The SemiColon Translation – Not Just a Punctuation Mark

I’ve been seeing the semicolon symbol a lot on social media, and I’m identifying with it and sharing its other story here today. It’s also a symbol of courage that simply uses the punctuation mark to tell the world, our story isn’t over. It could have ended with a period, but the semicolon allows the story to continue.

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Grammarly shared a post about this stating:

“A semicolon is used when an author could have chosen to end their sentence, but chose not to. The author is you, and the sentence is your life.”

It was posted in 2015 by Grammarly, but has subsequently been recirculating and being used for suicide prevention advocating – the new significance of survival. – Project Semicolon

This punctuation mark has become a symbol for hope for anyone suffering depression, addiction, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, and more of the same. You may have come across some of these posts on social media. Marketing has joined in with creating everything from jewelry, Tshirts, and more with the semicolon design. Many sufferers of depression have also tattooed this symbol somewhere on their person. The symbol was created to change the stigma and to help inspire others who walk the fine line of suicidal thoughts, and for showing solidarity against suicide, depression, addictions and other mental health struggles, inspiring strength for the suffering.

Grammarly shares a post about this symbol and talks about Amy Bleuel who began the nonprofit ‘project suicide’ back in 2013. She created the symbol to be used for more than just a punctuation mark after her own father committed suicide. Sadly, she took her own life in 2017.

Our world is getting infinitely harder for many of us to cope in. The statistics on suicide are growing enormously, and these don’t even apply to the same category with those who suffer actual mental illness. One does not have to suffer mental illness to take themselves to the dark side. I can attest to how devastating events in life can push our minds to some places we’d never thought we’d ever go to when provoked by emotional distress, loneliness or grieving.

The significance related to the punctuation mark is, a story of horrific pain is a mere pause in life, but life can continue. Problems, events, situations are temporary, but suicide is permanent. A reminder that life will go on and not be ended, symbolizing a continuation of life even when life throws us unbearable times.

Please, if you are someone contemplating self harm, or know someone who has reached this dark place, share this post and call your country’s national suicide prevention hotline:

In the U.S. call       1-800-273-8255   https://afsp.org/get-help 

Or simply dial #988

In Canada call        833-456-4566      https://talksuicide.ca/

In the U.K. there are various numbers listed on the NHS website  https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/feelings-symptoms-behaviours/behaviours/help-for-suicidal-thoughts/

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There is always hope. Most of the suicides can be prevented if the distressed person could just have someone to talk to. If you know someone who has experienced, or living a tragedy, life altering situation, or severely depressed, and they aren’t acting like their usual selves, closing themselves off to friends and loved ones, or just disappears from their social circles, please check up on them.

These numbers can be called when desperation reigns, be it thoughts about suicide, surviving a suicide attempt, or deep distorting thoughts for the grieving.

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https://www.grammarly.com/blog/why-a-semicolon-tattoo-is-the-most-beautiful-tattoo/

©DGKaye2022

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You Never Know the Silent Load that Somebody may be Carrying

Be kind

You Never Know the Silent Load Somebo

dy May be Carrying.

63 thoughts on “The SemiColon Translation – Not Just a Punctuation Mark

  1. It had completely escaped my attention, Debby, but it is a very good idea and it expresses an important message very well. Thanks for sharing this important post, Debby. I can add that people in Spain can phone 024 for help with suicidal ideation. (This is a recent but welcome addition). And from a professional perspective, and talking to people who might be worried about somebody else, many people have the misconception that asking about suicidal ideas can drive people to suicide or put new thoughts in their heads. That is not the case. So, if you are worried about somebody else, don’t hesitate to ask and offer any support you can. And yes, recommend the phone numbers above, or to get in contact with health services. Stay safe. ♥

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    1. Thank you so much Olga for adding to the conversation and sharing the Spain help number. And yes, these numbers are so important for anyone dealing with a contemplative suicidal situation, for concerned loved ones too. I hope my post can spread some awareness. Hugs ❤

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  2. This us such an important subject matter. Suicide has increased dramatically the last couple of years especially in our younger generation.
    Mental health is often hidden in disguise, and erupts tragically for many unsuspecting families.
    Thank you for sharing this Debby. 🙏 💚💕💚

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    1. You are so right Sue. And in light of the so many contemplating their end, and for those who can overcome and survive, I am happy to spread the awareness. Hugs xoxo ❤

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  3. An interesting look at the little semi-colon and what it can stand for. And it’s good to know there is help out there for those who have lost hope. Thanks for sharing, Debby.

