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Seven-Year-Old Gets Plastic Surgery To Avoid Playground Bullying

Meet Samantha, a first-grader from South Dakota who's already developed a complex about her oversized ears (which, to our untrained eyes, seemed pretty cute). So she and her mother did the logical thing and hopped on a plane — the first time on a plane for both — to get Samantha's ears cosmetically fixed.


Samantha's mother Cammy is fearful that her daughter's cup ears (one of which is also a lop ear) are the subject of schoolyard bullying and views surgery as a preventative measure for her daughter. When Good Morning America's Juju Chang repeatedly asked the seven-year-old if she had been bullied, she said no — but her mother claims otherwise. Cammy says Samantha's been called "monkey ears" by other children and that "adults are the worst," as it's the adults who supposedly say things like "What happened to her ear? That's so gross." Perhaps Samantha's mother is more obsessed with those ears than Samantha is herself.

Illustration for article titled Seven-Year-Old Gets Plastic Surgery To Avoid Playground Bullying

The doctor who performed Samantha's transformation cites studies that suggest children with abnormalities are less popular, which can hinder the development of self-identity. While that's likely true, there are factors beyond self-esteem that affect a child's development process. What's more, we all know that kids will a reason to tease another child if they want to: why not focus Samantha's red hair? Freckles? Or maybe the fact that she went on national TV to fix her ears? Children are relentless if they want to be, and there's no surgery to protect a kid from that.

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If any of you ever has a baby with a mis-shapen ear PLEASE keep this in mind, it will likely save your baby surgery when they get older:

One of my kids was born with a deformed ear (crinkled/lop and with no lobe at the top). We were told it was likely just how he was pressed in the womb as cartilige is so soft, if he stayed in a funny position when that ear was growing it would have just done that.

I asked our doctor about it and we were told that if we wanted something done about it we could do so when he was older, but ear surgeries of the type he would need are very sore for recovery.

THEN, by happpenstance I saw a poster in a waiting room (not somewhere about ears) that said that our local hospital offered a painfree, surgery-free option to fix misshappen ears! I looked into it and if your child is under 6 months they just tape this little bendy shape (an "ear splint") to the kids ear, tape the ear to the side of the head and the cartilige is still so malleable it fixes it all in a matter of weeks! My son's ear went from very visibly mal-formed to completly normal in just about 4 weeks (would have been less if we had been told about it when he was younger). It was amazing. Both his ears look identical still 5 years later.

You can even do it yourself if you order the splint. I try to tell as many people as possible as it is a non-invasive, pain-free, infection free way (and costs WAY less than surgery) to fix a kids ear shape.

Here is the site where you can buy splints and get the info on how to put them on: []

(The pic above is from a medical journal.)