Mom Upset After 11-Year-Old Daughter Came Home From A Sleepover With 10 New Piercings—She Blames Her Older Friends

The mom was unconvinced her daughter made the decision to pierce her ears of her own volition and feels concerned about peer pressure.

Woman with piercings Lee chinyama / Pexels

A mom wrote in a now-deleted Reddit post that her 11-year-old daughter came home from a sleepover at her neighbor’s house with 10 new piercings and she's not one bit happy.

The mom reported that she was initially reluctant to let her young daughter have a sleepover with her neighbor, who’s 13 years old, as the neighbor invited her two older friends, who are 14 and 15. She ended up agreeing to the sleepover, justifying it by saying, “we know our neighbors well and often go away with them.”


The mom felt uncomfortable with the idea of her daughter spending time with teenagers, and it seems that her discomfort might have been sending her a message— at the sleepover, the girls decided to pierce their own ears.

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The mom was wildly upset that her young daughter let her older friends pierce her ears 10 times.

She said it was "very uncharacteristic" of her daughter to do something like that, explaining that “she only ever had her 1st holes pierced, which she rarely wears, and never expressed interest in other piercings.” 


“However, she now has her ears all blinged out with 7 in one ear and 3 in the other.”

“I have many concerns around hygiene, removing the piercings but mainly how easily my daughter was influenced by the older girls to do something so stupid. She is also too young to make what I consider a permanent decision and she may also regret the piercings later.”

The mom stated that she’s considering banning her daughter from spending time with her neighbor, although she wasn’t sure if that was a good idea, as the girls are close friends.

The mom said she was 'very shocked that she did all those piercings and suspect she was likely influenced by peer pressure.'

The other parents on the r/parenting subreddit offered support and guidance to the distressed mom, coaching her on what steps to take next.


Many comments revolved around the hygiene aspect of at-home piercings, with other parents suggesting she get her daughter medical attention, including a TDAP booster. They recommended not removing the piercings themselves, as infection could get trapped from doing so.

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“You obviously need to talk to your daughter about peer pressure, but I would actually be talking to the other parents as well,” said one level-headed parent.

“Do all of the other girls also have 7-10 new piercings from this gathering?” Asked another parent. “If not, then they were absolutely taking advantage of her as she is younger.”


Someone else suggested having an open and honest conversation with her daughter about how the piercings happened and how she truly feels about them.

“Even if she loves them, talk about peer pressure. Even if she wanted them, this was not ok for the other girls to be doing to her. It should be reported to their parents.”

Other parents echoed the suggestion to talk about peer pressure, noting that it will keep happening regardless of whether or not she is banned from hanging out with the neighbor girl. She needs to be able to say no even when that is hard.”

Some parents noted that it’s not unusual for teenagers to give each other piercings, so much so it’s almost a sleepover rite of passage.


“If a teen wants a piercing bad enough they tend to take matters into their own hands, and you can accomplish a lot with an ice cube and a safety pin,” said one commenter.

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But most parents agreed that the real issue at hand was peer pressure. 

In the September 2021 issue of the National Institute of Health newsletter, Dr. Emily Falk from the University of Pennsylvania explained how social networks affect decision making.

“People care about what others think across all different age groups— and that influences how much they value different ideas and behaviors,” Falk stated.


As teenagers are still learning how to navigate their social worlds, they’re extra-susceptible to peer influence. Teenage brains “undergo changes that make them highly attuned to social situations. At the same time, the reward system in the teen brain becomes extra sensitive.”

Not all peer influence is bad— sometimes, peer influence shows teens support, encouragement, and the communities that are available to them. Close, quality friendships offer understanding and validation of self-worth, creating a stable and satisfying relationship.

In a 2019 TEDxYouth talk, Aarchi Desai, a 9th grader, spoke about peer pressure as something experienced by all people, no matter what age they are. While peer pressure is commonly addressed in childhood and adolescence, it can persist into adulthood, as well.

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Equipping young people with tools to navigate sticky social situations is something that will serve them throughout their lives.

One person suggested that the mom and her daughter “work out a plan for if she's ever in a situation like this again. Maybe a code word? You know to call, come get her, and play the bad guy. She can maintain her social cred. And she doesn't become a teenager's pin cushion.”

“It’s not surprising to me that two 14 and 15-year-olds influenced an 11-year-old girl to do something like that,” noted someone else. “That’s a very very big age gap and she probably looked up to those girls and wanted to be cool. I wouldn’t ban her from seeing the neighbor, but put some rules in place.”


While piercings aren't permanent, social pressures often are. The mom would be doing her daughter a great service by teaching her the valuable skillset of setting boundaries and saying no.

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Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers celebrity gossip, pop culture analysis and all things to do with the entertainment industry.