Vienna Girardi and Kasey Kahl
08/08/2011 at 04:55 PM EDT
Kasey Kahl already thought his girlfriend of several months
, Vienna Girardi, was beautiful. But when she flew to Houston in July to have a rhinoplasty
, he flew there, too, to be with her.
"She says she wants to do this surgery to help herself feel better because she's been through some trauma in her early years," Kahl tells PEOPLE. "I honestly think she's gorgeous and beautiful inside and out so it doesn't matter to me."
He adds: "I was there a day after her surgery. I stuck by her side and either way, I said, 'I am here for you and I support you no matter what you want to do.'"
Girardi, 25, says Kahl continues to offer comfort even though they haven't gotten a good night's sleep in some time. "I am really exhausted and my head hurts pretty bad right now," she says. "I am getting through it. I've only been out in public for three days. I still have black eyes and my nose is still swollen and I am still recovering. It's about a month to 6 months for the recovery time and it's only been three weeks for me."
As to why she had the procedure, Girardi says, "When I got this done, it was for me. He thought I was beautiful before, but I don't think anyone should get plastic surgery for somebody else. When the opportunity arises, if that's what makes you feel good, then do it. That's your body! Do it for yourself. I think it's important for young women to know that."
While Kahl says he agrees with Girardi's "positive" message, he also says, "she could have a 10-inch nose or a two-inch nose. It doesn't matter to me! I love her for who she is."