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Parent Livid After Teen Secretly Pierces Nose Herself And Covers It Up Using Pimple Patches

Teen girl with nose piercing
bowie15/Getty Images

From parents telling stories to portrayals in family-friendly films, we all know that teenagers are going to sometimes act out against their parents’ wishes and want to do things a different way.

Unfortunately, this might include going behind their parents’ backs to do something, sometimes with dangerous side-effects, cringed the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor Impossible-Bake-3314 was shocked when she found out her 14-year-old daughter had pierced her nose at home, even though they’d already agreed to do it when she was 16.

Because of doing it behind her back and not taking proper safety precautions, the Original Poster (OP) felt punishment was in order, even against her daughter’s protests.

She asked the sub:

“AITA for making my 14-year-old daughter take out her nose piercing that she had done herself and disguised with pimple patches?”

The OP recently discovered her 14-year-old was hiding something from her.

“My daughter (14) had been complaining about a ‘monster zit’ on her nose for a couple of weeks and was using pimple patches to treat it.”

“At least, that’s what I thought was going on, and had no reason to question it.”

“I was driving her to school yesterday and noticed that in place of the pimple patch, there was a little nose stud and I was shocked and asked multiple questions. I made it clear that I was not happy.”

“Rather than going off on her in the kiss-and-ride line, I took a breath and let her know that we would be talking about it after school.”

The OP was grateful the situation turned out as well as it did.

“As it turns out, she pieced it herself.”

“She really wants a septum piercing. I’m glad she only went for the nostril!”

“She also had a nasty cold last week. I told her how lucky she was that it didn’t get infected.”

“In the end, I made her remove the piercing and took her phone away for the weekend.”

The OP was surprised this had become a problem.

“The idea of a nose piercing has been brought up plenty of times over the past year or so.”

“The compromise that I thought we had settled on was that we would discuss it more seriously when she is 16 years old, which I think is fair.”

“I’m not conservative and absolutely encourage her to express herself via fashion, hair, makeup, jewelry, etc.”

She also felt conflicted because of her daughter’s reaction.

“She would not come out of her bedroom last night and cried and cried, which may have also been because of her phone being taken away.”

“She told me that removing the piercing should have been punishment enough and I actually think I went pretty easy on her.”

“The thing is that she lied about doing something that I thought had been settled. Taking the piercing out answered for the piercing, and taking the phone answered for the lying.”

“The kiddo clearly thinks I’m the a**hole, but I’m not so sure. Luckily, there was no infection and I’m hoping it closes up without scarring.”

“I’m a single parent and her father is not involved whatsoever making times such as this a bit more tricky for me to handle without second-guessing my actions.”

“Am I the a**hole?”

The OP also didn’t want this to leave a lasting bad impression.

“Now that this has happened, I’m thinking of getting her a magnetic nose ring or something similar to cover the time between now and turning 16 when she’ll likely want a real one.”

“She used to have one, but I think it was junk or wouldn’t stay on or something. It’s definitely on my gift list for her. 


Fellow Redditors weighed in:

  • NTA: Not the A**hole
  • YTA: You’re the A**hole
  • ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
  • NAH: No A**holes Here

Some argued that the OP communicated something far worse through her punishment.

“YTA. There’s no rational reason for her to not have a nose piercing. This is about you controlling her appearance, and your fears of being judged as a parent. The nose piercing is harmless, and unless you foresee her having a lucrative career as a nose model, won’t negatively impact her life in any way. I’m willing to bet you let her get her ears pierced already, because that’s more culturally acceptable.

There will be more important hills to die on. This was a poor, superficial issue to put your foot down on. Petty things like this will make her more resistant to your future advice on things like school, drugs, and boys.” – IHQ_Throwaway

“I’m gonna go with YTA on this one. She’s 14 and did it herself, which takes a bit of effort so you know she had her mind made up. These things don’t happen on accident. Making her take it out would have been punishment enough, but to take away other things for something so small is cruel. Let her have some bodily autonomy.” – floydfan

“A nose stud is so harmless, and not as permanent/obvious as something like a tattoo, nor is is sexual like certain other piercings. In my opinion (and I’ve had a nose stud for all of my 20s) it’s honestly the same level of “mature” as an ear cartilage piercing or heck, wearing makeup! Do you allow her to wear makeup? If yes, then she’s old enough for a nose stud. YTA OP

Eta: consider that she might by crying because l her parent made feel ashamed to express her individuality, and not bc the phone was taken away. When 14, 16 feels like it will never come.” – hot-chai-tea-latte

“Dude it’s her body, if she wants a piercing badly enough to poke a hole in her face herself, she’s going to be doing it anyway soon enough so you should probably just tell her she needs to save the money up to have it done safely. YTA. I get not thinking she’s old enough to make that choice but she literally just did make the choice in a less safe way because you won’t let her make the choice safely.” – Affectionate-Box-724

“With all due respect, just let her get it done at a proper piercing shop. If you set limits like this (aka arbitrary limits just for the sake of having a limit) she will push them. My mom wouldn’t let me get a nose piercing, so when I had a friend who could drive, we went to a piercing shop asap. Taking her to get it done safely and making her pay for the service herself is a much better compromise. When your kid wants something entirely harmless badly enough to poke holes in their own skin, maybe it’s time to examine WHY you’re saying no to it? Setting this limit has ended up putting her in more danger than just taking her to get it done.

Nose piercings are tiny. I take mine out and there’s almost no mark. She will not be permanently scarred by it, this isn’t like a tattoo, and it’s not really considered trashy in our modern society anymore either. I would pick your battles. If she hates it, she can take it out later.

