Saturday, June 5, 2010

On The Violation of Hair and Personal Space

My posts are usually light-hearted and fun, but I wanted to talk about something serious today.

I do How To hair videos on YouTube and some of my fans are gentlemen that enjoy looking at long hair. I have no problem with gentlemen (or women) enjoying my long hair. It doesn't harm me or anyone else and so long as there are no inappropriate overtures or comments left, I leave it alone. Some of these gentlemen are very friendly and kind (yes, kind, ) and ask questions about the care of my hair. Again, I have no problem with this and willingly reply.

I recently read a post on a long hair forum that really disturbed me. The poster described taking liberties with an unwitting long haired woman in an elevator. The victim (because yes, that's what she is, ) was not aware that she was being taken advantage of. The culprit also described trolling movie theaters for women with their hair dangling over their chairs. He was deliberately looking for a person to take advantage of. There were several subsequent posts from other members that varied from "Wow, that's awesome," to "That was so wrong!"

It may seem strange, but once your hair reaches a certain length, people can touch your hair without you being aware of it. I've been in line at grocery stores and turned around suddenly to discover that someone was holding a strand of my hair. The culprit has been everyone from little kids to soccer moms and everything in between. I usually just give a chuckle and take a step forward. No harm done, and I understand that long hair is quite the novelty. Who hasn't wanted to play with long hair? I know I have.

It is not okay to violate someone else, even if it is "just" hair. Hair is attached to a person, the same as a limb or any other body part. It's not acceptable to walk up to a stranger and touch their arms, legs or torso. In fact, if it's unwanted, you could be charged with a crime. In the United States we have firm rules of personal space and hair, whatever its length, falls within the "bubble" that people are entitled to have around them.

My first instinct after reading that thread was that I would never wear my hair down again so that never happens to me. But wait a second- I shouldn't have to do that. Just because my hair is loose doesn't mean I'm asking for it. I have the right to wear my hair down if I want to without worrying about someone violating me.

For those out that may read this blog and thought that what that poster did was okay, it is not, and is, in fact, a crime. It's exhibitionism, which can be a crime, whether the victim is aware or not.


  1. Thank you for addressing this issue, i never understood why people think its ok to touch pregnant bellies and long hair on strangers. You are right, its not, it can be an opening to a conversation but should not be touched without invitation. I usually have my hiar up in public and covered anyway, but before i did that it was wierd...It is NOT ok to touch our hair becuase its long!!!

  2. I have had someone grab my hair and threaten me with a pair of scissors telling me that they were going to cut it all off! That and even just touching are assault and should be dealt with firmly. I told the person that threatened me, that if they didn't stop bothering my hair I would bring them up on charges, or in someway make them regret it for the rest of their life. Their behavior had kept escalating. I worked with them at the time. They never touched me or my hair again.

  3. Ravenslair, wow that's scary! I think if someone threatened me (or my hair) with scissors, I would probably press charges, as well.

  4. Scary stuff RavensLair.
    You might be interested in Janis Cortese site.