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Initiation and post-tattoo anxiety


an_inhaler
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  • 6 months later...

Just a quick update, since the tattoo is now a year old:
I'm not head over heels in love with it, but I am used to it and it does not bother almost at all. Seeing that my body still functions is reassuring, as are shorts and dresses that cover it. I almost would have forgotten the one year anniversary of the shitshow this has been had I not randomly thought about my other tattoos while working out. So I guess it's all good, I learned a lot and I hope everyone can come to not mind their tattoos that they regretted 🙂

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I will also give you guys an update on how things have been going on since that first post I wrote here 4 years ago. I was a huge help for me to get support here and maybe it'll be an inspiration for someone else to see how all the anxiety fades away with time.

I LOVE my tattoo. I've got two more since then: one pretty big one on my chest (beautiful blooming flowers) and a smaller one on my back. None of them is perfect, and I love them all completely.

I've never had any problems at work (in the university) and if anything it only makes my students more interested in me and my courses :). I've never received any negative comments about my tattoos anywhere actually, and they just help me to discover and embrace my true self, which has already brought me to the most beautiful places in life.

I am much more fulfilled with my life now than I was 4 years ago and the first tattoo was one of the first steps out of the life that I didn't enjoy. 

Now I just want to get more of course.

 

Hugs xx

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On 1/7/2021 at 3:30 AM, an_inhaler said:

I will also give you guys an update on how things have been going on since that first post I wrote here 4 years ago. I was a huge help for me to get support here and maybe it'll be an inspiration for someone else to see how all the anxiety fades away with time.

I LOVE my tattoo. I've got two more since then: one pretty big one on my chest (beautiful blooming flowers) and a smaller one on my back. None of them is perfect, and I love them all completely.

I've never had any problems at work (in the university) and if anything it only makes my students more interested in me and my courses :). I've never received any negative comments about my tattoos anywhere actually, and they just help me to discover and embrace my true self, which has already brought me to the most beautiful places in life.

I am much more fulfilled with my life now than I was 4 years ago and the first tattoo was one of the first steps out of the life that I didn't enjoy. 

Now I just want to get more of course.

 

Hugs xx

That's cool. I'm so pleased for you.

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  • 11 months later...

Brand new here. I have 5 HUGE colored tattoos but all in places where I can hide them (I live somewhere cold so they are covered up a lot). I decided to make the jump to something really visible for the first time. I was tired of having all this ink and not sharing it with the world. I saw other people’s visible tattoos with envy. The spot that intrigued me the most was the hand. I’m not attached to how my hands look, I play instruments, and love how they look on others. I wore a stencil of the tattoo for a whole day and loved the feeling. I worked with the artist on all kinds of little details and she was so patient and honest about what lasts, what doesn’t, best position for my size, the fading risk. In short, a good, educated experience. But it was kind of fast (she had time at an otherwise extremely busy and booked out shop) so I jumped on it. I didn’t ruminate on the decision. I just dove in.

I’m so glad I found this thread because I don’t feel alone. I woke up with huge anxiety. Crying bouts, feelings of dread, Googling laser removal, the works. I’m 5 days out. My husband thinks the tattoo is cool. I think it’s cool. Hell, even my MOM kind of likes it. I work from home. So it’s not an employment barrier (yet?). But I keep getting waves of being excited about it and then wanting to wash it all away. I keep comforting myself with thoughts of knowing I can just laser remove it and that hand tattoos fade a lot naturally. Is this normal? Will this weird feeling pass? This thread is a comfort but I am seeking more comfort (and also therapy, as I think maybe this is about something else). I’m not new to tattoos. But I’ve never felt this before. 

Here is a photo. It’s still healing so ignore the crunchiness look of it. It’s quite clean in person.

B1027A60-6F09-4565-A08A-F9101C8E66CC.jpeg

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On 12/14/2021 at 1:43 AM, 2pnt0 said:

Brand new here. I have 5 HUGE colored tattoos but all in places where I can hide them (I live somewhere cold so they are covered up a lot). I decided to make the jump to something really visible for the first time. I was tired of having all this ink and not sharing it with the world. I saw other people’s visible tattoos with envy. The spot that intrigued me the most was the hand. I’m not attached to how my hands look, I play instruments, and love how they look on others. I wore a stencil of the tattoo for a whole day and loved the feeling. I worked with the artist on all kinds of little details and she was so patient and honest about what lasts, what doesn’t, best position for my size, the fading risk. In short, a good, educated experience. But it was kind of fast (she had time at an otherwise extremely busy and booked out shop) so I jumped on it. I didn’t ruminate on the decision. I just dove in.

