For years Tiffany Posteraro had felt the stares of strangers and was the targets of bullies because of the rare skin condition she has that left her with large white blotches on her skin. The condition, known as vitiligo, attacks pigment cells and stops them from functioning, but it does not effect the skin as a whole, only certain areas. For a while she had covered much of her skin when in public so as to deflect attention, but when that became tiresome she thought of a great way to fight back—a tattoo.
Anyone who stares at Posteraro arm will encounter a script tattoo reading "It's called vitiligo." By flatly stating the name of her condition in the form of a tattoo Posteraro has taken away any ammunition that a would be bully may have had.
"I wanted to share what it is because that way they would learn something, rather than stigmatizing," Posteraro told The Daily Mail. "'I decided to get the tattoo for that reason—to answer the questions in their heads and give them something to actually stare at."
Doctors still do not know the cause of vitiligo, although some believe that there may be a genetic link to the condition. Regardless of the cause, when Posteraro was 11-years-old she started developing the white spots on her skin and was baffled as to what was happening. As the condition spread going into her teens she started receiving ridicule from classmates. To make matters worse Posteraro had just started a new school, which is never easy.
It wasn't until she was a little bit older that Posteraro started to learn more about vitiligo and other people who had the condition. Meeting people who understood what she was going through and learning about support groups online ultimately led Posteraro to her tattoo.
"I was sick of the stares," Posteraro told The Daily Mail. "I just wanted to say, 'come on, ask me what it is.' It's over my forearm and wrist and goes over white patches so it's perfect."
Way to go Tiffany! We love the statement that Posteraro is making through her ink and we hope that it leads to people getting educated about vitiligo, not to mention the joy we take in how the tattoo puts ignorant people in their place.