Piercing baby ears - okay or not? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums
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#61 of 120 Old 10-10-2013, 02:33 PM
 
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.... I don't see a huge problem with it, and certainly won't judge anyone for doing it. Yes, I do think making decisions about your child's body should be carefully considered.

"But parents are supposed to make decision for their children. And I little hole in the ear isn't the same thing as a functioning part of a boys penis being completely removed. "

Exaxtly.
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#62 of 120 Old 10-10-2013, 02:49 PM
 
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I was french raised roman catholic so i had my ears pierced at 10 months, like everyone else in our culture did. It never presented an issue for me or my parents. i dont' remember it hurting at all, though i'm quite sure that's because i was too young. I don't see it as a bad thing but that's probably due to my personal experience.

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#63 of 120 Old 10-10-2013, 03:12 PM
 
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^^^These posts are making me even more convinced that earrings are more of a hazard than a perk on anyone still young enough to engage in rough play or to not have a quasi-adult consciousness of their body's location in space and the juxtaposition of other items. So now I'm thinking maybe it would be a nice thing to do as a celebration before starting junior high, or some time around that time.

A friend of mine used to work in daycare.  She described a few of the different problems that earrings had caused and while I don't remember all the details, the gist of the conversation was: toddlers can find all sorts of ways to make earrings hazardous.

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#64 of 120 Old 10-10-2013, 03:46 PM
 
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We wait for them to ask. That said, dd12 has wanted it done since 9 or so but only at the mall-type places. No idea why. I insist on a professional piercer...so she's still not pierced.
My Mom and I got ours done together when I was about 10.
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#65 of 120 Old 10-10-2013, 04:59 PM
 
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Just chiming in to give another perspective here.  I think there is nothing wrong with early ear peircings.  In fact, I wish my parents had done it for me.  I wanted to wear earrings since I was a little girl, but I was afraid of the pain, so I waited until I was 16.  If my parents had just done it, there would not have been any painful memories (either of the actually event of of all the years I wavered, wanting earrings very badly but also being afraid).   It probably helps that I grew up near a middle eastern community, so I had friends for whom earrings were a from-birth-given, and none of the girls who had pierced ears have expressed regret (we're all still friends :) ).  

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#66 of 120 Old 10-10-2013, 08:40 PM
 
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We don't, after all, typically pierce the ears of baby boys.

 

Unfortunately, it's becoming quite common in my area, often BOTH ears, by their 3rd birthday.  My son's 2 1/2, but very tall, and my neighbors have insinuated several times that it's time to start thinking about getting James' done.  Ummm... NO!

 

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I find it strange that people get their babies ears pierced. Do people do it because they don't want others to call their girls boys?

 

I think it's similar to wanting to dress your baby girl in pink dresses or put little bows in her hair.  If my older son had been a girl, he would have gotten the works- pink dresses, bows in hair, earrings.  I didn't think anything of it then, it would have just been part of having a little girl.  shrug.gif

 

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Hubby is a doc, and he has had to cut the studs out of the inside of babies earlobes because of swelling, growth, etc. He says it is not uncommon.

 

My former step-daughter got her ears pierced when she was four and her Mother never cleaned them.  We'd see her every other weekend and by the time we'd see her, there'd usually be some serious cleaning needed, infection started.  Eventually, what you mentioned above happened to her and it was sooooooo painful for her when the doctor had to remove it and clean it.  :(

 

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Sometimes I think we overthink this whole parenting thing.

 

I suspect this is true.  We all want to be "perfect" parents, sometimes we go overboard trying not to mess up.


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#67 of 120 Old 10-10-2013, 09:26 PM
 
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I think it perpetuates the idea that people don't own their own bodies. Obviously in terms of damage, it is nowhere near the level of circumcision. However, it is still someone making a permanent decision about the body of someone who can't consent. Furthermore, the only way to get an infants ears pierced is with a gun, which is a whole different problem. Every reputable piercer I've met in my state won't do it before age 12.

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#68 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 09:42 AM
 
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I had my ears pierced at birth or soon after. Got my second hole at 12 or so and my 3rd as a teen. I did a lot of research and decided not to circumcise my son. When I had my daughter now 10 months first thing I asked my son's doc once I knew she was a she was when can I do her ears. I was told to wait until 6 mo old. At 6 mo I had her doc do it. Didn't even think to research it. Never crossed my sleep deprived mine. My grandparents kept asking when it was going to be done and why I was waiting. We're Hispanic on that side of the family. It wasn't until the super models pics of her baby girl caught fire that I even took a moment to think about it. I don't think any amt of research would of change what I did. It's not medically necessary, it is painful, but it's not anywhere near as drastic as circ. If she decides she doesn't want earrings when she is older she can take them out. My top holes have closed up since I stopped putting earrings in them. And if she hates me later for piercing her ears well it'll just be one more thing for her to tell her therapist about. It's not like I tattooed her.

