. The day he asks for his hair cut, his hair will be cut. Personally, I can’t wait. I don’t grow his hair out for ME. I don’t enjoy the extra work of conditioning and detangling a mop on an octopus. But I can’t bring myself to pin him down and force him to undergo a haircut that he doesn’t want for no good reason.
Shayna feels similarly:
I’m surprised people have so many questions, like “when am I gonna cut it,” and “how long am I gonna let it grow?” I just tell them it’s his hair, as long as it’s not distracting at school he can do what he wants with it. Now he’s learned how to brush it and take care of it, it’s his responsibility and he can handle it.
Also, because I’m a stylist there’s a presumption I’m dictating his hair length. If it was up to me I wouldn’t keep his hair like that! It’s his hair, he can do what he wants with it.
‘Chloe and Beans’ posted:
My 3yo and 4yo boys have told me they want to grow their hair, why shouldn't they be able to? Some kids don't like having their hair cut. My kids don't like having their hair cut. They get really upset about it actually. I don't want to upset my children.
And Michelle Horton writes:
"Don't cut it," he pleaded last summer. "I want to grow it long, like John Lennon. PLEASE MOM, PLEASE!"
I was quick to cut his baby hair, and then to buzz his toddler hair, but who am I to argue? He likes to twirl his hair before falling asleep, and he wanted to see how it would look. And so we went for it.
In our own experience, we even had a young guy write us directly, asking:What do I do if my parents are the ones wanting me to cut it? Any advice on how to convince them to let me continue to grow out my hair?
This put us in an interesting spot. We’re not here to interfere with parenting, so we offered him a suggestion which conveniently sums up our position:First off is being respectful to your parents under any circumstances. Talk to your parents about it. Ask them what bothers them about your long hair. There could be any number of reasons, but really listen to them. The next step is to demonstrate a high level of personal responsibility. That could mean getting good grades, doing your chores, always being on time for things, making it home before curfew, helping with responsibilities around the house, holding down a job, submitting your college applications, keeping your room clean and hundreds of other things. If you can show that you have taken ownership over your life and your responsibilities, the topic of long hair becomes secondary. Or at least it gives you a strong platform for your long hair argument. We advocate for men with long hair. We claim that you can be a successful businessman, working professional, family man, or anything you might want to become with long hair. The only reason we need to make that claim is because there is a pervasive stereotype that men with long hair are lazy, slackers, hippies, slugs and slack-jawed wasteoids. Unfortunately generations before us might have perpetuated that stereotype. But the only way we can break it is by actually demonstrating we’re not those things just because we have long hair. Clearly demonstrate a high level of responsibility, and most parents will soften up on the long hair.
So whose choice is it? At the end of the day, we’re not here to answer that question. But doing your chores definitely won’t hurt.
Kids Donating Hair To Charity
With the dark side of bullying and kids being forced to cut their hair,
there are seemingly endless heartwarming stories about boys growing long hair for a selfless cause.
In a recent news story that went viral, the Kannisto family with SIX BOYS, along with their mother, Phoebe, cut their hair for Children with Hair Loss, donating over 17 feet in total amongst them.
In another video, then 10-year old Damian Carrano shares how he started growing his hair after meeting a girl with ocular cancer who couldn’t grow hair. He describes getting bullied by the football team and in Mixed Martial Arts training, but he completed his mission to grow it out and cut it for kids with cancer.
Tyler Boone grew his hair for two years and cut it specifically for his friend with alopecia: Boy Grows Hair for 2 Years, Donates to Friend With Alopecia
Earlier you saw Christian, who despite being bullied grew his hair for 2.5 years and donated it. There was also Bodi, growing his hair to donate along with his twin brother Adin.
With these there are hundreds more stories of boys, men and women growing their hair in acts of kindness and compassion.
What We Know
After reviewing the literature, there are a few things we know.
Boys are getting bullied for having long hair.
Many times it’s by other kids, but seemingly more often by adults. And for some reason elderly men at grocery stores appear to be notorious perpetrators. In some cases kids are even getting their hair cut against their will.
Parents have found themselves having to answer questions about the length of their sons’ hair. In some instances they’ve felt the need to defend their sons from more aggressive comments.
Gender norms are a pervasive influence in our culture, to which kids are exposed from birth. This certainly has an impact on many aspects of their lives, perhaps far deeper than we understand.
Some parents are down for the long hair. Some aren’t. Some say it is their kids’ choice, others will enforce stricter grooming guidelines. Each has their own prerogative and the right to raise their children in the best way they see fit. In either case, it’s not for others to question.
There are a lot of kids out there with big hearts, and hell if we shouldn’t encourage them to perform acts of kindness, compassion and selflessness, often in the face of bullies, harassment and ridicule.
For Our Part?
And what do The Longhairs say, you might ask?
We Stand for the Little Guys
We want them to know we are here. And if their parents will allow us to speak to them:
Yo Little Dude!
We think your long hair is cool. Pay no attention to the bullies and the naysayers.
Anyone can have short hair. It’s takes something special to have long hair.
It means you’re different. And it’s ok to be different.
It means you are confident in who you are. You’re not bothered by what others think. You believe in yourself.
It means you are down for the flow, bro! And we’ve got your back.
So for every bully who makes fun of you, or says you look like a girl, or gives you grief about your hair, just know there is a community of tens of thousands of men and boys with long hair right here.
They’re big and small, old and young, every color of skin, from every background. They are football, baseball and basketball players, world-changing scientists, CEOs and business professionals, drummers and musicians, action sports heros, US Presidents, courageous warriors, entrepreneurs, fashion experts, coffee roasters, custodians, architects and everything under the sun.
They’re from California to New York, Florida to Washington and everywhere in between. They’re from Australia and India, Canada and Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and Sweden, Peru and Pakistan. There’s at least one on the tiny island nation of Mauritius off the coast of Madagascar; we know because we sent him a pack of hair ties.
That’s only the short list, because there are men and boys with long hair all around the world. And they’re regular guys. Who choose to be different.
We may have nothing else in common with any of those guys...but we all have long hair. And it means something to all of us.
So keep lettin’ it ride, kid. Here’s to hair whips and high fives.
For Those Who Donate
Hats off boys, we encourage and support you in your cause. Because contrary to popular opinion, Longhairs Do Care, which is the name of our charity outreach program where we donate $1 from every sale to charity.
Not only that, in March, 2019, with help from sponsors, hair professionals, volunteers and hair donors, The Longhairs broke the Guinness World Record for the largest hair donation in history, with 339 pounds of hair and over $25,000 donated to Children With Hair Loss.
It was The Great Cut, and we're doing it again in 2024.
To the Bullies and the Naysayers
Amazed you’ve read this far, but to each his own. Live and let live. Everything is going to be alright.
To The Reckless Haircutters
All we can say is what we said to Derick Watts & Co., and we’ll say it again here:
“The Longhairs vehemently denounce the unwilling and unlawful cutting of hair from any man’s (or boy’s) head in any form whatsoever.”
For The Parents
While respecting the wishes of all parents, we staunchly believe men and boys should wear their hair however long they choose.
For those who allow your sons to grow it out we give you all the credit in the world. You’re the ones who may be taking the risk of subjecting your boy to bullies and harassment. You’re the ones answering questions at the grocery store. You’re the ones dealing with a rat’s nest of hopeless tangles bonded firmly with a perfect blend of playdough and mud.
For that you deserve some credit.
A mother wrote us anonymously for this piece:
Running into your site has given me a great boost of confidence on what I do with my son. There were moments when I would see him get bullied and I would question if I’m doing right. But seeing there is another side to this madness gives me much hope.
We stand for the moms and dads, too. When you need tips and tricks for your little guy. When you need a special message for your son about his hair, like other moms have. And hopefully, when you need that boost of confidence.
You are part of this community. So please feel welcome here and visit often, we’ll help if we can.
Free Pack of Hair Ties For Guys™
And just to put our money where our mouth is, we’ll start ya out right here with a free pack of the finest men’s boy’s hair ties in the world. No restrictions or conditions apply.
For The Boys
After publishing Arthur’s story, Mae wrote to us:
If boys who are facing ridicule for their hair could hear words of encouragement, support,
and acceptance from men who share their love of long hair, I think it would go a long way to boost their self-esteem.
We hope we’re doing it.
Who Are These Longhairs?
The Longhairs is a global fraternity for men with long hair. We publish tips and tactics for guys with locks, interview successful professionals with flow, and celebrate men’s long manes with hair whips and high fives.
Advocate. Educate. Celebrate. Because long hair...long hair lives in the heart.
Every parent of a boy with long hair needs to see this. If you agree, please share and leave your comment below.
Excellent reading, my son is eight years old and has very long hair, he likes it, and his father adores long hair. I am not so much fond of it, but I support him.
I always wonder if fighting for long hair is worth it? Kids are so nasty to my son because of his long hair.
Not only his hair is long, but he is also different. Life is complicated and having long hair is a constant fight with the other kids and society.
It was Halloween 2018. Our son was old enough to walk to peoples doors alone, while his dad and I stood watching from the sidewalk. My son wanted to be Thor, an awesome superhero with long hair just like him! He was so stoked to be Thor, and excited to go trick or treating. We stopped at this one house, there were adults hanging out and talking by the front door. We watched him go up, get a candy, and he was sulking the whole way back to us. We asked what was wrong, and he looked up at us with a defeated look in his eye and said “they called me a girl. I’m Thor, and Thor isn’t a girl!” We asked if he corrected them and his face lit up and he said “I can correct them?!” We told him as long has he was polite, he absolutely has the right to correct someone. He asked if he could go back up to the door and say something, and we said absolutely. We watched him walk back up, you could see the adults were a little confused to see him again. We could hear Elliot loudly, but politely, exclaim “IM A BOY!” Immediately, they all started apologizing and he got some more candy. He skipped back to us and told us what happened. He walked a little taller after that, and now has no problem politely correcting people when they call him a girl. Fortunately, we have not had any negative encounters with people, everyone is genuinely sorry for mistaking him for a girl, and then tell him what awesome hair he has, and how they wished they had healthy, long hair just like him. He will be 7 at the end of August, and has never cut his hair, and has no plans of cutting it anytime soon. It is to his knees. He loves your products, and so do I! He says he wishes he could model your products for all to see! So if you ever need any kiddos to model for you, Elliot is your little man! He loves watching your tutorial videos and says El Rubio is on of his heroes! Thank you for all you do!
