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November 27, 2009

Red Hair and Freckles

In 2004, Nicole Giladi gave birth to twins, a daughter with brown hair and a son with copper-colored hair.

When her son started walking, "I couldn't believe how much attention he got," she says.

But there were no books available that could explain to her son how special he was, she says. So she decided to write a book, "so that he can understand why he has red hair, why he has freckles, why he burns in the sun," she says. "Little Redheads Across America", 88 pages of kid-friendly facts about red-haired children (littleredheadsacrossamerica .com.

In "The Redhead Encyclopedia", Stephen Douglas estimates that 1% to 2% of the world's population has red hair.

This information is in an article in USA Today. What I found interesting was that the parents of the little red haired delights were teaching them to think of themselves as special instead of feeling odd or freakish. Unfortunately, I was unable to meet my hubby's mother, but I would have so many questions for her if I could meet her. My husband was the only one is his family of mother, father and two siblings with blazing red hair and freckles over his entire body. There weren't any others like him in the town he grew up in and it affected him negatively. Instead of feeling special or unique, he spent his childhood trying ways to be someone else. One of the ways was drugs. He discovered at a young age that drugs would transport him to a different place and he could be someone else and not a freak.

In a related CNN story, a twelve year old red headed boy was beaten up by a group of seventh and eight graders when encouraged by a Facebook page stating that Friday was Kick a Ginger Day referring to redheads and possibly inspired by an episode of the "South Park" series.

Fortunately, over the past few years he has been able to come to accept who he was at birth, accept the life he has led for most of his life, and let go of the disappointment he felt as a child feeling so different and isolated. So reading how parents are equipping their red headed children with a strong inner acceptance and ability to view themselves as unique and special filled me with delight. These children are given a chance for self esteem and acceptance. I look at the red headed kids here in the midwest and I think what a different life it would have been for my hubby if he had grown up here where there would have lots of children who looked like him. But that wasn't the way it was and it is what it is and things are good now. I think I will get that new book about red heads for hubby though. Smile. It is funny that I ended up with him, and when I was growing up I would wish I had read hair and freckles! Now I have them, just not on me!!!

21 comments:

Shadow said...

red-heads do have it hard. my bean's friend is one, and the things he tells me....

cinner said...

Well that is one way to get red hair and freckles. My cousin has a little redhead boy maybe 7. He is so cute. When he was about 3 he told me look I have freckles, they just came overnight. I told him how lucky he was...What a twinkle in his eye.Hope you had a lovely day.

Brian Miller said...

enjoy those red hair and freckles today...smiles. a sad tale fo the boy, i always thought them special.

Yousei Hime said...

I only had natural red highlights, but I had lots of freckles. I am thankful for parents who made me feel special, no matter what I looked like. We even had a special story about how I got one particularly dark freckle on my nose--picking berries at Papa's. I wish all children knew how special they are.

janeywan said...

If I live to be 200 years old, I'll never understand why kids would bully a redhead! I think it's jeolously!!! I've always wanted red hair and the complexion to go with it.

Is that your daughter in the photo? She is gorgeous with a capital G...

jozien said...

'now i have them, just not on me'
Me too! Another item to put on my list; grateful for my husband!
Thank you.
At art-willem.com, you find at -foto's- a neat photo series of red heads. Reading your article and looking at his photos, it does make me wonder why it is positive for a girl to have red hair and not for a boy, but it seems that is changing, yes?

Bogey said...

I are one! Well, with what is left anyways. Now, I wonder why nobody picked on me on this so called Ginger Day. Hmmm! We actually had the same reports here from local High Schools whereby arrests were made because of the bullying. A shame!

Shadowthorne said...

??? what's wrong with red hair? I think they are cute.

Once back in 1994 I coloured my hair red and the dye wont come off till a year later. My fault, I dyed my hair without referring to the instruction, and the colour seeped into my scalp, making the hair red-tinged.

Shrinky said...

My daughter's best friend has a beautiful thick mane of long red hair, she is the envy of her year. Sadly, two children on this isle were expelled last week for participating in "Kick a ginger day". We think we have come so far in this day and age, then an excuse appears for the savagery to be unleashed. Seems any scapegoat will do for some to fill their need to feel validated. Makes my heart sink into my boots. I love the idea of this book, and I am so sorry it wasn't aroud when your hubby was growig up.

otin said...

My step brothers had red hair! Seriously. And to quote Forest Gump, "That is all I am going to say about that."

Spencer L Casey said...

That's a prejudice I never would have imagined. Too sad for words.

Ronda Laveen said...

What great wisdom and advice. It is so cute that you wanted red hair and freclkes when you were young and then ended up with hubby.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

I think red hair is very beautiful, so the expression "treated like a red-headed stepchild" has always shocked me, as well as the slurs against the "ginger man" in JP Donleavy.

There is always evidence of yet another way in which humans are a stupid species.

Unknown Mami said...

I've always loved red hair and freckles. I'm glad you finally got to have them.

Joanna Jenkins said...

I'm getting ready to add red highlights to my hair-- I've always loved red hair. Glad you finally got yours too :-)

The kick a "ginger" day is disgusting. It happened not far from where I live.

Hope your Thanksgiving was a great one. Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

xo

Tom said...

red hair, gap tooth grins, skinny or fat...etc...it is hard growing up in a world where being different is looked down upon. Instead it should be celebrated! A rare thing is a thing of beauty!

Beth said...

It was really sad to hear about the boy who got kicked/beat up when I was watching the news. People can be so mean.

I love red hair! My grandfather's hair is white now but his beard still grows in red. :)

therapydoc said...

They really have something, don't they, with that hair? SO cute.

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Big Dave T said...

I saw the headline on "Kick a Ginger" day and didn't read on so I didn't associate that with red-heads. My wife is a blond but her hair turned red when she became pregnant. My nephew has very bright red hair, but no freckles. I graduated from high school with a guy who had red hair and freckles. We still correspond by e-mail and he jokes that his hair is now pink (grey and red mixed together).

Jane said...

My aunt was a true redhead. She was always very sad. Maybe this is why..because she felt so different from others. Nice blog.

Thanks for coming to see me today over in the land of nod. It nice know someone is reading! : )

I'll definitely be checking back!