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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Bodies » I Want a Tattoo But Parents Are Against Them

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Author Topic: I Want a Tattoo But Parents Are Against Them
Eleanor R
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Hi!
I'm 19 years old and I want a tattoo on my back.
My parents have always been very strict and basically control my life.
I mean I am 19 right?
I don't know, I've always been afraid of standing up to my mom.
She still controls my life and I almost never go out with friends.
I've only hung out with friends about 4 times through all my life.
I have also since I was about 12 wanted my ear pierced at the top.
Just on one ear.
But again my mom doesn't approve.
What do you suggest I do?

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Well, sounds like the issue here is bigger than ink or piercings, but about transitioning into adulthood.

Ultimately, in our teens, what's supposed to be happening is that we're gradually separating more from our parents in the respect of being a dependent child to becoming our own person, an adult person.

It sounds like you are saying that process either still hasn't happened at all, or is very stalled out for you. How about starting to work to get it going, like by looking into moving out on your own, socializing more, etc?

Not saying ink isn't okay -- it'd be very silly for me, of all people to say that -- but it's also expensive, and if you feel unable to have your own life or separate from your parent at all, that money might be better spent on something that helps you do that more.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Eleanor R
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I'm just afraid of confronting my parents about letting me be more independent.
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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Okay, then how about we talk about some baby steps? Some ways you can forge out more on your own, transition into your own life, that aren't likely to be HUGE conflicts.

Who knows, maybe a tattoo is one of them, maybe that is something you really want to do for yourself, and once done, it won't blow up at you.

But if not, what can we think of that is less of a big deal? How about going out socially more often gradually, for instance?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Eleanor R
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I was thinking about the tattoo and I want a small one on my wrist instead. Just a small bird but that might freak them out so yes maybe going out with friends more might work better.
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Karybu
Scarleteen Volunteer
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I think, as Heather said, that in this situation baby steps are probably the way to go. If your parents have always had such strict control over your life, something like a tattoo is really a big step - and, in my experience at least, it doesn't matter where the tat is or what it's of, it's just the fact that it's there at all that can create problems. (Plus, any sort of permanent change to your body like that is something that deserves a lot of consideration, parental issues aside.)

Going out a bit more, socializing a bit more, sounds like it would probably be a great first step for you. In your first post, you say that your mom is very hard to stand up to - if you want, we can talk about that a bit and maybe brainstorm some ways you could open up a conversation about this with her.

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"Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing." -Arundhati Roy

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Eleanor R
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Yes my mom is the strictest of my parents. She's the only that "rules" the house you could say. She had a rough childhood I suppose. My grandpa was always very strict on her and my uncles and now everything my grandpa did to her she is passing to me I guess.
She is always yelling at me and my siblings, she can't take a joke, she's just very strict.

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cooldude20
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you should probably ask your parents what their concerns are about you getting a tattoo this can be very very concerning to parents because basically they are probably worried about wheather the needles have been sterilized and also you should let them know that you can be independednt but you have to prove that first. Hope this helps
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