- Category: Volume 88 (Fall 2016 - Spring 2017)
- Published: 12 April 2017
- Written by DANIELLE ROMANOWSKI | STAFF WRITER
Tattoos are becoming more common in today’s society and college students, recent high school grads and millennials are getting inked. The odds of knowing someone with a tattoo, or multiple tattoos are extremely high. It has become more commonplace for people to want to get something tattooed on their bodies and show off their personal artwork.
Personally, I never thought I would want a tattoo, but over the past couple of years I have actually gotten several. When I first asked my mother for permission for getting a tattoo, her response was, “Why don’t you just draw a picture of what you want and hang it on your wall? Don’t you think that’s a better place for art?” Clearly, her opinion on getting inked is very different from mine.
After a couple of conversations with her, she realized why I wanted one so badly, and she finally gave in. Originally, I thought I just wanted the one small finger tattoo and it would be done. Everyone said it was addicting and that I would want more, and it turns out they were right. Today, I have four tattoos and they all mean something different to me.
Each one of my tattoos tells a different story about my life. For me, it’s really a symbolic way of remembering certain people, places and life experiences I have had. Tattoos can tell you a lot about the people that have them. It sheds a light on what they value and what kinds of life experiences they have gone through.
Although tattoos are a personal choice and no one gets them just for other people to ask, “what is your tattoo for?” they are definitely good conversation starters. When people ask me about my tattoos, they get a better idea of who I am as a person and I love sharing more about myself with others.
Tattoos are definitely becoming more accepted in the general population. In the past, they were frowned upon by many, especially by older generations as it could be seen as unprofessional. A place where it still can pose a problem, however, is in the workplace, depending on the job type or employer. I have worked one retail job that required me to cover up my small tattoos, as it didn’t fit with the store policy. While I really enjoyed the job, my co-workers, and the company I worked for, I felt a little degraded and judged because of my decision to have something tattooed on my body.
I don’t believe there should be policies or rules against where you can and can’t show off your tattoos. Sometimes it can come with a stigma or a stereotype, and I don’t think the workplace is an environment that should reinforce that. It’s a personal choice and I don’t believe that they should have to be hidden for me or for anyone to be appropriate at work.
On the other hand, I am working in a clothing store now that doesn’t have any guidelines or rules for tattoos, and I don’t have to wear a watch, or close toed shoes to hide them. Since it doesn’t affect my ability to work, or distract my co-workers or the customers that walk in to shop, it isn’t seen as a problem.
There is really no better way of expressing yourself, in my opinion, than having something tattooed on your body. It is a great way to commemorate a special person in your life, put more value on something you love, and express your individuality. For whatever the reason, having a tattoo is a way to put permanent importance on the things in life that matter the most to you.