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#69 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 01:49 PM
 
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Cultural aspects aside... I think it's absolutely ridiculous to pierce a baby's ears. What's the point? Obviously the kid can't choose, so it's more about what the parent wants, which to me, is selfish. Piercing a baby's ears just because they won't remember the pain or cry much is not a good reason to do it that young. That annoys me. To each his own, I guess. My DD won't be getting her ears pierced until she asks, and if she asks before 10, the answer will probably be no.

A bit xenophobic when you say "cultural aspects aside" then totally naysaying said cultures by calling it ridiculous. Judgmental much?

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#70 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 03:01 PM
 
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I am slightly surprised that this has been such a sex oriented issue to be honest. I know that seems strange because it is certainly more socially acceptable I guess for girls to have their ears pierced than boys but still. This of course is just an observation not a judgement

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#71 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 03:11 PM
 
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A bit xenophobic when you say "cultural aspects aside" then totally naysaying said cultures by calling it ridiculous. Judgmental much?

Ah, here we go again. Can't voice an opinion without being called judgmental. I suppose I'm the only one on this thread with a target on my back. If it makes you feel better, I don't agree with it AT ALL. Ok? Go back and read my older posts to find out why. Also read what others have said about how they disagree with it as well. You'll see that there are similar opinions as mine, just worded differently and probably more politically correct than me. That's ok though. I don't usually try to be politically correct.

 

The definition of xenophobic...

xenophobic - suffering from xenophobia; having abnormal fear or hatred of the strange or foreign.

 

Please explain how I am being xenophobic.

 

Oh, and by the way, the OP started the thread looking for opinions. I gave mine. The title of this thread is... "piercing babies ears- okay or not?"

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#72 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 03:13 PM
 
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A bit xenophobic when you say "cultural aspects aside" then totally naysaying said cultures by calling it ridiculous. Judgmental much?

I come from one of those cultures that pierces baby's ears. I do not agree with it. I don't think it's a good thing.

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#73 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 04:21 PM
 
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I don't think it's a big deal on getting your daughters ears pierced. Sooner or later they're going to get them pierced so might as well do them when they're small and don't really feel anything cause they catch them by surprise.
 

That's an assumption, though. You can't say that it's going to happen sooner or later because your child may be a person that doesn't want her ears pierced. 

 

I personally will wait until my daughter is old enough to understand it, ask for it, and care for it. 


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#74 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 04:22 PM
 
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Also, most people wouldn't dream of piercing a baby boy's ears because they don't know if that's something they'll want done or not. Just another example of gender stereotyping, and I believe it sends the wrong message to girls.


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#75 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 05:15 PM
 
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I guess I don't think it's a very big deal bc I'm surprised by the degree of passion & contoversy on here. Wow.

 

I won't compare it w circ bc, well it isn't surgery, yk? I do see how one could point out the "alter someone's body w/o consent" similarity, but ear piercing is so minor, I can't put it in the same camp w circ; just my $ 0.02

 

I -would- like to point out that piercing w studs & a gun is **nothing** like piercing w "captive bead" continuous rings by a professional piercist. The rings are safer, heal better, & there is no pain, IME--no pain for  either me or my daughter-- we've both been pierced both ways. She says she's never had pain with either method & she's never shown any signs of pain. I only had pain when pierced w a gun thru the upper ear cartilage & it was minor. I have only seen infection & snagging problems w studs, usually of inferior or allergenic materials. My family's experiences lead me to believe ear piercing is fairly minor when done well & cared for properly.

 

I'm intrigued by some off the PPs. ie the description of poking holes in babies for decoration. I get that point, but most all parents do some type of uncomfotable things to/ with their babies (which the baby cannot decide for herself/ himself) for not-entirely-altruistic purposes-- things that are also prolly not that big a deal, like really adoarable-yet-uncomfortable shoes, etc... I'd put ear piercing more in this camp.

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#76 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 07:21 PM
 
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I also was interested in the notion that piercing sends the wrong message. I can see how it -could- send a negative msg-- esp if there was a lack of positive environment in general in the child's life. I don't think piercing in and of itself is usually powerful enough to effect this kind of change, tho, not in most situations.

