stereotype |ˈsterēəˌtīp; ˈsti(ə)r-| noun
1 a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing : the stereotype of the woman as the carer | sexual and racial stereotypes.
• a person or thing that conforms to such an image : don’t treat anyone as a stereotype.
2 a relief printing plate cast in a mold made from composed type or an original plate.
Stereotype. What do you think of when you hear it? Do you think of bikers? What about tattoos? Piercings? White collar workers? Lawyers? Farmers? Single moms? Single dads? Teachers? Certain types of car drivers? Nerds? Graphic Novel lovers? Gamers?
Everything can be perceived as a stereotype. How we deal with stereotypes can sometimes be frustrating other times we brush it off. There are times when we don’t think about it but the stereotypes are there. How often do you think about it? Do you see someone playing on stereotypes in your everyday life?
My biggest struggle with stereotypes is that I am a tattooed and pierced single mother. I have received compliments on my work and I’ve received negative feedback as well. It is frustrating at times because I fight the stereotype day in and day out. At times I love showing off my work but there are times when I cover it up so no one sees it.
It is a constant struggle trying to get over the stereotype of being a single mother with tattoos and piercings. The remarks, the looks, the shrugs, the loud sighs, the snarls, the comments. There are times when I’m shy of my work and cover it up. I struggle with it all the time and that will not ever end.
Each piece has a story behind it. There is a reason for every piece I have. I love talking about tattoos. I love hearing and sharing stories about tattoos. Each piece has a story even if it’s just a random tattoo. They had a reason for what they did. There are those stories you hear that are just hilarious and then there are the ones that make you tear up.
You can’t judge someone on their looks, how they talk, how they walk, what they are wearing or what they are driving. We judge so many people on things that don’t even matter before we get to know the person. That’s never going to stop though. We all are going to keep judging no matter what. It’s a part of our lives and it’s a part of who we are. It would be wonderful if we didn’t have to deal with the stereotypes but we do.
So what do you think of when you take a look at this picture?