A mother boasting more than 800 tattoos faces judgmental labels such as “freak,” but she bravely unveils the stories behind each of her inkings, offering insight into their personal significance.

Despite enduring taunts and teasing from those who label her a ‘freak,’ a mother of two remains a source of admiration for her children. She bears no natural physical deformities, but rather, her entire body is adorned in what some describe as “prison-style” tattoos. Despite facing challenges in finding employment and enduring verbal attacks whenever she ventures outside, she persists in adding to her collection of ink, admitting to being addicted to the process.

Melissa Sloan, a 46-year-old woman from Wales, has spent the past 26 years in a relationship with her tattoo gun, starting when she was just 20 years old. While she acknowledges the societal rejection she faces and the increasing difficulties it brings, she refuses to halt her tattooing spree.

“It’s like when you have a [cigarette] or a drink, you get addicted. I can’t stop it now, it’s addictive, for me anyway. I just can’t stop it,” Sloan explains. Despite being turned away by tattoo parlors for being deemed “beyond help,” she now carries her own tattooing kit with her and gets three new tattoos “prison-style” each week, courtesy of her boyfriend.

Although her heavily inked appearance has hindered her job prospects and resulted in somewhat haphazard tattoos covering her body and face, Sloan persists in her tattooing habit, accumulating over 800 tattoos over the years.

Sloan explained that years ago, she worked as a toilet cleaner, but today, she’s turned away from similar roles.

“I can’t get a job. They won’t have me. I applied for a job cleaning toilets where I live and they won’t have me because of my tattoos…People have said I have never had a job in my life, I have had one once and it didn’t last long.” She continued, “But, if someone offered me a job tomorrow, I would go and work–I would take that offer.”

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