Comments

  • Will Smith and Chris Rock---hair jokes
    Hi everyone,

    Hi everyone,

    First of all, I'd like to say how glad I am to see that this forum has not gone the way of the dinosaurs. I look forward to reading and writing about something that means a lot to me and all of you.

    I've actually been asked about this topic a number of times over the years, and am glad to have the opportunity to share my thoughts.

    I believe that in our society, and culture, there is a double standard in how bald men and bald women are looked upon and treated. The use of such a double standard (as an excuse, or even a simplified explanation) demeans the whole topic in general. To say all men feel this way, or that all women feel that way about their hair loss fails to take into account that feelings are personal, and they can change over time – both how the individual person feels about their loss, and how hair loss is looked upon by our society.

    I was 17 when I began losing my hair; and then at 19 when I saw the rather large bald spot on the crown of my head. I knew that I had inherited androgenetic alopecia from my maternal grandfather (though I did not know those two words for it for a few more years). I never met my grand father. He died from a genetic blood disorder (I inherited that from him, too), when Mom was a senior in high school. I knew he was a very good man, and a very handsome man even without a hair on the front, top, and crown of his head. I thought – that doesn't look so bad – provided I also got his facial structure, and expressive, blue-gray eyes. No, it wasn't going bald that made my stomach queasy when I saw my bald spot. I had been struggling with being over weight since I was 10, and so what I thought was, "oh great – something else I'm going to be teased and harassed about."

    At that time I would have said that being bald is harder on men because everyone feels free to make jokes and comments about a man being bald, than for women who are balding. I knew that some women lost their hair if they went through chemo-therapy to treat cancer. I knew nothing about alopecia areata and other causes of hair loss that women might experience. I thought, all they had to do was just wear a wig until their hair grew back. and no one said anything about women and baldness, because it was unusual, rare even, for women to lose their hair. Basically, I thought women got a break when it came to losing their hair – it’s just temporary, right? Let's just say I had a lot to learn about both hair loss and women in general.

    I think how a person feels about their loss of hair cannot be judged by the group. It is a very personal thing and many factors have to be considered. How a person feels about themselves and what they use to base their self esteem on is a crucial component. What kind of support system do they have? I don’t just mean therapists, and support groups – I’m talking about family and friends. As a man of Faith, my relationship with God is one of my components – the most important one in fact. Since I was in college, God has used my baldness (or rather, how I feel about it), to help others – and not just people with alopecia issues. In my essay, “A Special Wardrobe,” (which many of you have read), deals with what I do to make myself feel better about being bald. The thing is, you could take a pen and blot out “alopecia,” and replace it with just about any self esteem issue you may have. I know this to be true because of all the people who have come to me and needed to talk about what they were self-conscious about.

    Let me close with something I read recently. A woman diagnosed with cancer, and who had to be treated with chemotherapy. To her surprise, the biggest lesson she learned from the experience, was how unthinking and insensitive she had been when she talked to men with male pattern baldness. In the past she often teased and made fun of guys who were going bald, mainly because it was so common! Most of these balding men didn’t act like it bothered them, and many made self derogatory comments about losing their hair as well. Over time she learned a sad truth about men in our society – to admit your feelings were hurt, or if you had trouble looking in a mirror – made you look weak, a wimp, and unmanly. We are the sex that is suppose to be unemotional and strong; and a man is a weakling if their feelings get hurt, and you were worse than that if you talked about your hurt feelings with someone.

    While I do see change coming in our culture on how we view baldness (for both men and women), I am constantly reminded we have a long way to go. Once while paying for groceries, the lady cashier asked me what happened to my hair, and I replied with an old joke about giving it the day off. She then told me about hair replacement systems, and closed by saying, “look into it – we all want to look as good as possible.” She made the assumption that everyone wants to have a full head of hair, and if they don’t, then they must be very unhappy! A friend of mine with alopecia universalis, has started to not wear wigs in public. As an athletic swimmer, she grew tired of hiding her baldness by putting on a swimming cap when she was alone in the changing room. It was uncomfortable, partly because she was allergic to the material the cap was made from, and partly because she resented the notion that women were supposed to hide being bald and keep it a secret. One day she just stopped wearing the cap while swimming – and when the world didn’t end, she wasn’t banned from attending her Church, and all the people who liked and loved her before they knew she was bald, continued to like and love her after they did know. She has made a lot of new friends, and has received a lot of support – so much so, she decided she didn’t want to wear wigs any where in public if she didn’t feel like it.

