I think it’s safe to say that most of us have done some things for love that we may not have done otherwise. Successful relationships involve a lot of compromise, and I can think back to at least a handful of times when I’ve done something or gone somewhere I didn’t necessarily want to in order to make my husband happy. Luckily, hubby and I are on the same wavelength most of the time, so it’s rarely something big in our case.
I think perhaps most (or many, at least) of us have also changed our appearance in order to be more attractive to a man, at some point in our lives. From wearing makeup to buying that slinky black dress to picking out lingerie meant only for his eyes, it’s only natural to want to catch our man’s eye and get his attention. One thing I did partially due to my husband’s preferences has had far-reaching effects, both good (long-term) and bad (short-term). About six months before we got married, I cut my hair.
You have to understand, before that, I was always a long-hair girl. In first grade, my mom gave a hairdresser permission to cut my hair on a field trip, and she chopped it off short – “boy cut” style. I cried. I pouted. I threw a fit and swore I’d never cut my hair again. Of course I did, but never shorter than my shoulders. I had perms and layers and updo’s and I learned how to tease and back-comb and all of the things that girls with long hair (big hair, in the 80’s) do. It was part of my identity. It made me feel “girlish”, even when I wore it in ponytails or braids most of the time.
After I’d been dating my now husband awhile, he admitted that he really didn’t like long hair. He preferred the sleek, cleaner lines of shorter cuts. It planted a seed, and you know how when that happens, you start seeing things differently? I started keeping my hair back/braided more, hardly ever leaving it down. It started getting in my way more, and I started not liking the way it looked so much. I should clarify – he never said one bad thing about my hair, ever, and he never said anything about shorter cuts again…this was all me, all in my head. I think subconsciously I wanted to please him, to be more attractive to him…whether it’s right or wrong is irrelevant – I think it’s more just instinctual, to be honest.
I started getting it professionally trimmed. Then cut. Then cut shorter. Finally I had it cut all the way up to my shoulders, and I wasn’t happy with it at all, because it was at that point where nothing could really be done with it. So I looked through some pictures on the internet, found a very short cut I thought looked classy and chic, on a model with my facial shape…and I printed it out. I went to the stylist and showed her what I wanted…and after she asked me several times if I was absolutely sure (my hair had grown out quite a ways again by then), she chopped it all off. And shaved my neckline. It was the oddest, strangest feeling *ever* when I looked in the mirror and saw my new look.
I had a lot of trouble adjusting to having short hair. My husband loved it, of course – but I had issues with not feeling sexy or desirable like I had before. I had confidence issues for awhile, and felt very exposed without my long hair to “hide behind”.
Obviously I’ve adjusted, and honestly, cutting my hair was the best thing I ever did for my personality. I became more confident over time, and more able to be outgoing when I needed to be. People react to me differently with short hair…better in most environments. So ultimately it was the best decision I could have made, though one of the hardest – and all due to a personal preference expressed offhand by my then-boyfriend. I loved him even then, and that allowed him to influence me with just one comment.
Your turn – what’s one thing you’ve done for love that you might not otherwise have done? How has it impacted your life for better or worse? Big or small…tell me your story.