1. put this on the 4a forum, as you will get more answers, especially regarding styles there - this is the coloring forum
2. very tightly curly hair shrinks and accepting this is helpful to accept your hair and all of its characteristics.
3. I don't know what styles you wear currently, but have you tried stretched styles, like twistouts, braid outs or banding the hair while it dries? These styles will help you manipulate the hair to achieve the look you want.