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VIOLA DAVIS: ‘I AM NOT GOING TO TRAUMATIZE MY CHILD ABOUT HER HAIR’

Viola Davis

Viola Davis loves hair just like any other woman but she is not going to put a lot of stalk into it when raising her daughter, Genesis. The actress  recently told Essence magazine that beauty and style are not her priority when parenting.

essenceCOVER

Viola Essence Cover

“There’s not one woman in America who does not care about her hair. But we give it way too much value,” said Davis. ”We deprive ourselves of things, we use

it to destroy each other. We’ll look at a child and judge a mother and her sense of motherhood by the way the child’s hair looks. I am not going to traumatize my child about her hair. I want her to love her hair.”

Davis also told Essence about her husband whom she deems a blessing from God. “I asked for a husband who was emotionally available, someone who was older, someone who maybe had a family before,” explained the star. “I like older men. Someone from the South. Someone who loves God more than he loves himself.”

Julius and Viola wed in 2003. They adopted Genesis in 2011. She is their first child together.

HOT TOPIC: What are your thoughts on what Viola has to say about how people judge a mother’s sense of motherhood by the way the child’s hair looks?

Photo: Essence

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29 Comments to “VIOLA DAVIS: ‘I AM NOT GOING TO TRAUMATIZE MY CHILD ABOUT HER HAIR’”

  • Wanderer September 8, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    In 1000% agreement with Viola

  • MelB September 6, 2013 at 7:11 am

    Rock on Viola!!!…Black women place too much value on hair, they will spend $100-$200 weekly to get fake hair, chemical treatment and all that it entails, then complain about their inability to pay for an education…accept and love what is naturally yours, then maybe the world will too…and if they don’t so what!

  • Pisces September 6, 2013 at 12:19 am

    Did anyone else see in the news the little girl in Tulsa, Oklahoma, 6 year old Tiana Parker, who was suspended from the Charter school she attends for wearing dreadlocks? I think the Principal was an African American woman doing the suspension. Tiana was crying and so upset on television and she looked very traumatized. Parents may not want to traumatize their children over a hairstyle but school bylaws, rules and classroom peers sure will traumatize a child over a mere hairstyle.

    I’d rather conform than subject a child of mine to unnecessary ridicule, harassment, embarassment and cruel judgment from other ignorant people.

    • Pisces September 6, 2013 at 1:19 pm

      Tiana is 7 years old , not 6.

    • Oxford September 7, 2013 at 1:36 am

      @Pisces, if a child feels love, acceptance, encouragement from their family and home circle (no matter who makes up that circle), the world can’t traumatize them over personal issues like hair or clothing. You’re saying that conforming is better than accepting yourself. If the world thought this way we would still be living in caves.

      My brother’s best female friend from the time he was 12 is gay. Her family didn’t accept that and thought they could deprogram her. The only freedom she felt was when she was visiting America and the time she spent with my great-great uncles; both of them, the one that is related to us and his lover of over 50 years. That gave her the strength to say enough and has been with her girlfriend since they were in their teens. They both now work as physicians for the WHO.

      My paternal uncle is double board certified in Psychiatry and Neurosurgery. He wears his long blond hair locked and has done so for over 15 years. His wife is from Ghana and has worn her hair locked for over 20 years. They have both been told just how successful they could be if they would cut off their rats nest. Exactly how could they be more successful? My tante’s OBGYN/Infertility practice is successful enough that she can close for three months each year and do only volunteer work during that time, in fact our entire family, along with those that make up our village, that doesn’t have prior obligations (down to the bebe’s) does the same.

      How can you as a female justify conformity over individuality? That bebe girl may have caught h*ll at school but school doesn’t operate 24/7. I couldn’t be the person I am right now if I was told fit in or else. Forget calling the tellie people, my mum would have burn the school down if I came home and told her that mess.

    • Oxford September 7, 2013 at 2:11 am

      @Pisces, even after I wrote you a book, you still got me going HAHA. Women should just love the skin they were born in period point blank!

      This might turn off some folks but the first time I became a woman my grand-mère told me to wash myself with the water, even my face. Told me to face that part of myself every month and to never curse it, because that blessing was only for women, not men.

      That little girl is fighting for her own small piece of individuality and you are saying she should conform. I’m so MAD at you!

