The Art of Pain

I have never been interested in getting a tattoo. For some reason, the idea of sitting still for a long period of time while being injected ink with hundreds of tiny needles punctuating my skin is not appealing. There is no doubt however that tattoos are quite popular, I can guarantee that everyone knows at least someone with a tattoo. Kimmel argues that it is estimated that 15% of all Americans have at least a tattoo, I believe that this number has greatly increased during the past years.

Tattoos are also not a “new” trend, according to an article from the San Diego Magazine “The earliest tattoos found are more than 5,000 years old. In 1991, a 5,300-year-old mummy was discovered in the Alps. He had more than 50 tattoos on various parts of his body, and he is the oldest human ever found to have tattoos”.

But, why do people get tattoos?

During my Sociology class there was a small discussion on why people get tattoos. it seems that the majority of people with tattoos said because it was a way of expressing themselves, and not for others to see. I think there is more than just “a way to express myself”, and it seems that some professionals also agree. An article from University of Victoria explains that:

Peer pressure, media influence, and personal expression are some of the common reasons for wearing tattoos today.
The desire to be part of a group, to be accepted by one’s friends or peers, can have a great influence on what a person does.

This makes me wonder, if the closest friends of a person with a tattoo have tattoos themselves?   I believe that the reason “a way of expressing myself” is just a cover-up. I think the real reasons are peer-pressure, media and impulsiveness. After all, there was many ways not involving pain to express ourselves such as paining, drawing, singing, dancing just to main a few.

But, let’s say getting a tattoo is way of expressing ourselves. Then why, almost 1/3 of all people getting a tattoo regret it? 


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