Talking to kids about cosmetic surgery

by Naruschka Henriques


Sooner or later, all parents need to sit down with their kids and have deep discussions about the most important health topics, be they sex, drugs, getting older, and body image. There are things that both boys and girls really need to know and while schools do a great deal to educate kids about health matters these days, there is no substitute for learning from mum and dad.

Kids get mixed signals about cosmetic surgery from their friends, from the media, and from the internet. Some of those signals say that everybody should conform to a certain set of requirements if it is to be considered beautiful or attractive. Some say that cosmetic surgery is something to be ashamed of. It’s up to you to make sure they understand the issues and come to the right conclusions.

If you are scheduled to undergo a procedure yourself, it’s doubly important to talk it through with your kids first. They may not notice minor wrinkle injections, for example, but they will certainly notice a major fat removal procedure. It’s crucial that children know your decision to change the way you look does not mean they need to do the same. They may also need reassurance that the changes do not mean upheavals at home or involve serious health risks for you.

There are plenty of urban myths floating around the playground. Quite a few of them seem ridiculous to an adult mind, but for kids they can be serious worries. Often all it takes to set a young mind to rest is a half-hour chat with a parent. It might be a little awkward, but ultimately worth it.

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