Attempts At Adulthood

Why You Should Never, Ever, Ever Get A Tattoo (but Having a Baby is Fine)

I’m not super pro-tattoo or anti-tattoo.  I’ve debated getting one in the past but never that seriously.  But my mother is vehemently anti-tattoo.  Listed below are the reasons my mother has always given me for why I shouldn’t get a tattoo.

And I understand that she’s from a different generation.  And I love my mother very much.  She’s a really wonderful person and I’m not saying none of them is a legitimate reason, but I’m saying that after having a child, I find it really hard to take any of them seriously.

And so in case you were headed out to the tattoo parlor as we speak, here are:




1.  “A Tattoo is Forever”

Yes, a tattoo is forever.  Totally forever!  Except that a tattoo can, if needed, be erased with a laser.

 *Some of you read that and immediately thought, "I am so exhausted, please I need a laser that can temporarily erase a three year-old," but sorry, that is not a thing that exists.  

No comments on how there are some days when you want to temporarily erase your three-year-old with a laser.


*               *               *

2. “People are going to judge you all the time.”

They absolutely will.  You’re a terrible mother!  Why are you doing whatever you’re doing?  Why AREN’T you doing this thing you’re NOT doing?  People will judge you so harshly for every child-related decision, they won’t even notice that you have the Chinese character for “Serenity” inked on your forearm.

 Also, this is totally not the chinese character for Serenity.

This is not the Chinese character for Serenity.

*               *               *

3. “Having one will limit the type of jobs you can get.”

It will!  Like jobs where you need time off to take care of your kids when they get sick!  Or jobs where they’re only hiring guys because they feel like hiring women is a liability!

theuglyvolvo tattoo help wanted

*               *               *

4. “A tattoo will ruin your body.”

It totally will, right?  Also what will sort of ruin it is carrying another human inside your body for the better part of a year and then pushing it out an opening ten centimeters wide and then attempting to breastfeed it.  Followed by the stress of trying to raise it to adulthood.  Let me know if doing all that ruins your body any more or less than the butterfly on the small of your back.


 Oh no, a drawing of a butterfly.  My body is RUINED.

Oh no, a drawing of a butterfly: My body is RUINED.


*               *               *

5. “It’s going to be more expensive than you realize.”

It is SO expensive.  There are tons of basic costs at the beginning but I can’t even explain how much it’s going to cost to put this tattoo through college.

theuglyvolvo tattoo money

Start saving now.

*               *               *

6. “You don’t know if it’s going to be clean or safe.   Also, you know it’s going to hurt, right?”

Luckily, having a kid can easily be summed up by the words “clean” and “safe.”  Also, “painless.”

theuglyvolvo tattoo pain



*               *               *

7. “I know you think you want one, but you probably haven’t thought this through all the way.”

No, I hadn’t.

theuglyvolvo tattoo 4eva

*               *               *

8. “You’re excited about it right now, but how are you going to feel about it in 15 years?”

You’re right, I’m totally going to want to strangle it in fifteen years.

theuglyvolvo tattoo currentdating


*               *               *

9. “Is it that you really want one?  Because maybe you want one because it seems like everyone else has one.”

Judging from my Facebook newsfeed, yes, everyone does have one.  Maybe part of why I wanted one was actually wanting one, and part of why I wanted one was peer pressure.

Everyone in the world has that barbed wire tattoo, right?  Or DNA double helix?  Whichever this is.

Everyone in the world has that barbed wire tattoo, right?   Or depending on who’s around, you could pretend it’s a DNA double helix.

*               *               *

10. “You think you’re going to seem so cool walking around with one, but really most of the time you’re going to look sort of ridiculous.” 

Sorry, I couldn’t hear that last one.  I was screaming the phrase, “DON’T EAT THOSE BUGS,” while pulling pieces of sweet potato and banana out of my hair and coat pockets.

 Please someone save me from my own decisions.

Please help.

*               *               *

If you enjoyed this piece, follow the blog by signing up in the sidebar.  Or you can follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

If you want to read other blogs of mine, here is one I wrote on What I Do All Day When I Am Home With The Baby.  

If you’re my mom and the whole time while reading this you kept thinking, “Yes, sweetie, but it’s DIFFERENT,” don’t worry, I am aware that getting a tattoo and having a baby are different.  Also, let me know if you and dad can babysit the “tattoo” sometime soon.  Also, I love you!

