My Beautiful….Mommy??

New book on the market, just in time for Mother’s Day!

My Beautiful Mommy  is saving children from the psychological damage that occurs when their mom goes under the knife and comes back home unrecognizable. 

New nose, new boobs, a few tucks here and there…it ain’t mommy no more is it?

Totally warped cover of My Beautiful Mommy

According to Newsweek, The target market for this genius creation kids ages four to seven and features a plastic surgeon named Dr. Michael (a musclebound superhero type) and a girl whose mother gets a tummy tuck, a nose job and breast implants. Before her surgery the mom explains that she is getting a smaller tummy: “You see, as I got older, my body stretched and I couldn’t fit into my clothes anymore. Dr. Michael is going to help fix that and make me feel better.” Mom comes home looking like a slightly bruised Barbie doll with demure bandages on her nose and around her waist.

The text doesn’t mention the breast augmentation, but the illustrations intentionally show Mom’s breasts to be fuller and higher. “I tried to skirt that issue in the text itself,” says Salzhauer. “The tummy lends itself to an easy explanation to the children: extra skin and can’t fit into your clothes. The breasts might be a stretch for a six-year-old.”

The book doesn’t explain exactly why the mother is redoing her nose post-pregnancy. Nonetheless, Mom reassures her little girl that the new nose won’t just look “different, my dear—prettier!”

I am all for parents spending the time to explain to their children why they are compelled to beautify themselves, since why should the child suffer the consequences.  But the cover….c’mon.

I know from experience, children are very sensitive to how a parent looks, and they seriously react if a parent’s look changes. For me, my son used to freak when I took off my glasses, its like he did not even recognize me. He would look up at me, kind of scared, and I was surprised by that. Even today, if I pop in contacts for a night out, both kids say “mom, you look weird, we like you with your glasses.”

A few other random thoughts to ponder:

What do you think about the word “Beautiful” in the title? There’s all sorts of twisted things I start thinking about here, especially for daughters who are likely to start thinking beautiful equals fix, cut and change.

Remember the show The Swan? I read a story about one of the contestants that could not adapt to her new beautiful face, and regretted her decision since she ended up feeling like she lost her family heritage and connections because she looked so drastically different than her mothers and siblings. I never really thought of this as a consequence of plastic surgery, did you?

I am rambling here, but I felt like bringing up various topics for discussion. Plus it’s Friday and I am wiped out, looking forward to the weekend.

Love you all,


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15 Responses to My Beautiful….Mommy??

  1. KJosie says:

    What i find really alarming about that book cover is the mums waist is smaller than the little kids!

    Children should not have to go through a trauma like that – i identify with mamaVs kids – i got freaked out when my dad took his glasses off, and when my mum got cancer in my teens and everything about her appearance changed that was weird too.
    And worst of all in all this is kids are being sent the message that plastic surgery is a positive thing.

  2. Jamie says:

    wow what a twisted book! I agree with you mamav. When I was younger and my mom was going through her cancer treatments she lost a lot of wt and her hair. I was really bothered by what was happening to her. She explained everything to me but I was still bothered by it. I think kids are a lot more sensitive then what some people think.

  3. Amber/vanity900/cult66623 says:

    It should totaly be more personal than just giving a kid a book, save yourself money mommys and just TALK TO YOUR CHILDREN.

  4. Leire says:

    This seemed like a random, but appropriate link to throw out, on the topic of randomness:

  5. blah says:

    The comment about losing one’s heritage resonated with me. Many Asian women get eyelid surgery to make their eyes look larger and rounder. My mother asked me if I wanted to get my eyes done. I told her NO.

  6. xchristaox says:

    Please listen to my song.
    Afterwords, please rate it/leave a comment.

  7. Nats says:


    I have listened and I like it!

  8. j.Lowe says:

    Ugh. Reading the article made me feel sick… and I haven’t had that kind of reaction to something the media wrote in a long, long time. Did you click on the picture of the book to see a slideshow of excerpts from the book? If anything, THOSE excerpts made me want to hurl… Everything, the normalizing/sanitizing of plastic surgery, crafting it in images of warmth, love, safety, making it seem inconsequential, making it seem like a NATURAL and BIOLOGICAL process… I had to laugh/cringe at the image of the daughter and the mother, where the daughter is telling her mom that she looks beautiful already, and they are getting out of their BIG HONKIN’ SUV in their big driveway in a suburb with a huge mansion in the background… What do you know, there’s creating the image that plastic surgery is something rich/middle-class people do, that it’s very normal and even a symbol of status. And it’s not like these things aren’t already known, but when you put it in a children’s book and make it seem like a normal part of the aging process….

