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Age appropriate?

March 4, 2019

 It was right around my daughters age, 10 years old, that I became super conscious of the Mediterranean gift I received of dark, hairy, arms and legs.  It was also around this age that my peers took notice and thought it would be fun to ridicule.  Looking back on it, it makes me laugh. But at the time, it resulted in begging my mother to allow me to shave.  I remember her saying, "Once you start, you can never stop. The hair grows back coarser and coarser. You're too young, you can start when you're thirteen."  Additionally, it was around age 7 that I really wanted my ears pierced.  Again, my mother, who by the way has never pierced her ears because she believes if God wanted them there he would have put them there, told me I could get them pierced at age 10.  All parents have their timeline on when they think things are age appropriate.  That varies based on how you were raised, what your beliefs are, and cultural influence.  


I decided to google what age boys and girls should start shaving and what age girls should get their ears pierced.  I thought I'd find a lot of differing opinions, but surprisingly, there was a common average age for these big events.  The agreed upon age for girls to begin shaving is between 12-14 years of age and the reason is girls this age will more likely have the maturity to avoid cutting the skin which can lead to bleeding and infection.  Boys typically begin shaving at the onset of puberty with the majority beginning around age 15.  As for ear piercing,  there are two solid ages mentioned.  If you want to pierce your babies ears, it should be between 4 and 6 months to avoid infection as tetanus shots will have been administered.  If you believe it should come later, the age is typically 9-10 years old.  The reasons are at this age your child can have input and make decisions about if they want to do this and also, they have the maturity to take care of them with proper cleaning, rotating the earring, etc.  


Why do I bring this up?  Well, I find it fascinating that we won't hand our sons and daughters razors at young ages so they don't hurt themselves, right?  No parent wants to see their child cut themselves by accident, bleed, and risk infection.  We won't let our daughters get their ears pierced until they can prove they have the maturity and responsibility to properly clean and maintain them for the 6 weeks required and beyond.  BUT WE WILL GLADLY GIVE THEM CELL PHONES!!!!  We will give them something that makes them susceptible to cyber predators, bullying, and being bullied.  We give them something that they now base their entire self worth on dependent on how many likes they get, the comments they receive on their ridiculous selfies, and what they were and weren't invited to as it's blasted all over social media. We give them something that dumbs down their ability to verbally communicate effectively and stunts their ability to engage comfortably with eye contact and poise. We give them something that gives them full access to the internet where they can look up content they aren't equipped to handle at all. Images that desensitize them emotionally, sexually, and spiritually and an adult world they simply aren't developed enough to navigate.  


Am I the only one confused by this? Have we lost our common sense?  Food for thought, folks.  




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