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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ink Baby

My daughter loves the temporary tattoos and I give them out as rewards for everything from completing math homework to helping with laundry folding.  They're harmless - Canadian flags, Tinkerbell, smiley faces, Paul Frank monkeys etc. At age 3 she was already fascinated with skulls and bones but not for tattoos fortunately.
Image Source: not my kid

Her father warns her every time that she is only allowed to have the sticker tattoos, and real tattoos are completely off limits. Funny though, that made her ask what is a real tattoo? I had to explain peripherally what is a permanent tattoo and how it is done. I don't even think she had any idea who was Kat von D or Miami Ink before that conversation. I described it as a possibly painful and expensive experience, but I did not specifically say it was off limits.

I actually really admire tattoos, especially beautiful and artistic ones. I have the opinion that when my daughter is old enough to decide for herself that she wants to permanently decorate her body, possibly age 16 to 18 and up, I'd rather be supportive and let her do it tastefully. I would certainly suggest not tattooing a boy's name or something immature that she may regret later on in life, but I could not outright ban it. I'd rather that she found a professional place to do it and be supportive enough to help her pay the more expensive rate for a more reputable job.
Actually in random conversations with my guy friends, most seem to have the opinion that tattoos are destroying or permanently marking a perfectly perfect body. They were shocked I would even consider it, but obviously my husband would not approve. It would be difficult to hide my arm from him!  In fact we were joking that if I ever got a full arm tattoo, that the ink would end up going into my bloodstream and permanently ink my baby too.  What an Ink Baby that would be! Anywayz as much as I would like to get a giant Phoenix and peony flowers or Kali the 8 armed Hindu goddess tattooed on my back or arms, I think I need to hit the gym and build some muscle tone first cuz my arms are pretty tiny and I wouldn't fit much art on it.

It was explained to me that a tattoo is like a scar on the body that heals and fades over time.  The only tattoo I've ever done is the eyeliner tattoo, over 10 years ago, for the top and bottom of the eye. This is quite common for many asian women (it's obvious who's done it, who's natural and who wears eyeline).  I know I'm due for a redo but it was such a painful and shocking experience, I think I'll just stick with the daily Avon Glimmersticks.

What would you do if your daughter or son asks for this? I guess it goes back to my previous post about parenting, obedience and guidance. If someone is still asking me for "permission" to do something than probably they're not ready to make this choice for himself.

1 comment:

Christine said...

I like that you are so open to the idea of your child getting a tattoo. I am not. My best friend got a Maple Leaf tattooed on her ankle about 15 years ago and has regretted for about 14 of those years. I dated a guy with a lot of tattoos when I was young (who was that girl?) and my parents were mortified. And as a mother I get it. If my son or daughter got a tattoo, I think I'd be disapointed. I guess you can't control them forever, so I'd hope it was small and somewhere that could be hidden during a job interview.