Sat. Dec 14th, 2019

13 REASONS WHY: HELPFUL WARNING

If you are not familiar with “13 Reasons Why,” the infamous teen Netflix drama based on the 2007 novel written by Jay Asher, it explores the story of a teenage girl who decides to end her life after a string of horrific events.

When I first heard the premise before the series premiered in 2017, I was both intrigued and hesitant. How could a premise for a television show marketed to teenagers be so controversial? I wasn’t sure how it would be received by audiences. However, shortly after premiering, the series garnered a massive amount of conversation on social media. People of all ages and backgrounds were tweeting and posting about the series and the impact it had on them. A lot of the feedback was positive in its courage to explore sensitive material, portrayal of modern youth and representation of characters existing outside of their typical television tropes.

Nonetheless, the series did receive a lot of backlash, specifically for its graphic depiction of the main character’s suicide. Three seasons of the show have aired and so far the series has portrayed controversial subjects such as suicide, sexual assault of both men and women, domestic abuse, and abortion among many other things.

 “13 Reasons Why” demands to be talked about. The very existence of the show depends on controversy and discussion. But isn’t that the point? Shouldn’t these topics be discussed rather than swept under the rug? The show explores the realities of teenagers dealing with bullying, depression, mental health and sexual assault. Sure the depictions may be dramaticized for effect, but real teenagers around the world deal with these issues.

According to a study from Northwestern University’s Center on Media and Human Development, 78 percent of viewers believed that the series helped them understand that their actions can have an impact on others and around half of all viewers reported seeking information about sexual assault, depression, suicide and bullying.

The series also offers a Crisis Textline after every episode for those who are struggling. Whether you are a fan of the show or completely against it, the show sparks a discussion that is relevant and important. Talking about the issues that this show tackles opens up the possibility to provide resources and help for those who may really need it.

If you or someone you know is in crisis or struggling with suicidal thoughts, reach out for help. Text REASON to 741741, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.

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1 thought on “13 REASONS WHY: HELPFUL WARNING

  1. I have just read Alex and Raquel’s articles and agree with them both. The state of Utah and Logan have really done a number and have to take some of the blame.
    However, the college itself offers places to hang out. I visited the student center several times in the past few years, and it has never seemed fully used.
    The loss of the store was crazy, but how hard did anyone try to save it. What you have now is an opportunity to create your own environments . Let the Mayor of Price know who you are and what you want, sure, but also what you are willing to contribute to make it happen.
    What will not happen is the return of major department stores. Shopping on line has killed that. The only surviving shopping centers are high end or bulk stores.
    You have to patronize the businesses that exist, and ask them if they will be willing to make any changes to attract more students. Money talks, they are not there to make your every wish come true, so be realistic. Talk with the County too; they have amazing facilities at the fairgrounds. Maybe, with your help, they could institute some evening uses of these spaces. Beware, though, it is usually about liability and maintenance with public facilities,
    Now’s your chance to learn, use, and extend your work skills.

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