Crochet, 16 dreads, HUGE sections
crochet and dread tools recovery
I would probably comb them out and then either go with neglect, or a very gentle TnR --> Neglect. (though neglect would probably be best, your hair has been through enough!)
I haven't read all the comments so forgive me if I'm repeating. This is essentially how my dread were 'made'. I TnRed The very first row at the nap of my neck, then next month the row above, and next month the row above, etc...until I gave that up and went natural anyways..Its perfectly okay for dreads to have different birthdays. Here in September it'll be my first rowsyears Sectioning will be the key in keeping your regular hair and dreaded hair separate. I often wore my hair up and kept my dreads down to keep them from eating each other up If you have any more questions feel free to ask! happy dreading :D
Don't worry about it hun, everything above is spot on. I plan on becoming a doctor and my dreads are around a year old.. Dreadlocks are both religious and spiritual, and you cannot be discriminated against for them. That being said, I do see locs as a sort of asshole detector, as you can see you quick makes a face etc. The more time goes by, the more you and other will come to love them. My mother HATED my locs when I started, and now shes 'gotten use to them' and will occasionally touch them..:3 Im rambling. Peace and blessings on your journey!