Honestly, ‘13 Reasons Why’ Is The Most Important Media In Today’s Society

YouTube / ’13 Reasons Why’

13 Reasons Why is the most important media in our society today. I believe that with my whole heart. This series is the first thing I’ve ever seen that portrays suicide in a realistic and graphic (or are those two the same?) way.

I have seen so many articles and different comments talking negatively about this series and it makes me incredibly sad and a little bit pissed off if I’m being honest. I can understand the perspective of thinking that this will negatively affect suicidal adolescents, but I can also wholeheartedly disagree with that perspective.

One of the main arguments I’ve seen suggesting that this series has a negative impact is people saying that this “glorifies” suicide. Like-what? I don’t understand how watching a suicide from beginning to end is glorifying anything. In this series, you watch a teenage girl named Hannah Baker turn on the water in her bathtub, grab the brand new razor blades she stole from her parents’ store, get in the bathtub with her clothes on, pull up her sleeves, and run the blade all the way up her wrist, with blood pouring out of her body until she dies. How is that glorifying anything? You watch as her parents open the bathroom door and find her lifeless body with the water still running.

Is that glorifying suicide? No. It’s graphic and it’s real. It’s not glorifying.

Some have said, “Look at all the attention Hannah gets after she kills herself. Now kids are going to start killing themselves for that kind of attention.” THIS is the kind of crap that is wrong with our culture and mental health stigma.

People are not taking their own lives because of the attention they’ll get when they’re dead. (Obviously that attention will not matter to them at that point) People are taking their own lives because THEY DO NOT WANT TO LIVE IN THIS WORLD ANYMORE. That is what’s important here.

People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.
People are not killing themselves for attention.

Hannah Baker never said, “I’m going to kill myself so that these kids at my school can see how much they hurt me and then feel bad.”

She said, “The world would be a better place without me in it. I do not want to live anymore because I keep causing problems.” She then thought, “If I’m going to stop existing, I want the people I’m leaving behind to know the reasons why I chose to end it all.”

This series is important because it shows the struggles that almost every high schooler in America faces; depression, bullying, suicide, drugs, rape, abuse, homelessness. It shows teenagers that they are not alone. It shows adults the reality of what students are facing today.

I’m not sharing this because I want to tell people that I think they’re wrong. I am sharing this from the heart of a soon-to-be school counselor who wants to help teenagers more than anything in life. I am sharing this from the heart of a youth leader who has talked to teenage girls on the phone telling me they don’t want to live any more. More personally, I’m sharing this from the heart of a girl who used to think life wasn’t worth it, from a heart that used to have to fight through every tear to get to the next beat, from lungs that have wondered countless times what it would take to just stop breathing, from hands that have held all the pills that could fit wondering how they would all taste going down.

When I didn’t think that this life was worth it, I never thought, “I want to kill myself so that people see how important I am.” I never thought, “If I kill myself, then I’ll have all of the love and attention I am longing for.” I only thought of not existing and how that meant my pain would finally stop. I never thought about the life I would leave behind or the impact my life had on others.

But Hannah Baker and 13 Reasons Why is teaching us all that as much of an impact other people have on our lives, we have just as much of an impact on everyone we know. Hannah Baker taught us that the world only gets darker once you leave. Hannah Baker taught us that we all matter. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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