The irony of the tattoo

tattoo and glitter glue 005The irony is laughable. I’ve had a complete sense of deja vu!

When my youngest turned 18 she went off with her ID and got more piercings – not something I liked the idea of which I might have mentioned to her just a teeny bit – okay – a lot! (see this post – and note the date)

Her words of comfort to me at the time were; ‘well, at least it’s not a tattoo’! How this was supposed to comfort I can’t imagine! She supposed my wobbles about tattoos would be greater than my wobbles about piercings I guess.

Today, those words come back to haunt as, having recently turned twenty one, it is the tattoo she’s off for and a fairly large one at that, forgetting her earlier words.

“Can I remind you of something?” I said before she went.

“What?” she said, instantly suspicious of another forthcoming attempt by me to divert her plans. I reminded her what she said to me last time and we laughed about it.

Except then she said; “well, at least it’s not on my face”.

I raised my eyebrows in horror and had goosebumps all over. After last time I’d prefer she didn’t say things like that.

I appreciate tattoos are quite an incredible art form – I’ve been dragged to look at loads recently and some are stunning. And I’m even more stunned at people totally covering themselves with indelible designs even if incredible. However tattoos don’t quite do it for me but then, some of what’s hanging in the Tate Modern doesn’t do it for me either so what do I know?

And it’s not about me any more. It’s a time for me to butt out, other then offering a few indelible opinions beforehand!

For like with anything our children learn, about the world, or themselves, the only real approach that truly works is one I drew on many a time, especially when home educating and getting a bit frustrated: You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink.

I only ever got frustrated when I was trying to force someone to sip the learning I was offering and trying to force the outcome too. It didn’t work and forcing rarely remedies the situation.

With both learning and your opinions you can only lay them out and encourage the youngsters to take the opportunities – as and when they will.

I see our role as parents to keep on leading any which way we can. And sometimes that involves saying your piece and butting out and going off and dealing with it any which way you can!

And I begrudgingly admit, the tattoo is fairly awesome!

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8 thoughts on “The irony of the tattoo

  1. God this terrifies me. Funnily enough just tonight my son asked me why I have a tattoo.. I just have one small one, he used to ask me why I’d drawn on myself when he was really little. But he’d really thought about it when he asked me tonight, and I was a bit flumoxed to be honest. I was going to say that it was because I was stupid when I was young, but wasn’t sure what message that would be sending to him. I need to put some thought into it or else I’ll have no come back when he comes home in 12 years time covered in tattoos!

    • It is odd isn’t it, when we ask the children not to draw on themselves, then they notice tattoos! Just another issue that parents have to get their heads round. I’ve certainly had to change my old style views, but we were always able to talk openly about things with the kids and that really helped; drugs, sex, rock and roll – it all came up – we have to think it out, discuss, and be open to moderating our views when needed I think. When yours are teems no doubt you’ll have new things to confront! 🙂 I loved it all! It’s all worth it and works out so don’t be terrified – enjoy!

  2. I can already relate to so much of what youve said here, and my eldest isn’t even six yet! I have a couple of tatoos and piercings, the first of which I had done when I was 21. I think as long as they’re done in a clean environment by an actual artist, and as llong as they can be covered up if needs be, then that’s fine. It’s the face and neck tats I have huge issues with but that’s just my opinion…

    You’ve hit the nail on the head by saying that sometimes you need to know when to walk away… so much easier said than done!!

    • Thanks so much for coming by and commenting. I always appreciate visitors who take the time! I agree with what you’ve said about the tattoos and that it is very, very difficult to shut up and walk away sometimes, however old they are!! 🙂

  3. My now 22 year old daughter took 6 months to actually tell me she had had her first tattoo about 3 years ago. She was more put out that I didn’t react outwardly to the initials and flower on her hipbone (despite my hate of them, it is actually quite pretty – and small!). She has since had 2 more, chinese characters on the back of her neck, (which we tell her in jest means ‘egg fried rice’!) and Hebrew characters down her forearm. She justified this one by saying ‘Well, it does mean ‘love, joy, hope. peace” !!! When I point out that in 30 or 40 years time she may regret her irreversible decisions and face ridicule from her own children and grandchildren, she replies that by then, most people her age will have them anyway, so it won’t seem weird! Maybe she’s got a point?!

  4. I think a lot of tattoos look lovely, but I couldn’t get one myself because I know myself too well – in two years I would have changed my mind about it. Much safer to have art on the walls, I can change that painlessly!

    • That was one of my arguments too May! I also said why not do it in permanent marker (which wouldn’t inevitably be permanent) and then you get to keep changing the design! 🙂 Thanks so much for commenting. x

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