I’m so glad I found this thread because I don’t feel alone. I woke up with huge anxiety. Crying bouts, feelings of dread, Googling laser removal, the works. I’m 5 days out. My husband thinks the tattoo is cool. I think it’s cool. Hell, even my MOM kind of likes it. I work from home. So it’s not an employment barrier (yet?). But I keep getting waves of being excited about it and then wanting to wash it all away. I keep comforting myself with thoughts of knowing I can just laser remove it and that hand tattoos fade a lot naturally. Is this normal? Will this weird feeling pass? This thread is a comfort but I am seeking more comfort (and also therapy, as I think maybe this is about something else). I’m not new to tattoos. But I’ve never felt this before. 

Here is a photo. It’s still healing so ignore the crunchiness look of it. It’s quite clean in person.

B1027A60-6F09-4565-A08A-F9101C8E66CC.jpeg

The tattoo is awesome and it looks very beautiful on your hand! I'm sure you'll be able to fully appreciate it as well once your anxiety is gone. This weird feeling will definitely pass. 

As about your anxiety being about something else: I of course can't tell if there are any specific underlying psychological issues for you, but as I myself have learned from therapy and self-reflection, our brains are in general not so good with changes. We are programmed to stay as safe as possible in our comfort zone, and any change requires adaptation. Some people can deal with changes more easily, and for some they trigger huge waves of anxiety (even if we that change is something that we really wanted, it is still new and unknown and therefore outside of our comfort zone). With such a visible tattoo I can suggest you have to face this change constantly and you get triggered into anxiety a lot. So just give your mind some time to adjust and in the meantime remind yourself that it indeed will pass.

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@an_inhalerThank you so much! I think you're absolutely right. This time last year, we got our first kitten. And I remember having crying jags while he would sit on my chest and be incredibly adorable – but I was full of dread and anxiety for having to take care of this brand new helpless creature. Now I can't imagine life without him (he's actually the subject of one of my very big tattoos). So I think you're very right about the brain confusing "change" with "danger".

And the meaning of my tattoo is about time being short, making the most of your time, and the 3 stars represent certain people in my life. So, yeah, it's a lot of FEELS and very VISIBLE to boot. I'm going to use this thread as a resource to keep you all updated, since I have SO appreciated you all leaving your own updates over time.

Also, your tattoo is so pretty and the placement is nice and unique. As is @Theralex's. I don't know much about Harry Potter (one person actually thought my hand tattoo was a Harry Potter one at first cos I guess there is some kind of significant hourglass in that story?) but I was immediately like "Wow, that is so dope – I want one like that but designed for my hometown". It's funny how, like with all things about ourselves, what we're critical of other people are in awe of.

Much love to everyone here!

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On 12/13/2021 at 7:43 PM, 2pnt0 said:

Brand new here. I have 5 HUGE colored tattoos but all in places where I can hide them (I live somewhere cold so they are covered up a lot). I decided to make the jump to something really visible for the first time. I was tired of having all this ink and not sharing it with the world. I saw other people’s visible tattoos with envy. The spot that intrigued me the most was the hand. I’m not attached to how my hands look, I play instruments, and love how they look on others. I wore a stencil of the tattoo for a whole day and loved the feeling. I worked with the artist on all kinds of little details and she was so patient and honest about what lasts, what doesn’t, best position for my size, the fading risk. In short, a good, educated experience. But it was kind of fast (she had time at an otherwise extremely busy and booked out shop) so I jumped on it. I didn’t ruminate on the decision. I just dove in.

I’m so glad I found this thread because I don’t feel alone. I woke up with huge anxiety. Crying bouts, feelings of dread, Googling laser removal, the works. I’m 5 days out. My husband thinks the tattoo is cool. I think it’s cool. Hell, even my MOM kind of likes it. I work from home. So it’s not an employment barrier (yet?). But I keep getting waves of being excited about it and then wanting to wash it all away. I keep comforting myself with thoughts of knowing I can just laser remove it and that hand tattoos fade a lot naturally. Is this normal? Will this weird feeling pass? This thread is a comfort but I am seeking more comfort (and also therapy, as I think maybe this is about something else). I’m not new to tattoos. But I’ve never felt this before. 

Here is a photo. It’s still healing so ignore the crunchiness look of it. It’s quite clean in person.

B1027A60-6F09-4565-A08A-F9101C8E66CC.jpeg

I agree with @oboogie - I wouldn't get any more tattoos. You know laser removal is really laser fading right?  The tattoo is never really gone. And I'm not sure where you get the idea that hand tattoos fade. Certainly not more than any other tattoos. I'm not pointing that out to scare you, but you need to be realistic about what your options are. You've got the tattoo; have a Xanax, or a drink (or three), or a toke, and relax.