    It’s not always been easy. Once while having dinner at a restaurant (one of the first times she went in public without wearing a wig), she was coming back from the ladies room, a jerk told her, “get a wig sweetheart . . . you look like a freak.” That – as you can imagine – was not a good night. Fortunately, she didn’t let the jerk win; she is still going wigless in public when she wants to. She also talks to girls and young women as a motivational speaker.

    I have discovered that ignorance is the biggest threat to self esteem when you have a “different look,” than most people. I have discovered that when people know why I wear different wigs or no wig, their opinion can turn a 180; so instead of being that strange, bald Larry Barbee who wears different colored wigs, and who can’t seem to get his act together – why doesn’t he get a hair replacement system, and be normal?

    Because Larry doesn’t want a hair replacement system, thank you! He loves his bald head and doesn’t need a prostheses because he hasn’t lost his looks – just his hair (which he doesn’t consider a loss anyway.) He wears wigs because they are fun, he likes having a variety of looks, and through his writings and public speaking, teaches people why he does what he does, and he is being used by God to help people with self image problems of all kinds along the way.

    I am Larry Barbee
  • Will Smith and Chris Rock ... hair jokes
    Hi Tav,

    I'm glad you liked my comment, but don't worry about anything you write not being worthy enough for me or anyone else to read. Just share if/when you need to talk.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Will Smith and Chris Rock ... hair jokes
    Hi everyone,

    First of all, I'd like to say how glad I am to see that this forum has not gone the way of the dinosaurs. I look forward to reading and writing about something that means a lot to me and all of you.

    I've actually been asked about this topic a number of times over the years, and am glad to have the opportunity to share my thoughts.

    I believe that in our society, and culture, there is a double standard in how bald men and bald women are looked upon and treated. The use of such a double standard (as an excuse, or even a simplified explanation) demeans the whole topic in general. To say all men feel this way, or that all women feel that way about their hair loss fails to take into account that feelings are personal, and they can change over time – both how the individual person feels about their loss, and how hair loss is looked upon by our society.

    I was 17 when I began losing my hair; and then at 19 when I saw the rather large bald spot on the crown of my head. I knew that I had inherited androgenetic alopecia from my maternal grandfather (though I did not know those two words for it for a few more years). I never met my grand father. He died from a genetic blood disorder (I inherited that from him, too), when Mom was a senior in high school. I knew he was a very good man, and a very handsome man even without a hair on the front, top, and crown of his head. I thought – that doesn't look so bad – provided I also got his facial structure, and expressive, blue-gray eyes. No, it wasn't going bald that made my stomach queasy when I saw my bald spot. I had been struggling with being over weight since I was 10, and so what I thought was, "oh great – something else I'm going to be teased and harassed about."

    At that time I would have said that being bald is harder on men because everyone feels free to make jokes and comments about a man being bald, than for women who are balding. I knew that some women lost their hair if they went through chemo-therapy to treat cancer. I knew nothing about alopecia areata and other causes of hair loss that women might experience. I thought, all they had to do was just wear a wig until their hair grew back. and no one said anything about women and baldness, because it was unusual, rare even, for women to lose their hair. Basically, I thought women got a break when it came to losing their hair – it’s just temporary, right? Let's just say I had a lot to learn about both hair loss and women in general.

    I think how a person feels about their loss of hair cannot be judged by the group. It is a very personal thing and many factors have to be considered. How a person feels about themselves and what they use to base their self esteem on is a crucial component. What kind of support system do they have? I don’t just mean therapists, and support groups – I’m talking about family and friends. As a man of Faith, my relationship with God is one of my components – the most important one in fact. Since I was in college, God has used my baldness (or rather, how I feel about it), to help others – and not just people with alopecia issues. In my essay, “A Special Wardrobe,” (which many of you have read), deals with what I do to make myself feel better about being bald. The thing is, you could take a pen and blot out “alopecia,” and replace it with just about any self esteem issue you may have. I know this to be true because of all the people who have come to me and needed to talk about what they were self-conscious about.

