Eyebrow piercing

moonie_57January 8, 2007

Of all things, my 14 y/o daughter wants to get her eyebrow pierced. There was no way I was going to give into this thing and told her we would discuss it again this summer when she turns 15. I'm wondering what other parents thoughts on this is.

It kinda reminds me of when I was a teenager.. when blue hair and mini skirts were all the rage, just as all fads come and go with the times. There seems to be a short timeframe during those teenage years where these "off the wall" things seem to be appropriate (to the kids).

How far will you go to allow your child his/her individuality or self-expression and struggles towards adulthood?

With the true evils of drugs and alcohol so readily available, is it worth fighting over a simple piercing or should these fights be saved for those bigger problems?

To be honest, I really don't have a problem with the idea of an eyebrow piercing. I'm more concerned about the reaction of others, such as teachers or other kids parents. Should I let the perception of others rule my decision? I think people tend to judge on the physical looks of kids these days, not knowing whether they're commendable young people or not.

Just out of curiosity, when you see a girl with a pierced lip, or a boy with a nose ring, what is your first thought?

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I know what you are going through ! I have a 14yo DS and he has dreadlocks, I have been faced with the same issues.

I would be concerned about eyebrow piercing, things that come to mind are....

Who would do it, is it safe for those people to do it ?
What if they hit a nerve ?
What happens when she does not like it anymore, does it grow back ?
Doesn't it hurt, getting it done !?
Would she be able to go to school like that ?
Do her friends have it done?
How about the belly button instead ?
I know its a fad, but how permanent is it ?

Perhaps you could do a google about injuries from eyebrow piercings, there has probably been some.

I dont like the look of it, but I am 45 and probably conservative. Its hard isnt it, to see things through their eyes, let them be themselves.

You came to the right place. Lol

Take care.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 2:56AM
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I don't mind pierced eyebrows, but tongue piercings and lip or chin piercings make me itchy. When our DD wanted a belly button ring at 16, we told her she could have it if she had grades at the end of the school year (she was not applying herself at her new school). She bought it- it didn't seem to occur to her that she was (here) legally old enough to go out and have it done anyway without our consent ;-). She got good grades and the ring. It fell out a couple of years later and she didn't bother to replace it.
It could be shock value- when DD started talking about getting a tattoo we just shrugged and said, "Make sure you get one you can live with for a LONG time," and that was the end of that.
I think you should discuss with your DD your concerns about image and how potential employers and other adults may categorise her due to her eyebrow piercing. But really, in the grand scheme of things, it's not a biggie. She can always take it out.
Of course, the ultimate "ewwwwwwwwwwwww" for your DD could be if you say, "Eyebrow piercing! Let's get matching ones!" No teenager wants to look like his or her parent :-D

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 5:09AM
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DH Hated things like that, I'm OK with eyes and ears, noses not so much, anything else on the face...YUCK. Tatoos, don't like but it's an individual choice. That said...remember always..it's what's on the inside that counts, not what's on the outside.

BTW DH's rule was...I OWN your body until you're 18, once you're 18 put as many holes and colors in/on it as you want...each girl got a tatoo and one or two piercings. THe tongue closed, nose closed, eyebrow is still there.


    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 7:44AM
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I'm a bit overkill on it probably.

I personally believe in expressing individuality - hair color, even dreadlocks, clothing choices, etc. However, I think until they are 18, it should be expressed in non-permanent ways. Two holes in the lobe is as far as I'm willing to go.

SIL had issues with her DD begging for cartilage piercing in the upper ear. She and the hubby said no. So the day she turned 18, she went out and did it anyway. Came home all cocky and said since she's 18 she can do anything she wants.

Within a week it had a raging infection. So SIL told her since she's 18, she can pay her own doctor, and buy her own antibiotics LOL

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 9:43AM
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Not there with my kids yet. I wouldn't allow anything that's permanent.

I'll be honest. I am pretty judgemental towards people when I see tatoos, piercings, etc. First impressions do count. I am also a person who will start to overlook that first impression after I get to know a person.

I would allow the piercing before I would allow a tattoo. At least, it can close up. If this were my child, I'd tell her you'll let her get the piercing when she turns 16 and can pay for it herself. Then send her out to get a job. Getting out into the workforce may make her rethink her ideas on how to send her money and if she really wants to look like that for the rest of her life.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 11:39AM
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When I was 22 I got my navel pierced (I'm 35 and still have it). The customer in front of me got the eyebrow. It bled everywhere. Apparantly the facial piercings are known to bleed a lot. I would make sure she knows about that and also knows how to properly take care of it to avoid infection. I also like the idea of making her earn it with grades. Eyebrow piercings are (IMO) pretty good ones to have because the holes and scars are hidden in the eyebrow when they are no longer wanted. Good luck to you and your daughter.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 1:17PM
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Thanks alot for all the responses as I couldn't disagree with a word anyone has said.

popi - Dreadlocks.... EEK! But it's not so bad, is it? And good point about the hitting a nerve thing. That can happen by someone unknowledgeable!

Naval piercings are definitely out for now. I have teenage girls that work with me and the sole purpose of a belly ring is to show it off! Tongue and lip piercings.. no. No tattoo's either. My son got his tongue pierced when he was 21 and I threw a fit. He doesn't have it any longer. :)

I like the suggestions of earning the priviledge. Need to do more thinking in that regard.

I was really curious to other parents thoughts on this, so thanks alot!

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 3:36PM
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In our house...the answer would be no. it would have nothing to do with good grades, etc. When they are adults, then they can make their own decisions. I have to say when I see a young teen with the lip or tongue piercing, I see a parent unable to be a parent. It appears that the teen is running the house, and that you have a parent unwilling or unable to be a parent.

I realize that I may be wrong, but that is the impression it gives, and so that is my impression of the family, without knowing them.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 5:11PM
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I don't like all the piercings I see on the teens. At my daughter's school a certain group of kids that have multiple piercings and it just makes me cringe. I do think what is the parent of that child thinking when I see the younger kids with all the piercings.

I guess I am just old fashioned, but pierced ears is enough.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 5:33PM
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Hi there

I had a chat to my DD (19) about eyebrow piercing and she says its okay, in her mind. She said you can put in rods, or whatever they are called, that are small and non-obtrusive. I think I would not like it if it had something big and obvious sticking out of the eyebrow. She thinks that it is perfectly acceptable for people to do this, and would not be a problem if the person was getting a job etc. I am not sure that I agree with her, about the job.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 8:34PM
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I realize that I may be wrong, but that is the impression it gives, and so that is my impression of the family, without knowing them.

bnicebkind - I don't know if this is wrong or not, but it is what it is and this is what concerns me. As adellabedella said, first impressions DO count. At this point in time, in my DD's little world, school is top priority, and next year she'll be in high school. A new place, new teachers, that don't know her for her or anything about me as a parent so you have a good point.

labmomma - since I look up to your knowledge in the pet world, help me out here... Do you generally think of yourself as old fashioned? I'm far from that, but I wonder if I'm so immune to piercings since I work with teenage girls that I'm not thinking straight. One of the girls has multiple ear piercings and a tattoo on her hip. I'm wondering what that tat will look like after a few stretch marks. :)

Another girl actually got her nipples pierced as soon as she turned 18. Ewwww. She also has a nose stud which I thought was right cute on her, but then she tells me about the "crude" that gets caught up on it. Another ewwwww.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 8:54PM
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"Just out of curiosity, when you see a girl with a pierced lip, or a boy with a nose ring, what is your first thought?"

My first thought is (sorry) - slut.
My second thought is thank goodness my son doesn't have any interest in doing anything like that!
Third thought is along the lines of how awful/ridiculous it will look in 20 years.

Then I remind myself that it's not fair to be so judgemental, that piercings are just another particularly unfortunate fashion trend, that my brother's high school girlfriend used to shave designs in her 1" long spiked hot pink hair and was the loveliest girl you could ever know, that at least a piercing hole will close up...

But that first impression isn't what you're hoping for...

You know what they call those lower back tattoos around here? tramp stamps
Fair? No. But it's happening.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 10:49PM
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sweeby - tramp stamps. I hadn't heard that, but I can see why some might call them that. Just like belly rings, those tats are there to be "admired".

And now, I have to call you out on something. :)

You said, My first thought is (sorry) - slut.

This seems directed at the girl with the lip piercing but not the boy with the nose piercing! But this is our world, where girls are unfairly judged next to boys.

Now, since my daughter has, and will be viewing these postings I wasn't going to mention this, but changed my mind.

One friend of DD has parents that are tattoo artists with lots of piercings also. The mother has a full rose garden tattooed on her back and also some on her upper arms, and I don't know where all and don't want to know! They look very bizarre to me and if I didn't know them through their daughter, who is wonderful, I never would have given them a chance, or gotten to know them. Otherwise, they seem to be "normal", with "normal" parenting skills but I think they're.... ugly.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 11:06PM
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I just sort of think I'd be a hypocrite if I teach my child the lesson of "Do what you know is right, and don't worry about what other people think of you." Then say one of my reasons for not consenting to her piercing her eyebrow is concern for what other will think of me as a parent. I mean, piercing an eyebrow is not a question of morality or ethics, but of standards. Even if you don't like the look, do you really question someone's ethics and morality because of it, or just their standards?

I am a 36 y/o mother of 4, married 14 years, college educated, I drive a minivan, and have only my ears pierced, once. I don't even color my hair. I'm about as conservative looking as they come. (But inside, I'm a raging liberal waiting to get free from my beige minivan.) My biggest regret in life, so far, is always doing what others expected of me. I should have taken more chances, done more stupid things, broken a couple rules (that didn't hurt anyone) and let others think what they will. Now I have too many responsibilities to act like that. Now I have to wait until I'm old and don't have all these responsibilities to my family. Then I'll embarass my kids.

When I see young people with unconventional piercings, I don't think it reflects poorly on their character, or their parents' abilities. I just think that would hurt and they are braver than I am! I don't need other people to think I have control over my kids. I need my kids to live like they've been taught right from wrong. A piercing has nothing to do with that. If my child was doing well in school, working, participating in activities that interest them, living life responsibly and with respect for others, I would not be upset about a piercing.

I would want to set a waiting period, though. Wait until summer. That gives them time to really think it through. Summer is a better time, out of school, because if she gets the piercing and regrets it right away, it's out before anyone sees it. It gives her time to get comfortable with the look before everyone else gives her their opinin of it. And it gives the hole time to heal so it can be removed for short periods if the school has dress rules against it or other in appropriate times. Not that I think school is absolutely in appropriate, but grandma's birthday might be and a job interview might be. (Which I'd remind them of during the waiting period.) I would try to be calm and neutral. In the mean time, I'd ask questions, like why, and who, what, where, when, how and listen to their answers. I'd want her to give it some thought, make sure it wasn't a whim, and that she it wasn't something she wanted just because of how others would react.

I would not be in favor of the piercing if grades were low or there was other trouble. Then I'd say you haven't learned to be accountable for your decisions, you need to get there first. But if they are accountable, and dont' waver through the waiting period, I guess I'd consent. It'd be like a contract, you hold up your end, I'll hold up mine. I would not feel the same about a tatoo. A piercing can be removed at any time, like if the grades drop.

