A piece asks, "When Is Cosmetic Surgery the Answer to Bullying?" And we're gonna go with, "almost never."
This is not to say that cosmetic surgery is not the "answer" to the protuberant ears some of the kids in this piece have pinned. (This, along with cleft-palate and cleft-lip surgeries are the only ones approved for young children.) These kids — one a 7-year-old girl, the other an 11-year-old boy — apparently deal with a lot of teasing. Which is cruel, and awful, and surely makes their young lives a misery. And doctors, to their credit — at least those interviewed — seem to do due diligence.
Before doing surgery on a child, Lukash said most surgeons will talk to the child during multiple consultations to find out how the child feels, and how he or she interacts with peers. He encourages them to draw pictures. In many cases, like Brian's, it's clear children are upset by constant teasing.
As kids get older, teasing can take a turn for the worse and turn into bullying. In the age of social media and the Internet, parents say it's reached a new level.
"Bullying is very different now with Facebook and sites like that," said Donoghue. "I didn't want him to go through that."
But, as Angry Black Bitch made plain in a terrific post on her blog, if it's not one thing, it will be another.
We need to shift our thinking on this shit. We need to focus on the bully and ask ourselves why they aren't being asked to change. And we need to deal with the fact that bullies will bully until bullies are taught not to bully. Eventually the bully will move on to something that isn't changeable…to something that isn't fixable through an expensive surgery and painful recovery. Because bullies bully until bullies are taught not to bully. When we start down the road of changing ourselves to appease bullies we being a journey that will never end and that puts the responsibility for being harassed on the survivor rather than on the person who desperately needs some home training and likely needs therapy.
If someone wants to "correct" his kid's appearance, I guess that's his legal parental prerogative — although that, too, seems like a pretty slippery slope. But there is no cure for bullying. And while I still remember the pain of being taunted for my tiny size and high voice (which I would have surgically corrected in a second if I could have), I know if it hadn't been me, it would have been another kid. Maybe as a parent, you don't care.
When Is Cosmetic Surgery the Answer To Bullying? [ABC]