The Manhattan-based Jed Foundation, which works to prevent teen suicide, has prepared a tipsheet of talking points for “13 Reasons Why” to open up a dialogue between parents and kids based on how the story unfolds.
Parents of Shawnee Mission South High School students received a letter from the counseling department warning them about the popular Netflix series. Porter, their school counselor, just before the viewer is shown, proving that it’s even harder to watch than to imagine.
Most importantly, the show misrepresents those who are driven to suicide. “This is a whole television series where we watch Hannah’s life unfold and start to relate to her life before we are graphically shown her tragically dying”.
13 Reasons Why stars Australian actor Katherine Langford, Dylan Minette and Kate Walsh and counts among its executive producers, Selena Gomez.
Before she dies, she sends 13 tapes to people she believes caused her death.
Asher said it could encourage some kids to do something.
“If they talk about taking their lives, take them seriously”, she said.
This particular moment has been criticised by mental health organisations because the blunt graphic depiction of Hannah’s gory suicide is being labelled as glamourising suicide and has led to an alleged increase in calls to suicide hotlines which serves as evidence that the scene is acting as a trigger to vulnerable depressed people who are tuning in to the Netflix show. Last fall our district, with the support of our Board of Education and engagement of numerous community stakeholders, mobilized a committee to discuss the issues of mental health and suicide prevention. Many students have heard of the show “13 Reasons Why” (2017) released on Netflix.
“There’s no harm in talking about suicide but it’s got to be balanced, reasonable and include a message of hope and optimism, which is that most mental illness can be treated and suicide does not have to be the response to bullying”. The dark plot of the show has however sparked controversies among psychology and mental health experts.
So, the Central Valley School District sent a letter home to parents making them aware of the series.
The show sheds a light on important issues rarely tackled on screen, but conversations around the subject matter have been mixed.
Mental health professionals have said that just watching a series about suicide isn’t inherently unsafe, but it needs to be combined with open and honest conversation. Talk wit them about how to seek help for their friend or classmate.
If you’re at all like me, you likely have seen the new “welcome to your tape” meme and felt confused and old and scared.
Feeling distressed, depressed or suicidal?
The show is rated TV mature, but has been consumed by teens.