First they came for the tattooing. Then they came for the body-piercing. Now, Queensland, Australia’s authorities are pressing for a ban on giving teens’ access to cosmetic surgery. While the bans on tattoos and body-piercing have been around for a while, there is no law against letting teens get cosmetic surgery. Included in this ban are breast enhancement, tummy tuck and BOTOX® injections.
Premier Anna Bligh believes that there are some good reasons, both medically and psychologically, why young girls seek out these procedures, but worries about kids looking to them for pure, unadulterated vanity. Getting corrective surgery is one thing, but there is apparently no good reason why any Young Turk should be able to alter their appearance through cosmetic enhancement.
Freedom of Choice
While it isn’t much of a stretch to say that many young women believe their appearance is of the utmost importance, and having access to cosmetic surgery gives them a wider range of options of ways to stand out, authorities believe these girls are too immature to make this kind of a decision. Getting breast enhancing surgery to impress the boys is a bad idea when you’re 15. The thing is, most cosmetic surgeons would agree with this.
While the law in the States lets some people as young as 14 get cosmetic surgery, this is done for corrective reasons. It’s the kids going off to college where the line is blurred between corrective and elective surgery. This is the time when society often allows these burgeoning adults more freedom to make their own decisions. Yet, impressing the boys when you’re 18 or 19 is much different than impressing them when you’re still asking your parents for a ride to the mall.
Vanity plays a role in any teenager’s life, both male and female. In our hyper-sexualized, 24/7 media cycle, looks seem to be de rigueur on how to get ahead or get what you want. And kids want it all without the wait. No matter how often they’re told by their parents to wait a few years to see if they still want something, the children are going to see this as an assault on their personal life. Sometimes the child might wait and change their mind. However, there are some parents who both get sick of the whining and the anger, and simply give in. “You want a boob job? Let me just grab my checkbook.”
Maybe the question should really be who are the parents who want their children to get a tummy tuck at such a young age? Is it just up to the kids? Or is it up to the government to make these decisions for both child and parent?
If you are interested in cosmetic surgery, please contact an experienced cosmetic surgeon in your area.