'Tremendous Pain And Discomfort': Is It Fair To Shame Hilary Duff's Parenting Choice?

When it comes to 'the parenting police' everyone has their own opinions. Their latest target is Younger actress and mum of two, Hilary Duff.

Duff, 31, shared a photo of her eight-month-old daughter, Banks, on her Instagram story, where she wrote, "She has enough hair for a pony! Oh, and, yes, we pierced her ears."

After telling her followers about her daughter's pierced ears in her story, Duff posted a photo to her feed, where commenters were quick to jump on the piercing debate.

"I can't fathom why you would you think it's okay to have your daughters ears pierced. Causing her a tremendous amount of pain and discomfort," one commenter wrote.

"Was she able to ask you to have them pierced? Was she able to agree to have them pierced? Did she sit there with a smile on her face whilst a gun with a needle was placed on her ear?"

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"Or did she sit and scream looking to you for comfort and to make it all better? And tell me how did it make you feel sitting there and watching her have pain inflicted on her unnecessarily?"

"Just won an unfollow after seeing you pierced her ears, poor baby. Bye!" Wrote another.

"Can't believe someone who seems so screwed on pierced her baby's ears, causing unnecessary pain that isn't for medical reasons," added a third.

Clinical counsellor and psychotherapist Julie Sweet told 10 daily the choice to pierce a baby's ears comes down to parenting style and their age.

"There is no specific ‘right age’. My preference is to err on the side of caution, research, educate yourself on the risks and always consider - what is in the best interest of the child?" she said.

"It’s something that can cause pain, yes and although we are talking about a baby, perception of pain is still endured by a baby all the same. Though, it’s not known to have an impact that results in memory recall or flashbacks for instance when done at a young age."

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Children's wellbeing specialist Dr Maxine Therese told 10 daily that in some cultures, piercing a baby's ears is a part of religious or cultural custom and some have a scientific reason for doing so.

"In my professional opinion, of course, there is physical harm to the child as well as the psychological harm of doing something to our children without their consent," she said.

"But like ear piercing; circumcision, vaccinations, choice of religion, choice of gender, schooling or unschooling and many other decisions parents make, could also be judged as unfair and damaging to children."

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Dr Therese said for parents to improve their own parenting practices, they need to hold the opinions of others without resorting to shaming them for their choices.

And thankfully, many did do this when coming to Duff's defence, pointing out the decision to pierce her baby's ears is a personal one.

"Trust me, working in the child abuse field, this is NOT child abuse. Next," wrote a commenter.

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"Come on mum shamers! I got my baby's ears pierced when she was five months old," said another.

"The audacity of people blows my mind. Worry about your own kid. Also if that kid happens to be a boy who you've circumcised, think about your own hypocrisy," pointed out a third.

Duff is yet to make a comment about the controversy unfolding in her Instagram comments.

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