A Mommy Makeover is a procedure that you need to make sure is understood and put in perspective by your children – especially your daughters. Young girls need to understand that you are not simply doing this because you “don’t feel you are pretty enough” or because you have low self esteem.
For older children, you might give more detail and explanation. In my view, we all need to be very careful about discussing plastic surgery with our children. As they grow up, we want them to have a positive body image. How Mom carries herself, how she responds to celebrities in popular media, and the language she uses to describe her own body have a strong impact on her children. Our kids need to know that cosmetic surgery isn’t necessary to be attractive. They need to know that you’re having surgery not to become a different person, but instead, to restore your body and to look as good as you feel.
The goal of a positive body image is particularly important for girls reaching their teens. As girls get older, they want to know more about your thinking and why you’re doing a Mommy Makeover. Talk to your girls honestly, keeping in mind that you are an important role model for them. Here’s how one of my patients explained it to her 13-year-old: “As a Mom, I sacrificed to have children. My body has changed and some of those changes I can’t undo. What I’ve given to you I wouldn’t trade for the world, but now I’m doing something for myself.” I think that’s a positive approach. I think it’s fine and healthy for anybody, not just Moms, to say, “Look, I’ve helped you out and now it’s time for me.”
Sometimes, however, limited information may not be enough. One patient recently told her daughter about her breast augmentation. The daughter expressed happiness for her mother, but also concern. She wanted to know where they “put her other breasts?” Obviously, you’ll need to tailor the conversation to your child(ren) and your specific situation.
As always, if you have concerns or questions about how to discuss procedures with you children, myself and the staff at MCPS are here to help!