An Open Letter To Strangers Who Touch My Natural Hair Without Asking: How The Fuck Dare You?

Jesse Herzog
Jesse Herzog

So you’ve never seen natural hair in person before. It is amazing, I know; so much body and so much “ethnic” heritage your (most likely white) mind has no real knowledge of, and therefore you feel entitled to take it.

Here’s the thing: ­­if I do not know you, do not touch me. Remember in preschool when we learned about personal spaces? Remember the bubble? The hula hoop? The general vicinity of my being that has nothing to do with you and yours?

Okay, many school-­taught lessons are inevitably lost somewhere along the way. It’s human nature. This specific lesson, however, is one that can also be attributed to common sense. It’s a teaching understood in your formative years, when you quickly gather that those who do not want to have their boundaries overstepped will, in fact, punch you in the face. That is why when your hand found its way into my cloud­like locks, the shock on my face barely matched the fiery pains in my gut screaming at me to rip that hand off of its owner.

I did not act on those urges, of course­ but you should know that I really, really wanted to. You barely had me with those sullen “compliments” you badly wished me to take…with what? Your germs and cooties and God knows what else you left twisted into my curls? No, thank you. Actually, no thanks. How about a simple HELL NO?

“I love BUSHY hair!”

“Look at these Shirley Temple curls!”

And “Oh my gosh­ can I touch your hair?” when your hand has been on my head for SECONDS already.

How the fuck dare you? Myself is mine and ultimately wants nothing to do with you and yours. Unless explicitly stated and outwardly indicated, do not come near me or my bubble, as we have a life to live here in our unsoiled space. I do not know you, so do not touch me. It’s as simple as that. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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