Now, none of you are allowed to bring this up to me when I come back in a few years and tell you my DD wants her eyebrow pierced. I reserve the right to change my mind and deny all of this. LOL!

Myself, I'd like my ears pierced again, maybe twice more, and my belly button pierced (and a stomach flat enough to show it off). I'd also like a small tatoo, my children's names in script, like a vine, very small, delicate, around my ankle. (OK, I've given it a little thought.) One of these days, when I'm visiting family in Ohio (where my very tatoed cousin can take me to his tatoo guy) I will get it done. I won't tell any friends or the rest of my family (only my cousin, he's been waiting a long time to get me into trouble). I admit, I look forward to the shock and the "Well, I never expected this from YOU!" I've waited too long to do something unexpected, it makes people underestimate me.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2007 at 11:56PM
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My first thought is,I see my husband everyday and he has one. I have my belly pierced.
The good thing about piercings,is they can come out.Unlike a tattoo that is forever.
They are quite the fad these days.I got my belly done when I was 19.Hubby had eyebrow done about 5 years ago.

Mostly,no one even notices hubby's eyebrow ring. I like my belly piercing in the summer when I wear a bathing suit which is the only time people ever know I even have it.

I understand your concern though.There of course are risks involved which is something to consider,and 14 seems a bit young.

When my hubby took out his eyebrow ring once for a special event,the inside of it got infected and it swelled to the size of a pea on his eyebrow.

Also,many places that do these piercings are not 100% sanitary.You really have to do your homework and find a good place.

I'am going to be pretty free allowing my daughter to express herself as a teen.But I feel the law that you have to be 18 (or have parental consent) is a good one.And,I wont be letting my daughter do these things until she is 18. She can dress how she wants,maybe color her hair if it is temporary~but tattoos and piercings she will have to get when she's 18.

I think there are alot worse trends then these..such as the pants that hang down to your knees!

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 12:57AM
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coolmama, LOL Amen on the knee-pants!!! LOL

As far as public opinion goes, I remember when my brother had long hair and dressed all in black thru most of the 80's and early 90's. He'd get so mad when people would 'notice' him. My dad told him - well what is the impact you're going for? You wanted to make people notice you, and you're getting offended when that's exactly what happens?

But as they say on What Not to Wear, sometimes you can get noticed more when you dress better, than when you dress for shock value. Individualitly can still be expressed in these ways. It's a hard balance to achieve.

And when I see the teens with the pants down to their knees, I do have judgments that automatically pop in my head. Imagine if they were asking me for a job? And when I go thru my daily life and look at teens who are gainfully employed in my community, I have never seen any of them wearing 'knee pants' unless they only wear them on their day off.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 9:45AM
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I recently was in line next to a guy who had holes in his ears the size of dimes, with a ring disc in each one. I asked him how he did it, and he told me that they were pierced and that he then kept opening up the hole bigger and bigger until each hole looked like a large bullet could go through it. He said that he is going into the military and that they have to be surgically closed up at a cost of $2,500 EACH! $5,000.00 to fix it. I also imagine that unless he has the surgery done, it will severly limit his employment opportunities.

Speaking of employment opportunities...I think that these young people are handicapping themselves in life. What they want, and what they are doing is closing options in their life. There may be a job they really want, but there is one opening, and many applicants. And they may lose the opportunites simply because of their tattoos or piercings. Because of this "look" that employers may not think it is worth dealing with, or is who they want representing their company. And so, IMO, I think that it hurts our children, because it so often closes doors.

Also, keep in mind that even many teens do NOT think that this is cool, and it may push them towards other groups in school, and may affect them socially. It may push them towards groups that are very into this kind of thing.

And last, you may want to do a web search on tongue piercing and find out what the real reason why young people are doing it.

And Stephanie...if you wanted to impress me (or anyone you know) by doing something unexpected...absolutely the VERY LAST thing that would impress me would be a tattoo or piercing. If you want to surprise people, or impress them, it would be finding out that you had some hidden talent I never knew you had! Like out of the blue, find out that you had a really good book you wrote, and it was just published. And I had no idea you were even writing a novel. Or that secretly you painted in your spare time, and galleries were showing your work. Or to find out that for the last five years, you had helped build 6 habitat for humanity houses. Now I would not only be surprised, but throughly impressed. If I found out you gotten a tattoo, I suppose I would be disappointed. I would think that you had bought into the latest "fad". just my opinion.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 4:25PM
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moonie, Now that I really think about it I am very old fashioned about some things and so not about other things.

The piercings is just a thing with me. SIL had her tongue pierced, yuk. Also has tatoo, had troubled teen life and early 20's. I saw the piercings and the tatoos as acting out.

LOL about the tramp stamp. I never heard the term until another SIL used it in describing one of the mom's at her kid's school. (example of one adult judging another adult) I know this may not be fair, but it does happen. SIL is not in the minority. Most of the other moms think poorly of this woman based solely on her appearance, i.e.; her tatoo that sticks out on her low back above her jeans. When I see a woman my age wearing teenager-type clothing, I just think stupid, stupid, stupid. Sorry if I am offending anyone, but you asked me. There are just some things that aren't appropriate.

To me life is hard enough without facing adversity of prejudice (let's be honest) that goes along with the piercings and tatoos (boys and girls). It gives an adult or another authority figure a bad first impression. You could be the nicest boy/girl, but you will be judged if you tatoo and pierce your body in places that people can see.

I know if I am in a restaurant and the waiter/waitress has all those piercings I lose my appetite.

We have all high school and college age file clerks in my office and if they do well, they can move up into different positions within the firm. One of the things that holds them back is the piercing appearance. It isn't professional and most places don't want their businesses represented by someone at the front desk with an eyebrow or nose or lip pierced. Where to draw the line? I don't know.

I like the idea of a waiting period or a temporary tatoo.

One of my daughter's friend's dad said it best when his daughter wanted a tatoo: A PERMANENT REMINDER OF A TEMPORARY FEELING. I thought that just about summed it up.

I am soooo glad I am not you since I would feel like discouraging my daughter, but she is free to do it once she is 18. If your daughter wants to do it badly enough, you can put it on hold until she is 18, but after that, you really can't do a thing and believe me the kids let you know that once their 18. If I hear that statement one more time. It's not easy being the parent of a teen, boy or girl. I think girls are harder, tho.

Where to draw the line, which issues to pick?? At times I feel like I am doing the great parenting, and other times, not so much. Depends on the day, the issue and which friends my daughter has been with recently.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 4:27PM
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Labmomma,it doesnt offend me,I'm not even 30 yet,so I can still get away with it.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 6:41PM
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There's a real problem in my life right now. See post Grown Kids In Trouble. As a parent, I feel inadequate and a total failure, at least today I do.

With my oldest son in trouble with the law, I reflect back now and see some of the things I did all wrong. We pretty much kept him under our thumb, not allowing him to make his own mistakes. We were so afraid that, like other kids in the neighborhood, he would get in trouble if allowed freedom. At 16 he started sneaking off, and did get into trouble.

Now with my daughter, we don't want to make the same mistakes, yet I wonder if even thinking about allowing an eyebrow piercing is so far in the other direction that we'll end up with the same type of problems. There is 15 years difference in their ages, and as parents, we have "lightened up" quite a bit and in many ways that's good. Most of the time I feel more confident in my parenting skills than I did with my boys, but raising a girl is a whole different ballgame.

I just want to do the right things by her, and for her.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 10:17PM
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And now, I have to call you out on something. :)

You said, My first thought is (sorry) - slut.

This seems directed at the girl with the lip piercing but not the boy with the nose piercing! But this is our world, where girls are unfairly judged next to boys.

Not to quibble, but I'm equally narrow-minded when it comes to the boys ;-) so it's not really a double-standard. The vocabulary just isn't as 'automatic'

Good luck with this, whatever you do...

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 11:15PM
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Moonie 57,believe me your doubts are valid.As by my name,I consider myself to be a young,hip mom who is pretty open to most things...and I still think 14 is just too young to make this choice.

Exspecially the eyebrow,because if you take it out and it doesnt heal correctly,it will keep getting infected over an over. Not to be too graphic,but when they pierce the eyebrow,
They are actually removing a hunk of skin that forms like a hollow tunnel (much different then just doing your ears)
When you attempt to take the piercing out,that tunnel can become infected.

My husband's was nasty.It swelled up and was painful...and the only way to get rid of it,was to basicly "pop" it back open to let the pus and stuff drain out.

I'd be more willing to say yes to anything not on the face.
Even my grand mother ribbed my husband about getting his,saying,"You have such a nice face,now why did you do that???"

I think you're pretty cool moonie 57 for even considering it. I bet alot of your daughter's friends parents dont even do that.

There are times now I wish I didnt have a belly piercing,but I have had it so long (10 years) that I dont even think about it much anymore.
Dont be so hard on yourself!

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 2:00AM
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I think that is part of the problem. It is the differing opinions of what makes someone "cool". Many, even many teens...think piercings are decidedly "uncool" and for those letting their teens get the piercings, we do not think that parent is a "cool" parent, we wonder what in the world they are thinking. We assume that they are trying too hard to be the kids friend, instead of the kids parent. I know several very "cool and hip parents" who do not have a single piercing or tattoo. They are cool and hip because they have a neat sense of style, are in great shape, and are so secure in themselves, that they do not have to follow the piercing/tattoo fad to "act" like they are cool. And they do not handicap their life with piercings/or a bunch of tattoos that limit their options in life...they can fit in "anywhere" and have many options. Just my opinion for whatever it is worth.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 7:18AM
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I have to agree with benicebekind. My daughter and her friends view DH and myself as "cool". We take them to see music at different venues. I have taken her to concerts that she has wanted to go to. I have sat in the nosebleed section to watch Usher perform. All in all, I think life is about experiencing culture. Music, art, social events of different cultures, reading, etc.

I have exposed my daughter to more experiences in travel than most kids ever have in a lifetime. I chose to take her with me despite her young age, and she is so much more mature for it. She doesn't see the world as a small place, but rather in a more global sense and I am so glad that she has that global mentality.

My daughter sees us get "loose" with our friends at our house and theirs, and that we do have fun. It's not about being cool. It is about being a parent. We are adults and she is still an adolescent. I don't believe in partying with your children, that I am old fashioned about, no way. It sends the signal that underage alcohol use is okay. My daughter also sees someone in our group not partake and be the "designated driver". We are teaching her life lessons by our example. That said, next week she could do something really screwed up and I will be posting that I am failing totally. I don't think we are failures. I think that there are so many outside forces that are operating against us. Not all parents are on the same moral page and our kids in high school are with 400 other kids. There are bound to be mistakes in judgment by our kids as well as others, it is just a part of growing up. Hopefully those mistakes will not be life-threatening.

Parked in front of our high school is a totally wrecked car in which four students that attended our high school were killed in a few years ago. We have a parent prom committee that raises money all year to make the prom a fun experience, yet a safe one. It is not an inexpensive or easily planned event. You have to make it attractive enough for the kids to want to participate in Project Prom. Planning goes on from September until May to create a complete 24 hours of having fun with no drinking ergo, no drinking and driving.

You cannot be your child's friend and their parent during certain times of their life. You just have to use your own judgment as to when those times are. That's the most difficult part of parenting in my opinion.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 11:16AM
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Ah whatever,I never said I was cool for having a piercing!!!

