Just because your 13-year-old swears that if she doesn’t have Selena Gomez’s nose, she’s going to be a future-less social pariah, it doesn’t mean your first instinct should be to make an appointment for her with your friendly neighborhood plastic surgeon.
Not that we’re discounting the very real and very painful bullying that goes on amongst adolescents. Kids can be extraordinarily cruel. But expecting that slapping a new nose shape on your teen is going to change that fact is totally unrealistic.
Now, if your teen has a harelip, a large growth, or severe scarring, then having cosmetic surgical correction definitely has the potential to help your kid tremendously. But it’s a different matter entirely if the child is emotionally distraught because he or she just isn’t as pretty/handsome as he or she would like to be.
Get Real, Kids. And Parents.
Look, we’re all for making informed, rational decisions regarding your appearance, but for most teenagers—again, unless they have significant physical deformities—plastic surgery is at best a surface fix that won’t do a thing to resolve any core problems. Not to mention, a nose job gives those bullies an awful lot of power. Let’s face it—if a kid were relentlessly mocked because of her glorious Roman profile, why wouldn’t those same bullies then relentlessly mock her for having plastic surgery?
While paying for cosmetic surgery for bullied teens is an act that has seems to has its heart in the right place, kids will be kids. There will always be teens who are teased about their appearance, no matter how accessible plastic surgery becomes. And seriously, is encouraging kids to change themselves to please others really the best lesson to teach?