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Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

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Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Medic on Wed Jun 01, 2011 11:37 pm

So recently I was watching the National Geographic Channel and I saw an episode of Taboo about body modification and it really made me wonder what other people’s thoughts were on body modification. Now I think that when most people think of body modification they immediately think of piercings and tattoos, and I used to think of those as well and not really notice anything else. But then after thinking about it and watching that TV episode I realized that body modification is much more than ink or piercings.

It can be anything that you do or get done to your body that is not natural to your body. So that could be getting a piercing or a tattoo. It could also be getting braces or even breast implants. Maybe branding your body or purposefully scaring your body. I would even consider getting Lasik as a modification too.

Now when I think of the American society some body modifications are socially acceptable and others are not. IT seems that because our society places personal beauty as a high importance priority people will get their teeth straightened with braces, get bigger breasts, have their nose or other features modified so that society views them as more beautiful or acceptable.

I myself had braces when I was younger and my teeth really weren't that bad I could have gone all my life and not needed to get braces for any health reasons. The only reason I ended up getting them is because I guess society told me that I would look better if my teeth were straight.

But the reason I got my tattoos was much different I got them because I felt like they represented my personal beliefs and feelings. Although they may contradict what other's believe I felt that they were necessary for me to have. I also realize that even though tattoos are becoming more acceptable in our society they are still not mainstream. Some people may not even be hired for a certain job if they have tattoos that are visible. But I also understand why some jobs may not allow tattoo's to be placed in visible places on the body. In the Army soldiers are not allowed to have tattoo's that go onto the hands or that are on the neck or above (Although I have heard a rumor that we can now get tattoo's that go up to our chin strap when we have our ACH on. I don't know if it is true or false though.).


So anyways anyone who has ever had any body modification and would like to discuss why they got it and how society might view their type of modification here go ahead. I would really like to hear a lot of different point of views on a lot of different modifications that people have gotten, how these modifications were received in society, and if you had them reversed and why?
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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sciamancer on Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:45 pm

I think medical modification (like laser eye surgery, braces to correct severely bad teeth, removing a tumor, etc.) is good. I am indifferent to the few modifications that are used to make someone not look "deformed" (like a breast implant for a woman that has one breast that didn't grow, reconstructive facial surgery for an accident victim, etc.). I think unnecessary cosmetic modifications are a bad decision, but I don't really care.
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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby _BlackButterflyLove_ on Thu Jun 02, 2011 8:34 pm

I'm indifferent to aesthetic or cosmetic body modification, whatever you want really. Medical modification is obviously a good option in most cases.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby DizzyJynx on Tue Jun 07, 2011 9:32 pm

Indifferent.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Medic on Tue Jun 07, 2011 9:59 pm

It seems like so far most people are indifferent to body modifications especially when it comes to body modifications that are usually for the better such as braces, replacements or reconstructive surgery.

Although I am kind of suprised that so few people have posted here with their comments on the subject. I would have thought that body modification would have been a much more talkative subject.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Jag on Thu Jun 16, 2011 6:02 pm

I have absolutely no problem with body modification in moderation. My wife has a small tattoo and it is something that helps her express a part of who she is. She likes it and it's done in a very classy way so I'm all for her in that regard. I've fooled around with the idea of getting tattoo myself and still like the idea. My problem is that I can't come up with anything that strikes me on enough of a core level to have it permanently attached to my body.

My problem is when it goes too far. I know that people have a right to do what they want with their own bodies and for that reason I don't think it's "wrong," but it's just not appealing to me when people go overboard. A member of my family, for example, got one tattoo. And then another. And then another. For me, it's far too much. Still, it's a personal choice.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby StrangeCupcake on Mon Jun 20, 2011 10:31 pm

It IS a very personal idea.

For me, I could care less what another person does to their body. There should be a limit, somewhere you can draw the line and say "That's it"...but some people go too far. Some women become addicted to plastic surgery and then can't seem to stop. They end up looking disfigured and horrifying, rather than beautiful. Most were beautiful BEFORE they got started. This, I'll never understand. The farthest I would go there is breast augmentation...but when you've had 2 kids and even that couldn't give you a chest, I think you're entitled to a wanting a little change for yourself. And when I say 'little', I DO mean little. For God's sake, if I did that and the doctor made me look like a porn star, I'd kill him.

