They said I was too hairy
Aaron was in Year 6 when he hit puberty. He didn’t really think that the hairs appearing on his face were a big deal until the other kids pointed them out and started calling him “goatee boy.” The name didn’t stick, but the feeling that he didn’t quite fit in did. “It just kind of added another thing to the list…that made me a bit different,” Aaron explains.
As a teenager, Aaron was on the receiving end of another hair-related blow. He sent a shirtless picture to a girl he liked and her response was blunt:
She wouldn’t speak to me unless I waxed my chest.
Reflecting on his hairiness, he says: “I never thought that it was a bad thing before. It really took me aback.”
Watch the video below to find out how Aaron learned to look beyond what others thought of him and love his luscious locks.
Hairy isn’t scary
Puberty is a normal part of growing up. It happens to everyone at different times and can affect you in lots of different ways. It's a bit of a rollercoaster, but it's also a natural part of life and doesn't last forever.
Aaron’s journey into puberty started a little earlier than his classmates’ which meant that he was picked on for being different. When you’re in the midst of a hormone tornado it’s hard to see clearly, but Aaron’s advises that keeping perspective is really important, especially in your teenage years.
“We all have different quirks and different rates of growing up. Puberty’s a horrible time for everyone,” says Aaron, but “it’s not forever.”
If you’re going through a tough time, it also helps to talk insists Aaron. You could talk to people who are older than you and more experienced, or to your peers, but the key point is to keep talking. "The more you do, the less alone you feel," explains Aaron.
As he grew older, Aaron also learnt to embrace his quirks and stop caring what other people thought of him. He realised that he liked himself and so if someone didn't like him, it was "their loss!"
Your uniqueness is what makes you, you.
The real turning point for Aaron has been beginning to model. He’s even done an underwear shoot! Through acknowledging his uniqueness he’s now capitalising on his “Persian rug” rather than letting it hold him back.
So remember, whether your hair is curly or straight, thick or thin, head-to-toe or somewhere in-between, it’s part of what makes you special, human and beautiful. As Aaron rightly says, “If everyone was exactly the same then life wouldn’t be exciting.” You know it's true!
Where to find support
If you’re worried about puberty or hair growth, you can find lot of advice and support on the Childline website about the changes your body will go through and how you can learn to love the new you.
Don’t forget that you can also talk to an adult you trust too – they’ve been through it all before and might be able to give you some good advice.