    Let me close with something I read recently. A woman diagnosed with cancer, and who had to be treated with chemotherapy. To her surprise, the biggest lesson she learned from the experience, was how unthinking and insensitive she had been when she talked to men with male pattern baldness. In the past she often teased and made fun of guys who were going bald, mainly because it was so common! Most of these balding men didn’t act like it bothered them, and many made self derogatory comments about losing their hair as well. Over time she learned a sad truth about men in our society – to admit your feelings were hurt, or if you had trouble looking in a mirror – made you look weak, a wimp, and unmanly. We are the sex that is suppose to be unemotional and strong; and a man is a weakling if their feelings get hurt, and you were worse than that if you talked about your hurt feelings with someone.

    While I do see change coming in our culture on how we view baldness (for both men and women), I am constantly reminded we have a long way to go. Once while paying for groceries, the lady cashier asked me what happened to my hair, and I replied with an old joke about giving it the day off. She then told me about hair replacement systems, and closed by saying, “look into it – we all want to look as good as possible.” She made the assumption that everyone wants to have a full head of hair, and if they don’t, then they must be very unhappy! A friend of mine with alopecia universalis, has started to not wear wigs in public. As an athletic swimmer, she grew tired of hiding her baldness by putting on a swimming cap when she was alone in the changing room. It was uncomfortable, partly because she was allergic to the material the cap was made from, and partly because she resented the notion that women were supposed to hide being bald and keep it a secret. One day she just stopped wearing the cap while swimming – and when the world didn’t end, she wasn’t banned from attending her Church, and all the people who liked and loved her before they knew she was bald, continued to like and love her after they did know. She has made a lot of new friends, and has received a lot of support – so much so, she decided she didn’t want to wear wigs any where in public if she didn’t feel like it.

    It’s not always been easy. Once while having dinner at a restaurant (one of the first times she went in public without wearing a wig), she was coming back from the ladies room, a jerk told her, “get a wig sweetheart . . . you look like a freak.” That – as you can imagine – was not a good night. Fortunately, she didn’t let the jerk win; she is still going wigless in public when she wants to. She also talks to girls and young women as a motivational speaker.

    I have discovered that ignorance is the biggest threat to self esteem when you have a “different look,” than most people. I have discovered that when people know why I wear different wigs or no wig, their opinion can turn a 180; so instead of being that strange, bald Larry Barbee who wears different colored wigs, and who can’t seem to get his act together – why doesn’t he get a hair replacement system, and be normal?

    Because Larry doesn’t want a hair replacement system, thank you! He loves his bald head and doesn’t need a prostheses because he hasn’t lost his looks – just his hair (which he doesn’t consider a loss anyway.) He wears wigs because they are fun, he likes having a variety of looks, and through his writings and public speaking, teaches people why he does what he does, and he is being used by God to help people with self image problems of all kinds along the way.

    I am Larry Barbee
  • Blonde men
    LOL Well, I think I'll need to be careful in how I answer questions - being compared to Robert Redford (no matter how much better looking he is than me) isn't so bad, but I hope I'll not be compared to the Scandinavian actor who played the some what dim assistant to T. Nelson Craig in the sitcom "Coach."

    Seriously, I hope you and yours are doing well.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Blonde men
    LOL you are being too kind - but I'll run with it anyway! I think a little bit of silliness is good for the soul!

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Blonde men
    I just wanted to thank all of dear, sweet, and special ladies for making my choice to go blonde, one of the best things I've ever done for myself. Because of you all, I feel like the women in those old Ms Clairol commercials - I've gone blonde (and maybe even blonder) . . . . . BECAUSE I'M WORTH IT!

    Larry
  • Blonde men
    Thanks Tav - I passed this on to Dawn, and she was thrilled! Like me, Dawn is still in the honey moon stage of being blonde, and wants to keep her blonde hair looking as good as it did when we left the salon.

    Given the response I've had, I'm thinking of going a shade or two lighter for my next wig. What do you think? Can I pull it off?

