Tai Justice staff writer
I watched all three seasons of “13 Reasons Why.” I find the show interesting and honestly addicting. It’s one of those shows that you have to see the end. I understand why people watch it, but don’t find it helpful to people with mental health problems for a bunch of reasons.
Reason No. 1: I feel using suicide as a revenge tactic (which is what the show did in season one) is not a healthy or productive message to the audience, especially to people struggling with depression already. Seeing it played out that way can again bring the wrong message to the viewers.
Now, the spokesperson for Net ix said that it wasn’t meant to be portrayed that way, but it’s very easy for people to make the assumption that was the case with Hannah Baker in the first season of the show.Reason No. 2: The show only showed the negative affects of seeking help when dealing with thoughts of suicide and depression. In season one, Hannah goes to her high school counselor on one of the last episodes before she commits suicide to tell him about what happened to her and how she’s been feeling. She was clearly upset and needed someone in that moment and the counselor basically shrugs off her problems and tells her to deal with it.
Again, that’s putting the wrong idea in people’s heads about reaching out for help. When dealing with suicidal thoughts, depression, anxiety, whatever the case may be, the thought of putting yourself out there and opening up to someone is already intimidating. Visually seeing someone reach out and basically have their problems not taken seriously can be enough for someone to end up not getting help when they should. Reason No. 3: I feel as if the show puts out a misleading message. One of my many thoughts after watching the show was, “if you’re nice to people stuff like this won’t happen.” Which, of course we should be kind, caring and considerate of everyone’s feelings.
Treat people like you want to be treated, all that. I agree on all that, but mental problems are deeper than that. That’s a step, the show should have gone deeper into how to prevent that from
happening more than just being nice to people. Suicide is much
more complicated than that. I think a show like this can be helpful, but “13 Rea- sons Why” missed how to be helpful for people with those type of thoughts and problems. The audience sees Hannah’s life through the tapes and doesn’t hear the other side of the story to those people on the tapes.
While the people she went to school with may have treated her poorly or harmed her emotionally, they are also teenagers who are also trying to find their way. We all can relate to how hard mentally high school can be at times and I think it can be hard for kids at that age to realize what someone else is going through.