I came across Thirteen Reasons Why randomly on Netflix about three weeks ago. It sounded good so I decided to watch it. I didn’t know it would end up being this popular amongst young people around the world. I wouldn’t have watched if I found out about it later on, because generally I don’t jump on the bandwagon when the entire world is obsessed with something. It isn’t me.
Anyway, it was very weird and confusing during the first few episodes. This isn’t a review of the show, I wanted to address why it doesn’t help raise awareness of mental health. So this is Thirteen Reasons Why this show does more harm than good.
1. It isn’t realistic at all
2. Hannah puts the blame of her suicide on her friends, which they will have to carry around their whole life, thinking they “killed” her
3. The school only started raising awareness of suicide AFTER a suicide happened
4. After Hannah’s suicide, the school didn’t even offer help to her family and friends who are clearly affected by it – counselling would have been beneficial
5. Hannah didn’t even leave a note or even record a tape for her parents. Surely they have a right to an answer about why their daughter felt she needed to kill herself?
6. Why would you blame a suicide on someone who was “scared” to love you? Personally, I think Clay shouldn’t have been on the tapes. He did nothing wrong. You can’t save someone from suicide just by being nice to them
7. Rape shouldn’t even be justified. Justin should have confronted Bryce and told the police about what he did to Jessica. Why let it happen in the first place? It was his girlfriend!
8. Hannah should have told someone about what Bryce did to Jessica. Why would you keep that to yourself?
9. They showed Hannah actually self harming. I couldn’t watch. Why would you show a graphic scene of someone self harming really badly and bleeding to death? It triggered a couple of my friends’ self harm. It shouldn’t have been shown.
10. That scene also gave people ideas on how to go about killing themselves
11. If the show is supposed to raise awareness, then why does it not even mention the words ‘mental illness’ or ‘depression’?
12. Mr Porter telling Hannah he “can’t do anything” because she isn’t giving the name of her rapist and telling her to “just move on” is going too far. He could have got a name out of her or done something to reassure Hannah that what happened to her isn’t her fault and justice will be served. He did the opposite by telling her he can’t do anything, making her feel more worthless.
13. The show glamourises the planning stage of suicide. How Hannah records her suicide tapes, decorates them, put them into a pretty box. Realistically, people who want to kill themselves won’t even have the energy to do that as depression is draining.
Having discussed this with a lot of my friends who have mental health problems, we all came to the conclusion that the show shouldn’t be watched by those who suffer with similar issues. It brings back flashbacks and can give ideas to those who are currently mentally unstable. I personally think it should be taken down by Netflix and/or banned.