If you like to buy or read books, I have an essay in this one that just came out a week or so ago.  I Just Want to Be Alone.  I feel like it was a pretty good essay.  

be alone

For anyone who’s like, “I totally want to buy this book but I don’t want to support the adorable local bookstore to which you linked.  Give me the link so I can buy it off Amazon,” here is a link so you can buy it off Amazon.

869 Responses to “Why You Should Never, Ever, Ever Get A Tattoo (but Having a Baby is Fine)”

  1. Dylan

    Wow this article just proves that the internet is for the insane still! EAT ****** YOU CRAZY &$(&@*(&^$(^@&(^$#*@*() !!!!! I will have babies and tattoos just try and stop me!

    • b

      That was a stupid article and some points untrue if not wrong. She is literally selling herself and all her “friends” seem to be posting positively. That really is a stupid blog/post/article. Maybe it was written in 1950? That sounds about right.

      • s

        I think that perhaps you missed the point…

      • Chloe

        Yeah well that was a stupid comment. Did you even read the beginning paragraph? You should read the entire thing before posting something negative about it. Maybe you should think about that next time you decide to comment on an article.

  2. Aestival Blue

    Haha great post. Well I have had both. Two children and I have nice tattoos, six of them before I had the girls.

    1 true tattoos aren’t forever, not these days anyway.
    2 yes I have been judged. I used to care but I don’t anymore.
    3 true they can limit, but you can cover them. There are great products out there that work well.
    4 they will ruin your body, not as much as having kids will. My boobs have never been the same since 😉
    5. yes it can be expensive. But I save up if I really want one.
    6. I always make sure I do my homework first and make sure the tattooist has a good rep, pain for sure depends on where on the body and it’s still not as painful as having a baby.
    7. I always book months in advance. It I change my mind by the time the appointment comes round I don’t got through with it.
    8 excitement can fade. Had my first at 22 and only just had one reworked/covered. It had some chinese writing and got fed up with people asking what does that mean while prodding me at the same time *sigh*
    9. I got them because I wanted them, not because someone else had one.
    10. Walking round thinking I am looking cool, hardly haha. As for ridiculous I think that depends on your chose of tattoo.

  3. sammysaba

    I’ve always been hesitant of getting a tattoo pretty much for all those reasons and I currently have a 9 month old. I just shared this blog with my co-workers and they loved it just as much as I did.

  4. Kristen

    Love this post. Am now wondering if you are actually my sister and my mom just never told me about you, because your mom SOUNDS EXACTLY LIKE MY MOM.

  5. msmurfe

    This is why is have 16 tattoos and one six year old… Still on the fence about more children, but definitely plan on more tattoos!! 😉

  6. andiesuedonnelly

    I read this and heard my moms voice with earch of the 10 reasons and I also heard 18 yr old me telling her how she was so wrong. Now I am a mom giving my girls similar reasons and failing .
    Thanks for sharing

  7. Megan L.

    Still laughing! I feel like I should get a tattoo now because I can tell my mom that it isn’t as extreme a life changing decision as getting pregnant and having my children was 😉 And my children are awesome…but my tattoo would be too!

  8. Elza

    This is really, really cool. I enjoy your sense of humor.

    I feel as though the above two compliments contained within this comment are rather impersonal and almost spam-like. I might have scaled back my enthusiasm a bit too much, in order to not appear as a friendly predator with a virtual van and a handful of candy.
    What I’m trying to say is that this blog is quite nice and truly well done.

    Also, no kids, no tattoos – wondering whether I should be working towards one and/or the other, which is how I found my way here, when googling for some damn answers in life – needless to say, this post actually helped.

  9. Christian

    Would you explain ” Ugly Volvo ” ? Hope it was another essay – I would love to read it!.

  10. nestingnewlywed

    Absolute gold. The next time well-meaning people ask when I’m going to have children, I think I might tell them I’m getting a tattoo instead …

    • Newly Wed, Not Dead

      As a fellow newlywed, I totally agree! I mean people need to keep their opinions to themselves about babies AND tattoos. It’s my body, right??

    • Amanda

      This is my favourite comment ever. I’m 27, unmarried, and don’t have children. I HATE it when people ask when I’m going to have children. I usually just say, “Probably never,” but now I think I’ll add the “I’m just going to get a tattoo instead” part to it, too.

