Won't You Regret It? 17 Questions People With Tattoos Hate Being Asked

by Sheena Sharma

I was 20 and in a junior year slump. College, with its binge drinking and after-hours shenanigans, was still mostly fun. But it had also grown boring.

College is a period of intense self-reflection and self-realization. I found myself growing further away from the things I used to love and inching closer to new passions.

Naturally, I wanted to memorialize the things that finally made me feel comfortable to be around myself.

When you’re young, it’s easy to fall in love -- with everything. But the things we love are often difficult to grasp.

The most important things in life elude physical contact. We can feel them only in our hearts. Maybe it's an explosive emotion.

It's a fleeting moment in time. It's happiness that we want to remember forever or a pain that broke us down and forced us to make ourselves whole again.

Sometimes, we want to honor the things we're quick to forget. To truly understand something's significance, you may need to continually remind yourself that the lesson you learned was important.

I suffered a life-altering heartbreak. I cried for months, but what got me through it was music -- listening to music, laughing with music, writing music. And so, on a spontaneous Sunday, I took a trip to the local tattoo parlor and got a treble clef inked onto my waist.

I'd given myself a slight nudge on the shoulder (or waist). It was a reminder to stay grounded and true to myself. And though the scribble is an artistic representation of the experiences I had with other people, it wasn't drawn in remembrance of them. It was drawn for me and me alone.

It was a small homage to the things closest to my heart -- what I too often take for granted.

The pen was like a beer bottle breaking on my skin, but everything about it felt right.

“I’ll see you when you come back for your second one!” my artist joked. I laughed in his face.

“There won’t be a second one,” I said.

A year later, I found myself back at the tattoo shop, ready for my second.

Tattoos -- and the people who have them -- get bad raps, and I’m not exactly sure why. Tattoos, like clothing, are forms of self-expression.

A tattoo is more than a work of art; it’s a battle wound. It’s a short-term fix and a long-term commitment. It demonstrates loyalty.

But along with the tattoo came a slew of questions from friends and family. I guess I should have expected these. But I grew f*cking tired of them.

They tend to turn into judgments, and the judgements get really old, really fast. #CanILive?

1. Did it hurt?

No, it felt like petting a pony. Jeez, what kind of question IS that?

2. Were you going through a rough time?

I was, but I’m not ashamed of it. Rough patches always end up making me stronger.

3. Are you still going through a rough time? Do you need to talk to someone?

I like talking to people, but I don’t think that I like talking to you.

4. I don’t think I like it, but do you?

You really think I give a sh*t that you don’t like it? And, for your information, I actually love it.

5. Don’t you think you’ll regret it one day?

When I’m saggy, old and have great-grandchildren, I’ll look at my tattoos and remember my fruitful youth.

6. How many do you have?

I have too many to show you and not enough time or patience.

7. Do you know if you're going to get any more?

I don’t know yet. Do you know if you’ll ever shut up?

8. Didn’t your parents want to murder you?

Sure, they did, but at least they love me. That’s all that matters, isn’t it?

9. Can you translate it for me?

I could, but I’d rather keep walking in the opposite direction.

10. Don’t you think you’re averting the attention from your beautiful face?

Um, I didn’t really think that was an issue. But thanks for calling me beautiful, I guess.

11. Why did you get it there of all places?

Well, I thought about getting it on my forehead, but I didn’t think that’d be outrageous enough.

12. Are you also going to get a million piercings?

If I do, will it bug you even more? In that case, yep!

13. Do you think I could pull that off?

Are you literally thinking of copying and pasting my exact tattoo? Hm, I can’t decide if I’m angry or flattered.

14. Did you get that rage out of your system?

I did, but I can feel it building up again. Wonder why.

15. Couldn’t you just have done with a temporary tattoo?

My tattoo is my legacy, and its permanence is the reason I love it.

16. How will you hide that thing at job interviews?

I haven’t figured that out yet. What I do know is any company that would shame me for what I look like rather than celebrate me for what I have to give isn’t one worth working for.

17. Aren’t you afraid no one will take you seriously ever again?

I’m not worried, because I try not to take life too seriously. Hey, if we took life too seriously, it would be no fun.