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Blonde men
    Thanks,Tav,

    I'm so glad you posted something! You and I have posted a lot of stuff to each other over a number of years, so your opinions always matter a lot to me.

    I never expected just how much women love me as a blonde - I knew they loved being blonde, but that t would be treated the same way has left me stunned. As much as I loved light auburn, I now know being blonde is the real me.

    Dawn tells me she has experienced the same thing. We agree that we'll never be brunettes again. or us, being blonde makes life better.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Blonde men
    Thank you, Alice!
  • Blonde men
    LOL

    Thank you! You've made my day - I definitely envy your husband.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Going Blonde Day
    Hello,
    I just wanted to say that yesterday, Dawn and I did finally have our "Going Blonde day." Here is a bad photo to commemorate it.

    For you folks who don't know what I'm talking about, a dear friend from my past came back into my life shortly after I lost one of my best friends. Curios as to why I have different colored hair on my facebook page, she was touched and impressed about my work helping people with alopecia areata - which was when I started wearing wigs - and how a class project for a psych class became a ministry (that I've resumed) inspired her to "stop playing it safe," and do something she's always wanted to do: dye her very dark brown hair blonde.

    She then said, "hey - I've got an idea!"
    "Uh oh," I thought. By this time I ought to know that I should be running by now - and running fast!

    Me: "So what's your idea?"
    Dawn: "Do you have a blonde wig?"
    Me: "No .. ."
    Dawn: "Why not?" She asked rather sharply.
    Me: "Oh, I had one back in the day, but it didn't look good with my skin tones."
    Dawn: "So it was that particular shade of blonde you disliked, rather than all colors?"
    Me: "Yeeesss, I guess you could say that," (I said slowly, not sure where this was going).
    Dawn: "Oh,well,we can find a blonde wig that looks good on you!"
    Me: "Huh?! Who is "we?"

    And that's when I was told I was going to become a blonde, too. To be fair, Dawn wasn't ordering me to do this, and even if she had, I could have said no.

    In an earlier message in this discussion, I wrote:

    I told her, I’d do it. Well, why not? If the wig looks bad, all I have to do is not wear it! On the other hand, it might look great and I’ll have another “look” for my wardrobe. More importantly, I want to do this for Dawn. She’s been a really great friend, and dying her hair blonde means a lot to her. If taking part in her “going blonde day” gives her the courage to do something that means this much to her, then it’s a no brainer – I’m in!

    So what do you all think?

    My biggest surprise came when my stylist was confused as she examined my hair line. She said, “Wait a minute, this isn’t your hair . . .” Puzzled for a moment, she said: “But you don’t have any hair!” Rolling my eyes, I said, “yes, I know.”

    She had never seen a lace front wig before. She knew about them, of course, but mine was first that she had seen and touched. I think she will encourage her clients with hair loss issues to consider wearing wigs, because they look even more realistic now than she realized. I’d like to think that in a small way, I might be helping others.

    God bless and love,

    Larry

    PS. Sorry there's no picture - I'm not the most techno savvy guy and don't know how to add the photo.
  • Going Blonde Day
    Glad to see you back Linda, and thank you for your kind comments about the people in here. They've been very good to me, too.

    God bless and love,

    Ginger
  • Going Blonde Day
    I do, too, Alice, and not only because I'm a gentleman (gentlemen prefer blondes you know <rolling eyes>), but because I'm about to become one myself! (lol)

    I think I speak for many of the other members here, that we hope you'll post some photos of you wearing your blonde wigs.

    God bless and love,

    Ginger (or Larry if you must <grin>), your wig sibling (I have boy parts so I can't be your wig sister).
  • Going Blonde Day
    [[[Alice]]] Thank you so much, Alice! The kindness you and all the others on this forum have shone, and continue to show me is one of the ways God feeds me spiritually - I cannot put a price on how valuable the love I get here is.

    Yes, there will be photos from going blonde day! Even if my peroxide in crime isn't comfortable with having photos of herself after going blonde, I'll post photos of me anyway, but I'm sure she'll not mind me posting some of her (not to mention the both of us doing before and after poses).