Thank you so much for sharing Courtney! What a great story and so happy for your son. Great to hear he and you are loving the products, means the world to us. If you are ever in San Diego let us know, would love to have your family come over to the HQ.
Who should decide hair length? It’s the kid’s preference, of course.
How Not To Respond
I was driving through Spring Valley in my pick up in the 70’s when I was pulled over by two Deputy Sheriffs. My hair was down to my shoulders then. They told us to get out of the truck and asked for ID. When one to them looked at my drivers license, he commented the the picture looked like a girl. When he handed it to his partner and turned to my passenger, I looked over his partner shoulder and said “If he thinks that looks like a girl, I’d hate to see his wife”. I’m still amazed that I didn’t end up in jail.
Just found out today that my son’s new middle school will require him to cut his hair. He has had to miss his last year of elementary, been at home with this quarantine stress and now when we’re trying to prepare him for the new school year they lay this on us. My kid just went to bed crying. His father has hair down mid back and he just wants to be like his dad. This is insane. He loves his hair. And as an FYI he is an excellent student with no history of any issues due to his hair or anything else. His hair has never stopped him from excelling. This is asinine.
My Son is long hair for 3 years
I have two sons and two daughters. When my older son was in the 2nd grade at a charter school, I started getting emails from the school saying I had to cut his hair off. Have you tried explaining to a young boy that he has to cut off his hair simply because he’s a boy? He was hurt that there was a rule that singled him out because he was a boy and he immediately asked if he could just go to a different school. When my daughter heard this, who was in kindergarten at the time, she became upset and asked if she had to cut her hair too. We explained that the policy said she didn’t have to because she is a girl. She was confused, then she was “mad.” She said she would cut off her hair if the school made her brothers cut their hair (she really loves her hair, so it was surprising to hear her say this). She started crying and everything. Every time I was at the store or family was visiting, I had to endure the comments. My own sister joked that she was getting my four-year old boy a pair of high heels. I have had enough- not with my boys hair length, but with jerk comments and insensitive people. I will help them find healthy and kind ways to respond to rude comments and they will continue keeping their hair whatever length they choose. Thank you for having this site guys <3
I really like the story
Hello I am from Jakarta indonesia
Here long hair on boy will be called sissy or girly.I have plan to grow my hair and donate it to charity but then I realized that thelonghairs.us is based on the US.My hair already long but wanted to keep it longer till waist to cut it.I really empathize to the cancer patients that undergo chemotherapy to cure they illness.
When I read this I feel encouragment from other who boy that have long hair and endure the other opinions.
In asia culture usually women have long hair so many hair accessories and hair ties designed to be worm by girl and women with no choice for boy to wear it.(I think pink colour to girly for me and wanted to avoid attention as possible)
I usually keep it flowing and conditioned 3x times a week.
Wanted to donate but it’s seems to far away from your event(the great big cut ) in chicago.
Greetings from Indonesia
(Sorry for bad english)
Hello Francisca, thank you for writing in from Jakarta! Glad to have you here, and that you want to donate for The Great Cut! In 2019 we did a mail-in option, where you could cut your hair and then mail your donation. We may have something like that again…but maybe this will be your chance to visit the USA! Either way please stay in touch, we got your back man!
My boy will be 8 years old next month, he is half African from his dad’s side…and my side is First Nations. His hair is past his waste when wet…and very curly. People are constantly complimenting his hair but always referring to him as a her. I always correct them and they apologize which is cool. My boy always puts it behind him, and shrugs his shoulders in a “it don’t bother me” kind of way. May be because he understands what hair means in our culture and that’s where our strength is. He says it makes him feel strong and will cut it when the time is right. We trim our hair on a full moon and we as a family are all proud of who we are. Nice to see we are not alone! ✊🏼
My son is 6 and has long hair – not waist length or way down His back but 2-3” below his shoulders. I freely admit I LOVE to play with it. I’ve often used a curling iron on the ends for making curls and it is gorgeous. But like others we’ve gotten the little girl comments. Then one day my friend said, do you suppose people are saying those things just to find out if he’s a he or a she because I always made a point of dressing him super boyish. So we experimented with some girlish outfits. Not skirts or dresses but maybe blouses and definitely pinks and other “girl colors.” And the comments stopped. I guess they just assume he’s a girl and thats fine with me. Way better than rude comments.
I’m glad you found this article Ann! Thanks for sharing your story here, and please give our warm regards to Junior!
Donating your hair is a nice thing to do. But please keep it a personal thing: I have had long hair for many years and occasionally there are people who suggests that I should cut it off and donate it to “people who need it more than me” as they say with a hint of “shame on you for having something without sharing it”.
We’d never shame you for keeping it Flemming!
Thank you, Longhairs! 🙂 We watched you on Shark Tank and last year my son (now 17) decided to grow his hair out. The first thing he told us was “I’ve had the same haircut for 16 years, and just want something different.” Totally get that!! We thought it was just a friendly competition with a friend, but recently learned about The Great Cut 2024 and he is growing it to donate it, and I might just join him. He has unruly, tight curls, so it’s much longer than it looks! And a little bit of an afro, but loving that he can almost pull it back. His dad and my brother both had long hair (a long time ago) so it’s not anything really new in our family. Thankfully it’s not an issue at our school, yet, but it does slow him down a little on the track-ha (and teammates are telling him to cut it)! One grandfather, although he doesn’t say it to him, despises his hair. The way I see it, he will cut it during his junior year in college for The Great Cut, and can keep it short or grow it back out-his decision. Thank you for your awesome products (he loves his LH hat!) and more importantly the community and support you give to “longhairs” of any age to stay strong with their decision and overcome the naysayers. Your group, and TGC also led us to find Stache Strong that raises support and funding for Glioblastoma (GBM) cancer research-a cause dear to my family.
Hi Amy! Reading this made my day! So glad to hear your son will join in TGC2024 and hope you will also! Please send him some hairwhips and high fives from The Longhairs and keep lettin it ride! Thank you for taking a couple minutes to share your comment.
Even though I am on their side, the sad truth is that the kids who are the most different get bullied the most.
Nevertheless, the little Sampsons should stay strong and let it ride now and for years to come.
I used to have long shaggy reddish brown hair when I was a boy. Other boys like to fight me because of my hair color Why ?
I don’t know why Peter, but hopefully we can make a difference so other boys don’t experience the same treatment! Thanks for sharing.
well im 10 and like im a boy who has long hair and i get picked on bc…..i was born with chameleon alike hair where in the sun its light chocolate and in the dark its dark chocolate coloured
Sounds like some great hair Wade!
I really liked reading this. I had long hair until I was 19 when I got it cut short in college. I’m now 29 and have decided to bring it back! 🙂
Happy you enjoyed the read Grant. Thanks for checking it out and stoked you are growing it back!
El Moreno how your long hair now ? What color is your hair ? I like long hair myself
How long your hair now
How long your hair. What color hair
My 2 kids have long hair.
When my son was 8 years old teacher made a pony tale and my son is autistic.
My son is 3 years old and today teacher told me to cut my son’s hair, she ask me to put a headband if i do not want to cut his hair.
Glad to have you here!
Our grandson Oliver Fox M. is 5 yrs old and still not had a haircut. He has beautiful long locks and is such a handsome little fellow. He is a very self confident and one tough little character.
His preschool teacher puts his hair in a ponytail at lunch, his mom puts one of the long hair bands around his hand in the mornings. She feels its not a big deal as it gets in his mouth at times while eating.
His Dad (our son) makes it perfectly clear to anyone, Educators as well that Oliver likes his hair and when he wants to cut it they will do so. They have talked to him about bullying, and also that being different is nothing to be ashamed or to be afraid of. Our son has always been somewhat of a rebel who stood on his own beliefs. Now his hair is very short but In high school he had a full beard, long hair and was voted for homecoming court, he chose the arm of an African American girl who had weight issues and had been singled out.
Our son did not care one dot about being in it, he chose to go ahead with it for her to be in it.
Mind you it was a small community with very few African American families. They were voted 2nd place. lol
Oliver’s mother our DIL is an educator and a feminist in her own right. She grows her hair and then cuts it to donate as wigs for cancer victims, she teaches Oliver about the environment and recycling, sometimes he has pointed out to me “Granny put that in the blue bin” Oliver has two parents who have proven to him that being different is not always popular but being true to yourself and your values are most important. Currently our son who has a bachelors degree in medical science has put his career on hold and is being a stay at home Dad to both Oliver and his baby brother until they are both in full time school.
He is very masculine but loving too, he teaches Oliver how to work in their yard and garage, and yet wash dishes, change diapers and soothe the baby. Every Friday night they have a musical jam session at their home just the four of them and they play instruments of choice, and they dance and sing. We had the pleasure of joining one evening and WOW…… I figure instilling these values is giving the best example in the world to Oliver and his brother Bruce that being secure in who you are is nothing to be ashamed of even if it goes against what society thinks is the Norm for something so simple as the length of ones hair.
Hello my brother and were persecuted and physically attacked for shoulder length hair at burnie high school
This was in burnie Tasmania australia
This the backblocks of australia
My brother was put down a toilet head first
I was at work and pinned on floor with people cutting my hair with scissors
This just a small sample
We’re sad to read this Michael. We’re here for you and your brother!
