My friend Jilly Manty just posted a video that has me hot and bothered. It’s about a seven-year-old whose parents got her plastic surgery because her ears were a bit floppy and big. The story positions it that a parent will do anything to protect their child from bullying. Check out the video, then answer this question for me…
Do we really want to send this message to parents and their children?
Let me tell you a story
When I was a sophomore in high school, I was walking by a bus when I heard a voice say, “Hey…hey you…are you sure you’re old enough to be in high school?” I ignored the voice but they were persistent. I couldn’t figure out where the voice was coming from. Then I realized it was one of the bus drivers. They called me over and asked me again if I was sure I was old enough to be in high school. All of the kids on the bus, of course, laughed their butts off. It was like a moment from an after-school movie.
My “abnormality” as the story puts it is that I am a ruler’s length shorter than most people. As minor a problem as ears that stick out a bit. But there’s no plastic surgery that can magically make me taller. And if there had been something to make me taller, blond-haired kids may have picked on me because I had brown hair. If you are blind, if you are deaf, if you are mentally challenged, if you are ill – there are no quick fixes for any of these things, and if you get one problem fixed, bullies are sure to find something else.
People will always find something to pick on if they feel small themselves.
Ultimately, you have to love yourself. No amount of plastic surgery can put a band-aid over self-loathing. No amount of denial can protect you from the fact that some people are just mean-hearted individuals.
I am so utterly concerned that this story seems to indicate otherwise. And I’m a little ashamed that this is where our society seems to be going.
You have to love yourself. That is all.