Due out April 28, My Beautiful Mommy is a new children’s book directed to 4-7 year olds to help them cope and assure them that mommy going under the knife is okay. A couple of things concern me here. The first is the undermining of beauty as seen in the Lord’s eyes (Proverbs 31:30; Psalm 139:13-16) and the second is the affirmation of the assumption that surgery can somehow improve or add to someones beauty. What’s most troubling is the book itself and who it is directed to.
Dr Michael Salzhauer, a father of four, said he wrote the book because many of his patients are having “mommy makeovers” to fix saggy breasts and slack tummies a few years after childbirth and were concerned about what to tell their kids.
“It sounds like a joke but there really is a need to address this issue,” Salzhauer told Reuters. “It is for the mom who has already booked her plastic surgery and now has to tell her kids, why she is going to be in bed, why daddy is picking the kids up from school and all those other issues.”
“Hundreds of thousands of women have this operation in the United States. This is for a specific consumer at a specific time in their life that is going to turn their household upside down for a couple of weeks.”
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 1.8 million plastic surgery procedures were performed in the United States in 2007 — most of them breast augmentations and liposuction.
Salzhauer said feedback to the book from his own patients has been very positive. But some of the explanations from the attractive, cartoon-style mom in the book have sparked a furious online debate.
Read Josh Harris’s thoughts here. Below is an excerpt from this post:
A couple of thoughts: first, can you imagine if Dr. Seuss had done a book based on this concept? I will refrain from any rhymes at this point.
Second, and this is obvious, but a book like this points to the fact that cosmetic surgery is fast becoming the modern day equivalent of getting your hair colored. (Will do-it-yourself kits that come in a box at the grocery store soon follow?)
And third, if kids have this kind of bedtime reading, is there any doubt that cosmetic surgery will only become more and more “normal” in the future?
Reading about this book brings to mind is the importance of training our children, especially our giris, to think about beauty and their bodies from a biblical perspective. How can we teach them that prettier doesn’t equal happier? We need to take steps to show them that godly character and the fear of God are more to be desired than the perfect nose or body. We need to teach from a young age the truth of Proverbs 11:22 that says, “Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman without discretion” (ESV). This is true even if the pig has had a “snout job.”