For loving adoptive mom Stephanie Hollifield, it doesn’t matter what her children look like. She loves them all, whether they’re her biological babies—she has three—or not.
When she adopted baby Haley, though, she found herself frustrated trying to make sure her new daughter—who is black—had her hair properly taken care of.
Her black friends made sure she knew how important it was to learn about taking care of African-type hair, which requires a starkly different treatment from Stephanie’s own long, straight, blonde locks.
Although she did everything from asking friends to watching YouTube videos on taking care of Haley’s hair, though, she found herself frustrated when one of Haley’s teachers sent her a picture one day of the toddler’s hair looking messy and disheveled.
This little angel is getting more and more personality by the day. She lives to talk to strangers and make people laugh at her. I’m afraid we may have an Ezra 2.0 on our hands. And I’m kinda scared.
“Her hair seemed perfectly conditioned and styled when I sent her off to daycare a few hours earlier, but it looked different in the picture,” Stephanie wrote. “The voices of all the women who had taken their time to tell me the importance of taking care of my daughter’s hair rang in my ear.”
Desperate to make sure to do right by her daughter, Stephanie posted the picture on Facebook with a plea.
“Dear Black friends of social media,” she wrote…
This clueless white momma is humbly coming to you to ask your help with Haley’s hair. I have asked my friends. I have asked strangers in Publix with kids with cute hair, and I’m still not getting it.
Dear Black Friends of Social Media, This clueless white momma is humbly coming to you to ask your help with Haley’s…
We wash once a week. We do the water, leave in conditioner, oil, and hot towel every morning. We’ve tried more products, no products, less products. We are gentle as can be, but she still requires at least 6 minutes of cuddles after the trauma of her daily hair combing. I feel like it looks great for about an hour or two and then it is tangly and clumpy again. This picture is 3 hours into the day. What am I doing wrong?
The response came from a woman named Monica, whom Stephanie didn’t already know.
A couple of days ago, I posted to Facebook asking for advice on caring for my African American daughter’s hair. As a…
Monica offered to come over to Stephanie’s house and show her, in person, how to do Haley’s hair. They sat down together in the kitchen, and Monica—who brought an entire basket of hairbands, clips, and other supplies to teach with—taught Stephanie how to do protective, cute hair styles by herself.
“Monica and I chatted about hair, marriage, friendship, parenting, education and race issues. That day, I got so much more than advice and confidence in fixing my daughter’s hair. I made a new friend,” wrote Stephanie.
People seemed to love the gesture, which surprised Stephanie. After all, it seemed like a logical thing to ask for help with.
Before long, though, she realized what people loved so much—which was the fact that the two women had put aside everything and just helped one another.
“This is newsworthy because Monica saw a need that she could meet and she did something about it. As simple and as complex and honorable as that. This is rare. This is what we need more of,” Stephanie insisted.
Sometimes, for a moment, you are able to forget the mounds of laundry and the house that’s never quite as clean as you…
You may also want to watch this video
She gives her deaf step-dad a surprise—when he opens it, he finds a piece of paper and cries