"Many men and women see the declaration of autonomy as a form of taking your body, soul, and, to a certain extent, your wallet, back from the confines of an unhappy marriage."
Not everyone is interested in forgetting their divorce experience. There are many out there that look for ways to commemorate the experience, in order to learn and understand it more thoroughly. In commemorating the experience, they turn to their own bodies and get tattoos, that speak to what they have been through.
Both men and women experiencing a divorce have lead a recent trend in society, where they are getting tattoos talking about or symbolizing the end of their marriages. Part of the appeal stems from the continuing popularity of tattoos as a whole.
Behind the ink
According to the Pew Research Center, 40 percent of Americans between the ages of 26 and 40 and 36 percent of Americans between the ages of 18 and 25 have at least one tattoo. Additionally, 70 percent have said that they have made sure that their tattoos can be hidden during work hours, according to Reuters. This is due to the fact that many Americans are under the impression that tattoos will affect their employment status.
A study at the University of Tampa revealed that 86 percent of students with visible tattoos are under the impression that they will have a harder time finding a job after graduation. Additionally, out of students without tattoos that are considering getting them, 89 percent said they will consider how it impacts their job options.
Tattoo placement can factor into the decision to get a tattoo, for individuals who have experienced divorce. Individuals experiencing a divorce do not want another part of their life, such as their job, further interrupted by the ending of their marriage.
‘Part of the healing process’
Many people begin their journey with a tattoo. The Washington Post told a story about an individual, whose marriage was failing them and got a tattoo, in an attempt to do something for themselves. By the end, they had gotten several tattoos and found that doing so was part of the healing process.
This individual informally polled people that had gone through a difficult divorce and found that many individuals of all ages and genders had gotten some ink in an attempt to help move on. People have used the ink to describe what they have referred to as an unhealthy relationship, wasted time, or even a declaration of autonomy.
Many men and women see the declaration of autonomy as a form of taking your body, soul, and, to a certain extent, your wallet, back from the confines of an unhappy marriage. For those divorcing people married to their jobs, it can be a way to show yourself the attention that you never got during the course of your marriage. The inspiration for a divorce tattoo is entirely dependent on the given situation.
Much of the inspiration of the trend of divorce tattoos comes from a social media wave. The hashtag, #DivorceTattoos, elicits hundreds of responses on Twitter and Instagram, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC/Radio Canada).
However, the main inspiration for many of the works of art stems from Pinterest, where you can find countless examples ranging from quotes from Nathanial Hawthorne’s “The Scarlet Letter” to the Celtic symbol for a new beginning. This platform allows individuals to engage with one another and come up with ideas, as they move on from the divorce experience.
Moving forward is the end goal for people who have gone through a divorce, and for many, getting a tattoo is a step in that direction. Going through the pain of getting a tattoo resonates with many who go through the pain of a divorce.
Celebrities and self-reflection
Many celebrities also recognize the symmetry in both concepts, and their existing ink has been made, modified, or removed, in reflecting their separation and attempting to move on from it. Johnny Depp modified a few of his existing tattoos, in changing the one on his knuckles from “SLIM” to “SCUM” and blackening out one on his bicep that once resembled his ex-wife, Amber Heard. Actress Melanie Griffith had the tattoo of her ex-husband, actor Antonio Banderas hidden and removed after their divorce.
In seeking a fresh start, many individuals would compare getting a divorce tattoo to redecorating a room in a house. With a fresh coat of paint and a different style, an entirely new outlook can be forged moving forward, and that is what these men and women getting divorce tattoos are looking for.
Tattoos are individual choices that people make, and we, at Men’s Divorce, would never condemn that choice. Divorce tattoos are a growing trend, and individuals experiencing marital issues or divorce itself look to the artwork to provide clarity and self-reflection during a confusing and conflict-ridden time in one’s life.
Dan Pearce is an Online Editor for Lexicon, focusing on subjects related to the legal services of customers, Cordell & Cordell and Cordell Planning Partners. He has written countless pieces on MensDivorce.com, detailing the plight of men and fathers going through the divorce experience, as well as the issues seniors and their families experience throughout the estate planning journey on ElderCareLaw.com. Mr. Pearce has managed websites and helped create content, such as the Men’s Divorce Newsletter and the YouTube series, “Men’s Divorce Countdown.” He also has been a contributor on both the Men’s Divorce Podcast and ElderTalk with TuckerAllen.
Mr. Pearce assisted in fostering a Cordell Planning Partners practice area specific for Veterans, as they deal with the intricacies of their benefits while planning for the future. He also helped create the Cordell Planning Partners Resource Guide and the Cordell Planning Partners Guide to Alternative Residence Options, specific for seniors with questions regarding their needs and living arrangements.