10 Best Survivor Tattoo Ideas You Have To See To Believe!

by Patrick
Survivor Tattoos

Want a survivor tattoo that reflects your strong will to live through all the hurdles in life? We have curated the best for you.

Survivor Tattoo
@kristinevodon via Instagram

It is rightfully said that God helps those who help themselves.

Life is a never-ending inevitable cycle. Growing up, we have all realised that life is all about surviving through the hurdles and growing a little more every day.

Tattoos are a permanent decision and that’s why when one plans on getting one, naturally they often look for something that defines them or tells their personal story. If you are wondering what survivor tattoos mean, these are, in a simple term, a reminder of how strong one can be. When life hits you hard and tends to hold you down, it can be a real task to remember the good things and you could easily start underestimating yourself. These tattoos are a great way to remind us each and every day when we wake up that whatever life throws at us, is only a test to make us stronger than yesterday. Our mind is a fragile little thing and it deserves a lot more love and care than it receives. If you too have been looking for a self-reflective tattoo and are proud of how you have come out gracefully through the atrocities of life, these personal and beautiful survivor tattoo inspirations are here to help you remember your strength and how nothing, no matter what, can bring you down.

Sexual Assault Survivors Tattoo

Sexual Assault Survivors Tattoo
@denzellextattoo via Instagram

Surviving a sexual assault can be traumatising. So much, that one could have the effects of that one unfortunate incident for the rest of their life. This tattoo, name ‘Fire rose unity tattoo’, was created by one of the survivors who joined Lady Gaga onstage for her performance ‘Til it happens to you’, written with the intention to educate people about sexual assault. This tattoo features a unity symbol inspired by our DNA structure symbolising infinity incorporated with the symbol of Lady Gaga’s favourite flower, the white rose and a fiery shape to symbolise power and strength. This tattoo is a reminder that the sexual assault was not the fault of the victim and that one should never blame themselves for what happened because this body and our mind are too precious to let it be consumed by it and that we are strong and nothing or no one will ever dim our fire against the evil. Get this tattoo to acknowledge your strong will to survive and not give in to evil. Alternatively, you can also get a little creative and combine a butterfly symbol with this tattoo like the one below.

Sexual Assault Survivors Tattoos
@three.goes.my.sanity via Instagram

Breast Cancer Survivor Tattoo

Breast Cancer Survivor Tattoo
@craftmanstattoo via Instagram

Cancer is a dreadful evil and although there is no promising cure for cancer, this evil has surely been defeated by millions so far and all that it takes from your side, is a strong will to live life the next day and a positive mindset. Over millions of women around the world are diagnosed with breast cancer each year and if you were diagnosed with breast cancer and survived it, words would fail to express how proud we are for you. Pink ribbon is the symbol for breast cancer that is universally used during breast cancer awareness campaigns and survivors often seek for a pink ribbon tattoo like this to speak for their cancer fight. If you have had a mastectomy, scars are inevitable and survivors have also been found to look out for mastectomy tattoos to decorate their breasts like this one below.

Breast Cancer Survivor Tattoos
@pinkinkfund via Instagram

Semicolon Tattoo

Semicolon Tattoo
@nextwavetattoo via Instagram

A semicolon mark, in punctuation, means the sentence could have ended right there, but the author, however, chose not to. In terms of a tattoo, the sentence becomes a metaphor for life. This sign is used as a symbol of affirmation and solidarity against depression, addictions, anxiety and other mental health issues. Mental illness can make one feel lonely and can evoke suicidal ideation, but trust us when we say this, you are not alone in this fight. Healing from a mental health issue is a journey of its own and we know how hard it can be to remember all that you learnt from your therapy sessions. This semicolon tattoo is therefore a great reminder that you are strong, beautiful and worthy, and that everything will be alright.

Stroke Survivor Tattoo

Stroke Survivor Tattoo
@tattoocharm via Instagram

A stroke occurs when the brain suffers a bleeding or blocked blood vessel, or the blood supply to the brain is blocked. Strokes require immediate medical emergency attention and could be life-threatening. However, people do survive and life after a stroke often comes with a price. Symptoms post-stroke include paralysis, difficulty speaking, depression, and many more. Although a few of them would go away within a few hours or days, most major symptoms last for a lifetime. Stroke might have its own adversities, but surviving an accident like this is a miracle and shows how much your body loves you and needs to be cared for. This tattoo featuring the brain incorporated with blooming flowers is a perfect tattoo for a strong survivor like you.