What if just being here for our boys is not enough?
Tryggr is my 8 year old little boy, ( or little men as most of our boys are more manly than the fossil at the corner super market) he has a Viking style hair cut shaved on the bottom and top left long.
I’m partially ashamed to admit I force cut part of his hair. It was a blunder that I though surely if I threaten him to cut it, that he will take better care of his hair and sit still for me when I care for it. I was wrong and I panicked, being a woman of my word I went to the depths of my creativity for a solution where I could honor my strict boundary , honor his will to keep his body looking as he likes, honor my reputation as a woman of my word and reinforce my no bologna tolerance policy. So I only had the bottom shaved.
Really conflicted about it we went to the hair dresser I told her DO NOT cut all of it. Luckily he was never so happy after he got a good 15 min spin in the salon mirror. This was a huge trust building moment for us as well as I found a way to protect him from even my harshest threat. Since then he’s felt with plenty bullies and crotchety angina stricken fossils. But what sticks out most to me is his need for reassurance. It only comes on after an extended bullying period but he asks me to inform him of well known sociologically accepted idols. Like mommy he asks are there any foot ball players or truck drivers that have long hair ?
I sit him down go threw the list and of corse add him in the end and make up some fantastic alternative life of an eccentric genius borderline nutso sweet man whom is known for humble things. But most importantly I tell him he could have it much worse , he could have hot pink hair like his little brother. We laugh and he goes back to being Tryggr.
What I have learned is our little freedom fighters are just different. Thier long hair maybe a mark of thier individuality but truly they are the history in the making. They are what breaks the laws and comforts of our easy to treat and diagnose well categorized society. Outlaws as they are to those seeking comfort in the small minded naysayers, and the naysayers are not going away. They are relentless and they are serving thier purpose in our single serving society.
My bunny buns , as I call him at home is a sweet boy who can feel the hurt of the world but fights with the courage and self determination of a warrior long ago past. He doesn’t like to fight and he usually cries after any fight with his brother where he feels pushed to use physical force.
I am honest with him. I tell him he has to toughen up tho it breaks me up inside. He has to toughen up for the outside world. It’s harsh and it’s cruel and unfair and I have never led him to believe otherwise. People are people they do t care how you feel what you think or what you have to offer.
I tell him. I tell him he is not people nor person he is human.
He now proudly calls them cheeple like chickens foolishly bumping together in flocks cheep cheeping about the newest cheep deals. My point is that support by being there for them isn’t enough. What if we could have someone to advocate to them to teach them self defense and skills that supersede normal confidence levels? What if we could give them something back for their hard work fighting the world every day being de- masculineated infront of cheeple day after day ? A special club where they can go do super manly things or even super girly things who the noodles even cares? Just something for just them? Maybe some man to come talk to the teachers and school higher ups about discrimination and be the muscle for the parents who like me were threatened by the school acused of not caring for my child because of his long hair because I myself refuse to conform to thier cult like brain washing free thinking posing cheeple nation.
Is there any way we can spread enough word start enough commotion be a major pain in the sides of the rule benders in our perfection driven system of sociological stupidity, that we can get some well known long haired famous guys to come to our schools our little ones and talk to them? John Lennon would surely get more respect that I do at Scandia elementary. That’s all I’m saying.
But furthermore offer a club or a secret safe haven for our boys to be amongst one another just for enough time to keep them feeling like they can deal with another 3-6 months of hell to keep wanting to be different. Any ideas for more than just being there for our lil men are desperately welcome and needed. Because the day they break my lil man is going to be the day where the world will loose potentially the best thing to happen to humanity yet and for each of us and our little men, and for me well it will be a sad sad day if it comes that I can no longer hold weight against the pressure waters of sociological refinement and to me that’s worse than being hung and burnt at the steak for raising a Hell beast abomination with long hair and a voice an opinion a mouth that’s not afraid to share that opinion, a heart that’s not afraid to break for it, and for “gods” sake damn me for raising my boy to have a soul.
Thank you for the thoughtful comment Hadi! Please give your little man our warmest regards, I’m sure you already saw the lists of notable men with long hair in this post, and our video shout out to the little guys. If there is anything else we can offer definitely let us know!
Yes, I needed this! My 4-year-old little guy has waist length, gorgeous spiral curl hair. Until recently he’s had no interest in cutting it. He’s picking up more now on people asking him about cutting it and now wants a trim. We’ll take it slow and keep it healthy but long hair suits his rad personality and he couldn’t be more “boy” otherwise. I stand by my choice as his mother to not push gender norms and love everything about him, especially his gorgeous crazy hair.
Hello Najma, so happy to have you here!
I think this issue is more a universal human reaction towards people who are different from the current social norms. I was bullied mostly in elementary school because I was apparently different from the other kids and I didn’t even have long hair back then. Anyways, I started to grow my hair for almost an year, starting at sometime in 2018. It almost touches my shoulders now. My father used to have long hair as a ponytail in his college years. Unfortunately, my mother is not a fan of long hair and was angry with me about it. She wanted me to have short hair and stay clean shaven even though I disliked it. When I asked her why she wanted me that way, she told me because it’s what most teen boys do and I looked older and ugly with a beard and I should have short hair and maybe keep a beard only when I got much older. I found that shocking because that seemed to be nothing more than a social norm of today’s society. I tried to convince her how in the past, in different cultures it was completely fine for the men to keep long hair like in Native American cultures, Arab tribes, ancient Chinese and Japanease cultures etc. However, she still seems to be convinced that long hair is something that only women should have and men in current society should not keep it long. My father is more understanding having kept long hair himself and doesn’t mind. Nevertheless, even our relatives such as my grandparents even told my mother to convince me to cut it. My mother is okay with me having a beard now though, because of religious reasons as we come from a muslim household. I hope my mother will come to understand that I don’t keep long hair to imitate women.
Well, I do have a well trimmed beard and starting to grow my hair even longer. Being 19 years old with a beard, I don’t get mistaken for a woman. However, I can see the problem of people judging others for their differences just because they might deviate from the current social norms. As long as it isn’t harmful to anyone, I think that it should be completely fine. I am glad there is a community here to help show the kids how being different is good and we should all appreciate our differences.
Thank you so much for this article! My 12 year old son has been wanting his hair to grow out the last few years… at first, it was hard for me to accept, but it’s what HE wants to do, and it’s his personal style. It does get a little wild at times, but he has learned that he needs to keep it brushed and maintained if he wants to keep it longer. He still gets the “she” pronoun from those who don’t know him. I get the “when is Noah going to cut his hair?” from family and friends. When he is ready… is the only thing they need to hear.
I appreciate that their are so many other boys who are with my son! Thanks again!
We are so glad to have you here Connie! Thanks for the comment, please send your son a few aggressive hairwhips on our behalf.
My 12 year old son would respond to the “What are you a boy or a girl ?”
taunts from the boys at his school with a
smiling “Why? do ya think I’m hot ?”
Haha! Best response to date.
Thanks for sharing 🙂 🙂 🙂
I love this article so much! My sons hair is past his butt and it ha donkey been cut two times his whole life, only an inch b/c that’s what he would let me cut. He is 5 years old and loves his hair. He will correct anyone that calls him a girl and for the most part I don’t have any issues. I can honestly said there is only one time I had a bad incident and I took care of that quick fast and in a hurry. Alex loves his long hair and he will tell you that. One day I asked him if he wanted to cut it and he told me no b/c his hair gives him strength and I couldn’t argue with him. Plus I feel like I would be super sad if I did cut it. I love his hair as much as he loves it and take very good care of it. Thanks so much for this article b/c most people believe boys should have short hair and I disagree with that completely! This makes me so freaking happy.
We are so happy this makes you happy. Thanks for sharing 🙂
“Gives him strength.” Stay strong, Alex, and let it ride now and for years to come.
My JackJack is 11 and has hair down his back. He loves it because we follow ancient beliefs that his hair is his strength and is an extension of his nervous system. The idea that he’s a boy that’s not like everyone else makes him feel confident and empowered in himself and as a mom, I believe that’s the most important thing in life…
To believe in and control your own individuality!
Jack Attack! Hell yes it’s a strength and the extension you suggest!
Loved reading this. Thanks for sharing and please send Jack an aggressive hair whip from The Longhairs.
Well, I’m probably the kind of mother that most people think of when they see a long hair little boy. I’ve been a hairstylist for many years and when I finally married and became PG, I just assumed I’d have a little girl with gorgeous hair to play with. Nope, it was a boy! But what lovely locks that just never seemed to want to be cut. In fact, other than trimming the ends, I never cut it until the night before he started kindergarten. Then, through the tears, I gradually cut it back until he had the prettiest long bob. Since then, I’ve grown it out so that he’s now 7 with midback length, well cared for locks. Does he get the pretty little girl comments? All the time but we’re tough and just ignore it.
“They just never seemed to want to be cut.”
I can relate. Loved reading this, thank you for sharing 🙂
I can also relate to the never wanting to cut it, but only starting in December 2018. Before that, I somehow was fine with going to the barber, and from summer 2011 to summer 2015, I had a buzz cut, and would’ve chopped it off immediately if it was eyebrow length. I guess I’m just completely different compared to years ago or something.
My six year old son has always had shoulderlength hair and he has some friends that also have the same length hair. Recently he has come home from school and is being teased by the other boys in his class who say that he looks like a girl and it is making him wuite miserable. He now says that he wants his haircut so that he looks like everyone else. What do I do? Do I let him have his hair cut short and face the major disappointment? He hates having his haircut as it is. I don’t want him to give in to peer pressure but I don’t want him to be miserable either.
You can tell him that he can stand up to the bullies in numbers with his friends who also have long hair.
It’s tough growing up looking different especially when people perceive that you have made the choice purely to stand out rather than the idea that maybe you just prefer it.