And I also said my daughter will not have any of that until she turns eighteen (if she even wants it,which she may not)

I'am hip because I'am still young enough to know what kids go through and how important this stuff is to them.

You said not all kids think this is cool...well obviously moonie 57's kid does,or else we wouldnt be having this discussion.
And what is "cool" about it,is that you dont care what others think of you.Sorry,but I have NEVER cared what squares thought of me. Some kids prefer sports and being preppy,others dont...doesnt make them bad kids!

My husband twin daughter's are the perfect example.They dress semi-gothic with the black clothes and fishnet shirts and black nail polish.Yet,they are straight A students who havent been in any trouble at all and they are turning 18 in March.They are so smart,they have even started some college classes early during summer vacations.
So to say kids with piercings and who dress differently
will not be accepted by jobs or society is completely false.

Maybe they wont be accepted by YOU.But you are not everyone.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 6:59PM
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You said that you thought she was cool for even considering it. I disagree. I do not think it is cool to let your 14 year old kid get piercings. You also said that you are hip because you are young enough to know what kids go through and how important this stuff is to them. You may be right, but I see hip as something that has little to do with simply being young. I see hip as as having style that is just so interesting, and energy and neat "original" ideas that are fantastic. I see hip as being in shape and being confident enough to follow your own drummer and lead others with your ideas and energy. Like an architect seeing and trying something new and different with a creative edge that is fresh. Someone that has a way of putting things together that is so cool, others want to emulate them. They have this confidence that is never boastful, or proud, it is understated, but unmistakeable. IMO, there are many young people who understand what kids go through, and yet, they are not hip. So I do not see that youth = hip.

You state that what is cool about it is that you don't care what others think of you. I sort of disagree with this thinking. I imagine that you care what many others think of you, otherwise...why bother? Why go through the nasty pain etc. If you were not trying to impress anyone? Why follow the same fad other piercers are all doing? Because you care what they think and want to fit in and identify with this group. They think an eyebrow piercing or a tongue or lip, bellybutton etc. piercing is cool, so you buy into that and copy "their" definition of "cool". If you really did not care what others thought, perhaps you would come up with something unique and different that set you apart as a true individual who really did not care what others thought.

In terms of jobs, I doubt and eyebrow piercing would keep someone from getting many jobs, but I do not imagine that you will see many in professional jobs. And yes, if the person hiring is not into that sort of thing and he/she has 40 applicants for a job position, and 30 are highly qualified for that job, I would imagine that he/she might easily choose from another applicant. it depends how the person doing the hiring feels about it, and the type of job, and perhaps the number of piercings, and if that image is the image they want representing their company. I imagine that the type of job would have something to do with it. So I completely disagree with your statement that kids with piercing, that dress differently have the same job options as any other bright kid. Picture a kid in full goth, with several piercings. hair is dyed black, half shaved, half long. Straight A kid though. Now 30 other kids show up for the job, also very bright kids. Who do you think got the job? If it is at the store that sells Goth, then he was hired on the spot. If it was at any number of businesses that work with the public, I doubt he got the job. Too many other good applicants, and they do not have to worry about his impact on their customer base, since so many businesses are struggling today. Doesn't mean he would not have been a good employee. May have. But we imagine that so would a good percentage of the other really bright people that applied for the job.

Your husbands daughters are still in school, and bright girls. But they are going to find themselves competing with alot of equally bright people for jobs one day, and depending on their aspirations, it may or may not affect their clothing choices. When they finally enter the job market, this will have a strong influence on how they present themselves. Few jobs allow for people to dress in Goth ...but obviously there are jobs that allow for creativity of this sort. However, with their grades, I imagine that they will shoot higher in life. I have not seen any Goth physicians, or international bankers, or stock brokers, or attorneys, or real estate professionals, or architects, or teachers, or vets, or builders, etc. etc. etc. There is a reason.

And no, I do not think piercings make them bad kids. But I do think that they are foolishly limiting their options, in exchange for some fad...and I suppose that depends on how far they take the piercings, and where they are piercing. The same with how far they take the tattoos. A tattoo or two is one thing, but covering yourself with tattoos limits not only their life, it will limit their childs too, to some extent. In the same way that YOU assume someone is square, and dismiss them and their ideas, someone who is not into that sort of thing makes their own assumptions about someone with a bunch or tattoos or piercings, and it can affect your child feeling accepted and included among her classmates. people such as yourself have no interest in the "squares" or what they think, but what if the kids your daughter most likes at school are the daughters of (ug) "squares"? And just as you want nothing to do with them, what if they feel the same way and the piercings, or tattoos make them want to run from that parent and her daughter? The choices we make can affect our children too. And I am not saying you, just those into that sort of thing, for the sake of conversation.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 11:09PM
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bnice, I see your point. I agree that a certain amount of assimilation is necessary in order to be accepted and more easily succeed in mainstream professions. And I know that I have to fit a certain image to present myself mainstream to pursue my own career in teaching in the next couple years. I don't want to do anything that would hurt my chances of being hired as a teacher. My first impression of a teacher dressed in a suit is better than my first impression of a teacher dressed in baggy jeans with tattoes and piercings. But, I'm open minded enough (as a parent) to wait and see how they teach before I make up my mind.

You're criticizing a person for piercings or tattoos in order to fit it with one group, but insisting they need to look a more acceptable way to fit in with another group. But you don't seem to have considered a person may not be trying to fit in with any group, but just be themselves and experiment with who that is. We need renegades in life, or women would still be shamed for wearing pants and would still let their husbands do the voting. For good examples, I like to show my daughter women who triumphed because they dared to be themselves to matter how much criticism they had to take. I don't think unconventional dress and achievement are mutually exclusive. Can't a person have both? Does body art negate personal achievement?

We should live our lives for ourselves, to truly enjoy life and be happy and love the people in our lives. Not everyone strives to be a doctor, lawyer, professor, architect. Nor should they. They should strive to be good people and do work they enjoy. My very tattoed cousin repairs Harleys for a living, and is happier than a lot of lawyers. And probably a better husband and father than a lot of clean cut professionals with doctorates. YOU might not find him your definition of success, but I think he is a successful person. If he has limited his ability to be a respected lawyer by his tattoos, I think he's OK with that.

IF I get a tattoo, it's ok that it doesn't impress you. That's the last thing on my mind. I am way beyond trying to catch the next fad or impress anyone. If I were trying to be "cool" in my peer group, I would be president of the PTA. I don't expect to impress anyone. In fact, I'm tired of trying to fulfill the expectations of others.

I would love to write a book or volunteer for Habitat for Humanity. I volunteered my time for 3 years to lead a community built playground project. I started the grassroots projects, set up a non-profit organization and raised $250,000. It was a successful project, and I was darn proud of that, and impresed a few people. But that's not why I did that. If I wrote a book or built a house, or got a tattoo or my eyebrow pierced, it would not be to impress anyone. It would be to live my life to the fullest on my terms.

You only live once. When I die, I do not want my tombstone to read "She was so good at fitting in."

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 12:10AM
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bnice, I like your posts. I really do. I only know you from this forum and KT, but I feel like we could have this discussion over coffee and disagree good naturedly, agree to disagree, and still be friends. I like when people make me think and question and defend what I think.

Just wanted to say that. This is just discussion, not any kind of personal attack. I will still log on and look at a post just because it has your name on it, because I like to see what you have to say. And if we were neighbors, I'd still call ya over when the coffee was hot to see what interesting conversation we'd have today.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 12:16AM
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I agree who would have thought a simple topic such as this spawned so many opinions!

No,my step daughters dont want to become doctors.They are very artisticly talented,and could easily go into animation or some other creative career~which is what you said by definition as "COOL".

Same as I go,I clearly march to the beat of my own drummer,and am original. When I got my belly button ring it was ten-eleven years ago before it was anywhere near as popular as it is now.So I wasnt doing it to follow anyone.I was doing it cuz I happend to like the way it looked.And I had a lovely flat belly on which to place it.

I will support my own daughter no matter how she decides to be. I simply stated the squares thing,because when I was in school if you werent a jock you were unpopular and picked on.
I didnt want to be like THOSE people,so I did my own thing.That is about the least form of following the crowd that I can think of.And if my daughter ever becomes as stuck up as those kids and puts others down,you can bet I'll have something to say about it.

Moonie 57 is COOL for considering the wants of her daughter.Not because she's thinking about letting her get a piercing.My mom let me have BLUE hair...she hated it,but she let me do it.And then I grew out of wanting to look like that.But it meant alot that she let me express myself while I felt the need too.

And the thing is,if she absolutely forbades it,her daughter will only want it even more...and possibly do it behind her back at another time.

Not all kids feel the need for self expression...but they are starting to grow into adults and wanting to show their independence in one way or another.

I have cousins who parents were so strict,and didnt allow them to express themselves as teens at all.Now their parents are shocked they are acting out in their twenties and doing things they'd rather them not do. And what's funny is...I always knew it would happen.See,I got it out of my system pretty early,so by twenties I was already settled down.

And the piercings are easily taken out for any job interviews.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 2:04AM
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Stephanie and Cool mama...both very good responses. I enjoyed reading your views on this subject. And Stephanie, yes if you were my neighbor, I too would enjoy hashing out life over a cup of coffee. It is so much more interesting to have a discussion with someone who has their own opinions, instead of someone who just agrees with a viewpoint. That way, we begin to see different views on any given topic and we both learn something, or have something to think about!

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 6:51AM
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Bnicebkind - I like the way you think and have enjoyed your responses. We have very similar views on things. Cool is a sense of style, a savvy way about you unlike someone else. It is subtle - not something that smacks of "look at me - I am cool". Its the type of thing you can't put your finger on, like nutmeg in a recipe. Too much will ruin the dish.

coolmama writes: "Sorry, but I have NEVER cared what squares thought of me."

I am sorry but your statement sounds very high school and very judgmental. I find it hard to imagine someone not caring what appearance they make. (not just physical) I realize our ages differ, but I have never lost myself because I was trying to assimilate into someone else's idea of perfect. I have my own style. I don't follow trends - ever. In fact, I make it a point not to follow trends. I like classic - things that are timeless.

What makes someone "square" cooolmama? If someone is different than you, it doesn't make them "square" and I am very interested for your definition of "square". The use of the word is just very strange - sounds so offensive and dated. You didn't like the responses about the piercings and tatoos, and thus you start labeling those who are unlike you. If you want to really be your own person, do so. No need to justify it. If you like the piercings and all the tatoos, that's great. That's why the make chocolate and vanilla.

"So to say kids with piercings and who dress differently
will not be accepted by jobs or society is completely false."

Not false - appearance matters in all jobs that are worth having- the ones that make you enough money to live your life comfortably, i.e.; jobs that require a professional appearance. Granted, a job at the mall be no problem, but a career job? I don't know how many animation jobs there are out there. I don't think you are being practical. I know, I know, you don't want to. That's fine - for you and the people you influence.

Also, you might consider that most of the goth dressing kids are harmless, but there are some that were not, just a few years ago. Ergo the discriminatory feelings toward those kids who dress in that manner. When your kid starts dressing and doing things that they feel are "making a statement", I think you need to find out what's under the surface, what's the statement? Alot of times you will find your child is troubled about something. Bullying and the stuff that goes along with high school sometimes puts kids over the edge making themselves so unlike the rest of the kids in order to make their "statement". I am not directing it at your kids, just kids in general.