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@2pnt0 the tattoo is nice to be honest, and I'm relatively sure you will appreciate it someday... for the moment just try to be calm and to avoid falling into a spiral of panic and regrets. Having a glass of wine or listening to some relaxing music may be good ideas to chill out (just please don't take a Xanax if it's not really necessary: USA citizens tend to swallow those pills as if they were candies, but benzodiazepines - listen to a person who knows it personally - are not something that you can mess with, if nothing else because they cause addiction), and probably mindfulness/meditation techniques and sometimes emotional unloading (e.g. expressing your fears to someone you trust) would be even better.

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On 12/16/2021 at 3:21 AM, warrug25 said:

@2pnt0 the tattoo is nice to be honest, and I'm relatively sure you will appreciate it someday... for the moment just try to be calm and to avoid falling into a spiral of panic and regrets. Having a glass of wine or listening to some relaxing music may be good ideas to chill out (just please don't take a Xanax if it's not really necessary: USA citizens tend to swallow those pills as if they were candies, but benzodiazepines - listen to a person who knows it personally - are not something that you can mess with, if nothing else because they cause addiction), and probably mindfulness/meditation techniques and sometimes emotional unloading (e.g. expressing your fears to someone you trust) would be even better.

This is the weirdest thing I've ever read. You know all US citizens, do you? What a massive crock of shit. 🙄

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You can find what I said about benzodiazepines in the sheet that comes with every benzodiazepines pack (I can take a photo of the ones I have if you want... but it's not in english, so you would probably have to translate).

As for what I wrote about USA citizens swallowing benzodiazepines like candies:

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30554562/
https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhsr/nhsr137-508.pdf
https://www.cureus.com/articles/60414-benzodiazepine-misuse-an-epidemic-within-a-pandemic
 

If needed I can explain what these papers report.

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On 12/16/2021 at 3:49 PM, warrug25 said:

Please, if there is something you want to say then say it: what's the point of writing "Uh-huh" and laughing emoticons?

 

(I think all of this is going really off-topic, by the way...)

The point of writing it is that you are making a vague and silly generalization about a nation of nearly 330 million people. It's absurd.

Anyway, you're on my ignore list now, so off you go. 

Again, bless your heart. 😂

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I will not even try to explain how statistics works, nor will I point out again that what I wrote is based on peer-reviewed scientific papers... what I care about is that @2pnt0 got my recommendation about good activities to chill out (and possibly also the one about the fact that benzodiazepines are not something people should take carefreely...).

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Cmon people, this thread was aimed to help people going through some tattoo-related anxiety, and your personal opinions or statistics about the use of tranquillisers are completely irrelevant here and not helpful at all.

I don't agree with someone saying later don't get any more tattoos. I had terrible anxiety after my first tattoo and less severe ones about my next two, and I am still happy I've got them and I will definitely get more. Anxiety is not rational, and researching your options about laser removal doesn't come from the real wish to get rid of a tattoo but is just a way to come down your mind and see that there are safety nets available in the worst case scenario. 

Some people don't have this tattoo-related anxiety at all, but in my opinion it is strongly correlated with your general mental state and how prone to anxiety your are. For me, anxiety is my mind's natural response to changes, and I am very happy I am strong enough to make those changes despite that.

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On 12/16/2021 at 4:54 PM, an_inhaler said:

Cmon people, this thread was aimed to help people going through some tattoo-related anxiety, and your personal opinions or statistics about the use of tranquillisers are completely irrelevant here and not helpful at all.

I don't agree with someone saying later don't get any more tattoos. I had terrible anxiety after my first tattoo and less severe ones about my next two, and I am still happy I've got them and I will definitely get more. Anxiety is not rational, and researching your options about laser removal doesn't come from the real wish to get rid of a tattoo but is just a way to come down your mind and see that there are safety nets available in the worst case scenario. 

Some people don't have this tattoo-related anxiety at all, but in my opinion it is strongly correlated with your general mental state and how prone to anxiety your are. For me, anxiety is my mind's natural response to changes, and I am very happy I am strong enough to make those changes despite that.

I have anxiety, so you don’t need to explain anything. Also, you don’t get to decide what people say here. You see, there are these things called opinions. We all have them. So there’s that. 

Anyway, people with major anxiety about their appearance and what other people think should NOT get tattoos. You aren’t the voice of authority on this, especially with your three tattoos and no knowledge of this person’s mental health. And to get a hand tattoo when you have acres of open skin is absurd in my opinion, ESPECIALLY if you have that level and kind of anxiety. So yeah. You are welcome to day what you think. And so are we. Have a good evening.

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