I grew my hair down to my backside from the ages of 16 to 22. I was constantly verbally abused and a few occasions physical attacked for it. Friends supported me, family were accepting yet confused as to why I wanted it but strangers would often tell me that if I didn’t want to bring attention to myself I should cut it.
What people didn’t realise was that every attack on my image made my resolution stronger to keep it growing. I was a very insecure teen and young man but that came from other people forcing their opinions on me, not what I thought of myself.
At 22 I gave in and cut it. I thought I was ready at the time but there was inevitable regret and a strong feeling of loss. It was amazing, and almost ironically depressing, how my life changed. It was a relief to not be constantly stared at or judged and to walk down the street without people making comments and jibes. And yet I spent the next 10 years feeling like I wasn’t myself.
I then went travelling 3 years ago for 2 1/2 years. I grew it out for 9 months and then made the stupid mistake to cut it for a wedding on a brief visit back home. I was feeling happy with it but there was still a hangover of apprehension about the negative comments people would make. I hated my hair cut and regretted it more than you can imagine.
So I grew it out for the remainder of my travels and am now am 2 1/4 years into growing it again. It is now down to my chest. I won’t lie, I still sometimes think about cutting it due to the comments that have inevitably arisen again but I have to be true to myself and realise it is simply who I am! How I feel comfortable!
I think now I am older and bearded the bullies are less confrontational. Not that I am an intimidating character in the least but through age I am naturally a more masculine and adult version of my long-haired teen days, albeit minimally. But I still have to put up with constant ‘Hey Jesus’ and ‘God bless you’ comments. I am able to laugh it off, go along with the ‘joke’ in an amiable fashion and pretend that each interaction is as original as the instigator probably believes. Sometimes this actually aggravates the provocateur, in which case it is time to move away, but more often than not a mutual laugh can be had and I can get on with my day.
I do believe that people are more accepting in this day and age anyway. Long haired men are more commonplace and people are able to be themselves more.
My advice to the younger me and to all those little long-haired dudes out there is to do what makes you happy. Does the idea of cutting your hair make you cringe? Do you look at everyone with short hair and think they all look generic and alike with no sense of self-identity? Do you look at other guys with long hair and think ‘that guy’s rocking that look’? Don’t let the pressure of others get to you like I did as a youngster.
If you need validation then spend 5 minutes on a site like this and realise you are a brave, unique and proud little dude. We all think you are! Keep rocking that look!
Adrian, what a comment man, really appreciate reading your story. Thanks for sharing with the community and for your words of experience for the little guys! Glad to have you hear, and that you’re back on the long hair train. Safe travels amigo!
WOW!! As I sat here this morning I had the same thought on my mind that has been bothering me for some time now. My son Abel is 4 years old and has the most beautiful blonde/white hair of a God that is already halfway down his back. My daughter Sunny also has long beautiful hair but to be honest I would have to say that Abel’s is incomparable. Because my daughter is starting kindergarten this year I cant help myself from wondering about when Abel starts next year with his long hair. Some people in my family think we should have his hair cut before school in fear of him getting bullied for looking like a girl. When I was reading some of the stories from other parents and their boys with long hair it was like I was reading pages from my own life. In doctors offices, the grocery store, the park…pretty much anywhere we go he gets mistaken for a girl. Sometimes I correct the people, sometimes I dont and just keep walking, in my mind hes always clearly dressed as a boy and even his mannerisms scream HEY IM A BOY! I have to even laugh sometimes when Sunny pipes up to some stranger and exclaims, hey thats my brother and hes a boy! Ive never run into any nasty people about it like some of these other parents I just read about, thankfully, because my response would be neither kind nor polite. Abel enjoys his long hair, he has even been asked if he wants his hair cut short like Daddy and his response is always NO. He does always get compliments on how extremely beautiful it is as well, which I know he hears and I think enjoys, he loves attention from women….haha go figure, he is definitely a future ladies man. This site has given me confidence in allowing him to leave his hair long if he wants it, I personally adore it, I just cant help but to think of my reaction if my sweet boy were to come home one day crying or upset over being bullied by some kid/kids. Will I march down the school and demand to speak with the kid and their parents? Will I try and let him deal with it on his own? Will I break down and cry with him? Will I start a brawl outside of school pickup if I see the kids parents? Who knows?!!! When I met my husband he had gorgeous blonde hair that went all the way down his back that he always had pulled back in a low pony tail, it was one of the first things that attracted me to him. Am I holding onto Abels hair for my sake or for his? Ive told myself that I am going to just essentially leave it up to him, but what if he comes home so upset that he wants to make a rash decision about it. I know I am getting ahead of myself as in he is only 4 and doesnt even start school for another year but the comments and remarks from people already started a year ago. You guys are amazing for creating this site and giving parents of cool as shit little boys with long hair the courage to face any judgments or bullshit that is thrown at us!! LET IT RIDE BABY!!!
Haha LET IT RIDE BABY is right! Found myself smiling reading your story, Erin, and slightly jealous of Abel’s hair.
Thrilled you found us. Make sure you sign up for a free pack of hair ties.
And if you haven’t read about this yet, maybe it will answer the question of Abel’s hair for you: The Great Cut.
Glad to have you here!
Its an advantage for boys. When i was in high school every single girl liked this short, skinny kid because of his long hair. It was crazy. The real problem is being bald… or balding. Try it. Being bald sucks.
Reading this was very helpful to me. I am the Nana to a wonderful 6-year-old who I have been concerned about; not because he has long hair but because I am afraid he is being bullied and not talking about it with his parents. He has started acting aggressively to his sister, and I have been secretly wondering if it is because he is being ridiculed about his hair. Your article has helped me to see all sides of the issue, and reminded me that it’s really none of my business!
Glad it was helpful. If and when the time is right we hope junior will know there are thousands of longhairs here who have his back!
Was searching for ways to help my son better care for his amazing mane and found you guys. I’m so glad to have found your site!!
My 12 year old has been growing his hair for almost 4 years. Most of our family (other than Grandpa) has been incredibly supportive of his choice, but I know he’s gotten flak for his mid-back length hair at school. The worst is definitely the comments from strangers… That’s something only other longhairs and the parents of longhair boys can understand!!
This is his second round of long hair—first time around, after having long hair since he was a toddler, he couldn’t take the bullying and came home a few months into 2nd grade begging me to cut it all off. I’m so proud of him for deciding to go for it again and how calmly and politely he handles himself when people question if he’s a boy or girl. (I tend to go a bit Mama Bear in defending him)
Being a Longhair is part of who he is, and knowing you guys are out here for support (and hair advice!) when he needs it… priceless! Thank you!
Hey Mama Bear, we are super stoked to have you and Junior here at The Longhairs. Please give him a firm high five and an aggressive hair whip from the guys over here!
As a mother to a 4 year old with long hair, my eyes have been opened. I originally let his hair grow because it evens out the shape of his head and its just nice silky soft hair. Then it became part of his identity and he likes it. He is getting big enough to think its funny when they call him a girl. I often tell him its because he’s so handsome. But they also call him a girl when he is skiing with his hair completely covered by helmet and goggles, dressed in very boy clothes but skiing on pink skis handed down from his sister. Its hard to comprehend that our society identifies gender by the length of the hair and the color of the skis. Thanks for this awesome website and for all who shared their stories. There is strength in knowing we are not the only ones.
Lulu! Reading your comment makes it all worth it.
We hope you will considering joining us for The Great Cut on March 9, 2019.
We are glad to have you and your son here in our community! Please stay connected.
This is an awesome site! I have a 5 year old boy who has wanted long hair for about a year. I was hesitant because of the teasing – he’s very sensitive. I’d hate to see his feelings hurt. But it seems to not be a phase… he REALLY wants long hair (like Rapunzel, he says).
So I was honest with him, told him some people believe only girls should have long hair, people may call you a girl, etc, and he still wants to go forward with it. I had decided to let him do that, but was looking online for some ideas on how to grow out boys hair while keeping it looking ok in the process.
Your post here has given me the confidence to cheer him on in during the process. It’s given me a lot of confidence, whereas before I was more apprehensive. Thank you for giving me to information to be the best mom I can be for my son! I’ll show Holden your video.
So… is there a website for short-haired girls? My three year old daughter want to “cut it all off because it gets in my eyes”. But I love to do the pig tails, braids, barrettes, etc. Sigh.
So glad you found us here! We have a few more posts for Little Guys With Long Hair.
I haven’t heard of a website for gals with short hair, but we should partner up!
Thanks for writing in, hope your guy gets his locks flowing.
I’m 16 and my parents forced a haircut onto me. I had gotten it past my collarbone and they made me cut it all right off with a lot of yelling, insulting, and harassment from them. They tell me how they’re doing what’s right for me and that I’m ugly. Apparently everyone else I’m ugly as well but they just don’t say it according to my parents. I’m an indian male by the way. They’re embarrassed about going out anywhere with me because I’ve been mistaken for a girl a few times. I’m also very short for my age due to a chronic illness I have but that’s besides the point. My hair isn’t all just about style. It was a confidence boost and it helped me set aside as an individual. Being that I have very low self esteem, with that haircut, my confidence is all gone. That was literally the one single thing about myself that I had pride in and now I pretty much hate everything about myself. I know it’s just hair and I might seem to be overreacting, but for me, this is a huge hit and being the Long Hair community, I’m sure you could understand that. I can’t wait till I’m 18 and I can make my own decisions. Well, hopefully that’ll be the case because Indian parents tend to be extremely controlling throughout your whole life.
Anways, thank you.
Love you guys.
Thanks for sharing with us Eshan. We got your back man. Do everything to respect and appreciate your parents, while also doing the things that will help you to succeed and excel in life. With success comes greater freedom and responsibility to make your own decisions. We are glad to have you here and you always have support from The Longhairs. Stay in touch man!