I make it a point to keep up with kids, nieces, nephews, my daughter's friends, college age kids of friends. My husband and I enjoy hearing what's new and going on in the kids' lives currently. Things have changed significantly in the lives of kids. 9/11, Columbine and things like that are all excellent examples of why we need to keep a finger on the pulse of what our kids are feeling and why.

My daughter has done just fine growing up normally without making drama in the way of a "statement". She happens to see the bigger picture. She's got her head on straight and I am very proud that she's not feeling the pressure like alot of her peers. She's got a nack for realizing that there is a life ahead of her that she is preparing for. She's still having fun and doing things that she likes with friends. I don't have her incapsulated in a bubble, and believe me if she wanted a piercing or to look a different way, she would be doing it, regardless of my feelings. She's just been raised differently. That said, she would never pinhole any person by classifying them. She realizes that everyone is different and that is okay. She's different - than any other person on earth. Do you get that, we are all different. We don't need to pierce, tatoo and things like that to set ourselves apart. Our deeds and actions toward others set us apart. All of the rest of it is just window dressing.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 11:15AM
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Ever hear the term "dress for success"?...Well tatoos and nose rings aren't the way to go....unless of course you want to work in a tattoo parlor, as a bouncer in a night club or perhaps an exotic dancer, male or female. Even the armed services makes you remove studs and close up major ear holes.
I know of no law firm that would hire you if indeed you could find a law school to accept you. If you want to be a cop you have to cover any tattoos while on duty and remove any "hardware". McDonalds won't even hire you with an eyebrow ring, unless you wear a band aid over it or remove it while at work. Perhaps in 20 years the view of holes and tats will change, but now you are limiting your opportunities.

I really look with disgust at some large overweight woman wearing way too tight capris with a dainty vine trailing around her fat calf and a rose on her flapping upper arm. I wonder what she was thinking when she had that done? Did she think it made her look more attractive? Or was she emulating some little darling and thought a tat or 2 would make her "cute".
Oh...and you can't be a model with a tattoo, nor a Lexus sales person, not even a used Ford sales person.
Thank God for the miracles of plastic surgery and lasers. Today's tattoos and piercings can be fixed, but at a price, both in $$ and in pain. I know someone who had a bunch removed, because he changed his mine on the style he wanted. He replaced them with "sleeves" of vines and flowers.
To answer the OP....I would tell her that when she is 18 you will allow it, but not before. I suspect in 4 years pierced eyebrows will no longer be high fashion.
But lets face it, the high earners ( unless they are pro wrestlers) and the leaders of the world are not those with piercings and tattoos, and a disproportunate number of those in public housing and on Title 19 health care have tats and holes in places other than their ears. How they afford it I don't know but perhaps it's more important to pay for a tattoo than health care.
And coolmama, blue hair is a very temporary thing, easily fixed with a bottle of another color. We're talking permanant stuff here...
Linda C

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 1:32PM
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Wow, you guys have been busy and my time is limited right now so I only want to say this...

As I said, I work around alot of young girls. Mostly 2 18 y/o seniors. They think I'm cool. They've told my kids they have a cool mom. Picture the eye-rolling. :) I don't want to be cool! My image at work is totally different from what I portray at home as a mother. Cool is not cool! *lol* I can't even imagine talking, acting and having fun in the manner that I do at work. The things I've learned from these girls are sometimes bizarre and scary! All in all, they are good decent girls, but if my DD ever knows the things these girls know, I don't want to hear about it!

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 3:37PM
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I meant no offense by the term square.As I said,in my school,if you werent preppy and wearing the most expensive clothes and played sports,then you were bullied something terrible.So it is those people that I considered to be "squares",and yes,I rebeled against that image as much I could!
Now,I live in a VERY conservative town.There are lots of people who fit that description,and I find myself still rebeling against it to some extent. Although my husband and I arent anywhere near as bad as we once were.
I used to have dyed black hair up to my ears,and he had long hair down to his waist.Obviously we got some dirty looks.

Now I look pretty normal,natural hair color,no tattoos,and only the one belly piercing.
Husband has short hair,eyebrow pierced,but mostly wears nascar jackets and hats when he once wore ripped jeans and leather jackets.

I do follow fashion to some extent.Like those knee high UGZ boots that are out now,love those.Other "trends" I will never follow.
I'm skinny and dress what I feel is attractive,not slutty.
So the comments about squeezing into clothes too small is so NOT me.

Obviously my opinion is different for many reasons.The first one being how badly I was bullied by the preppy nice kids,who werent so nice.So for me,from then on,I formed the opinion that I would be different and do I as I pleased,and not try to please others.So...in that way,I do not care what people think of me.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2007 at 4:02PM
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Interesting, thoughtful responses. Stephanie your thoughts on the different perspectives of fitting in, whether it's with the 'piercing tattoo crowd' or the 'dress for success' crowd was thought provoking. Everyone else has had great responses also!

As far as how it impacts you in the job market, there are very real examples - it depends on what type of career you wish to go in, I suppose.

My niece in Orlando tried out for the characters at Disney, and wanted to be Jasmine. But she had to settle for Pluto. Disney will not allow you to display your navel if it has a piercing, even if you take the earring out. Let me tell you, she was not happy about that.

My brother worked for years in record stores and never ventured out, because his look was really only appropriate in a setting such as that. And when he finally did decide to expand and look at other retail career choices, he cut his hair.

Stephanie, your tombstone thought is interesting. But it makes it sound like 'conforming for the sake of a job' means losing all hope of individuality. I don't think that's the case. Even in my current workplace, there is such diversity in looks, dress, hobbies, etc. And even a scattering of tats and piercings (just no outlandish ones). And we mesh to make a very interesting workplace. I guess it's just a matter of degrees.

I watched a 'what not to wear' with a fellow who was a landscaper. He really thought, who cares what I wear? I dig in the dirt all day long!

But their thoughts for him were that he could get better offers if he went into the bid process in a casual look that was a step up from what he had been wearing. And in the end, it turned out to be true. So in a lot of career fields, it's a conscious choice to sacrifice moving ahead for the sake of clothing and accessory that may put off potential customers or employers.

After reading so many intelligent write-ups, I have to question my own self. Am I pre-disposed to assume things about people who have a certain look? Sitting here typing, I don't feel that way in my mind. I, too, went thru plenty of phases of dressing and accessorizing thru the years.

It's simply a reaction at the time of meeting someone that is almost built-in to humans to be apprehensive of the "different". It's a first-impression thing, and it is so hard to un-do the automatic feeling one gets upon the first instant of meeting.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2007 at 8:22AM
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While I'm not a fan of piercings, at least the jewelery can be removed and a "normal" appearance can still be achieved. Tattoos or ear guages are permanent, and that is scary.

Tongue piercing is scary and dangerous.

Compared to some of the things kids do to their bodies these days, it is pretty mild.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2007 at 12:15PM
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The everyday piercings of the nose, eyebrow, ears, bellybutton don't bother me at all. They have been around for quite some time and are commonplace. I have worked with many young people who have had these piercings and they have and are stil great kids. I didn't judge them or am afraid of them just because they had metal on their faces. Tatoos and clothing fall into that same catagory. They are just expressing themselves in their own individual way. (altho with lots of the kids doing it I don't know how individual they are actually being,lol) I see them and their piercings working at retail stores, hotels, volunteering in the community,etc. It does not concern me as was said before "it's not what's on the head it's what's in it". My daughter whom is an honor student graduating this year from high school has already been accepted at the two colleges she wanted to go to for Graphic design and a minor in creative writing. She sometimes wears bondage pants and has dyed the tips of her gorgeous blonde hair black. She has ear piercings all the way up her ear. She works at a shoe store to earn her own money. She volunteers not only as a mentor to middle school kids but also volunteers in the community. She loves to sing and has been a Chorus member starting in her elementary school days. She is just awesome and her younger sister seems to be following in her footsteps. Some of you would be missing out on meeting a great teenager if you judged her by the way she looks at times. Too bad your loss. NancyLouise

    Bookmark   January 24, 2007 at 1:50PM
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I'm wondering if I'll be looked down on this for even posting in here, but I'm hoping otherwise, because after reading through all of the content of this discussion, I've realized that everybody here is pretty open-minded and each has their own, solid opinion.

I'm not a parental figure - in fact, I'm the 14 year old daughter of a parent that is pretty open-minded.. I would like to contribute my own thoughts about this here, without being judged oddly because I'm not a parental figure, and I do realize this forum is for parents to post in.

The first piercings I ever got were my lobes when I was younger, and they closed up after a while.. September last year, for my birthday, I got my right eyebrow pierced, but I wanted my lip done twice (snakebites). My mom negotiated with me, and let me get my eyebrow. It's healed fine, didn't hurt a bit, and there's not much risk involved with it if the piercer knows what he/she is doing (in regards to the nerve ordeal).

After that, I decided to repierce my ears.. And I got it done with a piercing gun (biggest mistake of my life). Soon after, I pierced my own ears on the lobes, above the ones I got before (they healed fine, I know what I'm doing with piercings). Eventually, in October, I convinced my mom to let me get my left eyebrow pierced, but she was NOT happy. I'm very satisfied with both of them, but I feel I'll have to take out the right one soon because of migration/rejection (your body will push out the jewelry naturally because it's a foreign object).

My mother also lets my dye my hair whatever color I want.. I've had my hair blonde, black, brown, red, purple, blue, white (streaks of bleached areas), green, orange, and pink.. My hair's currently blonde with purple tips, but it was supposed to be black. I'm getting out of the odd haircolor phase.. I'll be satisfied with blonde, black, and red.

Anyway - I think that parents should allow their children to do as they please, but not so much that the children walk all over them. We, being humans, adapt and learn from our mistakes, and if your children decide that they made a mistake or regretted getting it, they will learn from it, and will have the option to remove it. It's helpful to give them a waiting period, or a goal to reach (good grades, manners, big project, etc), so they can have some time to think about it - they may change their mind. You may want to discuss with them the following, also: how much will it cost, where are they getting it done, do they know anyone that's had it done, do they know anyone that can tell them more about the place they want it pierced at, do they know how much it'll hurt, etc. If you want an idea of most of that, you can look it up on your favorite search engine pretty easily.

Piercings and tattoos will limit job opportunities for people, but I still don't regret mine.. I'm only 14, and I'm not a legal US Citizen yet, so I can't work anyway. If you're worried about piercings and job opportunities, your child can get something called a retainer.. It will keep the piercing open, but hide it from site. There's easy home remedies for this if you don't want to pay for them, also.

I don't see a lot of this as acting out.. I'll admit to some parental abuse in the past by my step-father, but it's been taken care of, and that's not why I wanted any of these things. I'm an honor roll student (last tri grades: A, A, A, B, B-), and I plan to take college courses as soon as I can. I find myself unique and an interesting individual, and I'm well-mannered and respectful towards others. I don't judge off of first impressions, but I'll admit: they do count. You shouldn't judge parents based off of their children's appearance though.. They could be the most polite, well-mannered kids you've ever met.


