Sense & Sensitivity

Daughter Wants More Piercings

DEAR HARRIETTE: All my daughter’s friends are getting double or triple piercings these days. I know this has been a trend for some years now, but I feel like this is not what my daughter should be doing.

We got her ears pierced years ago when she was an infant, but she has not been successful at wearing earrings without irritation up until this year. She recently has been wearing gold hoops, and she hasn’t had problems. I’m talking just a few weeks of wearing the hoops, though. I don’t think it’s wise for us to add piercings to her ears so soon. I think we should first determine if she can regularly wear earrings in the holes she has. I have expressed this to my young teenager, but she thinks I am being mean. What do you recommend? -- Protecting My Teen, Los Angeles

DEAR PROTECTING MY TEEN: You know your daughter’s medical history, and it is your job to reinforce what you know. You can also enlist the medical advice of your daughter’s pediatrician or even a dermatologist. Find out what the doctor’s recommendation is so you can share that with your daughter.

Beyond the practical, be prepared to talk to your daughter about peer pressure and how to make personal decisions that may be different from her friends’ choices. This is one of the toughest lessons to learn, but it is critical for your daughter so she can assess personally when the group choice should not be her choice. Your job is to help her to learn how to discern the difference.

(Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)

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