Thank you for this site…I’ve been searching the web on the topic of boys with long hair and came across your site. My five year old son is dealing with bullies over his beautiful long blonde hair. It’s nice to have a community to lean on and help us deal with these bullies.
Glad you found us Jill! Give Jr. a high five and a hair whip from The Longhairs, for good measure.
Love this site! So helpful 🙂
So glad I ran into this blog post. My son Nathan who is now 16 has been wearing his hair long by his own choice for about 4 years now. He deals with every single issue mentioned on this blog like a champ, so kudos to him, although I know it is bothersome sometimes. I ended up seeking information and resources mostly because my very conservative mother takes stabs at his choice from every angle and I was at my breaking point. She lives out of state so at least we have some distance. I was visiting this weekend and she had asked me to bring for a current picture of Nathan; she even qualified that it would be ok if it was a picture of him with long hair and I was proud that she was taking a step toward acceptance. But once I gave her the photo, she just could not bring herself up to display it on the bookcase where she keeps the pictures of all her grand kids. She even asked if I knew how to Photoshop a haircut! Anyway, the outdated picture from 5 years ago (pre-long hair era) went back up and she discretely put the other photo out of sight. Her actions broke my heart. The “Jesus had long hair” argument worked for a while (she is after all, a devout catholic) but she just keeps at it!. Reading you blog gave me a boost of confidence to continue to stand for my son’s choice and to let her know the issue with the long hair is HERS and not ours. Thank you for taking the time to write about this issue. Nathan is a talented rock guitar player and his hair is his mojo! Long live the Longhairs!
I think a lot of people can relate to your story. Sometimes family can be the toughest, little remarks may start as a joke but quickly build into a point of tension. You nailed it about it being HER problem not yours. I’m happy you’ve realized that. Tell Nathan we say hello and to keep on rockin!
One of life’s greatest joys has been watching my boys evolve into the kind-hearted individuals they are. Though they share a love of hunting, fishing and the outdoors, each has his own unique passions, and each has his own unique look.
Monday evening, my 10 year old dried tears as I pulled his hair back into a knot before he ran into ballet class. It was a rough day. He was stressed over school (in which he does really well), kids questioning and pulling his (long) hair, and just feeling generally overwhelmed, different, and out-of-place. As he left class that evening and we walked to the car he said, “Mom, I love dance class. It calms me. I forget about the world. It’s like, good for my soul.” [I can see how he got the nickname, “Hippie”, which he really doesn’t mind.]
Today, as I observed him from the mezzanine above at his rehearsal for The Nutcracker I thought, ‘I need to find a better way to tie back his hair as my “up-do” may contribute to him being mistaken daily for a girl.’ So, I Googled ‘how to tie back long hair for boys’ and I found your site. Wow. My husband, sons and I have spent much of the remainder of the day reading your blog, watching tutorials to learn new hair styles, and laughing over daily challenges others also share like being referred to as a sister, daughter, or girl, and feeling sad over the bullying other young men have (and still do) endure.
Overall, Caden has been fortunate to be surrounded by accepting adults who nip bullying in the bud. That said, your website gave our son an air of self-confidence I haven’t seen in awhile. Thank you for that. I will do my best to increase awareness of the great things you are doing.
Rachel thanks for sharing your story and really glad our site brought the family together for some quality reading and entertainment. That is just SO AWESOME! Warms my heart. Truly appreciate the kind words and we’ll keep puttin’ out the positive messages. Please tell Caden we said hello and that we fully got his back, he’s going to be a rock star in his Nutcracker performance 🙂
So happy I found this site.It has given me so much info on my sons life with long hair.I learned a lot with dealing with the naysayers and how to react(a really big help).Thanks for being here 🙂
Awesome Patti! Thanks for stopping by.
I love your site! I have a 4-year-old who loves his long hair and will not cut it for anyone; it is who he is. I am using this article as a basis for a paper I am doing for school as it hits so close to home. Thank you for being there to support the little dudes!
Hi Laura, so glad you found us! Will be interested to hear how the paper comes out, please share. Give your little guy a high five from The Longhairs!
Just stumbled across your blog and am SO happy I did!
My son Eli stopped getting hair cuts almost two years ago.
His last one was so upsetting that his Dad & I sat down that night to discuss why’d we even done it.
We decided that his next cut would be on his terms.
He’s now 4 years old with hair down to his waist.
Like everyone in your post we get the questions. It makes me sad that people are so heavily committed to societal gender norms that they’d bully a child.
Until that changes we continue to support our son’s choice and show him pics of longhairs like Jason Momoa, Thor, and Dad’s friends (from surfer days).
Thank you for speaking up.
Hi Karla, what a fortunate stumble to have brought you here! Glad you and your family have found us, hope you find some other great content on the website and visit often.
Thanks for taking the time to write in. Please give Eli an epic high five from The Longhairs.
My four year old, Michael, would love some Free Hair Ties for Little Guys! Thank you for supporting this movement. There is nothing wrong with a male having long hair. Keep rocking it little men!
Thanks Tiffany! Sent you an email direct, give Michael a high five from The Longhairs.
We have two boys (9 and 7) who now both have long hair. The older is more sensitive to comments from others and while he tried growing it out once he always kept it short (though he like his cousins’ long hair). Our youngest we didn’t think would grow his out but one day he said that he did want to. It blew us away when (just after turning 6) he said he wanted to do it to donate to kids with cancer. Cancer runs through our family and while we don’t have any friends or family currently dealing with that, he had it in his heart to do it. Now 1.5 years later he’s below the shoulder and is going to go as long as he can.
Ever since growing it out he’s been mistaken to be a girl, especially on the soccer fields. Greatest moment ever was the first time and when we asked him what he’d say he said “I’m a boy, dude!” During all the time of mistaken “she” or “are you really a boy?” comments, he’s stood strong through it all. So strong that it had an impact on his older brother who said he’d be too embarrassed to. Just getting through the awkward stages, he too is on the road to growing for donating and is looking forward to being able to fully pull his hair back into a man bun, haha (it’s darn close).
Thanks for this post; I never really thought much about it before as hair has always just been hair for me (oh what I’ve done). But it’s sad that kids have to deal with negativity from friends, family, and strangers (all of which our kids have endured too). Thanks for standing up for the little guys!
Great to read your story here, Justin, thanks for sharing. Hope y’all will consider joining us as we set out to break the world record for the largest hair cutting for donation in history. More info to come, but you can find preliminary info on The Great Cut here. Also, sent you an email for a free pack of hair ties. Give our best to your two guys, we got their backs!
I have a 11 year old son who has long hair. He loves his long hair. He went to catholic school and was allowed to wear his hair long without any issues. I would keep it in a pony tail or sometimes he would wear it out. He was known for his long hair. He is now in middle school at a different catholic school where they want him to “trim” his hair. That will happen over my dead body. I told the dean of discipline that is NOT AN OPTION, I’m prepare to fight for my son’s rights. I told the dean that Jesus Christ had long hair and was not told to cut it. His hair is clean, neat and in a pony tail that touches his collar. My son knows have to respond to people that call him a girl; he knows mom has his back and will not back down. I
We have his back too! Sent you an email for the hair ties. There are other moms and boys going through the same situation. You can read more over here. Thanks for reading and wishing you a positive outcome, please do keep us posted.
My son asked to grow his hair long shortly after turning 4. He’ll be 5 in a few months and he is now being mistaken for a girl. I agree that the most rude comments come from adults! They are actually angry over it which I will never understand. I love my son’s beautiful curls, short or long. I just want him to be himself. This article was encouraging. Thank you.
Glad you liked the article Jennifer! Sent you an email for the hair ties. Thank you for reading!
I am 38 years old. I’ve had many hairstyles through my life. Bowl cuts, mullets, shaved head, mohawks, spike hair, sideparts, pompadours, slick backs and now finally long 80s metal hair that’s I’ve always dreamed of. Now, my own son who is 3 years old has hair passed his shoulders. Been growing his hair since he was 1 years old. He is part Native American and filipino. As long hair is part of his culture. I couldn’t imagine having to have him cut his hair. He won’t even get a trim. Kids should be able to grow their hair any way they want without any restrictions. To be kids- wild and free seeking out their own adventures being carefree. Let them be free to be kids as we all once were.
Yo Lino! Thanks for writing in, we got your back!
My awesome almost 4 year old nephew has the most gorgeous long curls and people (including our own family members) are always asking his mom “When are you going to cut it??” She likes it and most importantly he likes it.. so the answer is when and if he wants to! Thanks for what you are doing!!
You’re welcome and thanks for writing in!
This is the article I needed to read. I was just looking up what to say to people who comment on my sons hair. He asked to grow it almost a year ago and I just said sure. Now I’m constantly getting complaints from all the older men in our family. He’s so happy with his hair. And plans to donate it when he’s ready to cut it, in honour of his uncle who died this year. Your article gave us lots of things that we can say to people and how to arm our Jensen with the best tools on what to say.
So glad to hear this Natasha! Hope you and Jensen will consider joining us for The Great Cut. Give him a big high five from The Longhairs!
My 5 year old has been growing his hair out for about a year now, so he’s in the awkward phase. Not that he knows it’s awkward…it’s just his hair :). He regularly gets people (including other kids) assuming he’s a girl, but so far it doesn’t bother him, he just corrects them. It’s weird how hair seems to be the gender marker that trumps all other gender markers. He can be wearing full-on traditional boy-signifying stuff (black sneakers, camo shorts, t-shirt with trucks on it) and yet it’s the hair that people use to decide. He hasn’t been bullied yet – when another kid assumes he’s a girl and he corrects them, so far the other kid just says “oh” and they carry on playing. Not sure what will happen once he starts public school this fall, however. Anyway, thanks for your page and this post!
Hi Cheryl, thanks for writing in and sharing! Glad to hear about your experiences here, please stay in touch. Also sent you an email for the free hair ties. Best of luck going into school this fall.
