Ear piercings and letting the baby grow into a man

Posted on May 11th, 2011

“To pierce or not to pierce, that is the question.”

I’ve been having a bit of an internal struggle. Well, maybe not entirely internal, since I tend to either blog about my feelings or scream about them. But anyway, I’m having a bit of a struggle. Specifically, I am struggling with allowing my baby to grow up.

And yes, I am well aware that my baby is 15.

But this has been the most difficult process of my life. Seriously. It’s way, way worse than my struggle to resist the siren lure of chocolate. Or resisting all the pretty eye shadows at Sephora. (Side note: why can’t I resist blue eye shadow? Really, it looks pretty in the box, then I get it home and realize I’m not a blue eye shadow type of person—mainly because it makes me look like I should have a job at Ringling Brothers).

Anyway, I’ve been resisting allowing my baby to become a man. Or possibly even a toddler. Look, the minute Junior became taller than me, what did I do? I started wearing high heels. People, please. I haven’t worn heels since the 90s, unless you count my Shape Up walking shoes.

But I went out and bought a whole bunch of wedge sandals (um, in my defense it was BOGO time at Payless). And I felt better because then I was taller than him. Or at least I was until last week when I suddenly realized that even with my 3-inch heels Junior was eye level with me.

And when he wanted a curfew earlier than 11 PM for movie night at a friend’s house, what did I do? I resisted, of course.  What the heck was I thinking? I mean, the kid was down the street, at the home of our neighbor who is a police officer, watching a movie with 5 or 6 other teenagers. Thankfully, Harry stepped in before I became irrational and convinced me to agree to let Junior stay out later.

And then there was yesterday when my son asked to get his ear pierced.

Now I should say that part of me doesn’t care. Harry has a pierced ear, done as a ritual when he became a SCUBA instructor. I actually kind of think it’s sexy, but then again, I still think Simon LeBon is cute so I believe it may be obvious that I never left the 80s. Anyway, when Junior asked, I was pretty ambivalent. He’s a good kid, has good grades and actually likes me most of the time. What more can I ask from a teenager?

On the other hand, I’m kind of torn. He’s 15. I wonder if that’s too young to pierce. I also wonder where this request has come from. Very few of his friends have earrings. I know freshman year is a time of trying to decide what group you are in and who you are, so I wonder who my son is trying to be? Himself? Eminem? Or somebody else? And before you ask, Harry doesn’t care at all, and in fact thinks it’s fine. It’s me who can’t agree and per our parenting agreement, until I agree Junior doesn’t get an earring.

So tell me, what do you all think? Is this gangsta? Should I be worried? Or should I let him do it and then go down to Payless and get 5-inch heels?

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7 Responses to “Ear piercings and letting the baby grow into a man”

  1. NCA Says:

    I’ve had pierced ears since I was 13, no big deal. As long as you do it at a reputable place and follow the cleaning instructions then you’re fine.

  2. Amye Says:

    As the sister of younger twin brothers and the step-mother of a budding teen I say let him do it. In the end he is going to do it whether you like it or not. My youngest brother was a really good kid. At 16 he wanted a tattoo. Nothing drastic, the Marine Corp Emblem on his thigh. He was adamant. My mother made on condition, he wait one calendar year and if in one year he still wanted it she would sign for him to get it. Do I really need to tell you that some how he managed to get it before the year was up?

    I know it’s hard. You wonder where the hell all those years went and want that cute little toddler that was always happy to see you and was appeased with something as small as his favorite cookie. But alas, they do grow up and we have to begin to trust them at some point.

    Good luck!

  3. Laurie Says:

    Well, he did it. He was a bit wimpy, but then so was I. Thank you for your advice! I think I did a bit of growing up too–because I did not cry!

  4. Jennifer Says:

    I LOVE YOUR STUFF! I’ve been reading your blogs daily for about a year now and my favorite was “How to wake up a teenager”. My son is only 11 and already getting there. Thank you for your dose of fun every day! I don’t think I would let my son get an earing until he was old enough to drive himself to the parlor. Perhaps it’s a good incentive for driving? No tickets, no wrecks etc., and then you can get the earing?

  5. liz Says:

    Does he like it? Do you like it? My son never wanted his ear pierced. My daughters had theirs pierced at about three months. But they both wanted their cartlidge pierced, which I of course I thought was horrible. But of all people the women who would not allow me to get mine double pierced back in the 80’s, said let them do it…yes my mother. I could’ve killed her. Of couse I did excactly what you did and took them to get it done. My oldest is now a teacher and keeps a very small earing in it. She never went out and got a bunch of piercings, so it will be fine. My youngest on the other hand is talking about another one, but she is now 18 and does not need my permission. She still wants my approval so that is good!!

  6. Laurie Says:

    Thank you so much! I did end up letting him get the piercing (and as a side note: everyone keeps mentioning this driving thing; are you all trying to drive me into a heart attack?). I’m posting that story today!

  7. Laurie Says:

    Ahem, yes he did it. Not sure if he loves it. I actually do kind of like it. BUT, I am dreading telling my parents. They are republicans. They live in Texas. Earrings on a boy, especially their youngest grandson? Yeah, that won’t go over well. I figure I’ll tell Dad at his anniversary party, after I’ve broken out the good tequila :)

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