      The above grand-mère is not my biological one but over two hundred years ago on a trip to Haiti my ancestor was buying slaves; men; to bring back to France. When my ancestor and his wife were passing by my grand-mère’s ancestor, she through herself down in front of my female ancestor. She couldn’t have been more than 10 or 12. When my ancestor realized what would have been in store for the girls she made her husband buy both girls as the older would not leave the younger.

      In conformity was a good thing then the older girl would have just shut up and pray for a good master, but since it’s not, that girl Henre’-Marie (I can’t spell her birth name) started a relationship with our family that has lasted through now.

      And for those who want to vilify me for slavery, something I obviously had no control over, I’ll say this much, on my mum’s side there were never any slaves, neither the men nor the sisters. My ancestor needed men with good sea faring stomach’s to sail his ships from the America’s and Europe to his properties in India and Australia/New Zealand and the white men he was using weren’t cutting it, neither in their stomach’s nor in their loyalty. I know the stories simply because I know my families history. My parents have made certain we know the good and the bad so people AKA the textbook people can’t fool us.

    • Rhonni Rush September 7, 2013 at 10:42 am

      The kind of attitude to ‘conform’ instead of standing strong is what makes people think they can bully someone else over something so inane. We should be teaching our children to withstand peer pressure, not succumb to it. Peer pressure is a large part of what compels our children to cheat, steal, drink, do drugs or other criminal activities, have sex before they are ready, become bulimic or anorexic, etc. Would you rather your child conform to any one of these things, or stand strong and resist?

      Besides, no matter WHAT you do, some child is going to be ridiculed by some other child for some reason, it doesn’t matter what. One child will criticize another just to improve their own sense of self worth, which is tragic. One should not have to make another feel bad just to make oneself feel good. We should not be condoning that kind of behavior. Instead, we should be building our children up to love themselves for who they are, not what someone else thinks they should be.

      As for judging a mother on her parenting based on how her child’s hair looks (i.e. natural vs. permed or real hair vs. a weave) is just another form of prejudice. As long as a parent keeps their child clean, fed and otherwise cared for should be enough.

      When the lovely young Genesis grows up, she can decide for herself what she wants to do with her own hair.

    • Wanderer September 8, 2013 at 3:35 pm

      So the brainy kids in school (often picked on and called names for being smart) should stop doing so well in school to conform with the rest? Should most African Americans start bleaching their skins, straightening their hair, get nose jobs, and thinner lips to conform with society’s standard of beauty (Eurocentric)?

      I would never tell my child to stop being his or her authentic self to please someone else. Why should my child have to sacrifice his or her own self-worth and self-esteem to make someone else feel more comfortable?

      Tiana is a straight A student. The fact that the school focused more on her hair than on her academic accomplishment is telling.

  • Connie1 September 5, 2013 at 7:43 pm

    SHE IS ABSOLUTELY CORRECT. ITS JUST HAIR PLUS, NATURAL HAIR IS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL ANYWAY. IF WE TEACH OUR CHILDREN TO LOVE THEIR NATURAL KINKY TEXTURED HAIR THEN THEY WILL GROW UP TO LOVE IT AND ADORE THEMSELVES. OUR HAIR IS THE MOST DIFFERENT THAN ANY OTHER RACE IN THE WORLD. ITS GORGEOUS!

    • Blue Hairs September 5, 2013 at 8:14 pm

      Any hair style or texture that you like is the most beautiful for you. Not everyone loves their hair in its natural state and that should never be considered a reflection of a persons self worth. We are more than the texture of our hair or the color of our skin. We are souls and an eternal spirits and far more complicated and majestically created than the way we wear our hair or how we change our skin to meet our preferences. I loooooove afros. Its my most favorite style by far but I couldn’t grow a decent one if my life depended on it. So, I bounce between relaxers and my natural with help hairstyle (lol) to keep it all interesting. So, its all a matter of choice and a question of style. And, I refuse to be defined by my hair. I am empowered by the many choices that I have.

      • Celeste September 5, 2013 at 8:27 pm

        Why don’t they like their hair in its natural state?

      • Celeste September 5, 2013 at 8:29 pm

        I love the hair God gave me, meaning in its natural state. It’s so versatile. I think Viola has her priorities in the right place. Her hair and her daughter’s hair is beautiful just as it is.