As for tattoos and piercings, I have those. Again, it's personal. And there isn't one tattoo on me that wasn't put there for a reason. I do NOT believe in the midnight drunken tattoo parlor visit. It's ridiculous. If you're going to have something on your skin FOREVER, make sure it counts. For one, my daughters' names are tattooed over my heart. I think that counts as a legit reason for ink. I also happen to have a massive portrait of Freddie Mercury on my back...but then Queen's music is a big deal to me. I don't expect everyone to go along with it. Most people look at me funny. Some at least give props for the fine artwork done on it...and it IS nicely done. But it's personal, because the band's music is deeply personal in my life. I've made some life-long amazing friends just because of a love for their music.

I have one piercing...and I mean beyond the ears. I don't get having your personal parts pierced. That's gotta hurt, and I won't go near it. I have my bottom lip pierced on one side, and that's all I'll do. I wanted to get the other side done, but can't afford it. Will I ever? Probably not. I like what I have. I don't wear spikes, I don't even wear a ring. I wear small studs. That's all. Enough it can be seen.

Branding, scarring, piercing, surgery... It's all up to the person. I've had people call me names before and tell me I was going to hell for it. Whatever. It's up to the person. If you want to, great. If not, fantastic. I'll still sit and talk to you.

One funny story... I was in a chatroom, talking to people about tattoos, and some crazy little Christian (just saying, they were, but they're not all nuts) person came in and told us we were all going to hell for having tattoos. I shut him up. Know how?

I asked him if it still counted if the tattoo was of Jesus. ::shrug::
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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby AlexF on Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:02 pm

Ohhh, I could go on about this all day. I'll try to keep the ranting rambling brief. :D

I love body modifications, let's get that out there straight away. I have seventeen piercings (including a vertical 16mm surface bar on the back of my neck) and a microdermal. And three tattoos. And I would get transdermals up my arms so I could have screw-on spikes if a] my piercer could do transdermals (she's working on getting the equipment) and b] my boss would let me (which she just might, if I get really lucky; she wanted subdermals until her piercer squicked her out explaining how they'd be inserted, so she doesn't have a personal objection, apparently). I may be a tad biased. ;]

I suppose that answers the initial question of what I think about body mods, but I couldn't just leave it floating there. There's a connected issue here which I think is relevant to the discussion: body mods + jobs. What I personally think about body modification, or what I choose to do to my own body, does not have any effect whatsoever on how capable or qualified I am to do a particular job. I'm lucky to have a boss who understands this at the moment -- company policy is a single set of studs in earlobes and one subtle facial piercing, max, so she already lets me off with a lot -- but even there, there are limits: no tattoos that can't easily be covered, for example. I would love full sleeves, but I know it'll scupper my chances of getting the respectable lecturing position I want in the future. And that's society being funny about people with body mods, tattoos etc, and it sucks.

I used to have a green streak in my hair, while working at a different job, and it was amazing how many people said they liked it -- people I had thought would look horrified or shake their heads and moan about the Youth Of Today (see, prejudice goes both ways! I've learnt a lot about not trying to pre-empt peoples' reactions since then. Or rather, not doing it). My current boss told me out of the blue that she loves my piercings and doesn't mind them being on show in the slightest. I get a lot of compliments on the vertical neck bar, despite it being a relatively unusual piercing and, I should admit, a fairly high incidence of "Ewww!" reactions too. It's weird how many people just don't seem to care -- even those who don't like it seem to understand that it's my life, my choice, and doesn't change who I am, or my intellectual/emotional/etc capacity. So why are body mods still frowned upon in most 'respectable' jobs? Probably a separate debate, but still makes me go :[

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Ziddie on Wed Jun 22, 2011 4:33 pm

I'm quite indifferent to most body mods. In fact, a friend of mine had her ears fixed to resemble elf ears. Although the process was terribly gruesome, I think they suit her better because it says more about her than what she was naturally born with. Going off of that, I understand why people are against body modification. It's because they are messing up what they were obviously born with. I understand that. But if it teaches more people about you...

