The Netflix original show 13 Reasons Why has ben getting backlash from different suicide prevention groups. The show is based on a book by the same title and co-produced by Selena Gomez.
The show tells the story of a teen who commits suicide and what happens after she leaves behind tapes explaining why she did it. The show is amazing, but that’s apparently part of the concern. One person who has some concerns about its popularity is Dan Reidenberg. Reidenberg is the executive director for Suicide Awareness Voices of Education, which is a nonprofit group that aims to help with suicide prevention. Reidenberg says:
“There is a great concern that I have … that young people are going to overidentify with Hannah in the series, and we actually may see more suicides as a result of this television series. I’ve heard from others that are really concerned because it’s so sensational and so graphic that they’re worried about the copycat effect of suicide.”
He went on to say that “The show actually doesn’t present a viable alternative to suicide, the show doesn’t talk about mental illness or depression, doesn’t name those words. My thoughts about the series are that it’s probably done more harm than any good.”
However, the book’s writer Jay Asher says that “Suicide is an uncomfortable thing to talk about, but it happens, and so we have to talk about it.”
The show’s producer’s relied on the opinions of mental health professionals extensively during the creation and execution of the show.