Name: Accidentally Shallow
Subject: Possibly Shallow???
Message: So.... I met a girl, and she's really cool. Similar interests, pretty, she obviously likes me. Problem is: she's got a lot of tattoos (7) and some irreversible ear piercings, plus she intends on getting more. I know its 2014 and these things aren't taboo anymore, but I'm from a pretty conservative family and I'm just not sure how I feel about this... what concerns me is I'm not sure if it bothers me, as much as it bothers me what other people might say. Does this make me shallow if I don't pursue this due to the fact that I don't like tattoos?"
Dear Accidentally Shallow,
I want to preface this by letting you know I am a pierced and tattooed lady. So this hits a little close to home. It’s easiest to do this by deconstructing everything you’ve said, so let’s start:
So.... I met a girl, and she's really cool. Similar interests, pretty, she obviously likes me.
That’s great! I know how hard it is to meet people who like the same shit you like and also like YOU and also aren’t already taken or crazy. So congrats!
Problem is: she's got a lot of tattoos (7) and some irreversible ear piercings, plus she intends on getting more.
Okay, starting this sentence with “problem is” isn’t ideal. Why exactly is this problem? Are they offensive tattoos? And what kind of “irreversible piercings?” If she has her ears gauged I can get why that might freak you out a bit. But that STILL isn’t really irreversible. Also, you’re describing her physical appearing only with the “negatives.” Are you attracted to this girl? Because you called her “pretty cool” and “pretty” and then listed the things about her appearance that seem to make you uneasy. Which in turn makes me wonder how you really feel.
I know its 2014 and these things aren't taboo anymore, but I'm from a pretty conservative family and I'm just not sure how I feel about this... what concerns me is I'm not sure if it bothers me, as much as it bothers me what other people might say.
I respect that you may have been raised to not think highly of body modifications. My grandmother is convinced that all women with tattoos are low-life trash, no exceptions (the woman hasn’t seen me in shorts or a tank top since I was in high school). But. If you are really into this girl, you shouldn’t be wondering how you feel. And no matter WHAT, you shouldn’t be worrying what other people will think.
Let me be super honest right now: I would never ever date someone who would worry about what other people would think of me. It’s incredibly insulting. I want to be loved and respected for who I am, tattoos and piercings included. I don’t care if who I’m with has tattoos. It’s not a necessity to me. Tattoos mean different things to different people, but most of them are personal and important. I got most of mine during or after times of turmoil. They are reminders of what is it important to me. Anyone who doesn’t respect that isn’t worth my time.
Does this make me shallow if I don't pursue this due to the fact that I don't like tattoos?
This doesn’t make you shallow, it makes you honest. I am all for honesty, all of the time. I’ve had guys tell me I shouldn’t have short hair and that long hair is way more attractive to them. Cool, thanks for the honesty, and now just know that I will not be dating you. We can be friends and hang, but you are not going to be a significant other to me. And I appreciate that honesty.
Be honest with yourself and this girl. And you will find an equally awesome girl with no tattoos and similar interests to you who really likes you and instead of saying “she’s really cool” you’ll be saying “THIS GIRL IS AMAZING AND I WANT TO BE WITH HER FOREVER AND SHE’S THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PERSON I’VE EVER MET!”
We all deserve that. Including this tattooed girl. And good luck. I hope you’re able to relax slightly and not worry about what other people are thinking. Because that shit is exhausting and it will wear you down and make you into a person who you do not want to be. -T
REWIND to this...
Frank Turner - Tattoos: I’m not going to lie, these days I spend a lot of time listening to Frank Turner and dancing/crying. The man can seriously sing. This song is off Tape Deck Heart, an album I’d recommend to anyone I know. Turner is from England and is a folk/punk singer-songwriter. I thought the song “Tattoos” was appropriate, because it might help you, as a non-tattooed gentleman, understand how important tattoos are to some people and why they get them. Most peoples’ tattoos are meaningful to them, and why read my ramblings when you can have a handsome man sing and sum it up in just a few minutes?
“We've got hearts for the lovers
And playing cards for the gamblers
Black flag bars for the punks
And sailing ships for the ramblers
We got skulls for the living”