 

I can think of ways the opposite could happen--- like how constantly being asked if you're a boy or girl can be damaging to a child's psyche and budding sense of masculinity or femininity. I got a pixie haircut as a young child & was asked this at one critical moment, and it did have it's crushing effect... (I got my ears pierced, incidentally, within a year after that terrible haircut, lol, hadn't thought of that conection before).

 

I also know of a family that refused to make any change to their children's bodies until the child was old enough to request it-- including haircuts. Their boys were constantly mistaken for girls & IMO, it did have a negative influence on them, psychologically-- the youngest eventually CHEWED off some of his long hair the first time he was away from his family for any length of time-- at a cub scout meeting, I think.

 

These examples are only illustrations that either position on "altering" a child's appearance can have unintended  consequences or send wrong messages-- which goes back to my original thought that the overall parenting relationship & environment will have much more influence than any single (fairly minor) decision by itself (like ear piercing or hair cutting)-- we can get this one thing "right", but still send a negative overall message, or vice versa-- get some small decisions "wrong" (or simply vain or frivilous) but still send good msgs & be good parents to our LOs.

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#77 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 10:24 PM
 
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If a child is old enough to be in boy scouts, they're old enough to request a haircut. Beyond that, hair grows back. After a year or two, lobe piercings will never close up. The hole will always be there. Again, the damage isn't the same as circumcision, but the mentality behind it is the same; someone making a permanent alteration to their child's body that they will be stuck with, regardless of their opinions and desires when they come of age to realize. I certainly don't react to people who pierce their DDs ears the same way I do when I find out they circumcise, but I do find it very sad that a choice was permanently taken away from them. 

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#78 of 120 Old 10-11-2013, 11:24 PM
 
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Is the underlying issue here partly about purity? I find that very interesting. I've met a lot of "purity hippies" over the past couple of years and although I like some the ideas behind this whole purity movement at the same time I think it goes too far sometimes.

I really don't think piercing a baby's ears is that bad, certainly not something I would want to judge a parent for doing. Really, what I'd like is if women could support a diversity of views, even those that are different from our own.

Sometimes I find being a mother so alienating due to the constant comparison in approaches and views, which so often devolves into competition and hostility with other mothers.
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#79 of 120 Old 10-12-2013, 06:54 AM
 
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Is the underlying issue here partly about purity? I find that very interesting. I've met a lot of "purity hippies" over the past couple of years and although I like some the ideas behind this whole purity movement at the same time I think it goes too far sometimes.

I really don't think piercing a baby's ears is that bad, certainly not something I would want to judge a parent for doing. Really, what I'd like is if women could support a diversity of views, even those that are different from our own.

Sometimes I find being a mother so alienating due to the constant comparison in approaches and views, which so often devolves into competition and hostility with other mothers.

I just don't want to make a change to my DD body without her knowledge and consent.


In the big picture, ear piercing is pretty minor. I realize that. However, a change is a change. Everyone should get a say in what happens to their body. Babies can't voice their opinion. What is the big hurry anyway? To me, piercing a baby's ears has nothing to do with what THEY want. It is all about what the parents want. IMO, that is selfish. There have been a few posts here where moms have expressed regret in doing it so early. I don't want to have regrets.

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#80 of 120 Old 10-12-2013, 08:48 AM
 
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Hmmm what about other "cosmetic" procedures that a baby or even a young child can't agree to. I'm thinking about raised raspberry marks or moles that don't cause any physical interference but that a doctor has suggested removing, or a dental cap for a non white tooth that is otherwise fine. I'm sure there's other such items too. Things that don't interfere with normal life but require a parental decision on a body modification that will most likely leave a mark.

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#81 of 120 Old 10-12-2013, 09:17 AM
 
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Hmmm what about other "cosmetic" procedures that a baby or even a young child can't agree to. I'm thinking about raised raspberry marks or moles that don't cause any physical interference but that a doctor has suggested removing, or a dental cap for a non white tooth that is otherwise fine. I'm sure there's other such items too. Things that don't interfere with normal life but require a parental decision on a body modification that will most likely leave a mark.

Raised raspberry marks (hemangiomas) and moles can be indicative of serious medical issues... like skin cancer or other types of cancer. Kids can have these types of cancer. Saving a kid's life is more important in this scenario, which is a bigger decision to make and must be made by the parents. A doctor usually won't suggest removal of skin discoloration unless there is a medical issue. So far in my life, I have never heard of a parent putting their kid through cosmetic surgery without having a medical issue that supersedes the cosmetic issue.