    God bless and love,

    Ginger (or Larry - if I have to! lol)
  • Going Blonde Day
    Hi everyone; it's nice to see some activity here this week!

    Diana thank you so much for your kind, uplifting words. I need all the support and encouragement I can get. I also admire the work that you do - you must live with a lot of stress just doing your job much less being "trash talked about" by your colleagues. Thank you so much for being a part of this group and sharing the gift of just being you with us.

    Although I'm only 58 I live in a senior's retirement community (I'll save how I came to be here for another time). You'd think that people at this time of their lives would have acquired maturity and wisdom, but you'd be dead wrong. These people act like they're back in high school! They form little cliques, and trash talk other people because the only way they can "build" themselves up, is by tearing other people down. They try to hang all sorts of labels on me from 'weirdo' to 'queer.' I think that negativity comes from being afraid of something new or different, and often when they learn the how and why I wear wigs changes their attitude toward me. Not all of them do, of course; nor do I "owe" anyone an explanation for anything I do. On the other hand, when I decided to wear wigs again I asked my priest if that would be a problem because I didn't want to be a "distraction." He knew about my work with people with alopecia areata and had even read my essay, "A Special Wardrobe," so I wasn't surprised when he said, "of course you can wear your wigs!" The fact that his Dad wore a hair replacement system probably didn't hurt (grin). So I'm just going to do my thing, try not to let the slurs get me down, and treasure the kind words of support and affirmation I do get - such as from you all - wear my t-shirt that says, "wig empowerment day" on it, and try to help others along the way.

    No, we haven't had going blonde day yet - our stylist is recovering from COVID! I've decided to assume that going blonde day is going to be a success, and so I'm having matching t-shirts made with the words,"We may be new blondes, but we're definitely having more fun!" What do y'all think - too silly or too cheesy?

    God bless and love,

    Ginger (or Larry)
  • Going Blonde Day
    It's always great to get feedback from two of the loveliest ladies on this forum.You are always supportive and encouraging, and it's greatly appreciated. My lifestyle is of loving being bald, but also loving wearing wigs is unusual and I catch a lot of flak about it.

    Just as important, is how God uses me and my unusual way of life to help others. When I get positive comments from wig wearers, I'm able to rise above the hateful slurs and labels I get all the time. I hope I'm not being presumptive in considering the two of you as good friends.

    God bless and love,

    Ginger (or Larry).
  • Going Blonde Day
    I love you, Tav! Whenever I find a message left by you, it always makes my day!

    I'm glad you think I look good with light auburn hair. It was the most popular color of the wigs I wore back in school. I have a cousin who has the same eye color and skin tones that I do, and while my hair is brown, her's is light auburn just like my wig both the one then, and the one I have now.

    ***

    As of now, "going blonde day" is still on. And yes, I'll put up photos!

    God bless and love,

    Ginger (or Larry)
  • Dating a man with a toupée - now I've heard it all
    Here is my experience (for what it's worth).

    I've encountered women who dislike men who are bald so much, that they wouldn't want to date a bald man or even want to be friends with one.

    On the other hand, there are some women who are crazy attracted to bald men. I've met a couple and while it was nice that they took a shine to my bald head (bad pun intended), we didn't match up on the important things in having a deep,and loving relationship.

    I've met women who liked me bald but hated my wigs. My experience and research indicates that women who dislike toupees, think men who wear them are insecure and lack confidence.

    Because I love being bald and wearing wigs (they are an important form of self expression for me), so if I pursue a romantic relationship, a woman has to love me bald or wigged.

    In addition to providing ways of ministering others with self esteem issues (and not just baldness), wearing wigs are a part of who I am. They may not have either helped or hindered my love life, I make friends with women a lot easier. Women love to talk about hair, and so wigs have provided a mutual interest. I'm constantly sought out to give advice and opinions such as "Should I cut my hair a lot shorter?", "Would I look good if I dyed my hair red?" I have no idea how I became an expert on hair, except (maybe) that I've had to become well read on hair and wigs for my own need to know about these things myself.

