How Do You Set Boundaries With Your Family Around Your Child’s Hair? [Video]

How Do You Set Boundaries With Your Family Around You Child's Hair? [Video]

Sometimes the hardest people to set boundaries for are the ones closest to you, and as you start to establish hard lines, feelings can get hurt and open communication has to be highly prioritized.

In the black community, boundaries around hair and how to care for it are often broken from one generation to the next.

In this post, we are specifically tackling how we set boundaries with family members and your child’s hair.

For example:

Your aunt might not see anything wrong with using a ‘light relaxer’ on her niece’s hair because that’s what she thinks will make hair styling easier.


Grandma thinks your baby boy should have a haircut and cuts it her self as you will notice in our example below!

We shared a video on our Instagram of a mother who said she dropped off her son at his Grandmother’s house for his first sleepover.

In the video, you will notice the child has pretty long hair.

The grandmother decided on her own to cut her grandchild’s hair without telling mom.

Watch the video and moms response below:


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A post shared by Petra Lomax (@emilycottontop)

The comments on the video were not very surprising, as a matter of fact, anyone would be livid if that happened to their child.

The question is how do you prevent it in the first place?

Some of you said “Grandma was out of order”, “She would never see him again”, “and that would have been the last time he sleeps there”. Others suggested that she only get supervised visitation and one lady rightly shared:

“Oh I would have snapped. She overstepped her boundaries. No one should be doing things to a child without having a conversation with the parents.”

Here are 4 ways to help you to set boundaries with family and your children

1. Establish the boundary from the beginning

This might be difficult in some families, but you have to start talking and acting like your child is 100% your responsibility and the choices you make about them are yours to make.

You do not have to be mean about it, but there is a certain demeanor parents can establish with family members very early even before the child is born.

2. Be firm but never rude

Leading with anger and defensiveness never solves anything.

Always express your needs with kindness, but remain diligent in the fact that your needs for your child are important.

If you have specific requirements for your child’s hair that may cause some contention, do not be afraid to express them firmly.

3. Know when to walk away
Before you even get to the point of a family member overstepping a boundary, you are probably already aware of some toxic traits that might affect you and your children.

With that said, sometimes you have to just decided to walk away especially when you recognize signs of gaslighting and intentional manipulation.

Your family member might make comments, saying your child’s hair is never done, or I think this would look great on little Jamie.

You do not need to get defensive if you know that you are caring for your child’s hair, just walk away.

4. Be Direct

Do not drop hints, do not be passive-aggressive, do not ‘hope they understand’, be open and be direct! Be very clear about what is ok, and what is not ok.

Additionally being direct doesn’t always have to mean some sort of verbal communication, you can be direct with your consistent actions as well.

For example, when dropping the kids off with family, make sure their hair is done.

That will be one less thing for the family member to do and there will be no question about how his/her hair should be done during their stay.

How do you set boundaries with your family when it comes to your children’s hair? What would you have done in the case of mom in the video? Comment below.


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