 

My DD has a dime-size mole on the back of her leg. My father, who is a doctor, suggested we should get it removed. Not because it is medically necessary, but because he thinks it's unsightly. He can be a jerk sometimes. She is only 5. He mentioned it shortly after she was born. I declined and said unless there is a medical reason, we're not touching it. If my DD doesn't like it when she's older, we'll revisit our options. She can decide that one on her own. No unnecessary surgery in my house.

 

As for cosmetic dentistry on children, never heard of it. Do people do that??


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#82 of 120 Old 10-12-2013, 12:05 PM
 
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Not wanting to change your babies body in any way out of respect for their autonomy is laudable, though I also think it's okay if others don't feel that small changes are bad. I know some women who constantly post pics of their little ones online and to me that has potentially far more consequences since it can be impossible to get that information back and there's a lot going on with biometrics. When we talk about purity the vaccine issue also comes up, and I suppose anything that you allow into your child's mind (violent tv etc) that can have long term impacts or change them. I guess either way children will be impacted by things and people around them and will chane as a result.
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#83 of 120 Old 10-12-2013, 12:54 PM
 
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Not for us. We believe firmly in the person's right to decide for themselves, with sound mind and full information, what they want done to their bodies.

 

Ear piercing, for boys and girls, is a decision we allow them to make when they're 10 and older.

 

Why 10? By 10, we feel they're old enough to A: be responsible for the cleaning by themselves, B: understand the risks (local infection, regret, possibility of earring being ripped or pulled in sports and play), and C: have enough sense of their personal style to choose something they like and will want to take care of, rather than something they'll hate the next day and take out.

 

Other cosmetic procedures will be evaluated as they come up, and dependent on the child. If it impacts their life and self-image enough, I think I would cave and do it, but in general if a child is old enough to be upset by something in their appearance, they're old enough to know whether or not they want to do something about it. I'm talking about things like ear pinning and mole removal, by the way; not major structural surgery.


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#84 of 120 Old 10-12-2013, 05:08 PM
 
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Raised raspberry marks (hemangiomas) and moles can be indicative of serious medical issues...

As for cosmetic dentistry on children, never heard of it. Do people do that??

I'm talking about purely cosmetic moles and other such marks, of course then can be something that medically or physically impacts them. But I have heard of doctors suggesting removal of purely cosmetics ones. And yes I have heard of purely cosmetic dentistry on kids.

While both these things would be rare, there are probably more things I haven't thought of like scar repair and more. But regardless of "what" it is (because it could be many things without medical need), there could be things in which parents choose purely cosmetic fixes for their children. Whether that be for social, emotional or other reason I don't know.

But I won't say I'll *never* do this or never do that because until I'm forced to make such a decision then I never really know what I'll do. Piercing ears as being purely cosmetic was brought up, there are other things that are done that are purely cosmetic too. While it may not be my choice I can certainly respect that it may be another person's choice.

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#85 of 120 Old 10-15-2013, 09:39 AM
 
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This post is kind of all over the place.  Please, indulge me for a bit.  You'll have to read through the whole post to get the "full view" of my thoughts on the matter.

 

I will say: It's a no-brainer to me, personally.  Piercing a baby's ears can please no one but the parent and other adults.  It can cause real damage by posing a safety hazard and be a starting point for a painful infection.  No one has mentioned it, but allergies to metals are common and can cause severe pain.  If someone really feels that they need to announce to the world their daughter isn't a boy, that's what all the frilly pink clothes are for.  (But now I think about it--are the frilly&clean clothes more limiting than a simple ear piercing?  Food for thought.)  

 

Quote:

 Piercing ears as being purely cosmetic was brought up, there are other things that are done that are purely cosmetic too.

 

I'm curious what other purely cosmetic things (meaning zero medical indications) we do to our kids are 1) permanent 2) potentially hazardous to the child and 3) can lead to infection 4) that is done to infants.  You can add "intensely painful", too.

 

I can think of some things that certainly are physically worse in some ways: wearing shoes all day that are stiff and tight, being strapped into an infant carrier for long periods of time day in and day out.  You could stretch the definition and include food as well that is non-nutritional ("purely cosmetic") and the possible damage from that.  That's a stretch, but I can see the similarities.  You could add exposure to loud music and ambient smoke for some households. All these unnecessary things that parents choose for their children that can cause physical damage.

 

I am 44 and never had my ears pierced.  Almost did.  Chose not to.  It was an incredibly non-conformist decision to make, though I didn't realize it at the time.  For my own girls, I was going to let them when they asked, but this thread has convinced me that I'm going to push a bit for them to wait due to the limiting factors of earrings.  I'm back to thinking about that magical age of 13. 

