March 24, 2010

Acceptance Stipulation?

The other night, my family decided to have a little movie-watching time. We were sitting in front of the TV, waiting for one for two stragglers to join us, when my step-sister piped up, out of nowhere, that one of her workmates was getting laser hair removal.

"She has some dark hairs under here," she said, gesturing to her chin and neck.

The way she said it was as though she was proud to know someone undergoing the procedure. I was surprised and intrigued, because you may remember our last exchange regarding a woman with facial hair. My mother expressed her sympathy while I tried to puzzle that out.

Finally, I had to ask, "Has she had tests done to make sure she knows the cause?"

I went ignored, but I wasn't going to press it. I'm still not comfortable with everybody knowing why I have any sort of authority on that topic. But it made me wonder if the teenager who laughed at a hirsute stranger and called her ugly would in fact be magnanimous to other girls she knows once she finds out they're bearded.

Do people feel it is "okay" to be bearded only if you take pains to hide it?


Anonymous said...

Do you think she might have been trying to suggest it to you? Is it possible your family has noticed?

Becky said...

Do people feel it is "okay" to be bearded only if you take pains to hide it.

I shave before I leave the house, but I don't cover the remaining shadow with makeup.

In my experience, people seem to be okay with that. In other words, I've never been mocked or treated with derision or stared at openly.

I'm not self-conscious about my beard-shadow, if I've shaved. I act normal, and as a result, I am treated normally. I teach people how to treat me.

I sort of like being a walking public service announcement, but it took me a long time to be comfortable in that role.

Also, the obstinate side of me just thinks it's fun to shock people a little. I like watchin' 'em squirm. :) It's good for 'em. :)

Allerleirah said...

I love that attitude, Becky. It's both beautiful and courageous. I aspire to that someday. :)

Allerleirah said...

And it's an interesting idea, Anonymous. Of course, she was around when I was getting laser done the first time, and I would have expected her to notice all that swelling and redness back then. She was much younger, though.

Hmm. I'm not sure how I feel about that. *lol*

Sophie said...

Becky, what a great approach!! I, too, hope I'll be there one day (slowly but surely).
Al... ... I have had a chance to observe a couple of situations when "people" where saying to and about certain girls (by no means hirsute) that it'd help them if they waxed their faces. When one of them got upset enough to start waxing her face, the comments disappeared. They stayed with the one who refused to wax for, what i'd say was, a tiny amount of hair, barely visible. Conclusion: if you look even slightly different, you freak people out and they'd do anything to make sure you dont stand out. So yes, its ok to be hairy, as long as you keep it a secret.
Your Mum knows, right? So if the sister was trying to sniff around, wouldnt she be asking her and then you would know? Just a calming thought...

Allerleirah said...

Probably not. She's not the type to ask personal questions like that. As a blended family us girls have always been pretty conscious of each others' boundaries, more than your normal family would. :)

But Becky has a great approach, hey?