Why do People get Tattoos if they Hurt

Tattoos – It’s one of the few clubs that anyone can join, as long as they can withstand the often painful initiation.

When it comes to tattoos and pain, there are likely just as many wannabes who abandon the idea as there are those purists who are attracted to the process for the very same reason. So why do people get tattoos if they know it will cause them, at the least, some discomfort? To answer this question, all one needs to do is to recognize the tribal yearnings of the human animal.

For thousands of years, man has used various ways to attract the opposite sex, advertise hierarchal rank, and brand himself as a distinctive member of a particular clan – 21st century men and women are no exception. For most modern people – beads, feathers, body paint and unusual hair adornments worn by primitive man have merely been replaced by expensive shoes, flashy jewelry and designer fragrances. The desire remains the same – to set oneself apart from the crowd by being noticed. Permanently tattooing the body with colorful images is just another way we identify ourselves as a proud, confident member of the human race. Almost anyone can purchase new clothing or hair products – but getting a tattoo is a definitive personal statement that comes with a cost – but one that will be with you forever.

They say that there is a fine line between pain and pleasure and there is a real sensual, almost primeval feeling that comes over you when you get a tattoo. Perhaps that is why they are so addictive. The artist prepares his tools while you watch transfixed at the ink and the needle – anticipating the first buzz, the first touch, the first sensation of pain. Some call it an erotic experience and I don’t doubt they are wrong.

Another important element of the tattoo process is trust. You may have come to know the artist personally or his/her reputation is recognized in your community as being reliable – but when it all comes down to the moment of that first needle penetration – all you have is trust that they will take care of you in all aspects of the transformation. Let’s face it, you are in a vulnerable position and a somewhat scared at the whole prospect – I think I just described everyone’s first sexual encounter. Perhaps there is a subconscious correlation between the two. That’s pretty deep and a thought that each person needs to examine on their own.

Getting a tattoo is one of those life passages that makes you feel different after it has been completed. You are proud, exhilarated and ready to take on the world. You have made it to the other side. It becomes all too evident that the question “Why do people get tattoos if they hurt?” has been replaced with the statement “People get tattoos because they hurt.” Welcome to the club.