Wow! Thank you. I’m so tired of my son being shamed for having long hair. I’m tired of the snide comments. I’m tired of him being called “she” when he’s clearly dressed as a boy. I’m tired of him questioning himself because he feels like he needs approval from others.
This is AWESOME! I’m the proud mom of a newly-minted 6th-grader, who came home on day 2 of school asking to get a haircut because he got teased in science lab for his long hair. My heart aches for that tough position, and (once I talked him off the ledge) we loved watching your ads and reading this post. Thank you for validating the youngsters out there who are wiser than their years and happen to think long hair is cool!
Hey guys my son is 4 years old his hair right now is almost 10 inches long his daddy has a man mane at almost 34 inches! I (daddy) have been growing my hair with my son for the last 4 years since his birth I have no intention on cutting it and neither does he, my wife has been a huge supporter and we are a proud long hair family! Cheers to your outreach on the Texas children and standing up for what is right!
This is great! A whole family letting it ride!
Thank you for this article. My 8 yo son has never had a real haircut, only trims to get rid of dead ends. His hair is past his waist now. His hair is actually longer than myself & both of his older sisters.
Originally it was my choice to not cut his hair, it was just so blonde & wavy & he looked like a mini surfer. When he was 3 his hair was past his shoulders & everyone (including my mother, even though my dad has long hair) encouraged me to cut it so he would “look like a boy”. I talked to him about cutting it & he cried & hid, so i didn’t push it & let him keep growing it.
Everywhere we went people said “what a beautiful little girl”, it was annoying, but I just smiled & said no, he’s a boy. Mostly the adults would apologize, but some just kept calling him she/ her, those are the people who are the most irritating.
When he was 5 & went to kindergarten was when the real bullying started from kids. From 3-5 he was in prek and the kids all asked “is that a boy or girl” were told once that he’s a boy & moved on to being friends, but apparently kindergarten is different. The kids (mostly the boys) were ruthless, always calling him a girl. Unfortunately that school wasn’t very good dealing with bullies & suggested I cut his hair to stop the torment, um no!
For 1st grade he was in a new school. He was again bullied by the boys, but this schools teachers/ admin didn’t allow it to continue & in fact encouraged him to keep his individuality and let him know it was ok for him to stick up for himself. 2 months into first grade he tested out and they moved him to second grade! The kids in that grade were pretty accepting of his hair on a boy.
3rd grade he had more problems with girls bullying him over his hair, which was very strange, but he handled himself well.
He turned 8 In July. He still has no intention of cutting his hair. He loves baking, video games, space science, coding & animals. Adults don’t think he’s a girl as often, even though his hair is constantly pulled back & braided. My mother still sometimes makes comments to him like “when are you going to let me cut your hair?” He just looks at her and says “never mommom” rolls his eyes and walks away.
We went to teacher meet n greet the other day & walked in & his new teacher said “you must be Harrison”. He wanted to know how she knew him. She told him they told her mini einstein would be in her class this year. That made him happy!
It’s been a long hair road so far & I don’t doubt he’ll still have problems, but at least he’s sure of himself & knows he has people on his side who accept him for him, no matter the length of his hair!
I’m proud of you, Harrison. I think you’ll have a bright future. Never cut your epic braid, and keep letting it ride with pride.
This was an amazing post. My 4 year old has hair past his shoulders and would love to have some of the free hair ties. I will read him some of this post as well, I’m not sure he’s ever met another boy with long hair. Thank you for the post!!!
My son and I are both currently in the awkward phase (sumo top-not territory).
The bad part is that my 5 year old daughter already somehow (maybe TV) has the notion in her head that boys can’t have long hair. There are subtle cultural reinforcements to the “boys have to have short hair” narrative everywhere in our society.
I am very grateful to have stumbled upon this blog! I have a 2.5 year old boy with long hair. I have no intention of getting him a haircut until he tells me that he wants one. But kids and adults (family included) who are anti long hair on boys are without question relentless. I’ve been overly polite and I’ve not even corrected most strangers when my son is mistaken for a girl. But I know the longer he has long hair the worse it’s going to get…it’s a comfort to find a community of people with sons who have long hair. We should create and host a convention for boys with long hair, if that isn’t already a thing!
It’s not already a thing, but it should be!
Glad to have you here Aimee, please make sure to get your free pack of hair ties for Junior.
I have a 4 year old who’s growing out his hair and he’s in the awkward stage from an undercut (he can put it in a top knot/high ball) . I have long hair past my shoulders. I love that he continues to want to grow it out. We do get occasions where people think he’s a girl but he doesn’t care or notices those and we support him in his journey. He’ll be starting preschool next month and hope he doesn’t experience any bulling from other kids. He’s really social and we haven’t see kids comment on his hair being long, it’s mostly adults which is odd. Great post and great content! I’m letting my 1 year old son to grow out his hair too like his dad and older brother. Moms very supportive since she’s a hair stylist.
Pass it on!
Hey guys, thanks for all you do. Both our boys (2 and 3) have long hair and they love it. We’ve got their backs, and it’s so nice to know that you do, too. We’d love some hair ties if you still have some, but also want to share these clips and headbands for other parents looking for gender-neutral or “boyish” hair management options for toddlers/kids: http://etsy.me/2xz1EO8 and http://etsy.me/2xz7P4W.
There’s so much to say on the topic of boys with long hair, but I want to share an unexpected benefit of the experience that I really enjoy: Helping our kids (learn to) maintain their hair gives their dad and me an extra opportunity every day to be in contact and gentle with them. Washing, brushing, braiding…it’s an important chance to touch and show them affection and care (even when they’re complaining!) that we’d otherwise miss out on.
Awesome what you are doing. Interested in the little guy hair ties.
Thanks Valerie, we sent you an email for the hair ties. Thanks for reading and writing in!
at that adress a relation of what kind of freedom there is in Texas: http://www.insideedition.com/headlines/25098-school-blocks-4-year-old-boy-with-long-hair-from-attending-its-outrageous-and-outdated
at 4 years, it’ s scandalous !!!
must the family converse to sikh religion or to the House of David for their son be respected?
don’t tell us more of liberty !!!you’re unable to establish it in your own country !!!
in other time, did the american people take the guns for less !!!
My son is 11 and has had long hair most of his life. He has recently been talking about cutting it off before starting middle school. He said he is tired of being bullied & told he looks like a girl. I stumbled upon your website and read him the letter above. He was really stoked to know that other boys (and men) are empowered by their long hair and said that he felt better about not cutting it now. Glad to see you have a some articles about what our younger guys deal with having long hair… it’s important that they know, long hair does not determine their gender. Bravo! Hope you will continue to expand on this, as well as offer younger boy products like hats or t shirts! Cheers to you!
Hello Jeni! So glad you found this. Pretty much gave it all we got on this one. Give your guy a hair whip and a high five from The Longhairs!
Oh and we do have hats and t-shirts! We have the tank tops in women’s too if you want to rep The Longhairs.
Thanks for writing in!
Hey, I am the father of two boys 10 and 14. They are quite different as the older one is a swimmer and has super short hair. About a year ago my youngest, Elio decided he wanted to grow out his hair long enough to pull back. It has been a long struggle with other people wanting him to cut it, and he is just into the awkward length of it in his face but not quite long enough to pull back. I heard about your site from Side Hustle School and came looking for boys hair bands and content for him to read and connect with.
Thanks for providing this needed resource!
Glad to have you here Nathan, thanks for commenting. Tell Elio The Longhairs are hair whippin for him!
Hey guys, I would love a free band for my 10 year old. How do I get one?
We’ll send you a direct email w/ instructions! Keep an eye out in the next day. Thanks for commenting!
This is one of the best blog pieces I’ve read in a long time – great job, guys!
I’m in the process of growing my own hair out – almost 10″ now! My shoulders are getting itchy in anticipation. Since starting this journey and dealing with tons of criticism from guys at work and family, I applaud any man/boy of any age who decides to let it ride. Even before reading this, if I saw a boy with long hair, I would make it a point to compliment them – “awesome hair, little man!” Or something similar and not creepy.
It’s interesting how the gender stereotypes are so ingrained in kids. My oldest daughter (5) tells me I look like a girl. My wife and I have never tried to teach her that boys have short hair and girls have long. She recently wanted to get a shorter cut so my wife took her to get it cut and now her hair is shorter than mine. It was a perfect teaching experience about how she can have short or long hair and so can a boy.
Anyway, thanks again guys for great content like always.
To any man or boy growing it out – do it! Don’t listen to other people’s nonsense.
Can’t wait until a few more inches so I can try out the awesome hair ties you guys came up with!
Matt, thank you man! Appreciate the kind words and telling us about your experience. Punch it into the endzone man!
This was a very powerful article.
As a child I remember always wanting to grow my hair out and not really ever getting the chance to – not that my parents would have disallowed it (they wouldn’t have cared one way or another) – but the social stigma attached to having long hair as a boy. All the ridicule & getting made fun of is something that I think a lot of guys are able to just brush off and ignore but as a relatively self-conscious person fairly low on the school popularity scale I couldn’t bear the thought of attracting any more malice than I already received. I carried that mentality all the way through my first two years of college after which I ended up joining the military (in which long hair is absolutely not an option).
What surprised me when I transitioned out of the military six years later was the vehemence towards men with long hair even in adulthood – I had initially decided to grow my hair out one year ago today in order to get it long enough to donate. As a thought experiment I chose instead to grow it out long enough to donate with the caveat that I would extend the amount of time I would continue growing it by six months each time someone told me to cut my hair; people who asked questions about why I was growing it or why it’s so long don’t count, and neither do people simply suggesting I cut it. Only serious, weighted, scornful, or otherwise negative reactions from strangers count.
