For a while over the summer, I worked two jobs.
One of them I had worked at for a while, and no one there thought twice of the literary quote I had gotten tattooed on my right wrist. My second job, though, told me that I had to keep it covered with a long-sleeve shirt while I was working. It didn’t matter that the writing was profanity-free and utterly inoffensive. It was a tattoo and thus, must be covered.
A friend warned me about getting my tattoo in such a visible place, specifically because of rules like that. Add to that the fact that other places might not accept me for a position at all, thanks to my “ink.”
I wasn’t dissuaded, though. I decided that I would let a thousand other character traits speak for me when it came to getting a job. The tattoo I have is a part of me, but it is hardly all of me.
Yet, I really shouldn’t have to worry about being jobless. I’ve chosen to permanently express myself on my body. Tattoos should not be the deciding factor in whether or not a person is accepted for a job.
I have an acquaintance that is going to be a teacher, and she has beautiful tattoos on her arms and shoulders. Another friend is incredibly smart and hard-working, and she also, has five tattoos.
In my experience, tattoos are symbols of someone’s philosophy or mementos of a loved one or an important experience. They are not meant to say that person is of poor character, but that they have a desire for expressing something important.
More prestigious jobs, should I decide to go for a more prestigious job, I might be turned away simply because any tattoo is considered “unprofessional.” How I act is the only factor that determines my professionalism.
My tattoo doesn’t say anything about how well I wield responsibility, how intelligent I am or how well-suited I am for a job. Only I can say that.
If someone wants a quote on their wrist or some art on the back of their hand, they should go ahead and get it, regardless of the job they want. Their skills and attitude will speak for them – not their ink.