A Plastic Surgeon's Take on the Mom Makeover.

by Carolyn C. Chang, MD FACS


This week I discovered a new phenomenon – the granny momma. Let me explain.


It was Monday morning, and I greeted a very nice woman who was in my office for a consultation. "Hello Barbara, it is wonderful to meet you. How did you find me?" The response was the usual, "Oh my friend referred me, and then I found out that a friend of a friend is your patient, and then my dermatologist recommended that I talk to you, and so now I’m here." As I got to know Barbara a little better, I could see that she was getting more and more comfortable sitting across from someone who could turn out to be her biggest nightmare – a talking mirror. That is not to say that Barbara had a whole lot to worry about. She was an attractive woman in her mid to late forties with a healthy figure, great clothes, and a fun personality. The conversation then turned to the inevitable – "What brings you here today?" She blurted out with indignation, "Someone called me a grandmother last week. I have a five year old daughter, and someone thought I was her grandmother! This happened a total of four times in the last six months. Can you believe the nerve?!!" And then the floodgates opened - her emotions ranged from rage to desperation and despair and back again. I heard about how she could run circles around any of the other moms on the playground. I heard about how she can pull off the latest trendy hip fashions, and I learned all about her camouflage tricks. Unfortunately, though, she admitted that those camouflage tricks weren’t working quite so well anymore.


I looked at Barbara, and I was shocked and sympathetic at the same time – it must be a little unsettling to always be the "mature" one in a sea of perfect nubile Angelina Jolies. She’s had three of her own for God’s sake and takes care of three more, and for sure nobody is mistaking her for a grandmother. The irony of course is that "older moms" are not even that old. They certainly are not being offered the senior discount around town – and one could make an argument that the forties are one of the best times in a woman’s life. But I do think that being around all those twenty-somethings must take a toll on the psyche.


It was then that I realized that I had discovered a new trend – rejuvenation surgery for the older mom - because Barbara was in fact the third mom that I had seen in a few weeks with a similar story. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons statistics show that cosmetic surgery is down, but clearly they are not looking in the right population.



The pressure is on for all of us...


I'm with Samantha. It's really hard to stick to your own decision of aging gracefully when everyone around you is fighting age altogether. You can't look 40ish anymore. You look so much older because everyone around you looks so much younger.


I think I know her! it's a slippery slope, be careful....


When it's a stranger who calls you a grandma as you walk hand in hand with your child, it's bad. But, when it's your kid's playmates, now that's really bad! I can only hold off for so long....!


Here's my frustration....with everyone getting botox and some even going for the big guns - those of us that don't -- don't just look our age -- but look crazy old.