'She's 13 and wants pierced ears. Help.'

When do you let your kids get their ears pierced?


I have pierced ears, the simple variety, one in each ear. I remember wanting to get it done for some time. During my late teens, I made my way to Pacific Fair on the Gold Coast, and the deed was done. I paid for it with my own money. One was fine; one goes in at a bizarre angle.

After a haze of 80’s pastel coloured chunky fashion earrings, I grew bored of the whole thing, and let holes grow back over. Well I thought this would happen, but after years and years, the holes did not seal up.

So now Ms 13 is nagging me to get her beautiful ears pierced, because “all my friends have their ears pierced & I really want them”. My response is no, no, no, no, no, under no circumstances do you have permission to get your ears pierced. No, No No.

Frankly I don’t really have much against her getting her ears pierced. I prefer that she didn’t but I am not super stressed by it.


I will let you into my perhaps silly parenting secret. I don’t support her desire to deface her body, so when she rebels against, and being a female moving into her teenage years, I am preparing for the rebellion, she has a buffer zone available to her.

I define my buffer zone of rebellion, as rebellious acts she can undertake, without really doing too much long term damage.

I have this picture in my head of her standing in an arcade deciding between great big exposed tattoos or getting her ears pierced, and she will choose the piercing, and all will be right in the world.

It even sounds really stupid to me, reading back over this. But I am paranoid about these teenage years.

Heather Smith is a small business expert, accountant, specialising in XERO and MYOB and the author of Learn Small Business Start-Up in 7 Days. You can find her at her blog and her Twitter.

What do you think? When should kids get their ears pierced?