So far in 365 days, that mental tally is now at six years, meaning that almost once per month someone had specifically obtained my attention to share their displeasure in seeing a man with long hair. In addition to the points you mention in the article, I think this also speaks quite heavily to the general undertones in society; imagine the good we could do as a society if we collectively spent even 10% of the energy that some people choose to expend towards ridiculing people’s hair styles, clothing choices, which brand of mobile phone they prefer and instead channeled it toward education, infrastructure, or even just flat being kind to one another.
Wow man! Thanks for your well-thought and articulated comment. Six years worth of negative remarks, almost hard to believe. Sounds like you’ll be with us for a while! Lol. Thanks again, appreciate you sharing.
A couple of years back, I dragged my son to the barbers, as my friends and family kept telling me he looked like a girl / Justin Beiber and he needed short back and sides.
Walking home, he hadn’t said a word. I eventually coaxed out of him, “but mummy why did you make me cut my hair.”
My heart broke, and I promised that unless HE wanted to, I wouldn’t force another haircut on him.
He managed to pass the awkward mullet stage at about age 10, and since then for the last two years has been called a girl at least once a day.
Proud to say, he stuck with his guns. He’s just finished his first year of big school without feeling pressured into cutting it all off; though we did agree to get him a little undercut to make the knots easier to manage!
Adults definitely are THE WORST. An older female neighbour of mine, babysitting her granddaughter, just passed us in the street and said hi, she then turned to the girl and went “guess whether this is a girl and a boy or two girls” … who even does that?! Just because you tell us we’re beautiful after doesn’t make it ok. She will be getting a mouthful next time I see her without the kid.
Honestly. I don’t think I would have been able to take the pressure my boy does on a daily basis. I’d never realised how much we associated gender with hair length!
Anyway. This site is completely awesome, long hair boys you rock! Xx
Great to hear from you Crissie and thanks for sharing. Yea it does seem that the adults are the nastiest thinking it’s funny. I don’t blame you for rippin her next time you see her. Tell your little man we got his back!
Thank you for taking the time to write and sharing this information.
I am my brother’s guardian and both of us have long hair. We very often both get harassed by family members about cutting our hair and I catch a lot of heat for not taking him in to cut it. While we often hear the “its not in the family,” or “why do you want long hair anyways?” from family members, we have gotten the occasional, more problematic statement. An uncle said to me, “if he stayed with me, it would be the first thing that would happen for him to stay.” This blew my mind. Instead of needing to take care of a child and look after them after they no longer are in the custody of their own parents, the only way this child can be shown human decency, love, and a place to call home is if he cut his hair? I didn’t fight my uncle on this much, but simply stated that “its a good thing he doesn’t live with you then.”
My brother is just finishing up elementary school. I know next year middle school is going to be a whole new experience with new kids. However, its also going to introduce a whole lot more opportunities for people to pick on him and tease him. I have always stood to be a role model for him in his life, however, being a kid is hard. I don’t know how I would handle the situation if I was my brother’s age. I can at least encourage him to stay strong, keep his head high, and to not worry about the bullies who tease about his hair. This article was very helpful to read through and hear from other parents who are dealing with external forces trying to influence their parenting/little guy’s choices. Being relatively new to this whole guardian thing, this will help be a cornerstone for when that inevitable push-back from society comes. Its unfortunate our society has created such a stigma around long hair on guys. Its unfortunate that men of all ages have to deal with comments from random members and society. And its incredibly problematic and heartbreaking when that happens to young children who just want to live freely and enjoy themselves. I want my brother to stand strong and I want him to know that I am standing right beside him.
To the parents and community here, thank you for sharing your stories and for supporting one another.
Mom to Z,
That reminds me of last season when my son played soccer, during one game the ref kept calling him “she/her” and he said “I’m a boy!” And even the coach correct her once. But I was thinking, really?? He’s on an all boys team.
It’s just silly how in even those situations where it is only common sense that they are long haired boys, people still will call them girls. Just shows that some cannot look beyond the hair.
But him tapping on his cup is hilarious, I love
when they handle things like that on their own. It’s always the best. ?
as i shared the testimony of mrs Fortin about his longhair boy in Quebec, mrs Klav, mother of a 4 years longhair son replies
i’ve seen the article about the longhair boy
about my son, i always ( really always) hear; “what a nice girl”, ” how is she pretty”
nobody criticize me; they confuse him as a girl simply; but he is dressed as a boy: jeans, boots, shirt, polo. forever, if even there’s no sexual dimorphism at his age, you can identify him as a boy
about boys forced cuts, the son of one of my cousines, 10 years wore his hair at waist lenght as he wanted it until last year for the crticizes of the other children were oppressive, and for the mother those from other parents
finally, the son asked to cut his hair very short
and the result was everybody ( those who criticized him) says to the mother ” whyd did you cut his hair? he was so nice with his lenght, and that was more convenient”
for my part, nothing or nobody will force me to cut my son’s hair for y fuck the criticism; i did’nt send him in any school, and he learned 3 foreign languages, he does count and becomes reading, but that’s another debate…
seeing as my son goes away when he sees any scissors, i believe he will be a longhair for a long time more !!!
french language comment available at that adress: http://chamanedaniel.canalblog.com/archives/2017/05/14/35285173.html#c72244394
the testimony of mrs Fortin ( french language) at that adress: http://www.marginaleetheureuse.com/2017/03/27/garcon-aux-cheveux-longs/
to Mommy of Samson: the paper you cite shows that in many schools, children of colour are tolerated when only they disguises themselves as white people…. colour discrimination is not dead in all the usa !!!
It is refreshing to see a site that supports boys going against the norm because they like their hair on the longer side.. our 10 yr old son has been called sweetie, cutie etc and complemented on “how pretty her hair is” .. Even at a TKD tournament while lining up for Sparing with his Cup on the outside of his uniform and fully visible he was asked by not one, but two lead instructors if he was a girl because of his longer hair.showing under the helmet. he politely, tapped the cup so you could hear it and stated he was a boy and in the correct arena.. They laughed it off and stated they had to be sure, but he was visibly flustered.. later he asked me “Mom, why did they ask me if i was a girl since only boys wear a Cup?”
Thanks for supporting the little guys! It is such an important issue and no matter their gender, race or age all people should be allowed to make up their own minds on how they want to wear their hair and not get bullied or harassed over their decision! I have faced adversity from my friends and people I do not know on my long hair but I have also gotten compliments on my hair, especially from women who are jealous of my beautiful, curly locks. I can’t even begin to imagine how hard it is for a little boy to get called out, bullied and harassed by kids and adults alike on their long hair and I truly wish people would stop doing that. Thanks for doing this guys and I do hope you get as much publicity for this as possible!
Longhair from Finland – Viking at heart
Hopefully I’m not too late to the party commenting here. I discovered The Longhairs a couple years ago when I had recently finished with the awkward stage, but man do I wish this site existed when I was a kid. I always hated getting hair cuts and started wearing it longer during middle school. While I wouldn’t say I was ever really bullied for it, my friends and family sure did give me plenty of crap about it. Saying I looked stupid or like a girl, always asking when I was going to cut it, the usual remarks I’m sure most guys here have heard countless times. I would always be forced to cut it before it got too long which unfortunately left me in perpetual awkward stage during high school. Finally, in college, I was able to say screw it and start really growing my hair and have it the way I want it.
The community that has been built here along with the fine works of El Rubio and El Moreno such as this article have done wonders for me feeling confident and proud about my long hair. I know if this existed back when I was a kid I would have had such an easier time standing up for myself. I really hope kids today get to see this and learn that it’s ok for guys to have long hair. It’s more than ok, it’s cool! As long as you’re responsible about it, your long hair doesn’t make you dirty, stupid, or unprofessional. You guys are very right that these long perpetuated gender stereotypes can make choices like this very challenging, but I’m sure we are moving in the right direction.
Apparently it isn’t just the boys getting discriminated against for their hair.
This is getting ridiculous…
Thank you for supporting the little guys! So much of this rings true to our son’s experience. Other kids can certainly be unkind but more often they are confused, curious, or even trying to be helpful. It is the handful of adults who feel compelled to be mean to a child they have no need to interact with in any way that most astound me. I always tell my son there are many ways to be a man and boys should have all those choices of how to express themselves as well. Thank you for your message of acceptance, it means a lot!
a longhair boy in year 1892: https://images.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fi.imgur.com%2FVNfxGiI.png&f=1
the same a few years later: https://images.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fp7.storage.canalblog.com%2F72%2F52%2F363481%2F88144960_o.jpg&f=1
he became the general de Gaulle, president of the French republic and world war II french leader
the evidence that a longhair boy will no necessary finish as transgender or gay; he will evolve as anyone…
I like the video of Bodi, it makes a big difference the way your parents act. And Isaac is a good father. I don’t know what was the matter with my own parents: no feeling, as if it was turned off, perhaps because of Worldwar II.
The header means something like you should kick this barber!
I’ll hope it comfort Dillon Grim http://bit.ly/2pCzFsA
This week a Christian brother told me the following out of the Bible: 1Co 11:14 Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? I told him that he don’t know the gospel, that is that Christ died for all mankind to fulfill the law. I didn’t say more because he won’t accept it, but hair means power in the Scripture, look at Simson. Much hair on your head means that you’re very intelligent, if you get much hair in your armpits it means that you have strong shoulders, hair on your face means you’re a good speaker.
For the Mommy of Samson: Long, long time ago men used to wear a dress and women in trousers.
About the following: “The next step is to demonstrate a high level of personal responsibility. That could mean getting good grades, doing your chores, always being on time for things, making it home before curfew, helping with responsibilities around the house, holding down a job, submitting your college applications, keeping your room clean and hundreds of other things.” That sounds like blackmail! 😉
Kids with cancer, that isn’t necessary, because there are plenty of natural medicins to cure cancer, for example olive oil or curcumin, but if you rather belief in your doctor whois part of Big Pharma, than your kid will die after all.