So yeah YTA for being a parent who denies her kid something reasonable to the point where she resorted to hurting herself.” – madamevanessa98

“YTA because:”

“a piercing done professionally isn’t a big thing. You didn’t listen to her. She is lucky she didn’t get her DIY piercing infected.”

“you made her take it out, after it was already in there, presumably without seeking any professional advice about future repiercing of it.”

“you put her in a position where she couldn’t be honest with you and you punished her for it.”

“you don’t seem to know your daughter well enough to know how determined she is to get what she wants.”

“You could have framed this as a lesson on determination, infections and the importance of a transparent and honest relationship. It could actually have strengthened the relationship between you and your daughter – but instead you made her take it out, not knowing if it can be repierced there again and made her feel like she is under your control for your own satisfaction.” – TheAutisticKitchen

Others reassured the OP the punishment was fair because of the lies and potential danger.


“14 does seem a bit young for this. And the lie is definitely a problem. You did not go overboard at all.”

“I think the suggestion others have of getting her a quality magnetic set until she’s old enough to have this done the right way is a good one.”

“How serious was the infection risk she took, if having it done by a random friend or at a shop which doesn’t keep to responsible standards generally? She may not truly be entirely aware of how risky all of this really could have been, and not just in the abstract but that yes, it could happen to her.” – PinkNGreenFluoride

“This is what my parents did, I wanted an ear piercing and to gauge it as a teenager but my dad said to wait til I was 18 (tbf I think he also worried I’d get bullied, I’m a guy and high school was rough). The magnetic ones look just like the real things without leaving a permanent hole. If she still wants it when she’s older, she can get it then.”

“But yeah, NTA. She shouldn’t have lied to you.” – AstraOver

“NTA. I would take your daughter to a professional piercer if she did the piercing herself, just to have them make sure she didn’t accidentally pierce something that could seriously hurt her down the line. It sounds like she either pierced herself or got someone she knew to do it, because reputable piercers won’t pierce someone that young without parental consent point blank period, and many won’t do anything but an ear piercing on anyone younger than 16 even with parental consent. Make sure she keeps it clean while it’s closing, because it’s always possible for an infection to happen. I would also have a sit down with her and talk to her (calmly) about why she can’t have a piercing right now, and why it was dangerous for her to get one the way she did. I would also recommend, if she still really wants a piercing (which she clearly does) talking about steps she can take to earn one. When my younger sister first got her nose pierced, it was as a reward for her improving her grades and keeping them consistently higher throughout the entire second semester of school. Good luck soldier!” – Genderfluid_smolbean

“My friend did mine when we were both 16. At lunch. With a sewing needle. I heard it pop as it pierced through the layers of cartilage lol. I nearly fainted!

I used the same excuse around my parents. I wasn’t using pimple pads though, so I basically just had this inflamed hole on the side of my nose because I would take the piercing out on the way home on the bus every day, then reinsert it on the way back every the morning. It sucked, but man, I really wanted a nose ring!

I think your punishment is reasonable, OP. NTA.” – TibetanSister


“I have 8 piercings currently, planning at least 5 more in my dreams lol so I do have some knowledge.”

“Piercing is serious business and she needs to treat it as such. She could’ve gotten sick with an infection, especially if she was putting patches over it and disturbing it, not to mention irritation bumps etc. 14 imo is just too young to be doing facial piercings. I understand her perspective, it sucks to wait for what you want especially when you’re so young and have so few years of experience with waiting. By bypassing the waiting and doing something dangerous like that she just showed she isn’t mature enough to be making these kinds of decisions. I have a friend who’s in her 30s and got a lip piercing at 19 and still regrets it (and the permanent hole in her face).”

“16 is a really reasonable age to talk about a subtle nose stud. I was 24 when I got my first facial piercing and my mom was so upset lol, she needs to be at least a little thankful she has a parent who’s willing to hear her out when the time is right.” – odd_duck_3

“NTA. She’s just being 14. I know I was not pleasant as a teen, either, and that’s okay.”

“Listen, I’m a goth, I saw my fair share of DIY piercings (and tattoos), those can go wrong, and I personally think 14 is too young for body modification. You gave a fair compromise, revisiting this when she’s more mature, unfortunately, her teen brain is still stuck on “instant gratification” mode, which yeah that’s normal, and she did something stupid behind your back.”

“Taking it out and losing phone privileges for the weekend is honestly a minimal punishment for this. Of course she thinks you’re an ahole, but welcome to being the parent of a teen – you’re gonna be the shole in her eyes for a while. Hang in there, and just make sure that despite everything, she has a safe space in you.” – corvidfamiliar

While the subReddit could understand why the OP was frustrated about her daughter’s choices, they debated whether the age of 14 was young enough to still worry about getting a nose piercing.

Some felt it was simply too young and that, both, the age of 16 and the OP’s punishments had been a fair compromise.

But others felt that the age of 14 was more than old enough for a teen girl to start making her own decisions about her body, including being able to see a professional about a safe, and often reversible if later not wanted, nose piercing.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan has been a part of the George Takei family since 2019 when she wrote some of her favorite early pieces: Sesame Street introducing its first character who lived in foster care and Bruce Willis delivering a not-so-Die-Hard opening pitch at a Phillies game. She's gone on to write nearly 3,000 viral and trending stories for George Takei, Comic Sands, Percolately, and ÜberFacts. With an unstoppable love for the written word, she's also an avid reader, poet, and indie novelist.