I've also seen people completely mess up theirselves through body mods. I've seen a boy who was the most handsome thing on earth ruin his face with piercings and a facial tattoo. Flawless skin, perfect mouth, no scars...hidden under a tribal tattoo. Two years later, he wanted to get the tattoo removed for his job. He took out the piercings in his face (snake bites, eyebrows, nose) but left the ones in his ears because they're hard to deal with. (Industrials, ear cuffs, and like...a ton of studs.) However, we couldn't do anything to fix the tattoo. My friend managed to get a job because the manager is like...awesome (and knew the kid personally) but he took him aside and had a chat with him. This kid had like...a 3.7 GPA in High school but if it wasn't for his boss, he's pretty sure he wouldn't have work because the manager said: "Extreme tattoos like that show poor judgement, son" Or something like that. "You've obviously shown a lot of it."

I personally have had braces and am looking foward to my first piercings soon. I enjoy doing henna art on my hands and have wings stained in my back. However, if it's way too permanant, it's not so much for me. I already feel like I am who I am.
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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Alexei on Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:01 am

It depends, if it doesn't go too extreme, I guess it could work.
Also if you need a correction of any part, like ears or something, I think that we should be lucky that body modification actually exists :)

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Ylanne on Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:25 am

For the record, and this is mostly directed to StrangeCupcake, I am a Christian, and happen to be a particularly religious one (not the type of person who identifies as Christian but knows little about Christian theology or practices), and I have no wish to be associated with people who quickly and publicly proclaim that everyone else is going to hell for whatever petty reason entertains them at the moment. I believe very firmly that body modifications are an individual's choice, and if made for a good or meaningful reason, should be respected as that individual's choice. If forced on an individual (like the tattooing of Nazi concentration camp prisoners) or made for trivial or not particularly good or meaningful reasons (such as while drunk), then body modifications aren't such a wonderful thing anymore.

For example, as StrangeCupcake alluded, there are women who undergo various procedures merely because society tells them that to look beautiful means to increase one's sexuality and appearance of youthfulness. This bothers me. If an individual decides to tattoo him or herself with an image or word that has special meaning or importance to him or her, that is vastly different than a woman who decides to have cosmetic surgery in order to meet societal expectations of attractiveness. A man who decides to get some piercings because that is how he wishes to express himself is different from a man who has numerous piercings because it is a positive cultural tradition, who is different in turn from a man who decides to get a million piercings everywhere to meet some Guinness World Record.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Aniihya on Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:02 pm

Sorry but I have to say something pointless. When I saw the title, I thought: "Hopefully it is post-cyberpunk related." But otherwise, I got a tattoo myself. Only thing you might consider body modification that I do not accept is gender transition surgery, especially when it is to an infant which was born androgynous or as a hermaphrodite.
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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sciamancer on Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:16 am

Aniihya wrote:Only thing you might consider body modification that I do not accept is gender transition surgery

So you're fine with people doing whatever they want with their body so long as it doesn't involve changing their sex? A man could replace his arms with robots and have horns installed in his head so long as he keeps his dick? Any particular reason why? Just seems like an odd exception to make IMO

I understand opposing it for infants. I think all body modification that isn't fixing a harmful medical condition should be illegal on those too young to consent, from tattoos to circumcision.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Aniihya on Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:59 am

My problem is more of the pre-cyber transition surgery. If you could completely replace ones body with that of female gender, I do not have a problem with it as long as it is cybernetic/robotic. But with what we have today a man could never become a woman. I am most strictly against gender transition of infants though.

Plus you cannot change the DNA of a person, at least not at the present time.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby NorthernSoul on Fri Jul 01, 2011 6:22 am

Aniihya wrote: I am most strictly against gender transition of infants though.

Not sure about my opinion on this but you could argue that surgery on an infant with relatively ambiguous external genitalia but a normally developed genital tract otherwise should be performed before puberty to minimise psychological trauma. With an ambiguous or underdeveloped genital tract, I think you're probably right, however and it should be left until that person positively identifies with a particular gender.

Plus you cannot change the DNA of a person, at least not at the present time.

That's basically irrelevant in the case of gender reassignment surgery. You can still have functioning external genitalia with current surgical techniques. And defining sex (as opposed to) is not as simple as being XX/XY, even if gene therapy were somehow possible. Women who are phenotypically XY (Turner's syndrome) are occasionally capable of reproducing naturally and often able to receive egg donations otherwise. Are these people biologically men or women? Does it actually matter?

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Aniihya on Fri Jul 01, 2011 7:09 am

NorthernSoul wrote:With an ambiguous or underdeveloped genital tract, I think you're probably right, however and it should be left until that person positively identifies with a particular gender.


Why does an intersexed person have to identify with a gender they arent? My ex didnt. She had the outward appearance of a female but felt to be intersexed/hermaphrodite. And it is mostly when they have gender assignment surgery at a young age or at puberty (under pressure from their peers) when the psychological problems happens. Gender assignment causes trauma 90% of the time, even when it takes a couple years to develop.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby NorthernSoul on Fri Jul 01, 2011 8:11 am

Aniihya wrote:
NorthernSoul wrote:With an ambiguous or underdeveloped genital tract, I think you're probably right, however and it should be left until that person positively identifies with a particular gender.


Why does an intersexed person have to identify with a gender they arent? My ex didnt. She had the outward appearance of a female but felt to be intersexed/hermaphrodite. And it is mostly when they have gender assignment surgery at a young age or at puberty (under pressure from their peers) when the psychological problems happens. Gender assignment causes trauma 90% of the time, even when it takes a couple years to develop.


Well, clearly they shouldn't have the surgery if they don't identify with a particular gender.

And, as I said, I think surgery is appropriate for a child with with a non-ambiguous genital tract, but ambiguous genitalia to align the genitalia with the sex of the tract itself. Do you have anything to actually back up your statistic on psychological trauma to children who have undergone this kind of surgery?

Also, your ex was not intersex or a hermaphrodite, she was intergender- an important distinction in this debate, I think.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Aniihya on Fri Jul 01, 2011 9:37 am

I know two people who are intersexed, one was assigned to a gender as an infant, which later on cause both mental and physical health problems. At the age of 17, her surgery was "reversed". She is scarred from it. She is also part of an organisation of intersexed people and friends who fight against gender assignment. Pretty much all of them have a mental scar from it.

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sciamancer on Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:58 pm

NorthernSoul wrote:That's basically irrelevant in the case of gender reassignment surgery. You can still have functioning external genitalia with current surgical techniques.

True.

Women who are phenotypically XY (Turner's syndrome) are occasionally capable of reproducing naturally and often able to receive egg donations otherwise. Are these people biologically men or women? Does it actually matter?

False. Turner syndrome is the absence of part or all of an X chromosome, but I have never heard of an actual Y chromosome being a part of Turner syndrome. Unless you can provide a source? It would certainly be interesting, but for all I know, one or more "Y" chromosomes results in a male (in physical appearance, too) and no "Y" chromosomes results in a female (in physical appearance, too). A partial X chromosome is not the same thing as a Y chromosome. Turner's Syndrome.

EDIT: My own source mentions people with Turner Syndrome and a Y chromosome. Well that's embarrassing. Disregard xD

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Re: Body modification. Good, bad, indifferent?

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby NorthernSoul on Fri Jul 01, 2011 3:29 pm

Sciamancer wrote:False. Turner syndrome is the absence of part or all of an X chromosome, but I have never heard of an actual Y chromosome being a part of Turner syndrome. Unless you can provide a source? It would certainly be interesting, but for all I know, one or more "Y" chromosomes results in a male (in physical appearance, too) and no "Y" chromosomes results in a female (in physical appearance, too). A partial X chromosome is not the same thing as a Y chromosome. Turner's Syndrome.

EDIT: My own source mentions people with Turner Syndrome and a Y chromosome. Well that's embarrassing. Disregard xD


No, no! You're quite right-Turner's is monosomy X or XO (with a Barr body which is what you're referring to as a partial X chromosome). Your source is talking about mosaicism with regards to the presence of an XY genotype. Sorry! It's been a long day. I actually meant androgen insensitivity syndrome.

Medicine fail, right there.

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