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Tattoos I Hope My Daughter Never Gets

Photograph by Twenty20

I'm standing in line at Starbucks when a woman, probably in her early 20s, in front of me bends down to pick up a dropped coin. As she bends down her T-shirt moves up revealing a good portion of her lower back and a tattoo in the shape of a bullseye with an arrow that points down.

I can't help but stare for a few seconds before she gets up. In my head my thought bubble is screaming, "OMG! She is somebody's daughter!" I have to assume that even the most liberal of parents would be a horrified to have their daughter ink up her body with such an overtly suggestive sexual tattoo.

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It's all I can do not to say something to her. I feel like a total fuddy-duddy, but I look at her and see my own daughter. My daughter is 4, but at one point this woman was 4. Her parents probably never imagined she'd have a nasty tattoo permanently placed on her body.

I think tattoos can be meaningful and beautiful works of art, but I can't imagine what I'd do if my daughter got a ridiculous or nasty tattoo on her body someday. Tattoos, after all, are one of the few things in life that are permanent.

Here are some tattoos I'm hoping my daughter never gets.

1. A Target or Bullseye Tattoo

Hopefully, I've taught her to have more pride in her body than that.

Even if she's grown up, I'll be horrified if my daughter gets a tattoo making any part of her body a bullseye or target. Hopefully, I've taught her to have more pride in her body than that.

2. Justin Bieber or Any Other Teen Idol

I get the power of a pop star. When I was a kid I was obsessed with Andy Gibb because of all the chest hair shown on the "Flowing Rivers" record jacket. But I'm sure glad I didn't ink Andy anywhere on my body because a year later I was over him. Chances are all the Beliebers will be, too.

3. A Tattoo That Reads "Property Of______________."

Unless that tattoo says my girl is property of herself, I hope she doesn't get it.

4. Any Tattoo Depicting Her Favorite Sanskrit Phrase

I'm completely convinced that half the people who have their favorite Sanskrit phrase inked on their bodies have no idea what their tattoo actually says. If my daughter needs a translator to read her own tattoo, she probably shouldn't get it.

5. Any Ink That Can Be Seen During a Job Interview

Hopefully whatever tattoo she gets will be PG. But regardless, I'd hate for my daughter to have doors closed to her just because of a tattoo she got while on spring break in Cancun.

6. Ink That Can Be Misconstrued for a Penis

I don't care if cucumber is her favorite food in the world or if she invents the world's most delicious hot dog someday, there should be nothing permanently placed on her body that can be misconstrued for a tattoo of a penis. Nope!

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7. A Guy's Name

There's nothing more powerful than young love, but it's not particularly permanent. So I hope my daughter doesn't ink some guy's name on her arm when chances are she won't know him in a year. Tattoos are permanent. Most boyfriends are not.

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