What would you like to know?
Share this Story

Catelynn Lowell gets an earful from fans for controversial parenting decision

Jeanne Sager is parenting and living editor for SheKnows. A photographer, social media junkie, and crazed mom to an even crazier kid, she's strung words together for,, Parents, Kiwi Magazine, and others.

Teen Mom stars Catelynn and Tyler's cute baby photo sparks huge controversy

Another day, another parenting controversy out of the Teen Mom crew. But if there's ever been a tempest in a teapot, the barbs being thrown at Catelynn Lowell and Tyler Baltierra for their latest Instagram photo qualify.

Catelynn posted an innocent picture of daughter Novalee flashing a gummy grin and looking strikingly like big sister Carly. So what's the problem? Nova's ears. Or rather the tiny little piece of jewelry in said ears:

I just love her little face #mytootie

A photo posted by Catelynn Lowell (@catelynnmtv) on

Yes, Tyler and Catelynn got their baby's ears pierced. Born in January, the little girl is now 8 months old, and many of their fans took to the comments section to call them out for "abusing" their infant.

More: Catelynn Lowell risks relationship with her daughter for an Instagram pic (PHOTO)

Say what now? Piercing a baby's ears may not be everyone's cup of tea, and it's certainly got its drawbacks. If you have a baby who tugs at those earlobes when they're tired, for example, you could be in for a lot of earlobe ripping issues. Not to mention an earring that falls out of a small baby's ears is bound to end up in their mouths because, well, everything ends up in small babies' mouths.

But the Teen Mom stars are hardly guilty of child abuse for this one.

More: Toddler forced to undergo surgery to remove stuck earring

Just ask the experts: The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests parents put off ear piercing until the child is old enough to care for the piercing on their own, however there's no ban on it. And Healthy Children, the AAP's own site, advises parents, "If the piercing is performed carefully and cared for conscientiously, there is little risk, no matter what the age of the child."

If you want to pierce your child's ears, the best person to turn to is your pediatrician to find out if it's advisable. Many doctors will actually do the procedure in the office, and they can provide necessary follow-up care too.

No matter your child's age, it stands to reason that you need to care for the piercing and watch for infection. But based on this photo alone, Novalee's ears look fine. They're not swollen or oozing with pus.

More: There are crazy baby names, and then there’s Chief Keef’s new son’s name

So again, there's nothing to suggest Tyler and Catelynn are "abusing" their child. If anything, it's the exact opposite. The baby looks well cared for and absolutely happy.

What age do you think is "old enough" to pierce a child's ears?

Tagged in
New in Parenting

And you'll see personalized content just for you whenever you click the My Feed .

SheKnows is making some changes!