Wednesday, August 09, 2006
Proof That Parents Fuck Their Kids Up In Unknowable Ways
I was a tomboy as a child. I am not sure what brought that on but I do know that it was the source of a lot of problems between my father and I.
He had pretty rigid ideas of what a little girl should be. He was indulgent enough, he bought my sister a football helmet for her birthday when she wanted one. But I think that was because she was girlish enough for him.
Arguments started over my clothes. I didn't like pink. I didn't like dresses. I remember crying tears of RAGE over being forced into frilly things. I wouldn't wear lace or ruffles. My mother had to start searching for an Easter dress for me right after Christmas. I remember my dad actually PAYING me to wear wool tights once. I just hated the feeling of skirts. You couldn't play properly, always having to make sure your underwear didn't show, and people just treated you differently. I liked jeans and sneakers and overalls.
Rather than letting it go my dad forced me to wear skirts and dresses not only for church but to school multiple times a week. No matter that the other girls, ones who were suitably feminine to my father, didn't do that. It was An Issue, and he couldn't let it go.
My hair was another issue. When I had my haircut I had to have it curled. I honestly cannot tell you why. I am not sure he could tell you why. Maybe because you could force a five year old. But I hated it. And I am not sure what it proved to anyone.
I don't know why my dad was so worried about my appearance. Was he worried that I was too boyish? Did he think I would become a lesbian? Did he think I would be ostracized by other kids? He never told me. I've thought of asking him now, but honestly my father is a totally different person now than he was twenty years ago. All I know is that he had an idea of what little girls should look like (namely, they should look like my sister) and he forced me into that mold.
It took me a long time to get over it. I don't think my dad was a bad father, of course not. I think he was trying to do what was best for me. I just can't figure out why the fuck it was so important. But it has made an impression on me. Even today I hate to wear skirts or dresses or pink in front of my parents (because I know they will fucking comment, BUT YOU HATE PINK--no one can change in their eyes) and I straighten my hair every day. It is pretty stupid when I type it out like that, but you know old habits die hard. And if my hair is curly than the terrorists win.
But above is a photo of my hair if I just let it dry (I am too photo shop stupid to blur out my face so see my clever way of dealing with it? Brilliant. Also, ignore the greasy roots it has been a long week). What do y'all think? Does it look dumb? I have no perspective on this issue. Of course whenever I ask for voting NO ONE COMMENTS but damn it. Am trying to get over childhood trauma here.