Jen, age fifteen, was called “Pelican Nose”. Nineteen-year-old Hannah suffered sexual harassment due to her DDD chest. At seventeen, John sported what he described as “Dumbo” ears. All three of these kids had physical issues that made them miserable–and all three got them fixed.
When I first tuned into this Today Show segment, I was prepared to wag a finger at the parents who would put their kids under the knife in the name of beauty. Are they teaching their kids that looks are the most important thing? After watching, I’m not so sure.
Each kid was taunted mercilessly before surgery–and all seemed to have emotionally changed for the better post-operation. Clearly serious medical procedures should never be taken lightly, but many feel that there’s nothing wrong with changing something that negatively affects your life. Dr. Sam Rizk, Jen’s surgeon claims that, “It’s no different than getting braces for crooked teeth.”
It’s a big leap from a mouthful of wires to the operating table–a place which is never without risk–so parents have to be absolutely certain that their kid is getting surgery for the right reasons. Psychiatrist Dr. Charles Sophy feels that the first step when a child requests a cosmetic procedure is to ask why they want the change. He recommends at least four sessions with a shrink to make sure that there really is a body issue and that the kid isn’t using surgery as a coping skill.
While it seems that the teens in the segment had legitimate gripes, I’m not convinced that anyone can get to the root of the problem in a few therapy sessions. No doubt Hannah’s DDD breasts must have caused her pain; I’m just not so sure about the others. Plastic surgery is a big deal and should be a last resort.
And if a teen should they request bigger breasts? Hell, no.
What about you? Would you let your kid get plastic surgery?