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  4. Debby, thank you so much for sharing this helpful post! I, too, was unaware of the significance of the semicolon.
    So many people are suffering. Not many know where to turn hopefully, this will help.
    Blessings~💖

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  5. Thank you for this post, Debby, and for bringing the attention to depression and suicide. Not many people are aware of the alternate meaning of the semicolon. As a matter of fact, I only learned about this earlier this year, when we made new friends in Baja and one of them had a semicolon tattoo on his arm – a sign, support, and memory of his brother who committed suicide a few years ago.

    On that topic, never have I understood the need to take your own life as much as this year. Like you, I can totally understand (and even respect) why someone commits suicide. Life can throw you a lot of punches and sometimes, it can get too much. And I’m not even talking about people with mental issues…

    My heart goes out to anyone dealing with depression, things going wrong, helplessness, frustration, and despair these months and years, where the negativity doesn’t seem to stop. It’s all too real and all too close.

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    1. Thank you so much for joining in the conversation Liesbet. There are many with these tattoos – sadly. And in these trying times, so many are facing so much. When people are overwhelmed to the max, bad things can happen. So I thought it would be important to post about. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I didn’t know about the semi colon, Debby. Good post about something a lot people like to ignore.

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  7. This is a beautiful awareness piece, Deb. Thank you so much for sharing. That last quote is a powerful reminder. “You never know the silent load somebody might be carrying. BE KIND.” So TRUE. xx

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  8. An important post Debby and simply expressed and relateable for anyone who is going through depression across its many faces. I understand the numbness that follows pain and it was not always possible to have an honest dialogue about those feelings without facing either inane response such as ‘pull yourself together’ from professional ‘healthcare’ experts or the ‘you are just trying to seek attention’ from those closer to you. Today there are people who understand and will listen and hopefully pull those feeling suicidal back from the brink. But that person needs to reach out… ♥♥

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    1. Absolutely Sal. The stigma has been broken. But there are so many, especially the young ones who don’t get the proper support, or are afraid to talk to their own family. Sometimes reaching out to a friend or a stranger is the best medicine – non judgmental or critical. There are always signs. It would be nice if people would take heed and recognize when things aren’t as they should be. Asking for help can be a difficult thing. I know this first hand. ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I was not aware of the semicolon’s connection to suicide prevention. There are far too many judgmental people in the world commenting on others’ freedoms and choices. Not only do we not have the right to judge others, but we also don’t know of the internal/external struggles that others are going through.

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    1. That’s is exactly the point Pete. I am hoping to spread the awareness, and hoping by explaining the meaning of this symbol, I am doing my part. ❤

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  10. Human pain is universal. But it takes courageous people like you to actually talk about it. So, dear lady, you shine light on hidden pain. Thank you. And take good care.

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  11. Hi Debby – not ‘doing’ social media … I rather pass these things by. But I did take note … and I try and find where people are at in their lives if I think something needs consideration – but I hadn’t realised this aspect. Thanks for letting us know, so we can be aware – all the best – Hilary

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  12. What an interesting take on semi colon! Yes, there is so much hidden in this little punctuation mark, often neglected by many. Thank you for looking beyond the obvious Deb.

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  13. I haven’t heard of this before about the semi-colon, Debby, but what a wonderful way to bring awareness. Thanks for sharing and I hope it helps those who suffer with depression. ❤️

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  14. A family friend lost her husband to suicide a few years ago. It shocked me deeply. I had no idea (as I’m sure his family didn’t) that there was any depression. He was always smiling and friendly, cuddling with her in the restaurant. I’ve never forgotten him.
    This is an important subject, Debby, thanks opening our hearts to the issue.

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    1. I’m so sorry to hear Jacquie. Your story reminds me of how many comedians really fight depression and disguise it til it’s too late. Think Robin Williams, et al. So very sad. I am happy to share the awareness. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I never knew about how the semi-colon has become a symbol, and what a beautiful idea. Thanks for sharing this info for us – we all need to understand and acknowledge the pain so many are feeling.

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  16. That’s a very important post, Debby, and I especially agree with your final message to be kind. I wasn’t aware of the semicolon’s other use and its associated project. How sad that its founder took her own life. Hopefully many other lives have been saved by it.

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  17. Thank you for sharing Debby.

    This is very important information. Sometimes we need to rest before moving forward.

    To all those who struggle, there is so much help out there. Keep reaching out. It a sign of strength.
    Many Blessings
    Lisa
    Xoxo

    Like

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