By Lecia Bushak July 8, 2015
Since the days of traditional sailor and prison tattoos, tattooing has truly become an art — and many people search for a specific print that holds a special meaning to them. Now, a new trend has emerged: Instead of butterflies or Chinese symbols, more and more people have been getting a semicolon tattoo.
Observers of the new semicolon tattoo trend may initially wonder: Is the tattooed person a grammar Nazi? Does the person even know what that symbol stands for? Is it a sign for a secret brotherhood that is fighting to reclaim the proper usage of the semicolon as a separator of sentence elements?
The latter might be onto something — except the semicolon tattoo is far more than just a statement about punctuation. It’s about mental health and destroying the negative stigma attached to it. If you’ve seen a person with a tiny semicolon on their wrist or arm, you’re facing someone who has overcome serious mental health issues — from depression and anxiety, to schizophrenia — and has chosen not to end their lives, but rather to move forward anew.