Mom Gives 11-Year-Old Daughter a Heart Tattoo ... Just Because

Odessa Clay
Odessa Clay
How many times a day does your kid say they want something that's absolutely out of the question? Once? Twice? Three times a lady? Odessa Clay told cops that her 11-year-old daughter said she wanted a heart tattoo near her shoulder. So she gave it to her.

Literally. Cops in North Carolina say Clay used her own tools to put a mark on the tween's skin that will be there forever -- or until someone coughs up the money for laser removal. Come on, hasn't she ever heard of fake tattoos? Or maybe the word "No"?


I'm not some skin ink hating prude here; my husband has two. But he's a grown man who was in his 20s and a father the first time he got inked. Odessa Clay's daughter is just a kid! She should have a good 60 or 70 years ahead of her on this Earth. And who knows what she's going to think of a little heart tattoo near her shoulder then?

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When your kid is not thinking much further than the next Phineas & Ferb episode that comes on at 8 p.m., it's not easy making them understand that the decisions they make now will affect them for years to come. That's where we're just so darn lucky to have screwed up a time or two ourselves. We have the wisdom that comes with experience and the forethought that comes with having a brain that's had time to develop past the OMG, HORMONES EVERYWHERE stage.

Who says this girl isn't going to have a job in the future that will require pristine skin? Who says this girl won't grow out of the hearts and flowers phase?

We don't know. This girl doesn't know. Her mom doesn't know.

Which is why the answer when your kid asks for a tattoo is always "no." Because 11-year-olds can't make life-changing decisions, they don't need to do anything that will permanently alter their body unless there is a medical necessity. A nose job to fix that deviated septum? Sure. A little heart tattoo on the shoulder because it's just so darn cute? No way, no how. Ear gauges that will leave holes large enough to fit your kitten through their earlobe? You don't really need me to answer this, do you?

The real telling thing in all of this is Odessa Clay's complaint that she didn't know it was illegal to tattoo a minor. Sounds like the government was smarter than the parent this time around ...

What do you think of Odessa Clay's defense for allegedly tattooing her daughter? Would you do something this drastic because your kid "wanted" it?


Image via Pamlico County Sheriff's Department

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