Anna Gragert
September 23, 2015 3:24 pm

Here at HelloGiggles, we are enamored by tattoos. We love their beauty, their poignant messages, and the unique history they hold. While tattoos are not for everyone, we celebrate those who choose to get tattoos. In the past, we’ve coveted simple tattoos with no meaning, tattoos showing one writer’s love for Harry Potter, matching Sherlock bestie tattoos, and now we’re loving a new tattoo story. This one centers on a woman named Maggie who has hid her tattoos from her parents for twelve years —until now.

Here’s the lowdown: Maggie’s body is decorated with various tattoos. 17 tattoos, to be exact. She’s had them for over a decade, which would explain why her parents haven’t seen her wear shorts in a very long time. Essentially, they have no idea that their daughter is a fan of body art.

Maggie’s mom and dad are conservative and religious, and they, well, seem to really, really dislike tattoos. And they negative associate them with negative, just untrue stereotypes. “My parents think people who get tattoos are people with motorcycles, probably dabble in drugs, and just are probably kind of lowlifes,” she explains. Which, of course, is completely not factual.

Filmmaker Bianca Giaever decided to help Maggie embrace the truth. “I find people who are having trouble saying something and I help them get their message across in a video,” says Bianca. To get her subject’s tattoos out in the open, she worked on creating a short film that Maggie could show to her parents, as a way to tell them about what she’s been hiding.

In the video, we learn that many of her tattoos are actually religious. And all of them tell a story that is incredibly meaningful to this young woman. One of them even pays tribute to her parents. It’s a blue anchor with the words Mom and Dad written upon it. “That tattoo is wishful thinking,” she reveals. “It’s a secret conversation I’m having with myself about my frustration for feeling really distant from my parents.”

It took some time to show her parents her tattoos, understandably. The first time she flew out to Boulder, Colorado to talk to her parents she didn’t end up showing them the film because she got freaked out.

On her second trip to Boulder, Maggie finally told them the truth. “I was so sure they were going to react one way and they reacted totally differently. The moment they saw the tattoos, I realized that I had been making all these assumptions about them.”

In the end, Maggie’s parents were totally okay with her tattoos. More importantly, this admission started a dialogue between these family members, one that allowed them to discuss religion, their beliefs, and to reinforce their relationship.

Watch the video right here:

Maggie’s story has reminded us that parents are still human beings and that, in turn, this means that they can beautifully defy our expectations.

[Image via YouTube]

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