      • Connie1 September 6, 2013 at 7:12 pm

        EVERYONE SHOULD LIKE THEIR HAIR IN ITS NATURAL STATE. WHY IS IT THAT MOST CAUCASIONS DEAL WITH WHATEVER HAIR GOD GAVE THEM YET WE FIND EXCUSES AND SAY, “OH WELL I WILL JUST RELAX IT. I DONT HAVE TO LIKE MY AFRO.” YES YOU DO. YES YOU SHOULD. IF YOU HAVE A PROBLEM WITH IT THEN WORK ON IT. MOISTURIZE IT, PROTECT IT, BRAID IT, DO WHATEVER NEEDS TO BE DONE FOR YOU TO LIKE IT BUT DONT CHEMICALLY CHANGE IT. THAT IS THE PROBLEM. YOU WERE BORN WITH NATURAL HAIR SO IT IS AN EXCUSE TO SAY THAT IT WAS NOT MEANT FOR YOU. IF NATURAL HAIR WAS NOT MEANT FOR YOU THEN GOD WOULDN’T HAVE GIVEN IT TO YOU. WE ARE THE ONLY RACE THAT SAYS STUPID STUFF LIKE THAT.

  • AWCMON September 5, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Viola’s so pretty and that baby is gorgeous. I love the baby’s afro, but I couldn’t resist putting a little pink bow on it if she were mine. But the fro is gorgeous otherwise

    • Pisces September 6, 2013 at 12:06 am

      I like little bows in little girls hair, too. No matter the style.

  • niaboo87 September 5, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Viola just seems so humble and I agree with her WE as women, especially African American women, we like to take jabs at each other over the silliest things, but HAIR just seems to be one of the most talked about. I also love how she said, she wasn’t going to “traumatize” her child about her hair, I think when you do that it puts a complex on a child’s mind. Even when I was in school I would hear some of my friends speak negatively about hair texture and skin tone.

  • Nonya September 5, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    Genesis is a beautiful child. Viola’s point is not only her choice but a valid one.

  • anevamoore September 5, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    I appreciate this, and it is about time. Black women criticizing mothers about how their child’s hair are brainwashed by popular media! There is a belief, that if a little black girl’s hair isn’t in pig tails, braids, or straighten, that the parents arent taking care of them. This is the hair that they are born with. There were no chemicals or anything used to force the hair to look like that. That is their natural hair! It’s supposed to look like that! It’s disappointing that a little white girl can wear her hair down with no design withoput criticism just because her hair is already long and straight. When a little black girl does it, oh, she needs beads, she needs braids, she needs a perm. And most of this is coming from the black community. We are so ashamed of our natural selves that we criticize mothers such as Viola or Beyonce for not conforming to society as if it’s a necessity! People just need to quit judging because it’s their life!

    • Rhonni Rush September 7, 2013 at 10:47 am

      Well said anevamoore!

  • ski_diva September 5, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Smart lady………Sheryl Underwood could learn a little something from Viola.

  • unqbaby19 September 5, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    Well that little girls afro is so cute. I do think its important to groom your kids and well as teach them to groom themselves, but it is also ok to let them be kids. You don’t want them to grow up so focused on their looks that they start to idolize beauty that is unnatural.

  • RandomTandem September 5, 2013 at 1:37 pm

    that’s great! I hope her tactic works! it’s going to be rough when the little girl gets to school though! it’s usually at school and from other kids that the insecurities start to fester! I hope she is able to make her child strong willed and not succumb to peer pressure and the BS that happens in schools.

  • Katherine G September 5, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    I totally agree. I have been one of those people who have judged. But to be honest we never know what is going on. Can’t automatically label someone a bad parent just because of a child’s hair.

  • Viola Davis: ‘i Am Not Going To Traumatize My Child About Her Hair’ | Gossipgrind.com September 5, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    [...] (via Black Celebrity Kids, 2 hours ago) [...]

  • Iridescent Me. September 5, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    What’s with the dislikes on everyone’s POSITIVE comments? Seek happiness.(>‿◠)✌

  • PlainMean September 5, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    I love Viola and all of her wisdom!

  • Jas September 5, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    What a refreshing statement. She spoke the truth. Beautiful woman!! Her baby girl is cute as a button too.

  • Krissy September 5, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    She is 100% right. I read it a lot in the comments section here. People place way too much value on hair and it’s importance and that really is ridiculous. Let kids be kids and stop worrying about their hair so much.

  • Iridescent Me. September 5, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    Viola looks effortlessly beautiful on the cover. Genesis is gorgeous.

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