When I was 8 years old the fact that I did not have pierced ears became a sore spot for me. I began bugging my parents to pierce my ears. Their response to me was I had to show them I was responsible enough to handle pierced ears. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how I was supposed to show them that I was responsible. I honestly don’t know what ultimately made them say okay lets pierce your ears. Perhaps it was my impassioned plea and pointing out that I could not prove my ability to care for pierced ears until my ears were in fact pierced that did it. Or maybe they always had an age in mind.
Shortly after that my mom brought me to the mall and had my ears pierced. Just before my 9th birthday actually. This might have been the plan all along because I’ll never forget at my 9th birthday party getting to take out my starter earrings for the first time to replace them with a brand new pair of earrings received for my birthday. Well, there was that and the 1st and last time that trick candles were used on my birthday cake which my parents still to this day refer to as the spit cake because 10 nine year old girls were all blowing on the cake trying to get the candles to go out. Oh the things we remember from our childhood.
Oddly enough here I am 25 years later and the holes in my ears that I made an impassioned plea for are now closed up. They have been closed for some time. I’m sure I could jam a pair in, but I have no desire to.
And when I was a child I of course swore I wouldn’t do to my girls what my parents did to me, but here I am a parent and my mom’s voice is often heard coming out of my mouth.
Only my 13 year old daughter has her ears pierced and I actually did it the same way my parents did it for me. Although, my daughter didn’t actually ask me to get her ears pierced. I asked her if she wanted it done because I felt she was responsible enough to handle pierced ears. She said she did so just before her 9th birthday I took her to the mall and got her ears pierced. On her 9th birthday the starter earrings came out and new ones went in. The only difference was we did not do the trick candles on her birthday cake.
My ten year old however does not have her ears pierced. She goes back and forth on getting it done, but my answer remains no for her for the same reason my parents gave me. Although, I have taken it a step further and told her what she has to do to show me that she can be responsible enough to have her ears pierced. We will see, maybe soon she will have them pierced.
But there is always pressure from outside sources to do things differently.
When My Girls Were Babies
We had our fair share of people ask us if we were going to pierce our daughter’s ears before they were a year old. I remember it much more with my oldest. Not sure why. Maybe it was because she was our 1st and by the time child 2 and 4 came along they knew what the answer was.
Maybe it was because I was more aware of every single thing people asked me about how I was going to raise my child and by the time #2 got here I knew I was doing what was best and it didn’t matter what others had to tell me.
Or maybe it was because people would point out that because of her limited amount of hair it would make her look more like a girl. Both of her sisters had always a decent amount of hair on their heads. This one makes me laugh though because I could have her dressed head to toe in pink and wearing a dress and people still thought she was a boy. So I wasn’t sure how little studs in her ears would have changed that. But none the less it was stated that it would make her look more like a girl.
Somehow When A Child Gets Her Ears Pierced Is A Fight
I am sure that there has been a difference of opinion on this matter since the first person pierced her baby’s ears. However, ear piercing a baby is certainly not illegal. As a matter of fact many pediatricians will even perform ear piercing on babies. Ours does, and she does it on older children too.
I often wonder though if my parents generation ever got into such heated debates about the status of another person’s ears. I would imagine it did not happen, but the internet seems to have a way of making a debate where there is none.
And like usual I read something on the internet which had me shaking my head at the extremes some people will go to say I am right, you are wrong and you should do things MY way.
The majority of the comments were from various people who said everything from it’s borderline child abuse to while you’re at it why don’t you get your child a tattoo. Well, ear piercing does not have the same permanency as a tattoo so you’re kind of comparing apples to oranges there. But everything must be sensationalized to effectively make a point.
One of my favorite arguments against piercing a baby’s ears in this article was the not my body not my choice one. Well if we’re letting our children make all decisions for their bodies, then I suppose they would likely refuse vaccinations, medicine when they are sick, healthy eating, and baths. All things that at some point we have to battle our children for and all things which have an effect on their body not ours. While vaccinations, medicine, healthy foods, and even baths arguably have some sort of benefit to our children and pierced ears seemingly have no physical benefit, none the less what another parent does is not my choice.
It’s not child abuse and there are far more pressing problems in the world today than if someone took her child to the mall and had her ears pierced. Now if someone comes in and takes my child and pierces her ears against my will, then I would totally object to that. While my reasoning for not piercing my daughters ears is really more of I’m lazy and just don’t want another thing to have to tend to it is my choice none the less. And I expect people to respect that.
As far as I know children are not dying from getting their ears pierced. Maybe there are infections occurring and sometimes even some botched jobs, but I don’t believe any have resulted in death.
It’s Silly To Fight About
There’s just no reason for this to be an argument. What someone else does or does not do to her child’s ears has no effect what so ever on anyone else. And honestly if you want to say well it’s just cruel to do I have to say how much do you remember from infancy? Because I sure don’t remember a thing. I do however remember getting my ears pierced and it was not that painful. It was a small pinch and after it was done they felt a little swollen and tender, but I think I had falls off my bike as a child which caused me more pain than getting my ears pierced. The 2nd and 3rd degree burns I had on my shoulders when I was 10 hurt much more than the ear piercing did.
It’s truly one of those things where it just has no effect on anyone else and it’s such a non issue that I have to wonder why people get so passionate about it. Mind your own parenting. Don’t worry about what other people are doing in this case.
Whenever I was asked about piercing my daughter’s ears as an infant I would just reply, “We’ll wait until she’s responsible enough to care for the earrings herself.“ I sometimes had people telling me how it wasn’t that much more for them to care for, but I’d just respond, “It’s not for us.“ That’s it. I didn’t get into any fights with people. I made the decision that was right for my family. Just like I chose to use formula or breastmilk depending on what was right at the time. Formula does not kill and neither does ear piercing. So let parents make that choice for their family and their child. It’s simply no ones business and you’re not saving the world from some rash of ear piercing deaths.
What are your thoughts on piercing an infants ears?