Carolyn Hax: Some individuals actually do ask, ‘Why are you bald?’


Adapted from an online discussion.

Pricey Carolyn: I’m nonetheless in my 20s however already as bald as Larry David, and with out nearly as good a humorousness about it. I actually wrestle with individuals feeling free to touch upon it. Strangers, co-workers and neighbors hit me with questions resembling, “Did your dad go bald early?” and, “Why don’t you put on a hat? You’d look a lot youthful,” and, “Have you ever appeared into hair transplants?” and even, “Why are you bald?” I’m by no means actually certain how to reply to these questions. I’ve tried your suggested, “Wow,” however I normally get one thing again like: “What? I’m simply asking a query. Don’t be so uptight about it.” Are you able to consider any follow-ups for when the “wow” doesn’t work?

Bald: Throat-punching must be authorized in response to, “Don’t be so uptight.”

I child, after all. However I’m dumbstruck and can want a second for this one.

Re: Bald: A school buddy of mine was almost bald and considerably delicate about it, though he would endure some teasing from our buddy group. When he bought a brand new driver’s license, somebody requested him what he put down for hair coloration. He responded, “Clear.” So possibly, “I’m not bald, I simply have clear hair,” may very well be a response.

Nameless: Your buddy is my hero.

Re: Clear: I feel that’s an excellent response, however should say, what’s it with the teasing about baldness? Or some other trait that’s past our management? Lots of the bald guys I do know developed an entire arsenal of self-deprecating remarks, I think about to preempt this kind of teasing — however I’ve to say, I want they hadn’t needed to do it. It’s even worse when it comes from strangers, however even from buddies, I don’t actually get it.

I Don’t Get It: I’m one hundred pc with you on teasing for baldness, and the questions are simply appalling.

I’m additionally, nevertheless, one hundred pc behind trash-talking amongst consenting buddies, as a result of it’s simply one of many nice establishments in life when carried out proper — that’s, with love and with out prejudice, the place you trash the bald, the bushy, the superbly coifed, the one with hair like her canine. It provides us an outlet, a neighborhood and many of the sitcoms value watching. Plus, it often cuts a flawless gem like “clear.”

· “I pulled all my hair out coping with individuals such as you.”

· Q: “Why are you bald?” A: “Why not?”

· Easy, full silence for a beat, with direct eye contact. Then an introduction of a brand new subject, or just strolling away.

· The commenters are simply projecting their very own particular insecurity on you. In order that’s the way in which to reply: sympathetic engagement with the vulnerability they’ve simply revealed.

Individuals who counsel methods to look youthful are simply telling you they themselves are frightened of ageing. “No thanks, I’m advantageous trying this age.” The one who asks in case your dad went bald early, they’re in search of reassurance in their very own dad’s hair scenario. “Sure/no/I’m unsure. Did yours?”

“Wow” isn’t working as a result of these audio system are (unconsciously) attempting to assuage themselves. You short-circuit them in the event you’re baffled by the suggestion that baldness is a supply of disgrace.

As soon as I noticed what number of guys had been simply frightened of baldness, I noticed there was fairly a little bit of energy in simply buzzing or shaving your head and carrying on.

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