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Old 12-09-2017, 03:35 PM   #1
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Default Getting used to a new tattoo?

Hi there,

I am new here and I read some older posts about feelings of anxiety and/or regret after getting a tattoo.

So, about 6 weeks ago I went for a new tattoo. I thought about it for a long time. I had three small tattoos and this one was going to be bigger, also due to its placement. (it's on the side of my upper leg).
I was really shocked about my reaction. I like the tattoo though, but I had panick attacks for about three weeks! I felt like I was going crazy. These weeks have been so tough. I don't know what happened exactly, as I did like the tattoo.. But I didn't feel the connection or something..I don't know how to explain this..but it felt weird on my skin and I panicked because I was afraid I would never get used to it and i felt shame and guilt somehow.
I guess there is some fear that has nothing to do with the tattoo itself, but it is now all focused on the tattoo.

However, for the last 2 or 3 weeks I feel much better. I don't think about it all day now. (I was totally obsessed with the tattoo.. I had to look at it constantly and I was also watching other people on the street to see if they had tats)
It was a big relief to me that I wasn't the only one with this feelings, though I am still kinda shocked.
I try to think differenty about it now. Of course I checked websites about tattoo removal because I was so scared and wanted this feeling to be gone, so the tattoo had to be gone. Now there isn't much I can do.. If I ultimately decide to remove the tattoo, I have to wait at least another six months.. Meantime, I hope I will get used to it.
Because this is sort of my question.. I am certainly getting more used to it, and I am very happy that I have no longer panick attacks or anything like that. However, sometimes I still have a feeling of anxiety , being afried of what other people think of me, and especially being afried the tattoo will never be 'one with my body', I will never get used to it. Also, when I look at the tattoo, I still don't have the feeling that I expected the tattoo would give me: strength, courage etc. It now reminds me of all the panick attacks I had and this is driving me crazy. Hopefully it's possible that I can associate the tattoo with the actual meaning .
I keep thinking I should got used to it since it is already 6 weeks ago?
Or is it normal it can take more time.. ? And does anyone else has the experience that the tattoo reminds you of something else , something that has nothing to do with what it was suppose to mean? do you think this feeling may change?

Sorry for my long story and perhaps my bad English, it is not my native language. And I am also not good at keeping it brief and explaining my thoughts and feelings. Hope you can understand me though.

Thank you in advance for replying!
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Old 12-09-2017, 03:45 PM   #2
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I got my first tattoo a month ago and still trying to get used to it. You only hear of people absolutely loving their tattoo immediately and feeling super happy about it right away; but that hasn't happened for me yet. Just got to remind myself why I got it; not be so nit picky about it and just get used to it.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=wYY1LPJCUnU

Watching this vid helped. The title is a tad misleading. Although she likes her tattoos and doesn't want to get rid of them; she still has second thoughts about the placement and design of them. As well as becoming accustomed to them.
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Old 12-09-2017, 04:31 PM   #3
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I remember feeling instant regret after getting my tribal armband as 19 year old, and for good reason, it was a stupid idea. I grew to accept it fairly quickly though, in a matter of weeks/months I think. It wasn't until my late twenties when I started noticing better tattoos and artists that the tribal regret reemerged, along with disdain for my other two tattoos (which also were quite poor). I started lasering a couple years later when I finally decided I needed to cover them up with tattoos I actually liked.
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Old 12-09-2017, 05:55 PM   #4
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You're putting something on you. It's foreign and that can feel weird because up to this point it wasn't a part of you. It's like getting used to anything that is a big decision, you get pangs of OMG what have I done? Did I do the right thing?

And it's a big design element and you always want the best for yourself so I think you can over think placements, details, styles and how could it be better always.

I don't think that's unnatural to feel and eventually grow into being comfortable with it.

However if it's something that feels more of a burden than a gift to yourself and doesn't go away, maybe you have to also ask yourself if tattoos are for you. I think that a lot of people like the idea of it more than the reality of how permanent they are... because you run into a lot of people who don't seem happy with theirs, embarrassed, etc. and that's avoidable if you just stop getting shit you won't want in a year.
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Old 12-09-2017, 08:21 PM   #5
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Thanks for your reactions! Really appreciate that.

I first thought I was the only one too as you only hear people who are immediatey in love with their new tattoo.
But I read a lot about it and it's quite common that people feel sad and anxious.

