toddler hairCan you think of any possible excuse for letting a toddler go under the knife for purely cosmetic reasons? One mom is defending her decision to get her 2-year-old daughter plastic surgery. And no, she's not incredibly vain and superficial.

Sasha Emmons' daughter Chloe was born with a strawberry mark on her head, what's called a hemangioma birthmark. It wasn't tiny, either. The benign blood-vessel tumor grew to the diameter of a golf ball, Emmons says. And it became puffy. But since it didn't pose a health hazard, her doctor told her to ignore it. He assured her it would fade within a couple years. It didn't.

The birthmark kept hair from growing on Chloe's head, and people kept staring and asking about it. Emmons began to fear that as Chloe grew older, "her birthmark would always enter the room before she did." She would become that kid with the weird birthmark on her head, not just Chloe.

Emmons wanted to raise her daughter to believe beauty comes from within, that your looks don't define you. But she learned that hemangioma birthmarks can stick around for 10 years. In Chloe's case, it could leave a bald spot even after the birthmark had faded. How could she expose her daughter to the bullying she would surely receive? How hurt and angry would Chloe feel if she someday learned she didn't have to go through life with a strange birthmark and then bald spot right on the front of her head?

And so, Emmons chose to have the birthmark removed when her daughter was 2 years old. It went fine and left her with just a three-inch scar. Now Chloe is a second-grader with long hair.

I think I would have done the same thing. There will always be people born with birth defects that doctors can't do anything about. And we all learn difficult lessons about looking past appearances -- they learn the hardest lessons about self-acceptance and inner strength. But there are some lessons parents can be forgiven for for saving their kids from learning, especially when you have other options.

Would you have made the same choice as this mother?

 

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