The singer just got some new ink, but there's more meaning than meets the eye.
It's not unusual for celebs to get tattoos, and generally, they tend to set the trends in ink. That's why when Selena Gomez posted about her new permanent body art, we took notice. The singer hit up a tattoo studio with two actors from the cast of the Netflix show she produced, 13 Reasons Why, and the tats they left with are definitely important. (BTW, find out why breastfeeding tattoos are the latest trend in ink.)
Gomez, Tommy Dorfman, and Alisha Boe got matching semicolon tattoos on their wrists, which stand for suicide prevention and mental health awareness. The symbol was popularized by Project Semicolon, and the founder of the organization, Amy Bleuel, explained it to The Mighty a couple of years ago, saying, "In literature, an author uses a semicolon to not end a sentence but to continue on. We see it as you are the author and your life is the sentence. You're choosing to keep going." Considering that the plot of 13 Reasons Why is based around a teen's suicide, it makes sense that the cause would be close to the hearts of the team who worked on it.
But that's not the only reason mental health awareness is so important to the show's cast. In his caption, Dorfman said, "I struggled with addiction and depression issues through high school and early college. I reached out and asked for help. At the time, I thought my life was over, I thought I'd never live past the age of 21. Today I'm grateful to be alive, in this new chapter of life in recovery, standing with my colleagues and friends, making art that helps other people." (Related: Facebook & Twitter Are Rolling Out New Features to Protect Your Mental Health)
Gomez has also been open about her struggles with anxiety, panic attacks, and depression, sharing that they were the cause behind her decision to take a break from the public eye last year. While it's undoubtedly difficult for those under the microscope to tell the world about their toughest moments, they're doing an amazing thing by bringing attention to issues that affect a huge segment of the population. Here's hoping more celebs use their platforms to address these important concerns. After all, awareness saves lives.
If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, you can contact Crisis Text Line by texting "START" to 741-741 or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. For more information on suicide prevention and awareness, visit 13ReasonsWhy.info.