  11. randomguy27

    Reblogged this on randomworlsonme and commented:
    bem, sempre há cenas que não conseguimos evitar e rimos com elas. esta faz parte

  12. gorillamums

    Reblogged this on gorillamums and commented:
    I was considering a controversial post about whether or not to get my daughter’s and mum’s initials tattooed about my person when I found this…

  13. bericm

    When I was much younger, I wanted to get a tattoo so expensive and racy, I shake my head even now. Dodged that bullet. Nowadays I am considering – and have been for years, actually – a tattoo of a band’s logo. I’ve been a fan since ’86 so surely that bit of longevity should keep me from embarrassment for a few more decades. Right? And besides, who would look at it say: “Einstürzende Neubauten?? Really?? They’re so last millennium!”.

    But enough about me. Great post, big laugh!

  14. Rob Macdermid

    My step-daughter asked me a few years back what my tattoo is. (It’s on my shoulder blade by the way). “It’s Max from ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ ” I replied. After a pause she said “No it isn’t.”
    “Well, yes it is.” I sighed “It’s just rather blurry now.” Consequently, she got out a post-it note, scribbled something on it and stuck it on my back. When I pulled it off and read it, it said “Where The Blurry Things Are” with an arrow pointing to where my tattoo is.

  15. sandipkamble

    Mom’s are same everywhere.
    tattoos aren’t bad!! I have tattoos and never find it difficult to find a new jobs and in fact i switched 8 jobs in 10 years, funny thing is that my senior have huge visible tattoo on his neck. and we work in reputed IT company.
    People will judge you all the time. No matter if you are tattooed or not. I have seen doctors, fire fighters and soldiers with tattoos and they do look cool and impressive.
    I remember one line about tattoos which says:
    The only difference between tattooed people and non – tattooed people is,
    Tattooed people don’t care if you are not tattooed.

  16. kristenmoux

    I had the same words of caution from my mother about a tattoo! Hilarious!!! And after having two children…. even MORE HILARIOUS!

  17. M. Wolf

    Awesome. Simply awesome.

    However, one also must remember that with a tattoo, you don’t have another parent to blame when your tattoo doesn’t come out. You can’t look at somebody else and say “those are YOUR genes, no tattoo in MY family ever came out like that…”

  18. Miki

    I’m sixteen and trying to convince my mother that getting a tattoo for her birthday isn’t the way to go 😐

  19. Miki

    Did I mention that she’s having me design it too? *facepalm* why mother? why?

  20. johannaknyn

    Hilarious. I’ve got a tattoo. If I don’t look after it, the worst that will happen is it’ll fade…at least some service won’t be called and that part of my body will be removed from me due to negligence…or worse…it’d die.

  21. thequilver

    I enjoyed this post because of its honesty. I believe that people sometimes get too wrapped up in being against one concept and completely for another that they don’t take the time to realize that both ideas have striking similarities.

  22. ghostsofweddedpast

    Good article, I really dig on the wit in this. Thanks for pointing out how a kid can be more risky and expensive as a choice to have than a tattoo. Both are permanent!

  23. ranganbiswas

    This piece of article is very entertaining but also very biased. I have three tattoos and I am a teacher. I may have been judged but everytime I look at my tattoos I thank myself for getting them done.

  24. Monica M

    I’m an eighteen year old female and I only have one tattoo (so far) and it is a tiny, blue morpho butterfly on my left wrist. BUT, my tattoo actually means something to me. I am planning to have more but I’m not sure of what to get and frankly that’s how I found your article. Now my mom is exactly like yours, and she was born in the late seventies! You would think my mom would be more open-minded from the era she was born in, though she has had her fair share in body modifications, considering the fact that she has had a few piercings but she has never had any tattoos. When I got my first tattoo, I tried to convince my mother into getting one with me but she is afraid of the pain and I tried to explain it wasn’t that bad but she still didn’t want to, and I RESPECT that. She is afraid of needles jamming ink into her skin about 1,000 times a minute. Then again, everyone’s pain tolerance is different.

    In speaking of giving birth that is one thing I’ve never experienced but want to so bad because I think that is the most precious thing that a woman could do. So far, I haven’t found the right man to settle down and have kids with but when I do find my Mr. Right, having a child will be on the top of my list 🙂 Though I’m only eighteen and I’m still a kid and have my whole life ahead of me, but regardless of my age, I still hope that I will get to become a mother someday.
    In fact, when I have my first child, I want to have their tiny foot prints tattooed on my feet. That’s the second thing on my list.

    You have an interesting article by the way.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Basic HTML is allowed. Your email address will not be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS

%d bloggers like this: