Real Patient Question: Articles to Convince Parents?
We spotted a post in the gynecomastia.org forum the other day—a young man was asking for help with articles to convince his parents that surgery could be appropriate. With more than three decades of experience with gynecomastia in New York, teen man boobs very much included, we have some resources and ideas to offer.
It has been a pleasure to work with hundreds and hundreds of young guys throughout the years, and we have both educated and learned from them. One thing we know for certain is that although enlarged breasts can be a burden for just about any guy, they are a special curse for teens. If you’re an adolescent with moobs, we sympathize and hope we can help. Read on!
Your Physician Strategy
If you haven’t visited your pediatrician or general practitioner with your parents, you might want to skip this step. Unfortunately many primary care doctors still harbor the illusion that gynecomastia will disappear on its own as a guy reaches adulthood. We know from experience that if the condition persists for two years or more, the man boobs are here to stay.
As you research board certified plastic surgeons you’d like to visit, be sure to choose one who clearly has a great deal of experience working with adolescents. You need that kind of authority when you bring your parents to meet him or her. And, we suggest you propose the visit as a consultation to find out more about your condition and don’t push your parents too hard to agree to surgery before the appointment. It makes sense that they will want to learn and make up their own minds.
Articles that May Help
As you gather articles to offer your mom and dad, you might want to begin with one published a few years ago through the U.S. National Library of Medicine, part of the National Institutes of Health. This one is a bit technical in nature, but quite comprehensive. You could highlight pertinent statements, such as this one:
Surgical management of pubertal gynecomastia may be considered in nonobese male adolescents who present persistent breast enlargement after a period of observation of at least 12 months, intractable breast pain or tenderness, and/or significant psychosocial distress.
You can find several other articles that summarize scientific studies of adolescent boys with gynecomastia. One that discusses the psychological impact of gynecomastia on adolescent males was published in Science Daily a few years ago. Perhaps even more interesting is a recent study conducted in South Korea that found 70 out of 71 adolescent gynecomastia patients were satisfied with the results of male breast reduction surgery.
We have detailed our experience with teen gynecomastia in New York here. You and your parents can benefit from reading what we have learned through the years, as well as looking over the results of surgery in some of our before and after teen gynecomastia photos.
Finally, you might want to provide some stories of real patients who have undergone gynecomastia surgery in their teens. Here’s the story of our patient John. If you think your parents may feel skeptical about stories published on a plastic surgeon’s website, have them read this account written by a mom we do not know.
You Control Your Destiny
Browsing the forums on gynecomastia.org, you’ll find that many guys receive a surprisingly good reaction when they talk to their mom or dad—others not so much. If you fall into the latter category, don’t despair. We have a few suggestions.
Plan to bring up the topic again later, after your parents have had time to think things over and talk about your situation together. You may find that one convinces the other to revisit the idea of surgery. In the meantime, look for ways to earn money toward the procedure and save every penny you can. Your parents may be impressed by your resolve.
To deal with the inevitable teasing from other young people, invest in a compression shirt or vest and a wardrobe full of dark, loose tops (if you haven’t already). You might approach a sympathetic teacher or counselor for support, and if your gym teacher favors “shirts and skins” games, consider asking him to please put you on the “shirts” side every time!
The best thing you can do while you prepare for surgery is to be strong. Don’t act like a victim and teasing will let up some. Store up snappy comebacks to rude remarks—gynecomastia.org is full of ideas for this. And if we can help, contact us. We thoroughly enjoy working with adolescents with gynecomastia in New York; it’s so rewarding to change lives for the better.
We would love to meet you someday. All the best.