Punctuation can be powerful.
Amy Bleuel battled addiction, mental illness, self-harm, and suicidal thoughts after her father took his own life when she was only 18 years old.
Bleuel wanted to honor her father’s memory, and got a tattoo of a semicolon. It soon launched an organization—and a global movement—to support those struggling with the same afflictions.
Project Semicolon is a faith-based non-profit that encourages and supports people with depression, addiction, and thoughts of self-injury or suicide.
— Project Semicolon™ (@ProjSemicolon) July 3, 2015
The organization explained the significance of this particular punctuation, writing “[a] semicolon is used when an author could’ve chosen to end their sentence, but chose not to. The author is you and the sentence is your life.” Since its beginning in 2013, Project Semicolon has gained worldwide attention and support, with the semicolon tattoo spreading in solidarity.
Project Semicolon does not offer a direct helpline, but instead brings those battling depression together through their inspirational messages, blogs, and other resources.
— Liam Corrigan (@designgenesis) July 7, 2015
Bleuel, a Christian, intends for the organization to offer a message that “Hope is Alive.”
“When the foundation of this project was created those involved reflected on what got them to where they are today. The answer was clear that it was the love of Christ,” Bleuel wrote on the Project Semicolon website. “As we set forth in the project, we committed to loving with a Christ-like love those who are struggling. We inspire others through the very thing that brought us to continuance in our own stories. This by no means excludes any other beliefs or religions, as we accept them all.”
— Bianca Solari (@bcsolari) July 3, 2015
“For we are all in this together. I ask you stick around with us for this journey. We might surprise you in the end with the outcome,” Bleuel concluded.