Domestic Violence Survivor Tattoo

Domestic Violence Survivor Tattoo
@akimicoco via Instagram

Domestic violence ranges from physical abuse to sexual and mental abuse. Living in a controlled environment, domestic violence in any form can have a huge impact on one’s mental well being and is a great criminal offence. Often people are found to be silencing themselves because they would fear the social stigmas or even the abuser. However, awareness campaigns are now helping people believe that there is always help and support if they try to seek it. The purple ribbon is used to promote awareness about domestic violence and if you have fought your fear and the fight with the abuser, you deserve a beautiful domestic abuse survivor tattoo like this one to let everyone know that you are strong inside out and no one can change that.

Anxiety Survivor Tattoo

Anxiety Survivor Tattoo
@ballistixz via Instagram

Anxiety is an unexplainable feeling of fear, dread and uneasiness that can easily disrupt one’s day-to-day activity. Anxiety can make one underestimate themselves and could also result in suicidal thoughts. Mental health awareness has been helping a lot of people learn and understand their unexplainable sudden trauma attacks that are similar yet not the same as panic attacks and have finally helped them blame it all on ‘anxiety’. It can often be hard to remember all the good things while having an anxiety attack and living with anxiety can be really exhausting. A tattoo can prove to be contributing a great deal to your healing process and if you have been through the fight with anxiety and want a reminder of how strong you are, a tattoo like this is a great idea for you.

PTSD Survivor Tattoo

PTSD Survivor Tattoo
@jobs_liberty via Instagram

Post-traumatic stress disorder refers to the lingering trauma that stays on for days, months or even for years in many cases. People struggling with PTSD could find themselves constantly being trapped within the flashbacks of their trauma and like any other mental health illness, PTSD too could take a huge toll on our day-to-day life. The symbol for PTSD awareness is teal and with a teal symbol as a tattoo on your skin, you could express your fight with PTSD. If you are feeling a little creative and want to spice up your tattoo that tells your personal story, you could also get a tattoo like this one below.

PTSD Survivor Tattoos
@sean.new.ingk via Instagram

Depression Survivor Tattoo

Depression Survivor Tattoo
@gabrielleperritte via Instagram

Depression is a very common mental health illness that involves the loss of interest in literally everything and feeling of nothingness. Depression disrupts our daily activities and, if remain untreated, could also evoke suicidal thoughts. If you have been diagnosed with depression and are fighting against it, we want you to know that you are strong and that there is help out there. If you want a tattoo to accompany you on your journey to heal from a mental illness like depression, we have the perfect idea for you. This tattoo featuring a serotonin structure with a few floral designs is the perfect therapeutic tattoo for your illness. Serotonin is the hormone that is responsible for our mood, and feelings of happiness and when imbalanced, that is when one feels depressed.

Self Harm Survivor Tattoo

Self Harm Survivor Tattoo
@unscarredfilm via Instagram

Self-harm is the urge to deliberately hurt oneself. This usually stems out from either some mental illness or a strong hatred towards oneself and one’s life. Like we mentioned earlier, life is too beautiful and precious. We breathe and that is a miracle in itself. Although self-harm is deliberate, the urges are not something that one usually has control over and to treat self-harm issues, one has to deal with the underlying mental condition. A lot of people have self-harmed themselves and have also recovered and started a new life full of love and happiness. However, the scars stay permanent and as a reminder of their personal battle against themselves, tattoo enthusiasts often choose a scar cover up tattoo over their self-harm scars like this one in this picture.

Survivor Quote Tattoo

Survivor Quote Tattoo
@maloustattooing via Instagram

Sure symbolic tattoos are really inspiring, but so are simple words that define a lot more than the length of these sentences. This tattoo features the quote that says “If the hurt comes, so will the happiness”. This tattoo is a tiny aesthetic ray of sunshine into the lives of people struggling with themselves, mind or body. If you want a tattoo that encourages love, happiness and acts as a reminder every day that life has a lot more good things in store for you, this tattoo is the perfect option for your next trip to the tattoo studio.

We are sure that you have found your favourite tattoo that brings new hope into your life and brightens your every day from now on. If you have been struggling with any mental health issues, please make sure to call your national helpline number and talk to a professional. You are worth a lot more than this and we promise it will all be fine. There can never be you and therefore, please do take care of yourself.

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