    Bottom line: for me going bald, and later wearing wigs, has been a blessing. I wish I had something really profound to say, but don't . . . except this: find your way to wearing hair pieces if that's something you want to do. Most of all, I hope you and other Christians will talk about this with our Father in Heaven.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Being Different
    I don't know if this is relatable or not, but I don't get grief about wanting to wear a wig, but that I wear different wigs or no wig. The assumption most people have is that like the overwhelming majority of men, I want to wear wigs because I'm ashamed or self conscious about losing my hair.

    I don't want a prostheses, as in a hair replacement system. I love my bald head -- I just enjoy having a variety of looks, and wigs allow me the option of having hair or not having hair; and having hair of different colors, styles and lengths pleases me . .. but so does having my head rubbed or kissed (especially when it's been freshly shaved) also pleases me. I don't see why I have to choose only one of the two.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Being Different

    Hi Linda,

    Thanks for remembering me. I've been around. I follow this blog faithfully and I do make the occasional comment, and even ask relevant questions. I hope you and the others here know how much I like to "pen pal" and I'd like to hear how you're doing -- both the good as well as the bad. I had a pretty good day today. One of the care givers told me she thought my hair looked nice today. Even though she knows it was a wig, she knew it would please me more by saying your hair -- not your wig -- looks nice today.

    It was a silly little thing to say, but it meant a lot for some reason. I don't think she knows my back story,we've never spoken before -- I don't even know her name!



    Hey Keith,

    Sorry for the delay in responding to your message.

    I’d be glad to “listen” to anything you need to talk about. I’m a little confused as to whether you want to wear toupees or wigs. A toupee is a hair piece that covers the balding area of the scalp; if you don’t have a bald spot or patch, how do you choose what size toupee to buy and/or have made for you. After covering the bald area, the hair (or synthetic fibres) are then combed in to the existing hair still growing on the scalp. You can’t wear toupees that are a different color than your natural hair. Perhaps like a lot of people, you’ve been thinking that “toupee” is a term used for all hair pieces for men, and that “wig” is the term used for all hair pieces made for women. These terms aren’t descriptive for the gender of who a hair piece has been made for. If the hair piece covers the whole scalp then it’s a wig – albeit a men’s wig or a woman’s wig. As to whether or not women wear toupees, I’m not sure about. If they have a bald spot or patch that isn’t too large, the ladies often wear hair pieces called “toppers.” Toppers are the same color of the woman’s hair as they are suppose to blend with their existing natural hair. In the ’60s when women started wearing wigs, those with short hair often wore a “fall” or an attachable pony tail. These created the illusion that a woman had long hair, when a woman actually had short hair. Today’s toppers now also include bangs, buns, and braids.

    I hope this helps.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Being Different

    Sorry for the delay in writing back, (my internet server has been "spotty" over the past few days); because I wear a variety of wigs -- not to mention the days I don't wear one at all -- I don't have the option of only telling certain people that I wear wigs. It's pretty much in everyone and their brother's face that I wear wigs.

    I live in a senior citizen's condo community so there are precious few secrets here as you can imagine. How did I end up here? In 2013, I had to go on disability, at the same time Dad was diagnosed with Altzeimer's (however you spell it), and so to save money and help Mom take care of Dad I moved back home. In November 2015 (Dad had died the previous March), Mom and I moved here ("Crescent Heights"). When she died unexpectantly a year later, Management said I could stay if I wanted to even though I was a few years short of being the minimum age of 55. There are a lot of "goodies" that comes with being a resident here -- not too mention Management's offer of reducing my rent by $200, and my money was clearly "old enough" to be accepted, so I've stayed. I still drive so when the walls start to close in, I can hop into my Jeep and visit friends, family, and continue attending my Church that I love. Pets are allowed so I have my little girl, "Georgia" for company. . . . but I seriously digress.

    I have found that when most people learn how I came to wear wigs, usually after reading my essay, "A Special Wardrobe" it changes their attitude. I'm no longer that weirdo bald guy who wears different colored wigs - I'm that advocate guy who helped and continues to help people coping with hair loss problems as well as anyone else with self esteem issues that aren't related to baldness.

