A mum has covered herself in nearly 100 self-drawn tattoos at the request of strangers – and plans to keep going until she has no space left.
Chelsea Rohrbough, 31, has tattooed herself with 96 tats resembling painful experiences or traumas suggested to her by her followers.
The mum-of-two has had over 7,000 requests for the inked designs and has a tat of a broken phone screen for those affected by online grooming.
She documents the tattoos on TikTok and her followers leave comments on her videos with designs they’d like to see, such as the word ‘love’ surrounded by a fake bruise to symbolise domestic abuse.
She also tattooed a trans person’s name on her body after they were disowned by their family, and has a button for a victim of sex trafficking.
Chelsea self-tattoed herself through 2022 but inked her first requested tat in November and now aims to do two a day until she runs out of space.
She says she does it to try and ‘raise awareness’ for what people request and give it the attention it ‘needs’.
Chelsea, an independent contractor, from Clarksberg, West Virginia, US, said: ‘A lot of the requests I get on my page I’m unaware of and I try and give them the attention they need.
‘I’ve put on murder cases that got no justice, sex trafficking cases, transgender people who’ve not been accepted by their parents.
‘I want to bring awareness to those things.
‘I pick the ones that will bring the most awareness and sometimes simpler ones.’
‘One was about two boys who were murdered and I wrote their football numbers on my leg and their dad reached out to say thank you.
Chelsea taught herself how to tattoo after buying the supplies online and spent most of 2022 trying out different designs.
Now she tries to do at least two designs a day until she runs out of space.
‘I’ve painted and drawn for years and during Covid I ordered a tattoo machine off of Amazon and self-taught,’ Chelsea said.
She said: ‘It helps them as much as it does me.
‘People always ask if it makes me depressed but I’ve gone on for so long feeling like I didn’t have any purpose.
‘As soon as I started doing this it really helped and it allows me to feel good knowing I’m helping with someone’s trauma.
‘Some people say it’s not my pain to carry for someone else or that people are lying.
‘I don’t believe that anyone’s lying on there because I feel that I can tell if something’s genuine or not.’
Despite having nearly 100 requested tattoos, Chelsea knows exactly what story each represents and says she is asked about them ‘all the time’ when she goes out.
She said: ‘I get asked about it all the time when I go out.
‘I wear shorts all year round and random people stop me at the grocery store and ask who does them.’
Each tattoo takes Chelsea between one and four hours, depending on the size and she always tries to two a day of varying sizes.
Chelsea says she’s had requests from all over the world and discovered ‘so many’ different stories.
She said: ‘I did an oak tree for a little girl who died in a tornado.
‘It was the first one I put on the back of my leg and her nickname was Oakie, she was the youngest victim in the tornado.
‘The parents lost their house and daughter. I reached out to her mum and now we talk a lot.’
Chelsea plans to keep tattooing until she runs out of space, before passing the baton on to a list of fellow TikTok creators to continue.
She said: ‘I still have a good bit of room but I don’t know how the heck I’m supposed to reach the back of my leg.
‘By the time I stop it’ll be past 10,000 requests and the plan is to have a few TikTokers who are going to carry it on for me on their bodies.
‘Then they’ll continue the list of requests whilst starting their own list of requests.
‘I don’t want it to end with me. I want it to go further so people can still get their bad experiences out and let someone else do that for them.’
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