 

Frankly, I barely even notice if a baby has her ears pierced.  But if I stop and think about it, I think it is ill-guided, potentially hazardous, and highly impractical.  But I think I disapprove more of the stiff-soled shoes so many babies and toddlers are shackled into.  *That* drives me batty.  Poor kids.  The stiff, play-hostile clothes that are sold to girls.  *That* frustrates me to no end.  Poor girls, struggling to take a high step on the playground, fighting those jeans all the way, attempting to run while strapped into those stiff, blinky bling-shoes.  And speaking of strapped in, those babies who are forced to view the world from their infant seat (which I see less and less where I live--yay!!!!)  All those rankle me far more than ear piercing.  Which isn't to say I approve.


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#86 of 120 Old 10-20-2013, 02:01 AM
 
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My family has metal sensitivities and piercing your ears was done at older ages 9+ because if you were metal sensitive anything in your ears on fragile scar tissue hurts and they constantly got infected had mine pierced for less than 6 months before they grew closed i couldn't stand to keep anything in them... Now look at that problem on a baby where the screaming could just be explained away as collic and i think i'll wait till they are old enough to be able to tell me what's wrong and care for them themselves.

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#87 of 120 Old 10-23-2013, 07:24 AM
 
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I have a similar thought to many other posters on here. 

 

I would not pierce the ears of either of my children until they were old enough to ask AND old enough to take care of them.

 

I remember getting mine pierced for the first time at the age of 7, I was not responsible enough to clean them and take care of them, and they got horribly infected (ear ring back stop was covered up by my ear lobe). My parents had made it clear it was not their job. (Figured out years later when I had them pierced again that I was allergic to any metals on my body.)

 

I see no reason to pierce them if they aren't asking for them. 


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#88 of 120 Old 10-26-2013, 06:51 AM
 
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I don't pierce ears. Mine were pierced as a baby but they kept letting infected and by the time my ears were done growing, they closed up, weren't centered and I had to get them repierced anyways. The new piercing was complicated by the old scar tissue.
I think I'd wait until preteen age if my girls were interested. Maybe a teensy bit earlier if they had their hearts set on it and we're mature enough to handle it.
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#89 of 120 Old 10-26-2013, 07:13 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetSilver View Post
 

 

I'm curious what other purely cosmetic things (meaning zero medical indications) we do to our kids are 1) permanent 2) potentially hazardous to the child and 3) can lead to infection 4) that is done to infants.  You can add "intensely painful", too.

 

I can think of some things that certainly are physically worse in some ways: wearing shoes all day that are stiff and tight, being strapped into an infant carrier for long periods of time day in and day out.  You could stretch the definition and include food as well that is non-nutritional ("purely cosmetic") and the possible damage from that.  That's a stretch, but I can see the similarities.  You could add exposure to loud music and ambient smoke for some households. All these unnecessary things that parents choose for their children that can cause physical damage.

 

I am 44 and never had my ears pierced.  Almost did.  Chose not to.  It was an incredibly non-conformist decision to make, though I didn't realize it at the time.  For my own girls, I was going to let them when they asked, but this thread has convinced me that I'm going to push a bit for them to wait due to the limiting factors of earrings.  I'm back to thinking about that magical age of 13. 

 

Frankly, I barely even notice if a baby has her ears pierced.  But if I stop and think about it, I think it is ill-guided, potentially hazardous, and highly impractical.  But I think I disapprove more of the stiff-soled shoes so many babies and toddlers are shackled into.  *That* drives me batty.  Poor kids.  The stiff, play-hostile clothes that are sold to girls.  *That* frustrates me to no end.  Poor girls, struggling to take a high step on the playground, fighting those jeans all the way, attempting to run while strapped into those stiff, blinky bling-shoes.  And speaking of strapped in, those babies who are forced to view the world from their infant seat (which I see less and less where I live--yay!!!!)  All those rankle me far more than ear piercing.  Which isn't to say I approve.

Yanno, this is a really good point. The other day I observed my daughter struggling to climb into her car seat in a particular pair of jeans. The next day I had her in a pair of boys' khakis and she scrambled right up! I think I'll get rid of those jeans. I've always made sure to put her in shoes with flexible soles.

 

I do hate seeing girls in clothes that don't lend themselves to play. Or parents who don't want them to play. I took my daughter to the park when she was around 1, and she was happily digging in the dirt. There was another family of little girls there, and one of them commented to me that her mom wouldn't let her little sister play in the dirt like that. We had a little conversation about how it was okay for girls to get dirty, etc. 


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#90 of 120 Old 10-26-2013, 07:41 PM
 
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 being strapped into an infant carrier for long periods of time day in and day out. 

 

People do this?! Am I mis-understanding?

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