Ask Sam letter


To Sam

I would like to dye my hair.

I have wanted to dye my hair since I was very young(around 4 or 5 years old). When I was 13 I started asking my parents and of course, the answer was no. I have explained to them that I want to do it for me because I like the way it would look and that I am not doing it because of anything that anyone said. When I was 14, over summer break, I dyed the ends of my hair a dark ombre purple without their permission and they weren't too mad but yes they were frustrated. I haven't done anything since then to respect their wishes. Naturally, my hair is black and very curly. I took care of it after the bleach and dye that I did two years ago and had almost no damage. I am 16 now and still want to dye my hair, but not all of it. I would like to dye it grey at the bottoms or even purple or pink at some point, but mostly the grey since I think it would look the best with my dark hair. I talked to my vice principal and she said grey hair would be okay since it is a natural hair color even if I dyed it. I want to ask if I could do it in the summer but my dad would probably say no. He wont even let me get clip in extensions so I wont have to dye my hair. I haven't talked to them about this for four months and I am not sure what I should do:/
Ask Sam


Hi there,

As you grow up it’s normal for you to start to want more independence in your life. And changing things about your own appearance might be one of those things. This can come naturally to you and lots of other young people too. Your parents are responsible for you so they have to make a decision to give you more freedom. This means that they still get to have a say in what they think you should and shouldn’t be doing, even if that sometimes feels unfair.

People often use their appearance as a way to show others what they are like as a person and I can see that this is something important to you. It looks like you have checked to find out what hair colour is appropriate at your school, but ultimately it might be your parent’s decision. Perhaps this is something you’d like to talk to them about again.

Sometimes it can feel difficult when you want someone to know something and are unsure how to tell them. But that doesn’t mean that it’s not possible. Before deciding to talk to someone it can be helpful to plan things out first.

Have a think about a time and a place where you’ll have some privacy to chat without being interrupted, and where you know you’ll feel comfortable talking. Choosing a time when you are likely to have plenty of time to talk will also help make things feel less pressured. Try to plan what you want to say. If you’re feeling nervous you might want to keep simple.

You might also find it helpful to have a look on our message boards, or even post if you felt able to. Sometimes, talking to someone else you trust can be a good way to get a different perspective on difficult situations.

If it would help to talk more about this, remember you can always talk to a counsellor. They’re there to give you a space to talk openly about your options and what you feel is best.

Take care,

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