We truly dread the moment the bean’s hair starts to creep down towards his eyes. The fact that we let it get so long before we do anything about it should be an indication of how much we hate getting his hair cut. It’s a traumatic experience for everyone involved and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better.
We took him to get his hair cut for the first time shortly after he turned 11 months. We brought him to a place that specializes in hair cuts for children – special toddler chairs in the shape of airplanes, cars and trains all with TV screens in front of them. What’s not to love!?! But the bean wasn’t having any of it. At that age, you chalk up his screaming and crying to first time jitters. The lady who cut his hair didn’t try to appease him in any way, although she did call over help to try to distract him but it didn’t work. But gosh darnit, he looked super cute after that first haircut.
3 months later, he was overdue for a haircut. We opted to go to a different children’s place to get it cut, but it was no better. Crying, screaming, head jerking at really inappropriate times … ugh. I don’t remember much about the stylist’s interaction with the bean but that’s probably because I was too busy trying to hold his arms down while simultaneously holding his head still. In the end, it wasn’t great, which I attributed to the new place. It was super short on the sides and too long on top. And then a week or two, once it had started to grow out, you could tell it was uneven and choppy. I decided we weren’t coming back here, not only because of the bad haircut but also because they only take cash.
Another 2 months later, we took him back to the original place. At this point, not only was his hair over his eyes and ears, but he had developed a really crazy cowlick in the back of his head. Everyone said that he looked so cute with his crazy hair but I don’t think any kid at any age (or any adult for that matter) wants to be known as the one with the crazy hair. The same woman who cut his hair the first time cut it again. She had suggested to keep his hair long so that the cowlick eventually gets weighted down and stops sticking up. papaBeaner was not too happy with this decision (he wanted to buzz him) but since he didn’t speak up, I decided to side with the stylist. Out came the scissors and down fell the tears. It was quick though and she definitely rushed it. You can’t blame her – nobody likes having someone scream in their face for too long. But I’m not sure if she was done or if she had just given up. It wasn’t the most flattering hairstyle. The front was uneven — she was attempting to layer it but since his hair is so fine, you could clearly see there were chunks that were shorter than others. And her trimming around his ears resembled Moe, from the Three Stooges. Plus, since his cowlick went untouched, it was just as crazy and wacky as the rest of his hair. papaBeaner was not too happy with the outcome, but at least he agreed that there was no way the bean was going to sit still enough to have his head buzzed without him losing a substantial amount of blood.
This brings us to this weekend, 3 months after his last haircut. This time papaBeaner was on board with keeping his hair long and to just get a trim. We got to the salon a little early and there were 3 little boys getting their hair cut – 2 of which were younger than him. And of course all of them were perfectly behaved. This made us even more nervous and rightfully so. He had the same woman, with the same reaction and the same outcome. We tried bribing him with TV, snacks and bubbles but he wasn’t having any of it.
I hate putting him through that much stress but seriously, it’s a hair cut! It’s not that big a deal and unfortunately since the bean is a boy, he’s going to have to get it cut quite frequently! But I don’t know how to get this message through to him. I mean, he’s only 19 months old and he has an acute fear of strangers. He has the same reaction to a strange touching him that I would if a spider fell on me – major freak-out. I guess the good news is that he has a better chance of out growing his fear of strangers and hair cuts than I have of out growing my phobias (but seriously, spiders are super creepy).
We’ve already decided that next time, which should be in another 2 months, we will attempt to trim his hair on our own. At least we’ll save the stylist’s eardrums although I’m not sure if the neighbors will appreciate it. Maybe if we have him watch a lot of videos of little boys getting their hair cut before we actually do the deed it will help him understand what’s going to happen. Although most likely it won’t make a difference either way.