One day, I innocently asked my sister when she was going to pierce my niece's ears.
Little did I know I was in for a long speech about how unsafe and unjustified piercing a baby's ear really is. At first, I won't lie, I thought she was being a little dramatic -- but I then realized I hadn't really ever thought about the right or wrong aspects of the situation at hand either.
I'm not yet a mother, so I had never really had to think about whether to put a needle through my own flesh and blood's earlobe or not. The more I started to think about it, the less sure I was that I would be able to pierce my own daughter's ears one day.
So, unsure of myself, I set out on a mission to see what other moms had to say, and the result...well, you'll just have to decide for yourself.
1. "I wouldn’t personally do it until my girls told me that they wanted it done. I don’t believe in doing something permanent to them, that they were not given the option!" - Penny Albrecht
2. "I wouldn’t do it until they asked. It would also be important that I go to a professional tattoo parlor, not somewhere like Claire’s. However, I don’t think it’s mutilation to do it young, just unnecessary." - Shelby Chase
3. "I'm not gonna do my daughter's ears until she can voice it to us that she wants it done. I'm not totally against babies getting it done, but I do agree that it is unnecessary." - Jessica Kohlhoff
4. "I got my daughter's ears pierced at four months. I took her to the pediatrician and they numbed her ears with a cream so she didn't feel it. If you do it that way, I agree with it because they don't feel it, and at that age, they don't mess with their ears. If you wait until they're older, it hurts more and they will mess with it. It's more expensive but totally worth your child not crying. They also pierce them with hypoallergenic earrings. They're plastic, but apparently no one's allergic to plastic. Didn't know that until I went there." - Brooke Moore
5. "I don’t think it’s mutilation or bad in any sense to get your child’s ears pierced. I got my daughters ears pierced after her four-month shots just as the pediatrician recommends, and went to Claire’s to get hers pierced. Now for the person who said they don’t sanitize the gun, I don’t know about you, but the Claire’s I went to, she pulled out a cavi wipe, wiped it all down right in front of me, let it dry, pulled out a non-opened pack of earrings and pierced my daughter's ears with little to no crying at all from my daughter. I cleaned them every night for six weeks with the solution and her ears healed perfectly fine. The reason I did it is that I got mine when I was younger, and don’t remember it. If later on in life she decides she doesn’t want them pierced, then she can take them out but why not do it when they don’t remember the pain or anything?" - Amber Stieb
6. "I originally thought I'd wait 'til kindergarten and make it a special day, but I really think I will do it when she's little. Her pediatrician will do it. As for people's comments about the pain...they get shots, they aren't going to remember it, and it will be okay." - Melissa Johnston
7. "I feel like parents are putting their babies through unnecessary pain for some cute earrings. I won’t pierce Ivy’s ears unless she tells me she wants them pierced. It is her body, not mine, therefore I won’t alter a body that is not my own. If you do get your child’s ears pierced, take them to a tattoo/ piercing shop, the sanitation is better." - Diedra Prokos
8. "We had it done at the doctor's office when Catie was about six months old. They used a numbing agent and Catie didn’t even feel it. To this day, (almost two years later) she has never messed with them. If you are going to do it, do it when they are young. I don’t regret doing it. She can always let them close up later if she wants. It doesn’t have to be permanent." - Liz Crain
9. "I have mixed beliefs on this topic. I just think if you do decide to get a baby's ears pierced, go to a tattoo/piercing shop for sure. But I think personally that the child should be old enough to decide for herself. Just my opinion. I made the choice when I was four lol, but it was the early 80's. Times have changed. " - Amanda Rall.
10. "I’m not a mom except to my cat, but I got mine a few months after I was born. My mom explained to me that it was an Indian tradition since a lot of gifts and heirlooms we receive are generations of jewelry -- including baby earrings." - Nidhi Rangarajan
11. "I waited until my daughter was old enough to ask. She begged for an entire day; that's all she talked about. I explained there would be a little bit of pain, and she still wanted them done. So, I took her to get them at just under two years old. She was so happy, she didn't cry at all, and almost two years later she has shown them off every day. She has even helped another little girl get through the process...(it's an earlobe and can be reversed), but it shouldn't be done unless a child wants it." - Britny Ross
12. "I believe that ear piercings on babies are for the mothers and not for the child. It is the mothers who must take care of those piercings. I believe that the child should have the ability to choose whether or not they want their ears pierced and at an age where they are going to be responsible to take care of the piercings. " - Denise Sian
13." I did both of my girls at less than a year old. I prefer it over waiting until their old enough because I've heard stories of four-year-olds or older ripping them out because they play with them -- because it's something new whereas, with a baby, it's always been there...It's a parent's personal preference ultimately, but I don't see an issue with it." - Selena Rodriguez
14. "I believe in bodily autonomy above all else. There are risks anytime anything breaks the skin and as a parent, I can't imagine taking that kind of risk with a baby, for any reason. I read a quote, "You're going to say they're perfect when they're born, do you really mean it?" I didn't have my son circumcised for that very reason. If a child is old enough to make the decision, I would always always always go to a professional! Claire's employees are barely trained and all piercing guns are impossible to sterilize. I think it's much better they remember the pain. I was seven when I first got them done, and you earn a healthy respect for what you are doing to your body when you can recall the pain." - Patience Alger
15. "I pierced all three of my daughters' ears as babies. Never had a problem and they couldn’t play with their ears at that age. I did my second holes myself at age 12. I used ice to numb the lobes and then stuck a sterilized needle through my lobes. Never had a problem. I don’t think this is mutilation, but a personal choice. Make sure you don’t use cheap earrings and follow instructions for cleaning." - Eva Swan
16. "I find nothing wrong with it. I think it’s best because the baby doesn’t play with them as much as if they were older. It helps them to heal better and you know the baby is being protected from tetanus as young as two months. So, they don’t have to worry about rust, etc from lack of cleaning. As when you are older, they aren’t always up to date on vaccines. " -Angelina Walker
17. "It is a bit barbaric. Babies can't tell you if they want it done or not. I know that the holes can close, but still -- is the money and pain worth the parent's satisfaction for a little while if the child decides to take them out? I don't think so. Also, parents tend to take babies where they use piercing guns instead of licensed piercers at a tattoo and piercing shop, and that is totally unsafe. My thoughts are not to do it until they ask for it. Why put a baby in that kind of pain just for me to be satisfied? There's no justification for it." - Kathy Sian
So, is baby ear-piercing barbaric or is there nothing wrong with it? Let me know what you think in the comments below!