Should parents pierce their baby’s ears a la North West? Closer’s writers go head-to-head on the debate

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by Closer staff |
Published on

Why I’m against getting your baby’s ears pierced

Closer’s writer Kayleigh Dray on maintaining the innocence of children

If someone held you down and shot holes into your body with needles, against your will, you'd definitely have something to say about it - and so it is with baby ear piercings. These little tots are too young to vote, too young for tattoos, too young to make any decisions about their body and they rely on their parents to look after them.

So why on earth would any mother or father think it's acceptable to take their baby and have their ears pierced?

'Why not wait until the child is old enough to make the decision themselves?'

Not only does it inflict unnecessary pain on the child, but there is also a risk of infection or injury - and why is there such a hurry to have it done?

Meredith Goodwin, a family practitioner in Florida, has said:

‘The procedure is not without risk.

'Not all ear-piercing operations have the proper equipment or staff trained to work specifically with young children.'

Why not wait until the child is old enough to make the decision themselves? You're not only denying them their control over their body, but also the opportunity to enjoy the experience with their friends when they're older.

'Parents should let their children decide when they are ready to get their ears pierced'

For many teens, going along to Claire's Accessories and getting your first studs is a rite of passage. Babies will not remember the moment at all.

It seems sick to impose an adult's ideal of beauty on a baby; makeup and adult-style clothing are taboo, so it seems strange that piercings are not. Babies are not dolls. And, if you do desperately need your baby to wear earrings, why not just use clip-ons? That way you are not inflicting a permanent change onto her body.

The only reason babies get their ears pierced is because their mothers think it looks cute. The babies can't possibly have chosen to be pierced and I can't see why any parent would think otherwise.

Why I’m for getting your baby’s ears pierced

Closer’s writer Jessica Rach on a cultural norm

I had my ears pierced as a baby and have never held a grudge against my mother. In our German culture, it is relatively normal for a baby girl to get her ears pierced, and it would have been more unusual not to.

I did not experience infection or injury, and certainly don’t remember the pain as any kind of traumatic experience.

'It has nothing to do with vanity. It’s a cultural tradition.’

Growing up, most of my friends had their ears pierced, and I felt sorry for those who didn’t.

They had to go through the pain of getting them pierced as teens, when they were much more aware of what was about to happen. I was happy to have the experience behind me.

If I had decided I didn’t like my ear piercings, I would simply have taken them out. I didn’t.

I was not brought up in a shallow or fickle household. My single mother was a newsreader, who placed great importance on education over appearance, so I do not agree that this is a vanity move on the parent's part.

'Having your baby daughter's ears pierced is a cultural tradition for many'

Additionally, other cultures do not ask their baby (sons) before they are circumcised, have their heads shaved or are christened. In Germany, and other countries, it is simply tradition.

Roxana Soto, co-founder of Spanglish Baby, has also defended Latin model mum Gisele Bundchen for having her 7-month-old daughter’s ears pierced, explaining: 'For Latina moms, piercing their baby girls’ ears has nothing to do with vanity. It’s a cultural tradition.’

When I have a baby, if she is a girl, I will have her ears pierced. Not because it looks cute- which it does in my eyes, but because I see it as a tradition that I refuse to break."

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