Have you watched the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why?
What were your thoughts on it?
Did you like it?
Every time I get on Facebook another person has an opinion on it.
As the mother of a child who committed suicide the show was very emotional for me. I could relate to the mother so much, and cried often for her loss and for mine.
Most people on Facebook say that Hannah didn’t have a good enough reason to commit suicide, or that Clay should have stuck up for her when she was alive. They also say that the movie idealizes suicide.
Everyone has an opinion, but not a single person has asked me what mine is. I wonder why? Are they afraid of upsetting me? Maybe they just don’t want to argue with me about it because they feel like their points wont be valid to me? I honestly don’t know, and I haven’t commented on anyone’s post, and I have kept my opinion to myself.
Do I think the movie idealizes suicide? Yes, but I think teenagers idealize suicide. It is the number 1 cause of death in children ages 15-24. In 2014 there were 42,773 suicides. My 16-year-old daughter was one of them. In 2015 there were 44,193 people who died from suicide. My friend Dustin was one of them, along with my friend Missy’s step daughter.
In 2016 I lost my dear friend Danielle to suicide.
My friend Lisa lost her son Jack.
My friend Stacy lost her daughter Olivia.
My friend Dan lost his daughter Elaina.
The number of suicides is on the rise, and it scares the crap out of me. It should scare you too.
I think 13 Reasons Why is something everyone should watch. Americans are so quick to get upset, offended, and beside themselves when they are taken outside of their comfort zone, and the show does just that. It’s hard to watch. Its honest. And it’s something your kids deal with everyday. I think every parent should watch it with their teen because it opens the door to a discussion that all of us need to have with our children.
You may think that your smart, beautiful, talented, happy, goofy, lovable child would NEVER even consider killing themselves….So did I.
I disagree with the show in the sense that there are not always 13 reasons.
Sometimes there is no reason at all other than mental illness.
When Juliet died I wanted answers. Everyone’s first question is always “Did they leave a note?” Juliet left 4. None of them had the answers I was looking for or listed any reasons. I knew there was a girl down the street who used to be her best friend that was bullying her. Do I think that’s what it was? No I don’t. At the time I wanted to blame someone, so in my mind it was all this girls fault. I know my Juliet was stronger than that though. She was a tough cookie.
My answers finally came a year later.
My son Justice had a really hard time with his sister’s death. He would often cry for no reason, and was known to have outbursts at home or at school. He was already seeing a psychiatrist for his ADHD, the same psychiatrist that my daughter Juliet saw. I shared my concern for Justice with him and he suggested I put him on an anti-depressant.
He asked what Juliet was on and I told him Celexa. He thought maybe it could work for Justice as well so we started him on the smallest dose. That was October, a year after Juliet’s death.
December Justice started self harming. He was only 9 years old.
He often punched himself in the face, choked himself, and slammed his head into a concrete wall.
In January I told his psychiatrist and he raised his dose.
By the end of January Justice was threatening suicide, having obsessive thoughts of cutting himself, and having violets fits of rage.
By February the school asked me to have him admitted into a psychiatric hospital. The closest bed was in Philly (over an hour away). We said “No, that’s too far away” so instead he was admitted into the Phil Haven day program.
Within 2 weeks found him with a belt around his neck, trying to kill himself.
As a mother to see your child decline so fast is heart wrenching.
I racked my brain for weeks trying to figure out what was going on with him.
Finally one day I had an “aha” moment.
I quick went to Google and there was the answer I had been searching for….
Did you know that the ONLY antidepressant FDA approved for children under the age of 18 is Prozac, and even that has dangerous side effects. Did you know that there was a class action lawsuit against the makers of Celexa because kids who were on it were committing suicide? No? Neither did I.
In children it causes anxiety, sleeplessness, fits of rage, and suicide.
The part that frustrates me the most is that my sons psychiatrist was also my daughters. He knew she was on Celexa, and he knew the risks….but he never told me. He put my son on it. Still never said a word. Then,. when I told him in great detail everything that was happening to Justice….He still didn’t tell me. He instead raised his dose making the situation even worse.
I almost lost 2 children to this horrible drug.
In all this my message to you as parents, and even for yourself…. Do you research before starting any new medication for yourself or your child. If I had Juliet might still be here. Doctors are not obligated to warn you of side effects. Even when it has caused a death to one of your children. Its our job as parents to look out for them, because as sad as it is, some doctors only care about money, and if you don’t protect your child no one will.