I was watching a "reality" show on television about some wealthy women in California. The women were playing games with their children in the yard, but something was terribly wrong. The interaction between the women and the children appeared to be strained by the lack of expression on the mother's faces. I suspect that these fairly young women had undergone rather expensive cosmetic procedures to remove all facial wrinkles. The women were unable to smile as they watched their children playing nearby.
Think about your own childhood. Did your mother raise her eyebrows when you tried to wear sandals outdoors in the winter or did she appear frightened when, as a toddler, you reached for a hot pan. Did she have different smiles for different occasions? A proud beaming smile when your class holiday show was a success. A sad smile when you were ill. A funny grin when you said something outrageous. With a look, your mother could communicate silently, in a noisy crowd,and you would understand. Whether the communication was about safety, reassurance, warmth, humor, sympathy or directions, a facial expression is critical to parenting. Due to the popularity of facial cosmetic procedures, many children will not know their mother's smile, and some may even grieve at the loss. These women seem to assume that their choices affect only themselves. The decision to undergo cosmetic procedures may have unexpected , and potentially serious consequences for the entire family.
I would love to get some feedback on this topic, either in agreement or in disagreement. I realize that it is a bit off topic for this website, but I feel that it is an important topic and should at least be discussed. With so many depressed children, and so much stress in the world, we need to maintain full communication with our own children and grandchildren. A "natural" mother's smile is a beautiful, precious moment.
Save the mother's smiles.