I think i am a bit hard on myself and need to give it more time. The first couple of weeks I was soooo anxious all the time, I could barely eat or sleep. I should be glad that this is all over now and there are moments I actually like the tattoo. But it annoys me that I am still not 100% used to it and still have some anxiety every now and then. What if I will never get used to it? What if I keep thinking about panick attacks when I look at it, for the rest of my life? What if people are not going to like me anymore since I got this tattoo?
( I know this doesn't make any sense but I am afraid that people will think of me differently). What if, what if, what if... I know, I am driving myself nuts sometimes. But the weird thing is that I also have moments where it feels like the tattoo actually means a good thing to me and I am happy with it..however, i still don't feel this way all the time and that concerns me..but okay, I should give it at least a couple of months since there is nothing I can do about it now anyway. I wish I could just love it all the time and would stop thinking about it.

Elis111, do you have moments where you feel good about it too? Thanks for your reply really, I am going to watch the video!
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Old 12-09-2017, 09:26 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sterretje View Post
Thanks for your reactions! Really appreciate that.

I first thought I was the only one too as you only hear people who are immediatey in love with their new tattoo.
But I read a lot about it and it's quite common that people feel sad and anxious.

I think i am a bit hard on myself and need to give it more time. The first couple of weeks I was soooo anxious all the time, I could barely eat or sleep. I should be glad that this is all over now and there are moments I actually like the tattoo. But it annoys me that I am still not 100% used to it and still have some anxiety every now and then. What if I will never get used to it? What if I keep thinking about panick attacks when I look at it, for the rest of my life? What if people are not going to like me anymore since I got this tattoo?
( I know this doesn't make any sense but I am afraid that people will think of me differently). What if, what if, what if... I know, I am driving myself nuts sometimes. But the weird thing is that I also have moments where it feels like the tattoo actually means a good thing to me and I am happy with it..however, i still don't feel this way all the time and that concerns me..but okay, I should give it at least a couple of months since there is nothing I can do about it now anyway. I wish I could just love it all the time and would stop thinking about it.

Elis111, do you have moments where you feel good about it too? Thanks for your reply really, I am going to watch the video!
Yeah if I really focus on what I like about the tattoo rather than the perceived 'defects' that only I am able to notice about it.
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Old 13-09-2017, 03:16 AM   #7
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Yeah I have been there. I still have tattoos that I regret. You get used to it. Try not to obsess too much. It's just a tattoo. It's not like you lost a leg or anything. You may never end up loving it but again it's not the end of the world.

Plus it's on your leg. Easily covered.

Would love to see it if you feel like sharing.
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Old 13-09-2017, 04:50 AM   #8
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Post a pic!
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Old 13-09-2017, 07:27 AM   #9
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Default Same same (Pic attached.)

I'm in the same boat. I have generalized anxiety though, so when I come around to accepting it as soon as I get stressed about unrelated things I begin panicking about my tattoo. I am Israeli, and I had the idea of getting a sentence in Hebrew across my chest. It was written correctly but the artist tattooed some of the letters backwards and inverted. It was my fault, but also, the placement afterwards I wouldn't have been pleased with because of the contrast between text size and breast size. So I got an amazing cover up. I am an Aries, so my coverup is of a ram skull, as the horns of the ram are also used for a Jewish custom, which I proudly am. So it does connect with me. But sometimes I think, a dead animal on my chest? I also have a jewish star on my outer wrist. Sometimes I regret them both. I just pray it ends. Just got my second session of my chest. Thoughts? Poor quality. Working on a better pic. 2/3 sessions. I hope it gets better for you man... I think we'll pull through. It's just a matter of calming down and getting used to it.
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Old 13-09-2017, 10:21 AM   #10
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thanks for all the response.
I know, I am overreacting..I just feel kinda shocked from my earlier reaction, I never expected to feel that way after getting this tat.
But true, it isn't the end of the world.. and I am getting more used to it nowadays, though I still don't feel 'normal' again but probably it's gonna take some time.

Adar, I like your tattoo. Feel sorry to hear you don't love it yet. I think it's a matter of getting used to it indeed, and this may take up some time.

I feel quite insecure about showing my tattoo somehow. I mean, I like the tattoo and its meaning and that's all that matters, but I also find it hard to share my tattoo over here.. But I am gonna do it anyway.
Just worrying too much about what other people will think. That's a general problem for me though
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Last edited by sterretje; 13-09-2017 at 06:21 PM.
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