    Unfortunately, not everyone knows my "back story;" and I shouldn't have to "educate" people before they treat me with respect. And, of course, some don't change their opinion of me even if they do know my "back story." In some ways living here is like being back in high school: there are your little cliques, and some people can only build themselves up by tearing others down. Some time it gets to me, and then I come here and bore you people when I'm disrespected and get my feelings hurt.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Being Different

    Again, I think similar thoughts as you, Tav. I grew up in a pretty conservative home (meaning I wasn't aloud to wear my hair long), which is why I chose the wig you see me wearing now for several reasons - one of them was because it's longer than my hair was when I was a teen-ager. I just turned 58, so better late than never. I know a lot of people don't like it (I even over heard a friend say, "he's wearing that awful red wig today." (sigh). She felt really bad when I told her I was able to hear what she said.

    I've always done what I like, regardless of what others think. Some times it's come with a cost . . . but some times I've been rewarded.for doing things my way. Still, even though I ought to know better, I tend to think about the one negative comment instead of the seven (or however many) positive comments. It does help a lot when I reflect on all the good God has done through me to help people with self esteem issues because I have done things my way; and so as far as wigs go, I still say: "My hair, my head, my wig, my say!"

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Being Different
    Thanks for your kind words, Tav -- you're a woman after my heart.

    I've always wanted to wear wigs,especially after getting involved working with women who have alopecia areata.

    Like you, I love wearing wigs because of fun and fashion. I also enjoy the satisfaction I get out of helping people with self esteem issues. I do wish I had friends who wear wigs so we could share not only the bad experiences, but also the good ones. Giving and getting positive opinions, advice and information about wigs would be wonderful to.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • So excited to be a new member!
    Hi HairLove,
    Welcome to the group. I think you already see that you have found a special place where you are definitely welcome!
  • Sharing something Good
    Lol thanks Tav, it's always nice to hear from you.

    Ginger :wink:
  • I Need Some Encouragement and Support

    Thanks for sending the message, Tav -- it's never to late to post comments or send emails to me, and so if you (or anyone else reading this <grin>, want to write to me about anything please feel free to do so.

    I'm sorry you are having so much trouble with your bio hair. What you've said doesn't surprise me though. From what I've read and from talking to chemo "survivors", most are surprised that bio hair can significantly change from pre chemo to post chemo. Most experience a change in color. This can be that they have a lot of gray now, but had no grays before, to some people who had brown hair before,now have red hair. Changes in texture and curliness are even more common experiences, so you're not alone in what you're going through.

    I am surprised by the number of women of women that continue to wear wigs after their hair grows back from chemo, even if the regrown hair looks the same as it did before. "That's the problem, Larry," said a lady to me over the phone, "I hated my hair before chemo, and now that it's back it's still too thin and fine!"

    I'm sorry that she discovered the benefits of wigs from having had cancer, and gone through chemo, but she is neither the first nor the last woman who has decided to continue wearing wigs even after their hair grew back. If you enjoy wearing wigs, then please do so. It's not hurting anyone, and if they make you feel better about your self, then don't let anyone stop you from wearing them.

    God bless,

    Larry
  • I Need Some Encouragement and Support
    Thank you, Cici.

    I've been doing what you have suggested. It's not easy some times, so getting a kind word of approval and support means a lot -- a lot more than I can say.

    I think where I'm living is a factor.

    Even though I'm only 55, I live in a seniors community. How I ended up here is a long story. I've discovered that most elderly people don't have filters, and if they don't like something they aren't shy about making their feelings known. It doesn't help that about 70% of the residents have some degree of dementia. They aren't happy about change, and aren't tolerant with people who have a life style that's not "normal."

    So what is this "lifestyle" of mine that's got a whole lot of old people bent out of shape?

    Although I love being bald, so much so that I shave my head to make it completely smooth, I also love to wear wigs because having hair can be nice to. Wigs allow me to be "haired" as well as bald, and I'm not limited to just one color or style. Simply put, I like to wear wigs because it's fun! The women I date like me bald or "wigged" because they enjoy my variety of looks I have; indeed, some of them start wearing wigs to and for the same reason. My wigs help me make friends with women a lot easier, and both men as well as women want to talk to me about their problems -- especially after they learn about my work with women who had alopecia areata when I was in college. Most important of all is how God has used my experiences with baldness and wigs in several ministries.

