Has as anyone ever discriminated against or judged you for having tattoos? Making very well-known remarks such as;
“Tattoos make you look unprofessional”
"You’re going to regret that when you’re older”
“How are those tattoos gonna look when you're older?”
Discriminatory comments of disapproval like these, have circulated around for decades. Nonetheless, people continue to get inked despite what all the “tattoo critics” may say.
Even though tattoos are mainstream and broadly accepted, you will still encounter people who judge and think less of you for your ink.
Having tattoos can lead to rejection or prejudice resulting from preconceived notions that people often hold. Some negative perceptions is that tattooed people are more rebellious, less intelligent, with lower levels of competence, inhibition and sociability. Tattooed people are also often stereo-typed as being drug addicts or criminals.
These negative perceptions and stigma, leave people with tattoos being viewed as socially undesirable, which further leads to discrimination.
So, who would be your biggest “tattoo critics”?
Imagine being the perfect fit for your ideal job. Highly skilled in your field of choice, the right personality, organized, and passionate. Should the ink on your body determine if you get hired for the job you are well qualified for?
Some employers judge tattooed people as unattractive and often times very unprofessional. The question is why? And should we have to hide our tattoos with long sleeves, turtlenecks, and bandages to get the job we want?
Visible tattoos are generally frowned upon. But the stigma surrounding tattoos in the workplace is slowly changing. More employers are becoming accustomed to hiring individuals who have tattoos. Yet, this depends on the employer and the type of job they are recruiting for.
You must also consider the context of your tattoos, as this can be a deciding factor for employment. If you have a tattoo deemed to be offensive (to anyone in any way) an employer has the right to turn you down. This situation is understandable, as tattoos are a form of self-expression. Having offensive tattoos can make a statement about the type of person behind the ink.
As the popularity of getting inked grows, some of the negative tattoo stigmatisms have been lifted. But some employers still have mixed perceptions as to whether or not a tattooed person presents a professional appearance or an appearance that an employer wants as part of their company image.
2. Your family
For many people, your own family can be the most judgmental or discriminatory about your ink. Believe it or not, (depending on your family’s views on body modifications) your family can have a massive influence on your decision to get a tattoo.
Being raised with parents who firmly believe that body modifications are “destroying your body” and "harmful", it took lots of persuading for both of them to be okay with my tattoos.
As soon as I turned 18, I marched right up to them and said “I’m getting this tattoo. I’ve been wanting it since I was 16. And this is when my appointment is”. Now that I was old enough to get inked, there was nothing they could do to stop me.
My family is not totally against the idea of tattoos, they would just never get one themselves. And if they could stop me from getting one, they would. Sadly, I am still keeping the one on my hip a secret from them.
3. People of Certain Religions
Having tattoos can be a cause for discrimination and judgment, by some religious people.
Their reasons are, for the most part, cultural and stem from their commitment to their religion. Some cultures believe that tattooed people are dangerous and should be avoided at all costs.
Other religious individuals cling to the belief that having tattoos is a form of self-mutilation. Although these claims can be proven to be false, ultimately, we cannot change how others choose to think and perceive body modifications.
A large number of people with tattoos are automatically viewed as “rebellious” and “irresponsible,” yet having ink on your skin is truly a form of self-expression.
“Tattoos are more than simply a lifestyle choice; they are an expression of someone's identity just as much as their religion or other beliefs.” - King Of Ink Land King Body Art The Extreme Ink - Ite
As times change and generations pass, the social stigma of having tattoos will also pass. For now, the best anyone can do is remember to be open-minded and respectful of other people's decisions regarding their bodies.
Do you have any crazy stories to tell from judged or discriminated against for your tattoos? Because the next time someone says “How are those tattoos gonna look when you get older?”
Say “AWESOME! I use Inked Ritual Anti-Fade Serum!”
Veryna S. - Guest Writer