Teenagers have so many new ideas and new phases to go through. You don’t need me to tell you how difficult this stage of life is. I’m sure you remember what you were like as a teenager, and things are even harder now. With the birth of YouTube and social media, teenagers see more influencers than ever before. So, it’s hardly surprising that they take to specific trends and want to follow them.
One trend that’s become particularly popular in the last few years is body piercing. Lots of teenagers have their ears pierced, but now they want to move to different parts of their bodies. If your teen comes to you and says they want a body piercing, what should you do?
Ask them where the piercing will be
This is the first question to ask as it makes a huge difference in how you might want to respond. A teenager getting a nose piercing to wear some gold nose rings is vastly different from one getting a nipple piercing – or worse. If your teen does want a piercing in a more sensitive area, I’d advise them against it. Ask them to wait until they’re an adult before making a decision like that, to be sure it’s what they really want, forever.
As for other body parts – like the nose, lip, or bellybutton – then your stance might vary. For piercings that are obviously on display, you might want to warn your teen that they won’t be able to wear them all the time. You can’t wear lots of piercings to school or even to a job interview where you have to look professional. Ultimately, it’s hard to know what to do if you don’t know why your child wants a piercing. That brings us to the second question:
Ask them why they want the piercing
Regardless of where the piercing will be, it helps to understand their reasoning for wanting it. You’ll be surprised at how much thought a teen puts into decisions like this. If they’ve put a lot of thought into it, and can give you lots of positive reasons, then letting them go through with it might be your best choice. They may tell you they want a piercing to help them feel more self-confident, which might be a better reason than if they just want what everyone else has, although I’d advise trying to get to the bottom of what’s causing them to feel underconfident too.
If they can’t give good reasons and seem to be following the crowd, then you probably need to try and steer them away from it. Particularly if it seems like they’re not 100% certain of their decision. Teenagers can do some pretty reckless things just to fit in. So, tell them that their friends shouldn’t care if you have a piercing or not. It’s never a good idea to do something just to follow the crowd as you can regret it later in life.
Ask where they want to get the piercing
At first glance, this looks like the same question as the first one. However, this is more to do with who will give them the piercing. Now, teenagers around the world are incredibly bored. They’ve been in lockdown for months, and I’m sure they’ve tried every activity under the sun to stay occupied. Therefore, it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that your child is thinking about piercing themselves! Or, even worse, they want to get a friend to do it.
Needless to say, you can’t allow this. If you do let your child get a body piercing, make sure it’s from a properly trained person. There’s a huge risk of infections or something going wrong if they pierce themselves. So put your foot down and tell them that if they’re going to do this, then they have to do it right.
Thank them for being honest
Finally, be sure you praise your teen and thank them for being honest with you. They could easily have tried to go behind your back to get this body piercing. The fact they came to you is a sign that they respect your opinion. Keep this in mind when you’re deciding if you want to give consent or not. It’s a big sign of maturity in my eyes.
A lot of you have probably read this article hoping you’ll get a yes or no answer at the end. Sadly, I can’t tell you how to deal with your teenager. Every situation is different, which means it’s sometimes okay to let them get a piercing, and sometimes it’s not. The best approach is to listen to your teen and move through the steps listed above.