A teenage Reddit user claims that her overprotective mother got her microchipped like a pet when she was a baby.
One commenter suggested she sue Black Mirror showrunner Charlie Brooker for stealing her life story for the episode ‘Arkangel,’ about an overprotective mother who tracks her daughter with an implanted device.
‘I’m a forgiving person. More forgiving than a lot of people,’ the 17-year-old wrote in a thread on the r/AMA (Ask Me Anything) subreddit, where users invite others to ask them questions.
‘And even I severely resent my mom’s decision.’
As of this article’s publication, the post has accumulated almost 300 comments. Reddit does not verify user accounts, but the original poster identified herself as a 17-year-old female.
The teen claimed her uncle, a veterinarian, used a inserted the chip under the skin between her shoulder blades when she was a baby. This is the same location where veterinarians usually chip dogs and cats.
The chip that this teenager has inserted between her shoulder blades is almost certainly too small to contain a GPS tracker
‘I think my mom wanted to get as many insurances as she could and this was one of the most obvious options to her,’ she wrote.
According to the original poster, her mother’s logic was that if her child ever got lost, the police could scan the chip for parental contact information.
DailyMail.com has reached out to attempt to verify the story and will update this article with any new information.
The teen said she didn’t remember getting the chip implanted, but that it’s reflected in her medical records.
Many users pointed out that unless authorities knew she had it, few people would ever think to scan a child for a microchip. ‘It’s pretty irrational in my opinion,’ she told commenters.
‘It does have basic info but I don’t know how much exactly.’
As far as she knows, the chip just contains her name and her parents’ names, she said, and the information on the chip has not been updated since it was inserted.
She claimed she has never been scanned to see.
Veterinary microchips are about the size of a grain of rice, and they usually just contain a serial number that can be looked up in a database for more information on the owner, like phone number and address.
Most companies that sell the chips charge a recurring fee to keep this information in their database.
But even if the chip owner hasn’t kept the subscription up to date, the very basic information such as their name should be easily accessible if one were to scan the chip.
One commenter noted that around the time that the original poster was a baby, microchipping children had just become a hot topic in the news.
Many users noted safety concerns if a nefarious stranger were to scan the chip. But due to the small amount of information it contains, it’s unlikely that someone could make much use of it. And fortunately, such a small chip can’t contain a GPS tracker.
Many users pointed out that this choice was a possible violation of her bodily autonomy, even if she was a baby.
She agreed and said she does feel like it was violating, but that she is not ‘obsessed with it or anything. It’s just a kind of mild dislike.’
The chip does make her feel different, though, she admitted.
‘It makes me feel sort of ‘other’ from other people and I also find it kind of funny when I see people conspiracies about microchips.’
The Redditor did not identify her home country, but it is illegal in most countries for veterinarians to treat humans. In New York, for instance, the legal definition of veterinary practice ‘includes every living creature except a human being.’ This definition is consistent across US states.
And while some companies have developed chips that people can use to store small amounts of data or open doors, veterinary microchips have not been cleared by food and drug regulators for human use.
In cases of emergencies, so-called Good Samaritan laws could protect veterinarians who provide first aid to an injured person. But this case seems to fall clearly outside of that.
She does not have plans to call the police or alert veterinary regulators, though, she said. The teen said she did not want to get her uncle’s license revoked.
A microchip about the size of a grain of rice can be inserted under the skin so that a vet can scan an animal and find out who its owner is. But veterinarians are not supposed to treat people
In addition to her complicated feelings about her mother’s choice, other kids made fun of her for it. ‘I was actually bullied quite badly for it when I was very young,’ she wrote.
Some commenters asked whether the chip could present problems during medical imaging, since piercings and other metal implants can get dislodged or pulled out by the powerful magnets in an MRI machine. A veterinary professor chimed in to say that the tiny device shouldn’t pose any problems.
‘Not [original poster] but veterinary prof, yes they do show up on x-rays and won’t affect an MRI or other imaging ([obviously] animals get them all the time),’ they said.
After reading all the comments on her post, the original poster said that she probably would get the chip removed at some point. ‘I’m definitely going to talk to my doctor about it.’
She also noted that she would probably have a ‘great sense of sadistic pleasure’ when she turns 18 and throws out the GPS tracker her mother placed in her car. ‘I love my mom despite her flaws but she doesn’t make it easy.’
Microchipping children isn’t in the news like it was 16 years ago, but in China authorities announced in 2018 that schoolchildren would be monitored with chips sewn into their uniforms. And as the 2023 Christmas season is upon us, many tech companies are advertising smartwatch-type devices for tracking your children via GPS.