Dad Christien Sechrist got a face tattoo of his baby son’s face (Photo: Christien Sechrist/Facebook)
Some parenting decisions can be reversed; others are a bit more permanent. That’s the case for one father from Texas who recently got an enormous tattoo of his baby son’s face — on his own face.
Christien Sechrist, a 20-year-old dad from Deer Park, celebrated the birth of his son Perseus Allen Mitchell by inking a giant black-and-white image of the boy’s face on his left cheek. Sechrist captioned the photo, posted last July, “Thanks Cody Gibbs for doing awesome work on me. Looks just like my son.” One of the reasons it’s gaining coverage now is because Reddit posted it a day ago.
Reaction to the portrait ranged from disbelief to supportive (sort of). “Is this a joke Christien?” wrote one Facebook user. “…Although it is a nice tat, you should have put it somewhere else,” wrote another. Also: “…I can see why you got it but I think the face was just a tad over the top.” Sechrist responded to his naysayers by writing, “Well my son looked at it [and] smiled so that’s all I care about.”
Gibbs (Sechrists’ tattoo artist) was also a source of scorn on Reddit for fulfilling such a “stupid” request. “You’ve gotta have better judgment than that,” the commenter added of the artist.
Tattoo lover Christien Sechrist got a face tattoo of his baby’s face. (Photo: Christien Sechrist/Facebook)
Yahoo Parenting could not reach Sechrist for comment, however, the budding electrician — who has a skull tattoo (where else?) on his skull — told Buzzfeed that he wanted to commemorate his son after nearly losing him and insisted that the tat won’t affect his ability to keep a job.
One tattoo artist disagrees.
“Although tattoos are more mainstream these days, they’re still not considered the ‘norm,’ so we always give our input when it comes to customers who want riskier designs,” Beau Brady, a tattoo artist at Invisible NYC in New York, tells Yahoo Parenting. “Face, neck, and hand tattoos are called ‘job stoppers’ for a reason so people should give those areas more thought.”
Young adults are increasingly opting for face tattoos and other visible designs, but without forethought, they can be poor choices. Brady says people don’t usually regret commemorative designs but since taste, style, and personality can change drastically over time, it’s wiser to choose classic pieces over trendier ones.
“For parents who want a tattoo of their infant’s face, I would encourage them to wait a few years until the child develops distinctive physical features, since babies tend to resemble each other when they’re really young,” says Brady.
If Sechrist does change his mind, the removal process could be lengthy and expensive. “Tattoo removal lasers pick up black and gray pigment easily but it will likely take 10 or 15 sessions to fully remove the tattoo,” says Beau. “In the meantime, you’ll have a half-broken tattoo that looks worse than the original and touch-ups usually take place every six weeks.” Depending on the facility and size of tattoo, the removal could cost thousands of dollars.
Elise Sole’s tattoo of her son’s name. (Photo: Courtesy of Elise Sole)
That’s something to consider. When my son was born 9 months ago, my tattoo-obsessed husband and I had his name inked in script on our inner wrists. Not only was the gesture a physical representation of our lifelong connection as parents, it was a fun celebration of our first child’s arrival. Placement was also key — the visibility of the inner wrist allows us to enjoy it daily but the wrist is subtle enough to hide it when we choose.
Being able to cover it up is key, at least where our son is concerned. Who knows whether he’ll be mortified about mom and dad’s namesake art, but we’ll find out in time.