    You'd think that my life living with senior citizens would be sweet, but you'd be wrong. Many ask questions about why I'm wearing wigs, but will turn away without waiting to hear all of my answer to their questions. Why? Because what I do isn't "normal." Others hear distorted versions of my stories and experiences, and they basically shun me. I've been called many derogatory names and accused of doing some very strange things. Some have minds that are lost in the fog of dementia, and others have hearing problems. You have got to remember that this is my home now -- a place to be comfortable, a place that's safe, and a place where people patiently help one another. I have to get in my car and go to friends and extended family for those things.

    God bless you all,

    Larry
  • I Need Some Encouragement and Support
    Thanks Taylor,
    I get excited when I get a new wig to.
    God bless,
    Larry
  • I Need Some Encouragement and Support
    Thank you, Taylor.

    Normally getting static from other people has never been a problem, but I've had changes in the circumstances of my life.

    Even though I'm only 55, I live in a senior citizen's apartment community. How I ended up here is a long story which I won't bore you with. I take meals in a common cafeteria, so I'm living "cheek by jowl" with a lot of folks who have no filter on what they say good or bad.

    Now as I've said in other posts, I started wearing wigs again after a twenty year break. While I was taking a college course, I had to create a peer support group. I chose to do one for people with alopecia areata. That was when I first starting wearing wigs. Some of my friends and women I dated loved my wigs, others hated them. Well, I loved them! I liked the variety of looks I had (I had different colors, different lengths, and different styles), I liked how I made more women friends, and most of all I liked how God was using me and my unusual life style to help people with all kinds of self esteem issues. He took a college project and turned it into a ministry, and because I'm a Christian that was a wonderful blessing. So, even though I love my bald head, with wigs I could enjoy having hair, too. I wrote an essay about that experience called, "A Special Wardrobe." I've posted it on various web sites (including this one), so some of you have read it. If you haven't but would like a copy, please feel free to email me for one.

    For a number of reasons I stopped wearing them -- until last year. While talking to an old and dear friend from those days on the telephone, she asked if I still wore my wigs. When she asked me why, I told her that I didn't have a ministry any more that wearing wigs would be helpful.

    There was a moment of silence. She then said, "Larry, you don't have to have a ministry to justify wearing wigs. We both know you'd like to, and that is reason enough. I had to admit she was right. We made plans to get together, and the last thing she said was, "Now, when I get down there, you'd better be ginger when I see you!" One of my best and favorite wigs from those days was light auburn. That even became sort of a nick name, and in private I have to admit that I liked it.

    So last year I started wearing wigs again, and after not wearing them for so long, it felt like it was for the first time. The reaction of the residents here has been different than when I did it before. They don't hesitate in telling me what they think, good or bad. I don't know if it's because they are elderly, the ones who don't like them don't pull punches. I have a core group of friends both here and at my Church that are very supportive. In fact, when I asked my Priest if I could wear wigs to church (I didn't want them to be a distraction so I wanted his approval first. He knew my story of wearing wigs in the past, so he not only approved, he insisted that I wear them lol). Another good thing about wearing wigs this time, is that I have a stylist helping me. She thinks it's great that I want to wear wigs, and she even comes here to do my wigs. And yes . . . the first one I bought was light auburn, and I'm starting to be called "Ginger" again by some of my lady friends. When my friend came to see me, they heard her call me that, and they call me that because they like to make me blush (rolling eyes).

    You'd think I'd be twelve kinds of happy wearing wigs again. For the most part I am. The reason I asked you all for some encouragement, is because I'm sort of shocked by the anger and hate I'm getting from those who don't like me wearing wigs. Some of the negative remarks can be down right hateful and nasty, and I wasn't expecting that.

    Thanks for letting me ramble on.

    God bless and love,

    Larry
  • Got my wig -Stop Traffic!
    I think you look lovely.
    Every once in a while a person gets a wig that really suits them. I think for you, this is one of those wigs.
    Thanks for letting us see you. I for one, love watching when a woman finds yet another way to express her beauty.
    Larry