If you have long hair or you squint, are small or tall, or whatever that it seems like you are different, most of them are just jealous on you. And if they aren’t than it has to do with the pecking order, whois the boss and than I allways says: A good boss is a dead boss and I know Who have taste dead and ressurect on the thirth day! 😉
This longhair come from The Netherlands.
Great article. Certain people may have failed to understand, but boys with well maintained long hair are displaying responsibility, freedom of expression, and taking good care of themselves. It’s often a long term commitment filled with lots of hurdles to handle. And it also helps those boys to relate to the challenges of long hair that many females face.
The long-haired young man in the snappy suit in the picture above kicks ass. To all the long-haired men of all ages: Keep it flowing, dudes!
An extraordinary compilation of stories regarding the injustices imposed upon boys with long hair. Beyond painful to watch the persecution of young Dillon Grims. I’m not one to casually use expletives, but that barber is a f*cking d*ck. He shouldn’t be allowed to hold a license in whatever state he currently practices. The constant verbal abuse that he dispenses throughout the haircut shows a complete disregard for Dillon’s feelings and, just as importantly, a total lack of professionalism. I don’t know which is worse: The parents (using this term very loosely) ridiculing this boy and ignoring his requests to retain his locks; or the barber’s complicity in berating him. How can these people hear someone say that he is going to take his own life and respond with derisive sarcasm? Beyond comprehension!
I know you guys are trying to get a spot on Ellen, but have you considered putting together something for a TED Talk? No doubt, the gentlemen at Longhairs would rock that stage!
Keep on doin’ what ya been doin’!
Fuck that barbershop video was hard to watch….
I used to have long shaggy reddish brown hair or layered. Other boys kept telling me to wash my greasy hair and cut it I would rather get punched in stomach than wash and cut hair
found that scandalous video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xZ3mNycFX0
it happened in a suburb of Brussels; a gang decided to apply their own law and shave the longhairs
i ask to Youtube to suppress that content ( all the comments say they are ” bastards”)as it shows a physical agression
and to the king’s prosecutor to send those gangstas to the court !!!
in belgium, we sing in the national anthem: le roi, la loi, la liberté ( king, law, freedom) and i cannot accept that a gang impose his rules to others !!!
seeing it, i feel the shame to be belgian …
I am not a parent, and I do not have biological children of my own. I do though have young boys that I mentor, and as a Longhair and educator I have a lot to teach about being unique, loving the skin you are in, and making a global difference. Some of the boys I work with have fathers that live at home, other fathers are incarcerated, homeless and w/o custody, in recovery, or never knew their children. I am a male, Longhair, role model and love Little Longhairs unconditionally allowing them to be special in their own way knowing they will one day be grown men continuing to make a difference.
BOYS!!!! Awesome!!! I apologize in advance because you’ve hit my soapbox. I’m a middle school teacher, so I get a front row seat to this kind of stuff when it happens, and I hate it. Since becoming a longhair (two and a half years-ish ago) it’s amazed me that MY hair is such a big deal for other people. And it’s crazy to me what kind of stuff people feel like they need to say. My favorite is when they ask me “How long is your wife going to let you keep that hair?” Or, when we were getting married, they said to her “Of course you’re going to make him cut it before the wedding, right?” But, I’m an adult, and I can deal with hearing that stuff. Plus, my wife and I just get to laugh about it later.
But, I hate the fact that kids have to deal with it. I’ve got a couple of longhairs among my students, and I hope seeing me–as a college graduate, and teacher, and professional–ALL my students realize that the stereotypes are wrong. And I hope it gives my longhairs the confidence to let it ride, enjoy it, and know that other people’s opinions don’t define them.
But I think you’re right. Since the stereotypes of longhairs exist, we have to do an even better job and work even harder than most to show people what they’re missing when they look us over. Often, people are surprised to find out I’m a teacher. It’s like they’re surprised to find out I’m doing something with my life, you know, because longhaired guys are….blah, blah, blah (insert stereotypes here). They’ve even suggested I cut my hair to “set a better example for those kids.”
Parents of little longhairs: GOOD ON YOU!! Thank you for supporting your kid! Your kids teachers are witnesses to some awful ways that parents tear their kids down. We do the best we can to build them back up, but there’s nothing better for a kid than a supporting, loving parent–especially in the face of criticism from others. Kids get so few choices as it is, thanks for letting them have this one.
Little longhairs: I wish I’d had the confidence to grow it out as a kid. The fact that you’re doing it shows you’ve already got things figured out a whole lot better than most kids your age. That self-confidence will help you SO much. This world needs people who know who they are and what they’re doing, and who aren’t afraid to say what they think (especially when it’s unpopular). The rest of us understand the crap you get put through, we love ya’ and can’t wait to see the awesome things you grow up and do!
El Rubio, there’s real power in this community you guys have created, and this post is an example of harnessing that power for one of the best reasons anyone could think of. Thanks for writing it!
I disagree with so much said here and parents who act blissfully ignorant. It’s all about how your boy wears the hair and how u dress him. Gender norms are a good thing! Long hair doesn’t have to be one of them though. Stop trying to be rebellious at your child’s expense. Make sure the hair isnt styled in a feminine way like some pictured here. And when your child is ready for a haircut respect that!
Can’t say I agree with everything you’ve said Lucy but appreciate your comment.
Advocate – Educate – Celebrate … like a BOSS!
Gentlemen thanks for making a difference in so many lives; I’m extremely proud to be a member of this community.
Thomas … aka ‘The Gray Ghost’
Thanks Thomas. Don’t hear from you often but sounds like you’ve been following for a while. Good to hear from you, amigo.
Right on BOYS!!!!! I am a long haired elementary teacher who pushes and shows all students how it is ok to express yourself. No matter what society tells us is the norms!! Long hair for life! Let the locks flow!
EPIC!!! Beyond epic in fact.
Thank you soooo much and then some more for putting this out there in such a clear, loving, and triumphant way. I never even questioned whether my two boys (shown above) “should” grow their hair out. Of course they can grow their hair out … because they WANT to. Done. End of story. Now for the tangles, conditioner, and trims info we needed, we learned that right here with the Long Hairs so we’re all set.
I love this article more than most anything else, but definitely not more than my two rock star boys.
Huge love and appreciation to this community,
What a great read! I’m so glad you guys are taking a lead on this by showing such support for these boys.
Who would have ever thought that something so trivial as HAIR could rile someone up to the point of perpetrating an act of physical aggression against another person? It’s beyond ridiculous. I know people like to gloss over and say how much we’ve grown as a species, but… “we” still get caught up on trivialities to the point of hurting another person? We’re far from where we think we are, and even further from where we need to be.
Kudos to these boys for being unapologetic in wanting long hair, to their caregivers who unapologetically support them, and to all of the strangers out there who got their backs. <3
Thank you Chamane! ❤️
I may have to hold you to that one day.
i’ve answered to Samson that i ‘ll wear my sword to defend him against the oppression
the oppression of authorities which are scarred or his gender future; as when he is 7, he does identify himself as a boy, there is no matter of fear ; he uses his freedom, and that’s his fundamental right since year 1776 ( independance proclamation)
when a boy chooses to be a longhair, thats must be seen as his happiness pursuit right !!!
if he were bullied for a supposed faith or political choice, everybody should protest !!! why not for hair freedom?
for those who want cut men’s or boy’s hair, i ask ” what is for you liberty?”
and to the bigots, i say i don’t admit the satirical picture ” the future under a democrat administration” and showing a hard muslim wife and a drag queen in the metropolitan; it’ s for me scandalous and it’s so scandalous judging anyone on his hair lenght ( thre are the same people who publish that kind of pictures and want cut men’s hair)
and i ask: ” what kind of freedom is there in the free America?”
Gilbert la Mothe deLa Fayette should be very disappointed seeing that !!!!( i’m a belgian who live in France)
You guys are absolutely amazing. Not going to lie that I got teary eyed when I saw the post. This is exactly what we have been needing for his whole life. Support. Men that understand what he experiences on a daily basis. An actual group that doesn’t assume a person is female because they have long hair. It may seem dramatic to say, but up until now I have felt alone on this journey, no one to relate to, no one who truly understands the trouble of your innocent child not understanding why people just won’t accept him for who he is. I understanf that a lot of the comments have been honest mistakes, but the majority are from ignorant, closed minded fools, and that is really what gets my blood boiling.
He has been called a pretty/beautiful girl, princess, lady. He has been given girl prizes or pink stickers when we’ve checked out at the grocery store. We have heard snide comments like, “So long hair, huh?” I have even been asked, “are you trying to make him gay?” A few months ago a woman very passive aggressively commented to someone in front of me ABOUT my son,” Come on, you have to cut a boy’s hair eventually.”
(Um…. actually, no. No you do not.)
I most commonly am asked by curious yet nosey people, “So…… what made you decide to grow his hair out?” And this is my answer:
” I actually haven’t decided to grow his hair out, allowing his hair to grow is the act of doing nothing, cutting his hair would be a decision.”
I hope this article will allow people to find it in themselves to care less what people choose to do with their own bodies, and teach the children the same. My son sees people on a regular basis that are “different” than him or I and I teach him of who they are and what they do. We have used his long hair as a learning experience, we now know (on a whole other level) how it feels to be criticized and judged, and it had given us a broad spectrum of compassion and empathy for others. I am grateful for every challenge having this little longhair brings, watching the way he has grown in accepting him self and standing up for what is right, he is my hero.
Since not all comments and reactions are negative, thought I’d share a positive one. The most recent and best compliment my son has received happened fairly recently. We were in a public restroom out of town, and a woman started talking to my son, and addressed him as a girl, he stopped her and said, “actually…… I’m a boy.” It obviously caught her by surprise, but she very lovingly looked at him from head to toe, and said,” You are your mom’s protector aren’t you? When I look at you I see a peaceful warrior.”
And that is exactly what he is.
Peaceful warrior indeed. Keep letting it ride!!