Friday, 14 April 2017

The real world is where the monsters are- End episode of '13 Reasons Why' and THAT scene

I want to continue my argument again why a show just as '13 reasons why' is so important. I am just so glad its sparked up conversations that need to be addressed. Everyone is thinking about the after math of a suicide now. In classic self driven society fashion though, some people are STILL letting the main messages fly straight over their heads. Saying that the suicide at the end is 'glamorised' and doesn't capture what an actual suicide 'looks like'. There is also the argument that it will 'send people to react the scene' if triggered. 

The final scene we are shown Hannah standing in front of the mirror with a blank expression. Although its not said what state of mind she is in, she either had dissociated to the point of not being aware of what she is about to do, or she has been driven into psychosis. Either way it is evident she is in a irrational head space. Hannah runs the water to fill up the bath tub. Fully clothed, she sinks into the tubs with the razors on the side. She then ends her life by cutting her writs. She bleeds to death in the bath. 

The Netflix series have adapted their own portrayal of Hannah's Suicide for one soul purpose- to show a suicide horrifically in a realistic approach. The choice to portray it in such a graphic manner has caused a lot of controversy. Jay Asher who wrote the novel has spoken out about the suicide in the end episode- 

"They felt for a tv series, if you're going to watch it, you want to show it as horrific as it actually is. So the way she does it, you cant watch it and feel like its glamorised in any way. It looks painful, and then when she's found by her parents, it absolutely destroys them". 

The screenwriter and show creator Brian Yorke also said they wanted it to be painful to watch. They wanted the message to be clear that there is nothing worthwhile about a Suicide. The reason I do believe there is such an uproar response is because society is still refusing to accept Suicide for what it actually is. A glamorised version of Hannah's death would of left you feeling relieved and sympathetic. This scene how ever, leaves you feeling gut wrenching nausea, tears streaming down your face and distressed. There is nothing wrong with feeling like this after watching something so confronting (there are trigger warnings at the start, and if you really are struggling but are curious to watch it, make sure you self care or be accompanied by someone). 

It still dumb founds me that people still aren't getting the message of this show. I have read some poorly written articles aimed at what they are trying to do (13 reasons why is an insult to mental health, 13 reasons is a suicide manual). Would we all have out cry if Hannah died peacefully from a over dose in her room with the doors shut? We wouldn't. Because we have such a 'out of sight, out of mind' mentality in society, you would be able to show your care by a sympathetic 'Aww, thats so sad' gesture. As soon as you are confronted with the truths of a Suicide. people still want to ignore the truth, run from it and shut the front door. Turn the blind eye, ignorance is bliss. 

Another thing bought to my attention is how they think Hannah has 'manipulated' the whole Suicide and placed blame on to others, which is another myth attached to Suicide. Hannah has not planned this the whole time. Her tapes were made in a day when she made her plan to end her life. She wasn't in a rational mind frame due to all the over whelming emotions and the isolation she was feeling. Hannah never said 'such and such is the reason why I chose to do this'. Hannah takes you through all the actions that impacted her leading up to her death. That isn't manipulation or making people take full responsibility. The actions impacted her and finally they over whelmed her to the point she broke. Wether you want to believe it or not, all the actions played a part in her death. This show is showing us to be better, not deny the truths around you. 

We need to stop living in a pigeon hole mentality. For example, just because your suicide ideation is different reality to the one portrayed in the show, doesn't mean the shows portrayal is 'wrong'. A lot of people have been Hannah in that bath room before. Think twice before you tear this show down and view it with an open mind. There is a lot of truth in the end episode and its up to us to start changing our views and confronting this issue instead of continually running from the reality of it. in the real world, this suicide does happen. I am sorry it doesn't have room in your fantasy world where you refuse to see it for what it really is. 

Hannah died by Suicide. Wether she had an undiagnosed mental illness or not, the end result reflected her internal battle. We as a society should not be arguing the method in which someone does when it comes to a suicide. I understand this show is fictional, but is based on the reality of suicide. We cant sit back and say 'in real life she wouldn't of taken her life'. A lot of people's mental experiences are different, wether it be a mental health issue or a mental illness. We aren't the ones who decide in the way someone takes their life. The main point is Suicide happens and the stigma around it is still a huge problem. Its up to YOU to make a difference by confronting it for what it really is- A tragic and horrific way to die. 

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