By James from Tempe, AZ

I was seventeen and had been into piercings since a young age. My Dad is a bit old fashioned so I had been grounded for quite some time when I got my industrial without his permission. Before that he was pretty pissed about the fact that I had BOTH my ears pierced (he thought one was ok, I dunno why) and kept putting them back in after he told me to take ’em out. I was in love with my industrial, it looked great and was a fun piercing to have in general. My nose was a different story. I loved the idea of a nose piercing. My friend had one and I thought it looked great on her, but on me not so much. Once I got a cold it was a pain in the ass – so I ended up taking it out within two months of having the little sucker. It’s a bit unfortunate my nose piercing did not work out, because I have many friends who enjoy their nose piercings.

Back then, tongue piercings were kind of a big deal. This was back when I was in high school and not every single 15 year old girl had a tongue piercing, people still thought it was semi-scandalous or that if a guy got one he might be gay. Anyway, I had read thousands of words of testimonies and knew it was time for another piercing… you know when you want one. Oh and I wanted one. When I decided to get my industrial and nose piercing they were both impulsive. One day I would have the urge and the next day I would find myself sitting in a chair in a tattoo parlous, awaiting the needle to pierce a hole through my skin.

So I knew now that the idea of acquiring a new piercing was in my head it would be an unhealthy obsession until I once again found myself in a tattoo and piercing parlor. My current girlfriend has a tongue piercing, and I had noticed hers suited her quite well, and it was not very noticeable. I actually didn’t notice it for the longest time. I work full time, and knew if I got a piercing that was horribly obvious I could potentially lose my job, but I hated the idea of having a piercing that was so unnoticeable that it was useless to have… there seemed to be no other option than a tongue piercing. I began doing research, watching videos and all that and before I knew it I was itching to have a metal bar through my tongue.

That weekend I presented the idea to my girlfriend, she was ambivalent and agreed that while it looked trashy on some it would suit me well. We decided to go to the parlor that Friday night…

We called the tattoo parlor where she went to get her ink done to see if her friend was in that night, the parlous was located Downtown and upon calling we found out her friend was not working that night. Now this put a damper on our plan. After contemplating we came to the conclusion that driving Downtown would be a hassle, but I was not going to let just anyone pierce me. I wanted to make sure it was a legitimately experienced piercer. My gf told me of a reputable tattoo and piercing parlor that was five minutes away from her apartment, it was where he went to have her nose pierced. Sounded like a good idea, so we headed over there… it was about nine p.m.

I was getting that nervous feeling that I loved before we walked into the shop. The idea of having a needle going through your skin was exhilarating, but it was nerve wracking as well. We walked in and told the guy behind the desk that we were here for a tongue piercing and he asked me if I have ever had my tongue pierced before, I told him I did not. He did a strange thing, well it was strange to me… he asked me to stick my tongue out and let him see the bottom of it. He studied it for a moment and declared that I could not get my tongue pierced – at first I thought he was joking! He showed me a mirror and told me that I could not get my tongue pierced because I had a vein in the way and it posed some health risks for me. I was a little disappointed. I was so set on getting my tongue pierced, this completely put me down. So we walked out of the parlor and my gf noticed I was a bit blue about this and she commented on how we should get a second opinion. I agreed, I mean… I was determined to get this piercing. So we ended up driving Downtown and going to five different places. At this point it was almost midnight, so a lot of the piercers were gone for the night. But we ran into three people who looked at my tongue and all said my tongue would be an easy one to pierce.

Now this caused me to have a dilemma… As much as I wanted this piercing I was afraid of something going wrong. I wasn’t going to kill myself over a piercing.

By 2.AM we decided to grab some food, after eating it was time – there was no more procrastinating. Either we went and did it or went home. I knew I wouldn’t wake up tomorrow without a swollen tongue.. so we drove back to one of the piercing places. The piercer told me not to worry, my tongue would be an easy piercing and to just relax – he knew what he was doing. He was older and had been teaching people how to pierce for many years. Which made me feel better, I did not want to be someones guinea pig.

I had watched many videos and expected him to mark my tongue, let me see it, put a clamp on, and pierce me. He did none of those things. He just saw my tongue, dried it, marked it, and asked me to lay down. I was nervous but trusting this guy. The piercing itself did not hurt, it was just pressure. For me, my nose was the worst piercing – even worse than my industrial.. but this did not hurt. (It was the aftermath that hurt the most) The piercing felt very strange, and looked very strange at first. The bar was so long. I could barely talk, and after any piercing I always am on.. a weird “piercing high” if you will, this piercing was no different.

The guy who told me my tongue was not able to be pierced was an idiot, I was so glad I went to a few other places and got other opinions.

That is my tongue piercing story.. now about the healing process. It was pretty bad the first few days… but only because of the swelling. I was living off ice and little things that I could stuff in the sides of my mouth. After two weeks my swelling went down, and after three weeks I’d say it was healed enough for me to eat comfortably and all that.

The hardest part is definitely the healing. I carried PLAIN listerine around a lot, swished often, and really couldn’t eat anything solid. Having a swollen tongue is a pain in the ass. But it was worth it. I’ve had it taken out for years, and even though for me the hole closed up IMMEDIATELY, when I’ve got it redone, the healing process is much much faster and easier, for some reason. Like, I was able to eat solid food without much problem, the swelling seemed to be lighter. I’m not sure if that was just a fluke or what. At any rate, I highly recommend it if you want one. It’s not a big deal at all. Just don’t play with it in public a lot if you don’t want to be an obnoxious twat. Some people look really stupid doing that, but usually it’s because they want people to see that their tongue is pierced. Edgy.

Anyway, I highly recommend it!