    This is culture control at its finest.

  9. Molly says:

    I don’t know. Honestly, I think it’s two separate issues- the mom getting plastic surgery and the book.
    And if a mom is going to get plastic surgery anyway (which is a whole other issue), I think anything that helps her kids get used to it is good. I mean, yes, definitely talk to your kids- but giving them a book makes it seem more normal to them, which I imagine being reassuring. I almost wish there was a series with slight variations of the book.
    When I was a toddler, my mom cut her waist-length hair to chin-length. I bawled when she picked me up from the babysitter because I did not recognize her. That was just getting her hair cut. There are other changes which can upset kids- and which aren’t always for vanity. My mom also had cancer when I was in high school. She lost her hair, and she had a wig but it was uncomfortable so she didn’t wear it around the house. She was bald for a long time, and when she grew hair back, it was a completely different color and texture.
    She also had breast cancer and did consider getting implants after. I suppose it would technically be considered vanity, but her breasts are now two very different sizes from the lumpectomy. She seriously considered reconstructive surgery to make the same size. While my mom eventually decided it wasn’t worth going through another surgery to her, I’m sure there are many mothers who would come to a different conclusion. And who here would blame them? But if the mom’s kids were still very young, that would be a big change for them to go through. Yes, by all means talk to the kids- but also give them a book that helps emphasize that it’s okay for mommy to look different. I think it’s two tools which can complement each other.

    As for the surgery itself, well, that depends on the situation. What about someone who HAS been tormented his/her whole life about some abnormality? What about someone wanting reconstructive surgery after cancer or burns, etc? What about breast reduction surgery because of the pain caused by large breasts? Yes, there are people with too much money to spend and there are situations where it is a case of out of control vanity… but not always. There’s a stigma around cosmetic surgery that isn’t always earned.

  10. mamavision says:

    My goodness Molly, I can likely speak for the group here to tell you no one would see your mother’s consideration of implants after breast cancer to be an act of “vanity.”

    I can’t imagine what one goes through with cancer of any kind, and losing a part of yourself is beyond my comprehension.

    I hope I didn’t offend you by this post!

    Take care,

  11. Pingback: Mommy Who? Part 2 « mamaVISION

  12. beth says:

    KJosie – Who says plastic surgery is not a positive thing? It very well may be for those who opt to undergo it for whatever reason. It is disturbing that children may have to witness a sudden “change” in their moms’ appearance, but why should a woman (who wants plastic surgery) not do this just to keep her child “comfortable?” Change is a part of life, as are alterations in physical appearance. People lose/gain tremendous amounts of weight, cut their hair, get into accidents, many situations which may suddenly cause an aesthetic change. Children are resilient enough to learn from these changes.

    I still assert that tattoos, braces, lasik, etc, are unnatural, painful forms of cosmetic enhancement. We don’t need books to explain these, do we? No, because they are for the most part socially acceptable and common. I am so sick of the stigma people put on cosmetic surgery!

    However, a good enough mom will have the parenting skills to explain her choice to have surgery to her child. Parents should be able to talk to their children about anything. It’s like giving your daughter a “puberty” or “womanhood” book and hoping she will self-adjust and have all her questions magically ansered.

  13. KJosie says:

    Beth – i say cosmetic surgery is not a positive thing. Spending massive quantities of money on a life-risking operation when that money could surely be put to better use. It reinforces the supposed importance of beauty ideals. The exception would be surgery to deal with deformities or scarring (I’m actually considering a cosmetic procedure to deal with scars).
    It’s my personal opinion that most cosmetic surgery is a bad thing, and should not be normalised or encouraged.

  14. blah says:

    Cosmetic surgery SHOULD be stigmatized. It’s fine if it’s done for health reasons, scarring, injuries, or deformities but other than that, it is shallow.

  15. April says:

    I saw this book on AOL. I think maybe the intentions were good but honestly people shouldn’t be letting themselves be cut up for cosmetic reasons. It’s like…there wouldn’t be a need for this book if women would consider what kind of message they were sending to their children, they wouldn’t need a book to make up some lame excuses as to why they NEED surgery.

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