    Bookmark   January 24, 2007 at 6:09PM
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Cassandra - Maybe you could answer a question for me that I always wonder when I see a teen with the piercings, tatoos and wildly colored hair - Why do you feel the need for the piercings and all the different hair coloring? Aren't you satisfied or happy with your appearance as it is? I am sure that you are very naturally attractive girl, and do not understand why you would do all of these piercings, tatoos and dying of the hair? I am interested in an answer from your perspective? In my opinion, when you do all of the above, it makes you unattractive as opposed to more attractive. Do you think that these things you do make you more attractive? Do your friends all have the same piercings, etc. and what is their opinion on what these endeavors do for your appearance.

Thanks for your input.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2007 at 12:29PM
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It's not really a need, more of a want or desire, but I understand where your questions're coming from. I'm the type of person that thrives off of individuality and self-expression, so I love being "different," so I dress differently, and do odd things. It started for the most part with "gothic" clothing, which I don't really wear much anymore, but people still call me a goth, and after that I got into dying my hair. I wasn't really satisfied with my appearance at all before I got into any of these things, either.. I'm naturally a dirty blonde, and I will admit that I weighed 85 pounds or so more back then, so it didn't help with my lack of self-esteem.

With a lack of self-esteem, I turned towards something different, seeing how I like to be my own "person" anyway, and began to get fascinated with the entire odd or different look. I think that it does make me a bit more attractive, and it puts me aside from others.. I'm not afraid to show who I am, and I enjoy being myself, so why not show it? To each their own, but I understand your perspective, it's just a matter of understanding mine now.

My best friend got her right eyebrow pierced after I got mine done, which is the same day that I got my left one pierced. I have friends with a variety of piercings, but a lot of them don't have any, and some would never even dream of being pierced. They're fine with it, and a lot of them like the eyebrow piercings, the hair dying, etc. I'll also add in that they're not all part of the typical group that many people would imagine me hanging out with.. I hang out with a variety of people, because I'm not very judgmental.

I can understand your view on piercings and the other things being unattractive.. and I do agree to an extent. If they're not done right, or are on the wrong people, then it doesn't look right, and it turns out unattractive. I've noticed that when it comes to things like piercings or hair color, it has to be the right person, and in regards to piercings, the right place and jewelry - they can be beautiful. On the other hand, if somebody had a face full of metal.. That's disgusting.


    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 6:46AM
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Thanks for responding Cassandra. I disagree that the tats and hair coloring are who you are - but it's your decision. My daughter has the same problem with gaining weight - she is about 5'5" and 90 pounds and appears very thin. I am sure this bothers her, since all of the other girls are 20 pounds heavier, but she's dealing well so far. She dresses nicely and takes time to attend to her appearance. She looks beautiful and wholesome without all those additions you have decided for your image. I would hate to see her go the route of piercing and tatooing to deflect attention to her weight/shape. However, that is your choice.

I do have something to add to this piercing thread. I had an experience yesterday afternoon. I was at the mall with DD and killing time whilst she shopped. I went to the coffee shop to get a "treat" coffee. I was in a long line and when I stepped forward to be waited on, I noticed that all 3 baristas were tatooted, pierced, crazy dyed hair.

The gal who took my money was the least mutilated.

The girl who made my coffee was tatooed up and down both arms. She was wearing a t-shirt on one of the coldest days in our area to show off her tatoos. Her appearance was dirty. It turned my stomach. I am sorry, but I do not want a dirty looking barista with numerous piercings making my coffee treat. She had pierced eyebrows, tongue, lip, nose, ugh.

I paid for my coffee, she was coughing into her hand which really was the straw that broke the camel's back. I don't want to be judgmental but truth is, I am. I thanked her, politely took the coffee from her, dumped it into the trash can outside the store. $4 down the drain, but it made me physically sick at the thought of drinking out of the cup she put together both because of her coughing all over herself and her general appearance.

Since the line was long, I could not see the baristas, or I would never have ordered anything. Once I stepped up, I just ordered and paid, but I felt like asking these poor girls, what are you thinking?? BTW, I was not the only person commenting on the appearance of all of the employees who were working with food products.

I was so totally grossed out by the appearance of these girls. I cannot imagine that this coffee chain couldn't find a little cleaner looking baristas to take orders and make coffee. Sounds judgmental, but it is what it is as far as my expectations of who is prepping my coffee/food.

I am praying that my daughter never wants to do any of that stuff to herself. These piercings, dyings and tatoos did nothing to make these young girls more attractive, but rather made them look tough as nails, worn out beyond their years, dirty, etc. Yes, it did set them apart from other girls their age but not in a good way. It made them look like freaks compared to others their age. I would think they face more adversity with their tatooed and pierced appearances.

I know self confidence has to come within, but I would think some sort of counseling would be better than mutilating your body.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 12:17PM
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The people you are describing that served you coffee do seem like they took it too far, and in fact, just hearing about it disgusted even me. I don't plan to get many more piercings, if anything, I'll get more on my ears, and maybe something for a year or less on my lip.. But I really like my eyebrow piercings. They're not so obvious that it seems like I'm screaming for attention, and it's a nice little touch, I think.

The part that would really throw me off about your experience would be how unsanitary the girl was being - coughing all over herself? I'm not a germ freak, but that's really gross, and I would have done the same as you did. I'm the opposite of your daughter, although it is a weight problem. Mine is tied to a defect in my thyroid, hypothyroidism, so my metabolism is basically non-existant. I've been taking pills for it for about a year, and I've lost 85-90 pounds. My "workout" is pretty amusing, but it really works, and I've impressed at least 100 people with it: I play DDR for it.

I didn't really get the piercings to make other people think of me differently or think of me as any more attractive, but I did do it for myself, and I'm glad I did. They're things I enjoy having, and they can be removed, unlike tattoos, so I don't mind.

I also don't view these things as body mutilation, because I tend to think of self-mutilation when I hear the words "body mutilation." I'm not one to willingly talk things out with people I don't know or trust, so I'm better off talking to my friends about it, which I do.

I hope you and your daughter are doing well. :]

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 4:22PM
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About the COFFEEHOUSE thing...Where I live,most coffee houses have people with piercings and tattoos.I think it's because here,a coffee house is a place where people who dress like that like to hang out.It almost more of a cultural thing then a coffee thing.
Where I can see how you (LABMOMMA) have every right to be turned off and grossed out by your exprience,it is a narrow kind of view to think all people with piercings and tattoos are "DIRTY" people. And for every "dirty" pierced and tattooed person who was gross,I can think of many so called "normal" looking people who have been just as gross as well.

I think it is an unfair generalization. I also want to add,that most people who get these piercings and tattoos are not the kind of people who WANT jobs of high power and money in society. Many of those people prefer different kind of jobs that many of the normal people would scoff at. So,all I'm saying is,EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT.
I myself would be bored to tears by a high paying normal job. I'd much rather prefer a job that allowed me to be creative.And many creative jobs can make a ton of money also. Animators and fashion designers,working in the music industry. Being artistic.
Also,not everyone thinks the same things are attractive.Just like men and their "I prefer blondes" or "I prefer brunettes" deal. I personally dont think alot of tattoos on a woman is very feminine or attractive. However,I'm not a guy,and I know alot of them who LOVE a woman with alot tattoos.
The good thing about piercings is they are easily removed.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2007 at 1:54AM
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In reading thru all the great postings, as I said earlier, I have explored my own reaction to folks who have made some of these individualistic choices.

I feel in my personal case that I don't have a 'narrow' view. I think what I experience is a human gut reaction to the different.

Blondes and Brunettes may be a preference, but Magenta hair is a choice to be different. So Cyndi Lauper or Pink will definitely stand out from the Celine's or Britney's of the world. And it is a conscious choice to stand out, I think. Kind of like people who used to delve into the colored contacts trend, and you'd see people on the street with jarring eye colors.

How can a human being help but react in a human way when encountering something 'different'?

When I travel to Seattle, I see a host of different style choices compared to what I see here in Atlanta. And I don't experience such a reaction in myself, because in Seattle, it is more the 'norm'. Running into the same style choices here in my hometown would definitely garner a reaction.

I personally don't think I'm narrow-minded to have these reactions. I think it is only human to react to the 'different'.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2007 at 8:18AM
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That is the point they are trying to make IMO. They "feel" like a rebel and cool because they are playing the part of a group that used to be outside of the norm. But it is now so common place, that I think it is only their parents/friends of their parents, or potential employers who react to it now. Those taking it to the outer limits with multiple piercings/tatoos will find they are limiting their options in life. They will find it hard to get the high paying jobs, for the most part. And so they will have choices to make. Is their "look" worth the price they are paying in lost opportunities? In my view, they are handicapping themselves...for what????? The 20's and 30's are the years when they should soar...when they should be thriving creatively, and professionally before the responsibilities in life make it more difficult. This is just my opinion.

And last...for those into piercings, make sure that you have some pictures taken without the piercings. A day may come when you are "over it" as you grow up and go through various changes in your thinking...we all do, and you may want pictures one day to show your kids without all the piercings.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2007 at 3:56PM
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I was in the fruit shop today, the girl on the checkout, had a hole in her upper lip, very obvious. I thought she must have had a piercing and the employer said she should take it out, so she did. She looked silly.

Does the hole grow back, I wondered ?


    Bookmark   January 31, 2007 at 2:29AM
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That's an intresting question popi. Most of the holes DO close up. There of course are some that dont.
When I was 17,I pierced my own nose myself. It hurt so bad though,I only left it in for 3 days. The hole closed up fine and you cant even tell it was ever pierced.
Yet,my belly button piercing does not close up. I have left the ring out for up to a year and it never closed.

I have heard you can go to a plastic surgeon though and they can sew it up for you if it doesnt close. If I ever decided to no longer have my belly pierced,I'd probably do that.But I like it.There are so many really pretty belly rings to choose from. I get compliments all the time (when I wear a bathing suit) on my belly rings.
Even by my extremely conservative family.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2007 at 9:11PM
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I read through most peoples' postings here and wanted to put my 2 cents in.

My daughter turned 18 late last year and got her first tattoo (knowing I disapproved) a little over a month later. 3 weeks after that (knowing I disapproved), she got a lip piercing. She claimed they were self-expression, but I believe rebellion was a primary factor.

The timings of tattoo and piercing correlated with increased school absences, defiance of home rules and verbal disrespect toward me. I also noted that my daughter was getting heavily into the punk rock scene and attending concerts more regularly.

After the piercing, I told my daughter she could either remove the lip ring or lose her early graduation present, a brand new car. She refused to remove the lip ring, so I took her car keys. Soon after, she attended a school night concert without the agreed-upon grades (80 or above), so I changed the locks on the house and she went to live with her father. He claims to despise the piercing and tattoo, but imposes fewer rules in his household....every teen's dream.

I believe that getting piercings and tattoos may:
1) limit a person's choice of employers
2) limit a person's choice of lifemates
3) lead to secondary infections and/or tissue erosion (particularly piercings around the mouth)
4) lead to later regrets
5) correlate with other, perhaps negative, events going on in a teen's life

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 9:53AM
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remodelingfool - I couldn't agree more.

coolmama - I have followed many of your posts. I would not consider your family stories those of a conservative family, really quite the opposite. Also, please realize that those jobs you refer to as creative are very few and far between. The people filling those jobs are usually college graduates who have recommendations and a nice resume to accompany them to a job interview. No pierced, tatooed, blue/purple haired individuals in Disney's animation department. Regarding the fashion industry. Look at the women who have made it, Bobby Brown, Vera Wang, Kate Spade, etc. Do you see the difference?

