Mar 182013
 

I try hard, although it is difficult, to remember that times have changed.  Things that were uncommon when I was a teenager are common for today’s teen.  Piercings is a perfect example of this.  I am not sure if it was the small town I lived in or the time I was a teen, but when I was that age it was unusual to see anyone with anything other than ear piercings on the average teen.  If I did see it, it was in a movie and the teens were usually in their later teens.

Photo by: sxc.hu, stock.xchng, cinezi, http://www.sxc.hu/photo/615011

Photo by: sxc.hu, stock.xchng, cinezi, http://www.sxc.hu/photo/615011

Nowadays, piercings seem to be much more common:  ear piercings that go all the way around the edge of the ear, face piercings on the nose, lip, and eyebrow, and then of course the body piercings on the navel and other not-to-be-named spots.  This all seems to be the norm now.

I allowed my daughter to have her ears pierced (one hole in each lobe) at the age of ten.  Now that she is close to 16 she is bringing up having her nose and navel pierced along with more holes in her ears.  As much as I am against certain piercings at her age, I also have to remind myself that times have changed.

So, what is the answer to “Mom, can I have my ______ pierced?”  Does it depend on the age?  Does it depend on the part of the body?  Or, is there simply an all-encompassing rule in the home?  I am quite sure that every parent has a different view.

There is a lot to consider health-wise when it comes to piercings as well.  Infection, allergic reactions, and damage to nerves are just a few items to keep in mind.  The Center for Young Women’s Health has some great information on this topic.

According to Statistic Brain as of May 2012, 14% of Americans have a body piercing other than their ear lobe and 72% of the pierced population is women.  Those numbers are not staggering, but interesting.  I actually thought that the 14% would be much higher.  So, I guess the argument of “but Mom, everyone is doing it” will not work!  Another statistic they note is that 31% of piercings had complications.  I actually thought that this number would be lower.

I personally have had my ears pierced since the age of four.  I got one other hole pierced when I was 12 and then a third and one on the other side in my early 20’s – all on the lobes.  At this point, I do not have a problem with my daughter getting more holes pierced in her ears.  However, I cannot bring myself to allow piercings anywhere else on her body.  Call me old-fashioned, but this is my ruling and she knows it.

So again, what do you consider as a parent when/if this question comes up?  Do you think about the health risks?  Again, does age make a difference in your decision?   Does the location of the piercing or what others might think when they see your teen play into it?

We would love to hear from you!  Please leave a comment with your thoughts.

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Feb 172013
 

My teenage daughter is no different from other girls her age when it comes to “girly stuff”.  She likes clothes, messing around with her hair, trying different makeup, shopping, painting her nails, and all those teen girl types of things.  She does well in school, is trustworthy and responsible, so I do not mind her interest in beauty and fashion at all.  I also remember being the same way when I was a teenager!

Makeup

Now when it comes to me, I noticed that over time I became less conscious of these types of things.  Most of my clothes were about ten or more years old – I was rarely buying myself anything new and if I did it was comfortable clothing.  My hair style rarely changed, I did not take pay attention to my skincare, and I did not have much to say about fashion or beauty in general.  I did not even realize this until my daughter became a teenager and more interested in hair and clothes than Barbie and Spongebob.

It started with looking through a fashion magazine together.  My daughter started telling me I should buy myself some up-to-date clothes and she wanted to help me pick them out.  She became interested in the types of lotions and moisturizers I used on my skin.  She showed me shoes and jewelry that would be sensible for work but still look nice.  She really became interested in helping me get back into those girly things.

Then, I suddenly realized that it was fun to update myself a little AND these also became topics that my daughter and I could share.  Now we go shopping together and help each other pick things out for the other.  We even have fun disagreeing on what looks good or works good sometimes!  It has really become a way for us to bond as mother and daughter and got me out of my comfort zone at the same time.

I do not think that you have to go as far as changing your look or spending a bunch of money.  But if your teen has an interest in these things; showing your interest in them as well can be a great thing to share.  And, as the parent of a teen I know that sharing a common interest can be a challenge!

This all might sound superficial to some.  But as long as she does not go overboard or lose sight of where this all falls in the big picture, then it is all good.  I still make sure that my daughter knows that looks are not everything.  This is just one small thing that we can share that makes us feel good as “girls”.

So, I thank my daughter for helping me to feel like a girl again.

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