The Piercing Truth

By: Jason Colthorp
By: Jason Colthorp

When is a child ready to get earrings?

OK, somehow I'm the bad guy because I don't want to let my 8-year old get her ears pierced... for the SECOND time!

My 5-year old just got hers done and my oldest had hers done when she was 6.  I fought a losing battle on those occasions, but when my oldest started talking about another set, I wasn't about to lose this fight.  You're probably saying to yourself, "You are her parents, she does what you tell her right?"  That would be the case if my wife wasn't for it.  She doesn't see it as a big deal.

Is this bizarro world?  When did 8-year olds start getting a second stud in their ears?  Never as far as I can tell.  But of course, when my daughter found out her cousin, also 8, was getting her second set of earrings, she had to have them too.  I told her no today on the phone which set of a Niagara Falls-like cry-fest.  I went home tonight and tried to console her with my reasons why.

1. You hardly wear earrings as it is now.
2. I'm always finding your earrings laying around the house-- sometimes just one-- which tells me you aren't responsible enough for more earrings and you don't value the ones you have now.
3. You're 8 years old.  As your parent, your provider, and the person who makes sure you don't get hit by a bus when you cross the road, I will decide when you get to put holes in your body.

My trump card was that she wouldn't be able to play indoor soccer which starts soon, because you can't wear earrings during games.  She's the one who rallied her outdoor teammates to sign up with her and that's not something she can back out of.  Upon hearing all this, my wife agreed, although still holding strong to the I-don't-think-it's-a-big-deal line of thinking.

I can't find one person with kids who think this is a good idea and most didn't let their kids get their FIRST pierced ear until after they were 8.  I think it would look absolutely trashy on a young girl.  Sorry, that's my opinion and I told my brother that, who was planning on taking his daughter today.  But, he threw me a bone by nixing the plan when he heard his niece would be left behind. 

Finally, solidarity.

What do you think?

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  • by A. M. Location: Lansing on Feb 4, 2009 at 09:15 AM
    Don't sweat the small stuff and this is relatively small in comparison with what you'll face when they start dating and driving. From the sounds of it, you're a great dad and you'll do just fine, but let this one pass.
  • by Judy on Jan 30, 2009 at 12:52 PM
    I think your wife is right. It is not a big deal for a girl to want holes in her ears for earings. Now..if she should ask for one in her nose or eye brow, that might be a big deal. But she didn't ask for that, she wanted something that was small and pretty. NO BIG DEAL DAD. Sometimes you need to let them win and this would be a battle for you to let her win. PS: Her hair will probably cover it and it won't be seen anyway.
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