I had never given much thought to why people in their teens and twenties are so often interested in getting piercings and tattoos. Recently, however, it occurred to me that one rather valid reason for doing so is so they can assert ownership of their own bodies, particularly in defiance of their parents. Having never felt as though I had less than complete ownership of my body, that potential motivation had never occurred to me before.
Arguably, it is especially important for young women to take such a stance (though there are obviously many ways of doing so). That is because their bodies have much more commonly been seen as the property of others, or at least under their control – whether the outside entity is the state, family, or some religious structure.