Talking With Your Children
I recently read an article about women struggling with being “formerlies” I took it to mean that we are no longer are our reckless, gravity-defying selves. That being said, are we now old? Are we ready to give up on being attractive despite age or what our bodies have become? There comes a point when our old clothes just aren’t working anymore. Does this mean it is time to convert to “mom jeans”? Translation… pleated fronts, elastic waistband, completely out of style. I say no. However, when the tummy is looking more like a prune than a washboard and our breasts are pointing south the fashionable low cut jeans and form fitting blouses don’t exactly work either.
There are many women who have had children, worked hard to lose the baby weight and still seem to fit within the category above. There are certain areas that will not be fixed by diet and exercise alone. In my opinion, it is not vanity to want to restore these parts with plastic surgery. There will be naysayers who insist that this is cheating and will call you vain. To this I say, how many crunches will it require to remove stretch marks, pull your abdominal muscles back together, and remove lax skin? The answer is… you can’t do enough because it won’t work! How many push ups does it take to lift your breasts back up or fill that top portion out that has suddenly become concave? The answer again is never enough because it won’t work! When plastic surgery is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon, it really can improve one’s life. In most cases I see moms who are merely looking to restore what was lost and achieve a natural result that will not make them look fake.
A question that comes up often is what do I tell my children? Let’s discuss some of the topics that come up and I will give you some ideas on how to address them. Keep in mind that these are my opinions and every family is different. Take it with a grain of salt and use what is useful disregard what is not.
Some parents choose to “hide away” or send the kids to a relative’s house until recovery is near complete. Other parents will discuss the fact that they are having a nip or tuck with their children. Obviously it is important to keep the discussion age appropriate should you choose to talk about it. Little ones may not understand the nuts and bolts of the procedure or even why you are having it done. Keep in mind that children are exposed to this subject matter these days via television and the internet. With older children, it may be better to discuss things openly rather than leave it up to the imagination or reality television. I personally would not focus on the pain or the technical aspects of the surgery. I would use clear, simple explanations that take the mystery out of it. Do not let your kids think you are having surgery because you were hurting, it is okay to tell them you are doing it to make yourself feel good. That being said, I would not hesitate to emphasize inner beauty no matter what. Inner beauty and confidence are the most attractive things about a person. This is just something you are doing for yourself to enhance those attributes. You can use this opportunity to emphasize that your kids are perfect the way they are and just because you are making this choice does not mean there is something wrong with them. Furthermore, it is not their fault that your body has changed as you are the one who made the choice to have babies (and you are so happy you did!).
Mothers with daughters have some particular issues to talk about. None of us want our children to feel that you NEED to have plastic surgery to look good. I would reinforce the idea that you are merely restoring what you already were and not necessarily trying to look or be like somebody else. If your daughter inquires about getting plastic surgery herself at a young age you might emphasize the fact that you have already had a chance to grow into your body and you know who you are while she has not.
The decision to undergo plastic surgery is a very personal and individual one. You know yourself and your family far better than I do. These are just ideas I have come up with over the years combined with ideas from some of the mother’s I have had the privilege of working on.