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 5:39PM
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Excuse me LABMOMMA,but my family happens to be extremely conservative. what you have read has been about my immeadiate family,not the entire family. My grandparents,aunts and uncles are all very wealthy and very conservative people. They dont even believe in divorce! It was them that I was referring to that complimented my belly ring.
And,there are more creative jobs then those that you named. Personally,I dont know anyone who would even want to work at Disney,so,no big loss there.
I also think it is terribly unfair to make the assumption that all people with tattoos or piercings are rebellious! You really shouldnt open that can of worms about generalizing a particular group.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 6:52PM
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So Remodelingfool.....are you suggesting that because your daughter got some peircings, that made her behaviour change ?

In my mind, at 18, I would not like it if my daughter got piercings, but that is her decision, she must suffer the consequences. I would not take it personally.

I think, as parents, we need to think very carefully about how we react to such things. Some children just love doing things to shock their parents.


    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 7:07PM
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In our area, lots of people have various piercings and tattoos. That said, I think people look odd with them and unattractive. In fact, I think of it as a form of mutilation and feel that most are an indication of self loathing. I do form a first impression that is not positive, and I would hesitate to hire anyone with such if I were a business owner and my employee would represent the firm in dealing with the public. I do understand that nice people do pierce in odd places and do wear tattoos, but I still feel sorry for them.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 7:20PM
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My generalization would be that the tatooing and piercing is a stupid move.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 7:43PM
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you know what? that is fine if that is how YOU feel.But not everyone wants to look how you think they should look. And it is wrong to say those who do it are in some way,less then you,or to assume they are all rebellious,or disrespectful.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 8:49PM
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Hi all. I've been lurking on this board for a while, and finally feel the need to jump in on this thread. As background, I'm an "older" mom of a 3.5 and 6 y.o. with no tattoos and only my ears pierced. I am a professional and probably come across as fairly conservative-looking.

That said, I'm shocked at the judgmental tone of so many on this thread. People choose to tattoo and pierce for many different reasons--shock value, wanting to be cool, self expression, aesthetic preferences, etc. Some of the reasons are better than others, but all the choice of the person who does it. How many of you who are so judgmental about these choices dye your hair, wear make-up (admittedly less permanent, but still a choice to alter your "natural" physical appearance), feel comfortable with breast implants, face-lifts, botox, etc.? We live in a world where people choose to alter their physical appearance (not really a new thing in history). I just don't understand the strong reaction.

For those of you who say people who do this will limit their choices in jobs, I have this to say: While it is true that really extreme measures such as facial tattooing might have this effect, body and arm tattoos and most piercings are not necessarily so limiting. I am a professor at a very well-respected law school. Many of my students have eyebrow/nose/tongue piercings and tattoos. Most of them recognize that in many legal settings they will have to remove the facial hardware, but only where the setting calls for it. All of the ones who are good students (i.e., good grades, law review, etc.) get good jobs working in law firms, working for judges, for the government, etc.--and yes, there are many very bright students who have piercings and tattoos.

Some of my favorite, nicest, most respectful students have facial piercings and tattoos. Many of them will make terrific lawyers because they do not slavishly follow "conventional" norms without questioning the logic behind them. They are courageous, smart, creative, interesting people. I don't mean to make it sound like the majority of law students have these piercings, because they don't, but there are plenty that do, and they won't be working in coffeehouses or "the arts."

I hope that when my children are old enough to raise this issue, I will have the good sense to make sure that the desire is legitimate, and not the product of some misguided motivation and, if the desire is legitimate, let them go ahead with it. I am more concerned with raising my children to be moral, respectful, independent thinkers with a strong sense of self and ability to distinguish right from wrong. I see nothing incompatible with that and various forms of body modification. I cannot imagine punishing a child for making a choice about appearance. If there is other bad behavior involved, I intent to deal with the behavior itself.

Right now, all I have to deal with are the constant requests for temporary Hello Kitty tattoos and Barbie band-aids, but I'm sure the day is coming when I'll have to face this issue.

I'm sorry to jump into the board with such a strong statement, but I just couldn't hold back anymore.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 12:11AM
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I agree with what you say, and think it would be a wonderful world if we could all be non-judgemental, but unfortunately out there in the world, people are judgemental, and in order for us to fit in we must accept that we must conform.

I think this forum is wonderful for allowing everyone to speak their mind and be annonomous.

After having a son with dreadlocks, I fully understand people's judgements about that, but I knew my son, and he was my lovely boy, who just had odd hair. Its taught me not to be so judgmental about people who do alter their appearance in any way.


    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 1:46AM
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COOLMAMA - OP asked for opinions. I gave mine. I am sorry you don't agree or like it. I am not addressing my opinion to you personally, but to all of the young adults who think they are making a statement, rebelling, or whatever the reason is for mutilating their body. I don't think I am any better than them, I feel sorry for them.

kitchenmom - I agree your students may be gifted, but their piercings, if not removed, will definitely impact the course of their employment opportunities. I am very curious, as I am very familiar with your setting and career path, what you would consider a legitimate reason to pierce your tongue, lips, nose? If I were a client, I would never want a pierced attorney. I also know that many firms don't even want to see facial hair on a protential hire. I cannot imagine a firm that would hire a pierced, visably tatooed attorney (speaking from experience of course).

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 6:02AM
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There certainly are varying degrees of tolerance here and I gotta say I'm more surprised how tolerant some of you are. I just wonder when actually faced with the situation if you would remain so.

For now it's a non-issue for me and I think for several reasons... I had previously told DD that we wouldn't seriously discuss the eyebrow piercing before summer, and her friend with the "cool" parents with tattoos and piercing have moved away so there is no influence in that regard right now. Also, she has had a problem with one of her ears being infected. She only has single piercings in the lobes so maybe it got her to thinking about infection in the eyebrow. Anyway, I'm glad she doesn't keep bringing it up.

About everyone's opinions... I think we all picture something different when we talk about this subject. When i first posted it was about a single eyebrow piercing, then we got to talking about tats and hair as well. Put it all together and you got a guy with dreadlocks, tats up and down both arms, piercing in every place imaginable... whoa! I believe I'll hire the attorney with the single ear ring, and I prefer the waitress not showing her belly-button, pierced or not. If I'm going to have my car repaired, I don't care what the mechanic looks like.. as long as he knows his business. The good thing about piercings is they are removable... not so easy with tattoes. But, small tats in the right places can be covered and only displayed outside the workforce.

So, all in all, I guess we have different views of what is tolerable and upstanding. We all judge books by their covers to one degree or another, right or wrong.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 10:28PM
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I absolutely agree that there are degrees here and that, while someone with multiple visible piercings and tattoos is likely to get a strong reaction, a single nose or eyebrow piercing is not necessarily an obstacle to any employment.

Labmomma--there are certainly some large corporate firms with corporate clients who are intolerant of anything but the most conservative appearance, but I do know of many legal settings that would hire someone with visible piercings, and many clients who wouldn't be at all bothered by the fact that their lawyer has an eyebrow ring.

I guess that, ultimately, I don't see choosing to be pierced as such a big deal. It isn't a path I have chosen myself, but just because a young person chooses to get various facial piercings doesn't mean that they are ruining their lives and will never be a productive, successful member of society. First, because I believe there are many people in many parts of the country who don't see it as such an issue, and second because most of these things can be removed at a later date.

I actually have a student right now who has an eyebrow ring that cannot be removed without great trouble because it is one of those continuous rings. Another has those earrings that are thick continuous rings that make large holes in the ears. Both of these students are graduating this year and were hired, with piercings, into good paying jobs--one with the public defender, another with a small firm.

I guess overall my feeling about this is that I don't see any need to feel sorry for, or look down on, people who choose to make piercings and tattoos part of their appearance. While we do live in a world in which people judge based on appearance, that doesn't mean that everyone has to conform to the most conservative notions of acceptable appearance. Fifty years ago, the thought of women wearing pants in the workplace was as horrifying (or more) than the tought of a lip piercing today, but brave women started doing it and the norms changed.

There is no way to predict, for any given person/child, what the consequences of piercing might be, but this is true of all life decisions. I guess that my hope as a parent is to equip my children with an ability to understand that there are consequences to their behavior, and a willingness to accept responsibility for their choices. They are bound to make choices I don't like or agree with. I certainly won't be thrilled if one of them wants to pierce their tongue, because that is one piercing I personally find distasteful. But I don't think it is my job to prohibit it as long as I think my child is old enough to understand the consequences of this decision and goes into it with open eyes.

Sorry this got so long. I really find it a fascinating subject.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 11:55PM
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Ok first things first "To Each There Own" if people could understand that the world would be a better place. I understand you always have the freedom of speech and I respect that but most of you are making a big mistake. Ive been piercing since I was 15 and im now 25. IÂve done thousands of them on people from all different cultures and backgrounds or professions including a County Judge and his wifeÂs nipples so it doesnÂt ruin your life or hold you back from a job IÂm a department lead for a Big CD/DVD Manufacturer and have 14 piercings plus ¾ inch holes in my lobes. There is jewelry made to conceal the piercing called retainers just little pieces of polycarbonate plastic you cant even see. But I have noticed over the years that you wont stop a determined teenager that wants a piercing. Now I will not pierce anyone under 15 and thatÂs only navels, eyebrows and ears. Anything else you have to be 18 but if you tell your child NO then youÂll get 1 of two results either they will do it themselves or have a friend do it and thatÂs the worst thing that could happen there is a lot of problems that could and probably will happen if not done by a Pro. And if your worried about getting someone who doesnÂt know what their doing check with the Association of Professional Piercers at www.safepiercing.org . And every good Piercer should have a portfolio to see and docs. From the health department. Now tell me- Does that sound better than your teen doing it on their own with improper tools,needles,and jewelry?

    Bookmark   December 8, 2007 at 9:08PM
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My 17 1/2 year old daughter came to me last week and asked if she can get her lip pierced. I told her to look at her ears. She had them pierced when she was a baby. She hardly ever wears earings but the holes remain there, visible. I told her that if she pierces her face (anywhere), she could end up with permanent holes or scars when she is older and has her own children, etc. I told her it may be cool now but when she grows up, she may regret it. She thought about it and then asked me if she can get her ears pierced again. That is something I was fine with.

My niece got a "tramp stamp" as soon as she turned 18. She had a baby when she was 20 and, well I don't know what it looks like now because she sure keeps it covered up now. She was so proud of it when she first got it. She also tattoo'd her baby's foot on her shoulder. I think it looks awful.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2007 at 1:37AM
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A few thoughts.

Tats and piercings put you in a category, like it or not.
No one can judge fairly and say, a person with a tat is dirty or naughty...

But anyone with a tat or piercing at one time has thought, I'm going against the grain intentionally.

More interesting, I find the discussion of cool parents. I tend to look at parents who try hard to look cool and I feel sorry for them - but then I look in the mirror and realize how cool I look! LOL!!! Kidding. My style with kids is to show interest and lots of snacks and hugs. I think that's pretty cool - then when I holler at them for doing stupid stuff they know i still love them, even if I'm wearing sweats or not buying them Big League Chew or whatever -

I do notice however that some moms try extra hard to recreate their childhood and fix what was wrong by finally wearing the latest fad stuff and by being buddies and 'popular' with the kids. Then again, it's often the less physically attractive women that are squawking about it - those who are secure and solid are neither the so called 'cool' parents nor the squawkers.

