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Lady Gaga gets matching tattoos with sexual assault survivors

By Marilyn Malara   |   March 4, 2016 at 10:37 AM
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CHICAGO, March 4 (UPI) -- Lady Gaga got a tattoo representing unity and solidarity alongside those who shared the stage with her at the Oscars on Sunday.

The Academy Award-nominated singer and songwriter shared a photo of the tattoo, by artist David Allen at Pioneer Tattoo in Chicago, on snapchat Thursday.

The image was later uploaded and shared by fans on Twitter.

Allen took to Instagram to share his work in a photo with Gaga, writing he is "honored to tattoo a symbol of 'unity'" on her. "An image of solidarity for survivors of sexual assault."

The tattoo resembles a lotus flower with connecting curved lines. Social media revealed many of those included in Lady Gaga's performance also made good on their promise to get tatted with the same image.

Shortly after her emotional Oscars performance, during which she invited onstage a large group of men and women who have experienced and survived sexual assault, Gaga -- who was raped at age 19 -- said the first day of rehearsal was one of the hardest she's had.

The first day of rehearsal with all the survivors I could barely get myself together. My body was wrecked with inflammation and pain, crying and shaking the whole walk to the stage. The whole night before I did not sleep. The fear of knowing I would finally face that I belonged in that group. I told them I was so sorry I couldn't be Lady Gaga for them, that I couldn't even get dressed. I could barely get through the song, couldn't hit any of the high notes. Hair wet, sloppy tee shirt jeans uggs, tissues. They all hugged me and told me that it was okay because it was more real this way, that they understood that they were in pain too. They told me they were there for me to support me because they believed this message needed to be heard. Without them I never could have felt strong. They accepted me for me, at my lowest and that was good enough for them, so somehow through the magic of their courage they made it good enough for me too.

A photo posted by Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) on

"My body was wrecked with inflammation and pain, crying and shaking the whole walk to the stage. The whole night before I did not sleep. The fear of knowing I would finally face that I belonged in that group," she said.

"I told them I was so sorry I couldn't be Lady Gaga for them, that I couldn't even get dressed. I could barely get through the song, couldn't hit any of the high notes. Hair wet, sloppy tee shirt jeans uggs, tissues."

She said members of the group hugged her and supported her, "without them I never could have felt strong," she added. "They accepted me for me, at my lowest and that was good enough for them, so somehow through the magic of their courage they made it good enough for me too."

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