The Real Reason Rumer Willis Removed Her DWTS Tattoo

Rumer Willis got a tattoo on her right bicep to commemorate her experience on Dancing With the Stars. Willis won the reality show's coveted Mirror Ball trophy in 2015.

The daughter of actor Bruce Willis and actress Demi Moore told People (via Uproxx), "I got it because I really wanted to just have a reminder of the journey I went through. I don't think I've ever put so much — physically, mentally, emotionally — into anything, or wanted something so badly. I feel like the journey that I won has helped me grow so much into such a completely different person, and I have such a different type of confidence in myself now." She added, "The only place you can really find the confidence and the love for yourself is within you, so that has to be what carries you: not all of these external things."

Fair enough, but now she's getting the ink lasered off. What gives?

Was she 'infatuated' with her dance partner?

A source told Page Six that Rumer Willis was "besotted" with Dancing With the Stars professional Val Chmerkovskiy after being partnered with him on the ABC ratings juggernaut — and that her obsession with him was the real reason she got the ink in the first place. 

When Chmerkovskiy began dating fellow DWTS pro Jenna Johnson in late 2017, Willis reportedly began the tattoo removal process.

"Rumer was so infatuated with Val when they won, she got this giant tattoo of them dancing together," a source told Page Six. "Now she feels like a fool, so she's now undergoing this painful tattoo removal."

She got stuck in the friend zone

A source close to the former DWTS partners told Radar Online that Willis was livid that Chmerkovskiy wouldn't date her — and that her hopes of hooking up with him were the only reason she went on the Dancing With the Stars tour in 2015. 

"Rumer has been very upset lately because Val finally told her he won't ever date her," the insider claimed. "She really likes him and wants to be with him 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It is one of the only reasons she went on tour ... Val told her that he only wants to be her dance partner and not her boyfriend." The source added, "He is fine being friends with her, but nothing else."

She doesn't like her partner's new flame

From the sounds of it, Willis wasn't cool being just a friend to the fancy foot-worker. Though she didn't seem to have any issue with Chmerkovskiy dating Amber Rose from late 2016 through early 2017, when he took up with Johnson, Willis allegedly "lost her patience," reported Page Six.

Perhaps it was Chmerkovskiy's over-the-top gushing about Johnson that made Willis upset. He's given entire interviews about being in love with Johnson, which may have rubbed some salt into Willis' supposed wounds.

She may have gotten a discount

One incentive for Willis to laser off an old tattoo that's lost its appeal: she may have gotten a kickback for it. In November 2017, Willis Instagrammed a photo of a LaserAway poster, writing, "Thankful for @LaserAway helping me make my tattoos disappear."

She's showing more skin

Since her stint on DWTS, Willis appears to be a lot more comfortable showing skin. Perhaps flaunting her body more often made her realize how much she hated the art that was etched all over it — because if you noted her Instagram post announcing her tattoo removal, she used "tattoos" as a plural. That may mean that it's not just a bitter burnout with a dancer that led to her lasering. Perhaps she's getting more than just her DWTS tattoo zapped off of her bod.

She got sober

In October 2017, Willis announced that she was six months sober — though she wouldn't specify from what.

"My decision to become sober wasn't out of a need necessarily, it was more just that I did 'sober January' and I just decided to keep going," she told People. "I wouldn't consider saying I had a substance abuse problem by any means ... I didn't say I was sober from anything, I could have been sober from a food addiction or buying too many clothes or from relationships or whatever, but I think we're in this culture where we naturally presume and assume. Like, I remember like there was this whole huge [Good Morning America] story that I've secretly struggled with this really intense addiction and how have I kept it hidden. And I was like, 'I've kept it hidden because there's nothing [to hide].'"

Whatever it is that Willis gave up to get sober, it may have impacted her choice to remove her tattoo — especially if whatever she sacrificed was, perhaps, an addiction to the idea of dating Chmerkovskiy.