That looks like I'm pointing fingers here but it's not, i dont' know anyone here at all but it seems to be a pattern i notice around me in my social arena.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2007 at 1:55AM
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Sorry for the intrusion - I'm not a parent, I'm just a 16-year-old girl who has stumbled across this page and feels the need to reply to the comments that have been posted here.

There seems to be some sort of feeling that people who get pierced/tattooed do it purely to look cool, to fit in with a group, etc. I have an eyebrow piercing (among other piercings), none of my friends are pierced, I have no desire to look "cool", I simply like the way piercings look. I don't want to fit in with some group or anything.

I have personally never found anyone to be judgemental about my appearance - it's not a problem in school, some of my friends' parents quite like my piercings, any employer I've ever had has not cared in the slightest, the parents of the kids I babysit don't have a problem with my piercings either. I get straight A's, I work hard, I'm generally a nice, friendly person.

Piercing is not a form of mutilation, nor is it a form of self-loathing. I don't hate myself, I just like piercings.

Perhaps people are using piercings as an excuse to judge people they find unsatisfactory for different reasons? Maybe if I was failing in school, didn't work hard and was generally a nasty person there would be those who would say it's because of my piercings?

There are both good and bad people with dyed hair, there are both good and bad people who wear certain clothes, and there are both good and bad people who get pierced or tattooed.

Well anyway I just felt I had to say all that because I do feel that some people on this forum are unfairly judging people and do have some pretty big misconceptions about piercings.


    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 6:48PM
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hi there, if its any comfort to you ill tell you when i was 15 (im now 32) i got the wise idea to get my nose peirced, it was the in thing, you know what my mom freaked out and threw a tantrum, i was in the bathroom admiring my self when i heard my dad tell her to shut up before i went out and pierced the other side! not to mention i had purple hair and wore army fatigues, long story short, eventualy i realized how silly it looked and took it out. i decided to join the military and couldnt have it anyways. so you know what it could be worse, she is a kid, and kids have to learn the hard and painfull way sometimes. i know am married (to a normal non peirced man with a good job) have 4 kids (3 girls god help me!) and am finally going to university, something i wanted to do for a long time. dont judge her for wanting to do this, i know a lot of awsome, intelegant kids who just happen to think that this looks COOL! its no worse than the other phase of people my age which was getting your ears peirced to the point you couldnt see skin anymore. and just remember if she comes home with it done, dont freak to bad or she may get the other side done just to tee you off some more! GOOD LUCK :)

    Bookmark   December 28, 2007 at 1:30AM
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Well, it's been almost a year since I initially started this thread and there's been no piercings or continuations of asking for her eyebrow pierced. I expect it will come again at some point, though.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2007 at 7:10PM
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I'm 26 so my high school days were not that long ago. I had my eyebrow peirced FOUR times!! Not all at the same time. I had it done so many times because my body rejected the peircing. The loop began to work it's way out of the skin. Gross!! Finally my last peircing was ripped out by my nephew and I never did it again. Where he ripped it out it took a chunck out of my eyebrow and the hair never grew back! The other peircing all left scars that you can still see today. Granted these other scars are hard to notice unless you know about them and are looking for them, but the chunk out of my eye brow is still just that, A CHUNCK OUT OF MY EYE BROW!!!! I love my parents for allowing to be my own person when I was a teenager, but I wish this was one they drew the line on! I'll never let my child get peircing of ANY kind (well maybe ears) or tatoos until their 18 and I don't have a choice anymore!!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2008 at 3:49AM
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I think it looks nasty, especially in the nose or mouth. It makes me wonder what's wrong with a person that does that. There was a report released that tongue piercing cause a medical problem, but can't remember what problem it caused.

I was at the Portland Rose Garden last year and saw a wedding taking place. My thought was what a pretty place to be married, then When I saw the bride I didn't notice her gown because every inch of her exposed body except her face was covered in tatoos. Lots of jokes and laughter in the crowd.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2008 at 5:28PM
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I think YUCK!

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 3:36PM
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Hello. I'm a bit uncertain about weather or not I should be leaving a comment, since I am only fourteen, but after reading some of these threads, I felt that I must. I stumbled across these posts, and was delighted. I am also fourteen, and desire a eyebrow piercing. I am a very responsible teenager. My parents comment on my excellent behavior often. I became very indignant when I saw many of you referred to piercings and tats as "mutilation". I apologize for this, but just who do you think you are? I realize that these are your opinions, but really? Who gave you the right to call it mutilation. I feel that unless you can at least understand what your beloved child is going through, you should not be so indignant to the idea. I happen to think it is attractive. And thats coming from a young woman who's father sticks his nose in the air at "punks", and others who are not labeled as "normal" in their appearance. And no, I am not rebelling. I love my parents deeply, and respect them with all my heart.
Besides, if you raised your kids so perfectly then why are they rebelling against you, eh?

*I am sorry to those I offended, I feel that all these are valid points. You must first find your faults before you begin to point others faults out.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2008 at 12:35AM
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Well Ms Bella how nice to hear from you.

I think us oldies really loose touch with young people, sometimes, so its hard for us to be patient with the decisions that young people make. Its up to you to explain your position, in a calm voice, and come up with a good argument as to why you should be allowed to do such things.

I think in the case of my 15 year old...I can see the consequences of his dodgy decisions, so that is a reason why I would object. Hopefully I have more life experience and its my responsibility as a parent to protect my child.

Your parents should be really happy to have you as their daughter, you have come up with some good points.

Why would you want to get your eyebrow pierced ? Are YOU aware of the downsides to such a thing ? I don't mean to preach to you...I am just trying to understand your viewpoint.

Take care

    Bookmark   April 18, 2008 at 3:24AM
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Popi, thank you for being understanding. I sure did not mean to come off as snide. (I have had issues with almost everyone believing that I cut myself and they said I was mutilating my body, though of course, I was not.)

I would like to get a eyebrow piercing because I think it looks pretty, and I like doing things that will make me look twice whenever I walk by a mirror. Some of my reasoning, yes, is for the attention I will undoubtedly get, but mostly for the way it makes me feel. It kinda feels cool and unique. HAHA...I say unique as if the five billion people with eyebrow piercings dont exist.


    Bookmark   April 18, 2008 at 9:11PM
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I can understand your reasoning --
But if you want something unique, why not get something that's actually unique? Instead of something that's popular in a certain circle in a certain way. Something that makes a rather 'predictable' statement of a type of individuality that isn't really individual at all?

"I feel that unless you can at least understand what your beloved child is going through, you should not be so indignant to the idea."
You raise a good point here -- But what you're forgetting is that all of us here HAVE gone through adolescence. And for many of us (not me, but others), it wasn't all that long ago. We all know adolescence sucks. It just does. So maybe we do understand.

My younger brother dated a girl in high school who was fabulously different. She did things with her hair that no one else did -- shingle-cut, shaved head, mohawk, reverse mohawk, hot pink bangs, shaved all but a 'baby curl' on her forehead -- Now she was unique! And everybody loved her because she had the guts to be different - to really express herself. And the best part was that as she continued to grow and evolve, she could change it and change it again - which she did.
With no permanent scars. Which is fortunate as she ended up marrying an international jet-setter and now lives in an honest-to-goodness castle, among other residences...

    Bookmark   April 21, 2008 at 7:17PM
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bella enchanted: I think it is because most of us grasp that what one thinks is attractive at fourteen, can be very, very different at 18, 22, or 32, let alone 50, 60 or 70. I am referring mostly to tatoos, but certain piercings leave their own permanent after affects, especially those that alter the ear lobes in a radical way.

People grow and evolve and change. The permanent markings
may be something you think is cool now, but may be an enormous source of embarrassment later, not only for you, but for children you may have one day. Sadly, the friends your child may one day desire, may be kids in a class whose parents don't get the look that represents "alternative" lifestyle. And it is those parents who often control "play dates" that can make your child feel included or excluded. And I understand that people should be able to see beyond that, but many don't. Keep in mind that many employers don't either, and it could limit future job options one day. Right now, you may love the "statement" they make about you. Remember, they continue to make a "statement" about you that one day may no longer fit who you evolve into. Trends change. People change. Friends change. The people you want to identify with today, may be very, very different later on... on this journey through life. If I were to pass on what I learned on this journey through life, it would be to give yourself room to evolve without limiting your ability to do so with permanent markings that will forever "identify" you and peg you as part of a certain group or culture, whether you are, or not.

If you want to make a statement, at least be unique. Dye your hair, find a style of clothing that "you" identify with that is uniquely yours, and not like everybody in a certain group or clique. But keep in mind, that being "unique" often has a price attached. A young girl I know dresses "one of a kind". She dreams up very unique outfits that draw attention to her and make her stand out. And yet, she often complains that she has no friends. That no one likes her. (she is beautiful, by the way). And I wonder if this need to stand out, is separating her somehow from those who would otherwise be a friend. If her clothes are standing in the way of friendships, leaving her lonely. Because if you are someone looking for attention by standing out, you must be aware that it can often have people snickering, or pointing, or feeling like that person always has to be the center of attention, and is always competing somehow for attention through what they wear.

Anyway, food for thought as you find your own way.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 11:22AM
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Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me.
First off, I just thought I would mention, I HAVE MY EYEBROW PIERCING!! I am most delighted with the result. :) And don't take me wrong, It took a month of effort on my part to convince my parents to let me get it. Conditions were made, many discussions held, and finally, they agreed. They would rather me be into this that sex or drugs. They said flat out "No!" in the beginning, but then my mother saw I was determined, I spent nearly five whole days on the computer doing research, and she in the end helped with my dad.

I realize that I may have limited my job offers, but it consoled me that when I arrived at my job (I babysit the children in my community), the mother that had employed me did not even notice, and I had my hair swept off my forehead to boot. Also, I have no desire to work for a large generic company, who wouldn't allow piercings. I would prefer something smaller. I have much interest in psychology, sociology and counseling. And I'm sure there are not many restrictions there.
I also understand that this piercing is not the most original thing, but I like it. Which is all that matters in the end. People have had there various reactions, from "I don't care, to NOOOO!!! I have just let them have their opinions, and continue with my day, happy with my decision.

One thing though. WHY,oh why does EVERYONE think that being a teenager means going through hell?? Really, I don't get you people. No offense meant, but just because your adolescence was a pile of crap, does not give you the right to assume mine is.I am having a great time with my life.
For Example: My parents have a loving healthy relationship even after 25 years, my sister is a fun, bubbly person with a functional boyfriend/ soon to be finance. Also, I play guitar, take kick boxing, am going to be taking ballet, and ballroom dance, AND I love it all. Yes, we may be poor, I may have my moments of depression, and yeah, I even have the wrath of a group of cruel teenage girls upon me, but I think it pretty much evens out in the end.

