Acronyms dictionary

KMS

or kms [ key-em-es ]

What does KMS mean?

KMS is an internet shorthand for kill myself. It is generally used as a melodramatic expression of frustration or disgust or a more serious expression of discomfort or sadness. KMS is sometimes short for kilometers.

Content warning: This article deals with the sensitive topic of suicide and an internet culture that, unfortunately, sometimes makes light of it. If you (or anyone you know) are thinking about attempting suicide, please call the toll-free, 24/7 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. 

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Related words

KMSL, SMH, 🙃 Upside-Down Face emoji, 🙄 Face With Rolling Eyes emoji, hello darkness, my old friend, shit just got real, fml

Where does KMS come from?

The origin of internet acronyms is always tricky to track down, but we can find KMS for kill myself on Urban Dictionary by 2007 and on Twitter by 2009. Earlier instances of KMS, often as kms, refer to kilometers, as KMS still can and does do.

The main point of KMS is hyperbole. It’s a way of registering an ironic overreaction to something upsetting but not ultimately horrible. It’s a favored shorthand for many a huffy-puffy teen. Some people will use KMS, however, to show earnest feelings of frustration and sadness, though not often corresponding to actual suicidal ideations.

Examples of KMS

$525 for my car’s registration this year, brb gonna kms
@Ronnie_p1, August, 27, 2020
KMS — An abbreviation for "kill myself," this acronym can be particularly alarming for parents. If you or hear see this in your teen's conversations, it's probably worth having a conversation with them about it.
Devan McGuinness, The Week, December 11, 2019
imagine the love of your life says they love bad bunny but then u ask them what’s their favorite song and they say mia ??? i’d kms
@callaiita__, April 30, 2020
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Who uses KMS?

KMS can refer to kilometers.

Often, KMS is used grammatically in place of kill myself, e.g., I’m going to KMS. Other times, KMS is used as a tone marker, added at the end of a statement, e.g., I’m out of Diet Coke KMS.

Although grave in literal content, KMS is used mostly as an exaggeration online and in texts in bouts of melodrama for mostly mundane irritations and inconveniences. Favorite sports team losing? KMS. Slept past the alarm? KMS.

As always, do be mindful that some may use KMS more seriously, and that discussions of suicide are sensitive to some and alarming to others.

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Note

This is not meant to be a formal definition of KMS like most terms we define on Dictionary.com, but is rather an informal word summary that hopefully touches upon the key aspects of the meaning and usage of KMS that will help our users expand their word mastery.