Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hair Care....

Hi Y'all! I came across this story on the other website where I like to waste away my time on Black Hair Media. I read this story and I thought that it was so sweet!!!

White Father Learned to do Daughter's Natural Hair

Interview from Black Girl with Long (Natural) Hair Blog

"Last week we were all captivated by the images in the Atlanta Journal Constitution of a white dad — Clifton Green — who learned to take care of his adopted Ethiopian daughter's hair. (Click this link for the AJC slideshow: http://projects.ajc.com/gallery/view/living/braids/) I was so amazed that I tracked Clifton down and asked if he would do a BGLH interview. He agreed! Clifton is a professor at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He has shared his personal photos of him and his daughter, Miriam. He did all the styles you see on his baby girl!"



Clifton: Let me first speak as a white adoptive parent of a black child. We know that love alone is not enough to raise our daughter. She will have experiences as a black person that we can't relate to as white parents, and we need to reach out to the black community to help us raise our daughter into a woman that is proud of her culture and heritage. We live in Atlanta, and we have black friends in our lives and go to a church that is roughly half black, but we didn't anticipate the support we've received from the online community. It's been really nice.

BGLH: First off, we thought it was cute that you were using a fork. I'm assuming it doubled as a comb?
Clifton
: I used to use a fork to make Miriam's parts. The rat tail comb I had at first wasn't very pointy and I was more happy with the fork. I thought it made nice, sharp parts. I have a better rat tail comb now and I've gotten used to it so I've done away with the fork.

BGLH: How often do you do your daughter's hair? And how long does it take?
Clifton
: On average we wash her hair every 10 days, but sometimes it's once a week or every two weeks depending on what we've done that week (like playing in the pool or the sand box). I often re-do the braids or twists during the week depending on how they're looking (smaller braids last longer) .

BGLH: Where/how did you learn how to take care of her hair? Why did you learn to take care of her hair?
Clifton
: We've always had black babysitters, and I loved it when Miriam's hair started getting long enough for our babysitter to braid or twist (Miriam came home at 1 year old with very little hair). Our babysitter moved away and our new sitter wasn't comfortable doing hair, and I missed how nice Miriam's hair looked. My wife and I started doing it but gradually over time it became my thing, at least partially because we also had a baby boy that my wife was breastfeeding. We learned from books like "It's All Good Hair," from other moms, and of course practice which I'm still doing. Our goal has always been to help her fit in among other black girls and to feel good about her hair. I'm not an expert, and we're always open to advice and suggestions :)

BGLH: Emotionally, how was the process of learning to take care of her hair? Was it ever frustrating or discouraged? Or was it a joy?
Clifton
: Learning about hair care and styles has been a joy. Sometimes the doing can be frustrating :) I would say the worst has been my attempt at cornrows. They look like they're two weeks old as soon as I do them, and when I spend an hour or longer on her hair I want it to look perfect. So I haven't tried them for awhile.

BGLH: If you could describe your daughters afro textured hair in three words, what would they be?
Clifton
: Curly, coily, bouncy.

BGLH: I'm assuming you've been around Caucasian hair all your life. This may be a kind of silly question, but what to you, is the most striking difference between the texture of your daughters hair, and the hair you were used to?
Clifton
: I would say perhaps the most striking difference is how dry her hair can get. In my experience, white people's hair tends to get oily between washings; with Miriam her hair dries out instead.

BGLH: Do you find anything uniquely beautiful about afro-textured hair?
Clifton
: My favorite is the way it looks with two strand twists. It seems uniquely black and beautiful to me.

BGLH: Do you think the care you take in nurturing your daughter's hair is having an effect on herself image? If so, in what way?
Clifton
: Miriam is 5. Right now I think we're laying the groundwork for when she's older and starts to think about her identity as a woman of color and what that means.

