13 Reasons Why is a TV series based on a book written by Jay Asher and adapted for a series on Netflix. It's about a girl in high school who commits suicide after feeling discouraged and hurt by traumatic circumstances. The story is regrettably real. Hannah Baker, the protagonist, details why she is going to take her life and who's responsible for her misery. She names 12 people she blames for her pain, be it for bullying, driving under the influence of alcohol, rape, or other traumas. Finally, she ends her life in a very cruel and descriptive manner for the audience.
This series has become very popular. Some say that it has even glamorized the concept of suicide, so much so that it's on the tongue of every youth. The majority of youth confront the idea of death and fantasize about how they will die. In most cases, the fantasy of committing suicide ends there, with an understanding that life is a gift that should not be taken for granted. However, the statistics are overwhelming.
Suicide is the third-leading cause of death for 15 to 24 year olds, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), after accidents and homicide. It's also thought that at least 25 attempts are made for every completed teen suicide. The risk of suicide increases dramatically when kids and teens have access to firearms at home, and nearly 60% of all suicides in the United States are committed with a gun.
This is a cause for reflection. It makes us wonder what factors could be contributing to a young person feeling so overwhelmed by life. We understand that there are many reasons to feel that life has no meaning, among them, not being able to compete in a society that insists on productivity, not meeting personal expectations or not meeting the expectations of parents to be successful. It is important, however, to remember that “success” is relative. Other times, we may feel disconnected from family, or disconnected from society. We may also be experiencing a phase of fatalism, a sense of not belonging or being invisible.
While it's a fact that youth flirt with the idea of committing suicide, adults might not speak about it, but this doesn’t mean that they're not thinking about it. Many adults contemplate suicide when feeling hopeless.
1. LIFE is an invitation to learn, a school. We can learn something from every moment, good or bad.
2. LIFE is not static, it's in constant movement, much like the waves of the ocean. Each wave that comes brings with it new experiences, and each one is different. So just like the bad ones can sometimes show no mercy, the good ones also come and refresh us. Nothing last forever.
3. LIFE is a gift; some beings (children) depart too soon and don’t have the fortune to know life. Those who have it should enjoy it.
4. LIFE is not only our own. It also belongs to those who surround us. We should take care of ourselves because we are important to others, even when sometimes we are not aware of that.
5. Each new day is a new experience. If we don't live it, we don't know what we’re missing.
6. We are the designers of our LIFE; it is our challenge to find beauty when just the opposite happens. It is possible and also brings rewards.
7. We all live through experiences that leave scars. However, there is always someone to give us a hand during those difficult times. The important thing is to accept that help. This is a lesson in and of itself.
8. Making an effort and dealing with problems makes us aware of how strong we really are. Therefore, all those things that upset us, are not so that we become weak, but so that we understand ourselves better and get to know who we really are.
9. To LIVE is to discover something about ourselves of which we were not aware.
10. To LIVE is to look at ourselves in the mirror and discover a message of love in our own eyes.
11. To LIVE is to allow ourselves to fall in love, with someone, with something, or with life itself.
12. If death gives meaning to life, then consider it, but in order to learn to live better.
13. Death is waiting for us anyways; why call on it before our time?