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I'm a paralegal at a small firm. My dreads have never been an issue.
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I was in a bad marriage when I begun my first dreadlock journey. My exhusband had dreadlocks when I first met him, and he very much influenced the route I took in my dreadlock care. I didn't ever feel quite right in my first set though, I felt ugly and like I wasn't pulling them off at all.
I did cut off my dreadlocks shortly after I divorced him. For me that was the way to go. I afterwards discovered self-love for the first time ever. Of course, I then started my dreadlocks journey a second time and love every bit of it.
What I'm saying is, I can relate and it's really only something you can answer for yourself. It would be a shame to let him take away your "roots to the world," just because of some ass that didn't recognize the awesomeness that is you.
I hope you soon realize the right path for you and your dreads.
I backcombed by dreads also. I would personally take out the bands. It is typical for almost all of the backcombed hair to come undone and it will knot itself up over time. The sections do tend to stay as you had them. It definitely sucks watching all the time you put into them come undone, but they knot up so amazing over the months.
I'm 9 months in now, and they are still reknotting themselves.
I also have had the same experience. My hair is very straight and fine (but thick) - silky, you know? Weeks have gone by, no combing, no conditioner or special shampoos - just what was recommended here and got nothing. About 2 weeks ago, I sectioned off my hair and twisted/ripped and backcombed the sections. I just think that with hair like ours, the sections need something to anchor the ends with so the middle areas will start tangling (or something like that). I am really happy with how it turned out - though I must say my head looks like a big hairy mess right now.
Just a question for those who did help their dreads along through the T/R/B methods - how long roughly did it take for the sections to really start tightening up and actually dreading on their own? I am trying not to obsess - hahhaha - but I am curious.
Hang in there, Panterra - I look forward to hearing how things go for you in the future.