What Does RUOK Mean in a Text?

RUOK means "Are You OK?".

The abbreviation RUOK is used with the meaning "Are You OK?", which is an interrogative phrase, typically used as a genuine enquiry as to someone's wellbeing.

Unlike abbreviations such as HAY (How Are You?) and HAYD (How Are You Doing?), RUOK usually expresses concern for the other person and implies that an answer is expected. It is often used following a traumatic event or when someone's behaviour is strange or out-of-character.

R U OK? is an Australian suicide prevention organisation founded in 2009. Every September, R U OK? organises a national day of action called "R U OK? Day."

Image for RUOK

When I write RUOK, I mean this:

meaning of RUOK

RUOK is usually a genuine question.

Summary of Key Points

"Are You OK?" is the most common definition for RUOK on Snapchat, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.
Definition:Are You OK?
Guessability:guessability level 1
1: Easy to guess
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

Examples of RUOK in Sentences

Here are examples of RUOK being used in conversations:
  • Miriam: You're quiet today. RUOK?
  • Joel: Yes thanks. I'm just tired.
  • (Here, RUOK expresses genuine concern.)
  • Mel: You sit down, I'll do the dishes.
  • Les: What?! RUOK?
  • (Here, RUOK expresses surprise at behaviour that is out of character.)

An Academic Look at RUOK

RUOK plays the role of an interrogative sentence (i.e., a question), but it is commonly seen without a question mark. It can be written "RUOK?" or "RUOK".

As it is pronounced using its individual letters (i.e., "Arr Yoo Oh Kay"), RUOK is classified as an initialism abbreviation. Initialisms are different to acronyms, which are spoken like words.

What Did We Say before Texting and Social Media?

Before the digital era, we might have just said "Are You OK" or something like "Do You Feel Alright?" instead of using the abbreviation RUOK.

Example of RUOK Used in a Text

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