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Carolyn Hax / Life Advice

Niece's Nose Job a Bad Idea

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Dear Carolyn:

My niece is getting a nose job for her 18th birthday, for purely cosmetic reasons. Having grown up with the same distinctive Eastern European nose, and seeing the blossoming beauty in my niece, I am heartbroken.

I really want to tell her that looking the way I do was a liability at first, but that from age 25 onward it gave me a striking appearance that has become a part of who I am. Not that this should decide it for her, but I am sure that fitting in and male attention play a part in her desire to look more average. Should I just nose my way out of this?

-- Nosey Aunt

This is such a bummer. Since your niece is young and hasn't filled out yet, and since the changes will be permanent, please tell your sibling you'd like to talk to your niece. Any time someone is on the cusp of a change that can't be undone, I think it's OK for loved ones to speak up, once.

Re: Nose job:

I have the same nose, and 25 was the year I started feeling comfortable with it, too. A button nose would have completely unbalanced the rest of my strong features. I suggest a girls' night with your niece immediately -- perhaps with a viewing of "Dirty Dancing"?

-- Anonymous 1

Good visual, thanks (of Jennifer Grey, who got the most publicly regretted nose job in history).

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