BGLH: And finally, I saw you have a young son. What does he think of his big sister's hair :)
Clifton
: Our non-adopted son is 4, and although we have discussions about skin color (they refer to it as brown skin and yellow skin), we haven't talked much hair specifically. Although he says it's beautiful sometimes, right now I would say he loves Miriam's hair mainly because he gets to watch TV when I fix it. He also likes for Miriam to fix his hair with her barrettes and hair balls, and he'll sit still to let her do that. Our 2 year old son also enjoys Miriam's hair stylings. We're on the wait list to adopt again from Ethiopia (another girl). So I'll have more chances to practice my skills, and hopefully the girls can appreciate each other’s hair and practice styling on each other as they grow up.

All I can stay is THANK YOU Clifton Green, thank you for not letting your adopted child run around with her hair looking like H.A.M. (hot ass mess). Caring for black hair can be tricky if you don't know where to start or what products to use. If you don't know ASK SOMEBODY!!!! We will help you!!!!

Zhara Jolie Pitt, po' chile......

Seriuosly??? Your telling me that Brad & Angie can't hire a stylist to come in a help them?? Find a chic from around the way and help this po' chile???? At least buy a book or something.
$11.21 on Amazon!!! Seriously..... Send your assistant to the beauty supply store or CVS for goddness sake and buy some hair balls, bows, barrettes and fix the child's hair!!!!

Just limit the use of hair balls and bows to no more than four per hairsyle.... It's a rule, if you don't believe me then please open your Black Folks Instruction Book!
Luv Ya!
Mean It!


P.S I can't wait to see Good Hair in October


15 ♥Say Something♥:

Nu Nu Dollie said...

I loved that story too. Fucking Angelina Jolie needs to get a fucking clue and fix her daughter's hair! AHHH! lol. :) Luckily I have you to help me with my childrens hair! yay

Rai said...

LMAO! I don't know why they don't comb her hair. =/

Great story though.

I can't wait to see Good Hair as well.

Jaimie said...

I freakin loved that mans story. One cuz he is white, Two cuz he is the dad! Most dads period dont take the time to take care of their daughters hair, I love that he took the time to learn how to do that.

I've been waiting for good hair to come out, lets go see it together. Will it be at movies or just dvd?

Tali said...

Angelina AND Heidi Klum.. who apparently hasnt ever even touched her son's hair! It drives me nuts! If he can learn to do it.. they can!

Sofee said...

wow...that is so amazing what a caring dad!!

Miss.Fab said...

That story was sooo beautiful :)
I loved it!

I BLEED PINK said...

I am so glad you posted this, what a great story. What awesome parents, to take the time to make their child feel beautiful!

Jessica G. said...

I love this post because Im half white so my mom is white but I have very "African American" textured hair and my mom learned as sooon as I was born! so shame on angelina she could at least give that poor child a relaxer!

supervillain said...

Missed you Soul Food Sista! This is such an awesome story. Dude what is up with the Jolie/Pitts. They need to get that poor girl used to getting her hair did. My sister had a black foster daughter for a while. She had a friend teach her how to fix her hair right away. She was so pretty, but my sister got pregnant and she Zari found a permanent home. She must be in 5th grade by now...

Well, I'm doing better. Thanks for the love. You know sometimes you just feel like the world is all fucked up. Yeah, I was having one of those weeks. lol.
Hope you're well and happy! xoxo

Lyn said...

wow! such a nice story! I'm amazed at this father!

BECKY (Embrace Your Imperfections) said...

this is such a wonderful story. im gonna show this post to my friends :)

im pretty sure angelina will get around to fixing her daughter's hair when she grows up a bit. i think her messy hair is cute :)

Yumeko said...

i love this story!!! thanks for sharing!

wuzzyangel said...

This was both an informative and touching story! Thanks for sharing it with us! I love how the father understands the need to impart his adopted daughter with her culture. And how their community has given their support.

LOL about Zahara's hair!

K said...

What a touching story!! OMG that trailer is HILARIOUS!! and I really want to see it since I don't know much about brown girls' hair!!! Too bad it probably won't be released in Japan...

I agree - Zahara's hair is a mess!!!!

Katie Ms. Cocktail Smarty said...

Haha I love this.... thats gonna be me tryna do my unborn daughters mixed hair... I'll just call you and Jamie and you can teach me! Lmao I hate when I see mixed children with their hair in puffs because their white mom doesn't know how to do their hair!! I REFUSE to let that be me! haha :) xoxo