I didn't even realise it was a thing until more than one of my readers, friends and colleagues mentioned it in coversation. So imagine my surprise when I read a mail recently from a woman who told me she really appreciates my blog and content etc. And she feels that after being natural for more than two years, she's finally ready to debut her fro. Huh? Well, she decided to stop relaxing her hair awhile ago but all this time she's been covering her natural hair up with wigs, weaves, braids - anything so that no one would see her own hair.
Now, I know some of you may be thinking well, she's protective styling that's good right? Yes and...no. For me I interpreted that mail along with some other communication I've had with women that there's the natural who occassionally/regularly puts a weave or wears a wig and isn't phased by showing her own natural hair in public in between those styles. Even if it's just for a few weeks. Then there's the natural whom nobody, except perhaps her significant other, even knows that under her extensions, she's natural. She is self conscious, she's insecure and worried she'll be judged if this is revealed to anyone. So she makes a conscious effort to be in the "closet" about her hair choice.
It's something that I'm intrigued by. And would like to know more about. The ladies who have jumped the fence into the world of natural but are hiding in the corner for fear of being outcast somehow - from a job, by a potential life partner or from socially being labelled as "beautiful".
I felt sad when I read that mail from my reader. She had the confidence to say no to relaxer but wasn't able to fully come out for all of those years. I hope she and other ladies find the inspiration to fully embrace their natural and no longer feel like it's a secret they need to hide.
Are you or were you a closeted natural? Do you know someone who is? What are your thoughts? Weigh in!