She told the magazine: "When my kids start asking me if I'm mad at them, and I say, 'Why do you think I'm mad at you?' They say it's because I'm frowning. I go, 'Oh no! I am? I'll be right back!'"
Pointing the needle in the other direction, recall actress Julia Roberts' anti-Botox comments a couple of years ago: "I want my kids to know when I'm pissed, when I'm happy and when I'm confounded," she told Elle Magazine. "Your face tells a story ... and it shouldn't be a story about your drive to the doctor's office."
Just how does dulling facial expressions, appearing to freeze them in some cases -- yes we can tell, Fembots -- affect that vital two-way communication street between mother and child? Could not being able to furrow your brow in disapproval when little Johnny throws a fistful of mashed potatoes at your chest make you a less effective mom?
"(Botox) likely does limit and distort parent-infant communication, possibly making the parent look 'flat' emotionally," says Dr. Ed Tronick, associate professor of pediatrics and psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts. "Facial expressions for parents and young children are really critical ways in which we communicate our intentions or whether we're angry or sad, and that involves this very complex array of all the muscles that go into making facial expressions. So if you limit that range of expression, especially with very young children who are really attuned to reading facial expressions, then you limit the amount of information, the amount of emotion that you communicate using a facial expression."
I was introduced to the notion that babies and infants scan mom's face -- more so than the teenager whose head is buried in a smartphone -- while pregnant with my daughter. A friend had given me a copy of "The Female Brain" by Louann Brizendine and I was fascinated to read that female babies are especially sensitive to their mother's moods and facial cues.
Embodied Emotion Perception: Amplifying and Dampening Facial Feedback Modulates Emotion Perception Accuracy
Maybe we'll start seeing the effects of this in a couple of years, if not already.