I apologize for my writing above, but thats how it is. I get very upset whenever people tell me anything like, "I know what your going through, being a teenager is really horrid!" And believe me, I get that allot! I honestly mean to offense. Last but not least, try to get to know people before you judge them. I may have dyed black hair, five piercings, almost all black clothing, but you would never guess from that, that I would take Ballet and ballroom dance, would you?
Sincerely, Bella

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 11:07AM
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My sister (who is very "hip") commented to me the other day that many in the current teenage generation seem to try to look as bad as possible (this coming from someone who did some pretty crazy things to herself in high school). And I agree. Dreadlocks, ugly piercings, tattoos, really unattrative and unflattering clothing, "goth", etc. My niece, my sister's girl, is the same (eyebrow piercing, horrible hair color, unflattering clothes), she's a beautiful girl that seems to try to look as bad as possible. I don't understand it. It seems to be a cry for attention - "look at me!". Or is it insecurity? Or am I wrong?

Just be aware that people are building their first impression of you partially on how you look. There are very few people who think an eyebrow piercing contributes positively to a first impression.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 10:34PM
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Are you suggesting that goth is unattractive or ugly? Or are you simply so close minded that you cant see how we find it fun to dress differently? My hair is dyed, my eyebrow pierced and I dress differently, so by your post, I am trying to look ugly? We just want to look different is all. Were just going by how we LIKE to look, which, as I have said before, is all that matters.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 4:27PM
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I'm not suggesting it, I'm saying it. Yes, I think Goth is ugly. That does not mean I think the person is ugly, I think people are beautiful as they are, with their real skin tone and hair, without black lipstick. I think Goth hides someone's natural beauty. I'm not close minded, I realize it may be "fun".

And I don't believe being a teenager means going through hell. That experience is not familiar to me. I hear about all the stress and angst that many (most?) current teenagers seem to go through and I don't get it, it just wasn't part of my experience. My sister did go through it and I wonder how much of it she brought on herself because she wanted to be "unique". Mohawk, piercings (only ears were done back then), etc. She has evolved in the last 20 years (haven't we all) and now seems embarassed by how she looked back then. She is a beautiful woman and she hid her beauty with ugliness for years, even she will admit this. She was insecure and stressed out and her "costume" was a way to hide. I'm not saying that is the case with you.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 6:20PM
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I suppose its all a matter of opinion. I happen to dress all black, or gothic to people who don't realize its a subculture, not a way to dress, and no one has a problem with it. That is, everyone thinks it looks really good. Some things, yeah, can be overly done, but eyebrow piercings should be the least of your worries. Try looking up corset piercings, now those would hurt. I feel no need to take up a costume in which to hide behind, I'm happy with who I am.In any case this discussion has gone way off subject, and to finish it up, I like the way it looks, feels, and is, and I think you should let your daughter do it if she still wants.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 1:01AM
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I am all for individuality BUT we all live in a society where we all have to conform to a certain extent.

So...if you want to work as a judge in a court...you cannot dress like a goth.

But...if you want to work as a youth consellor perhaps dressing like a goth, or having piercings, or tatoos, is a great way to relate to your clients.

My son, 15, dresses in black, and has recently started wearing army boots, with jeans tucked in...and has added some chains hanging down from his belt. I suggested he looked a bit threatening to people and he might attract some flak from other youth, or even adults. He is aware of that, but still went out dressed like that. I know he is a lovely gentle boy...but others might think he is a bit tough !!

But I am supportive of his right to be an individual...if you take that away from people, you stifle creativity.

This is the boy, who had dreadlocks a while ago...the school phoned me and told me he had to get them cut off. He wasn't very happy about that !

Go with the flow...


    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 4:21AM
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I think bella said it best herself- it isn't just a way to dress it is a subculture and that can be frightening to parents who don't understand and/or don't support those beliefs/values, etc. It isn't fair but it is life- the first thing we see is what is on the outside and sometimes that prevents people from going any further.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 6:12PM
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Thank you popi and newgardenelf.
Popi, see, thats just the thing. I realize what kind of world we live in, and I make it a point not to conform. Not to say that I go against it, just that I make sure to be 100% ME. Even if some of that seems to fit under "conforming". Which, lemme tell you is real hard. I cried my eyes out today because I was sick of people trying to get me to act more "normal". But can I help it? I have this whole thing against some points of society, like how we portray the perfect woman and how being sexy is THE way to go. I feel that a nice woman in jeans and a slim t-shirt is more attractive than the snotty woman in a miniskirt, tank, and stilettos. Anyway, I could argue with someone for hours about that. I am in love with the gothic look. I may change, I may not. I think we should all just be ourselves, at all costs.
Newgardenelf, thank you. Wouldn't it be nice if we all tried to look past the outside?

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 6:57PM
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Hey all, I stumbled on this page and had to put in my two cents. First of all, its unfair to generalize and categorize according to personal preference. Categorizing based on race and sexual preference is prejudice whereas judging because of a piercing is acceptable? That is simply not congruent. I am I pre-law, political science and economics double major at a respectable university. I have held numerous positions in student government and participated in extra intellectual clubs and organizations. And 'lindac' Id like you to know that I am going to law school and also have three piercings, a half sleeve of tattoos, a ribcage tattoo, and I had dyed hair. I get where you parents are coming from, im goal oriented and realize that I need to hide my ink and piercings on interviews, but the point im making is that it IS possible to hide them! Try to be more open minded, with the good parenting that you all seem to exhibit im sure your kids will turn out fine- I did.

Btw- many of you seem to be stuck with a very old-fashioned view of the corporate/professional world, my very distinguished poly-sci advisor who was a lawyer for years also has his nose pierced =p. Piercings are growing in terms of acceptability as the younger generations flood the workplace.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 1:46AM
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Good topic! When I was 15 I wanted a tattoo. My dad said I could as long as it was tasteful, fit under a quarter and could be hidden by a bikini. (thank you Dad, for letting me do it, yet setting boundaries!) I still love my little butterfly, and I think nostalgically about the 15 year old girl I was and the symbolism of me coming out of my cocoon. I got another one, a "tramp stamp" if you will, the last time I went to Tahiti. I love it too, and get compliments on it when I choose to show people. It too, fits under my bikini. In essence, I can go out and not be judged but my art is there for me and those whom I choose to show it to.

I got a belly piercing at 17, took it out at 24 to have my daughter, and put it back in at 27. I enjoy it, but sometimes do wish I hadn't gotten it because the hole will always be there.

I also have five holes in my ears, two when I was three (I wanted them, my parents didn't inflict it on me... a whole different subject is that I hate it when parents pierce babies. Gross, unnecessary pain inflicted on a tiny baby who didn't have a choice!) I got the second holes at 13 with my dad. I got the last hole in my left ear at 15.

Although I wore my combat boots and long skirts, black nail polish, black fishnets and stockings that we burned holes in with our cigarettes, dyed my hair and generally acted rebellious I was a pretty good kid. I graduated from college and live a pretty "straight" life. Upon looking at me now, people are shocked to hear I have two tattos and a belly ring "but you look so innocent and mainstream!".

My suggestion? Have children do research. Go to different tattoo parlors and have them look at the work that is being done. Piercings, tattoos, etc. Have them talk to people who are covering up ugly tattoos, or look at older people with a big blur of ink on their bodies. They could end up with a scar there. That can be a scary deterrant. Talk to them about whether or not they'd do it again...

They have pretty good removable earrings/noserings/bellyrings and tattoos now. Buy one of them so they can see how it looks and experiment. They are the ones who will have to live with their decisions.

When I see a "goth" kid walk by I smile. How wonderful that they are experimenting with who they are. When I see a big flock of Abercrombie and Fitch clones walk by I see it as they are too afraid to take risks. Yes, goth is not original. But no two kids are wearing the same studded necklaces and black shirts. It's all individual.

And they will grow out of it, most of them. I think a large majority of the goth adults are ones who weren't allowed the freedom to choose as young adults.

Make sure she has done research. Make sure she understands fully what she is doing. Then let her go.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 2:39PM
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Since starting this thread so long ago this is the first time I really feel motivated to disagree.

I don't feel like just because anyone wishes to dress in Abecrombie and Fitch... or preppie... doesn't make them "too afraid to take risks".

Oh, and to update.... DD has still not gotten her eyebrow pierced, or even asked to. She still wears black shirts, but has moved on to something other than plain black pants. She's into those black/red striped skinny jeans and blue leopard skinny pants. Soooo much better than plain ole black.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 7:18PM
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Hi moonie! Very worthwhile thread you started a while back, and a worthwhile read for anyone interested in the subject!

Anyhow, I knew if I sat back, that someone would call silversword on the statment that people wearing the Abercrombie & Fitch (or classic/preppy clothing) show themselves to be people afraid to take risks. Huh? Risk taking is a personality trait. I would imagine that many into extreme sports that we see on television, (talk about risk takers) may be walking around in real life in a tee-shirt and jeans day to day. And I would imagine that there are many Goth's whose risk taking does not extend past heading to the local mall for black nail polish and black goth clothing.

And I will take it further as silversword stated that those into Goth style are "individuals".

Sorry, I don't buy it. Both groups are wearing the exterior trappings of the group they wish to fit in and identify with. Neither is original, and not particularly risk taking. Both are following trends...whatever the trend is of those they want as friends.

Now if you really want to be individual, choose a style no one wears. Say jeans with a 10 inch zipper! Come up with a unique style that fits in with no group, per say. Now you are an individual, and perhaps venturing into risk taking, if you consider buying and wearing something something "NO One" wears.

I am smiling as I write this.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2008 at 11:33AM
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Sorry, to clarify: by risks I meant "risking" going outside mainstream with their clothing choices, not their behavior.

I still think, since goth is not mainstream, that those who choose to wear it are taking a risk to be different. I said that it's not original (not anymore, anyway) but it is still different from those who are following the consumerism of wearing the latest trends.

Goth kids/those with rings/tattoos get called/considered sluts/degenerates much faster than those who are wearing little schoolgirl outfits.

Actually, benicebekind, I didn't say goth kids are "individuals". What I said was "How wonderful that they are experimenting with who they are... Yes, goth is not original. But no two kids are wearing the same studded necklaces and black shirts. It's all individual." By that I meant they put their outfit together, they didn't buy it all pre-made.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2008 at 12:55PM
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hey everyone!
i stumbled upon this page and thought i'd share what i thought in case the original poster was still looking back or torn about the eyebrow piercing.
im not conservative at all and encourage any form of originality that anyone wishes to pursue. that being said, if i were you, i would tell your daughter to wait 2-4 years and if she still wanted a piercing, you would talk about it again. chances are, she wont wait it. i dont want the same things i wanted when i was 14. . . and i dont know many people who do.
also, if she does have a facial piercing/visible tattoo when she is interviewing at colleges it will probably count against her. just because piercings and tattoos are out of the norm. colleges judge you by your interview/application and they wont take the time to get to know your daughter after the first impression. with colleges becoming more and more competetive, everyone applying needs all the help they can get.

and as to the goth vs prep thing with originality. . . neither is original. its just clothing. and 9 times out of 10 the way your child dresses will most likely be affected by what their friends dress like/what their favorite tv character/band wears. its less to do with originality and more to do with admiration. if you really want to consider your child original guide them to something artistic. no one ever paints, photographs, or composises the same thing. people do wear the same abercrombie shorts, hollister shirt, black t-shirt, studded necklace, etc. with all due respect of course.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2008 at 1:04AM
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