Entertainment

“13 Reasons Why” Does Much More Than Glorify Suicide, Selena Gomez Explained

Selena Gomez / 13reasonswhy / Instagram

Selena Gomez, executive producer of “13 Reasons Why,” a show that covers the aftermath of a high school student’s suicide, is the latest to come out in defense of the show’s subject matter. While “13 Reasons Why” received generally positive reviews, the show has drawn sharp criticism for what some consider its “glorification” of suicide.

In a recent radio interview, Gomez defended the show’s uncompromising depiction of suicide.

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While appearing on the Elvis Duran radio show, Gomez responded to criticism of the show’s subject matter, saying, “I think a lot of that stuff is uncomfortable for people to talk about, but it is happening. Hopefully [the show] will open the door for people to accept what’s happening and actually go and change it.” Gomez also added that in addition to suicide, “13 Reasons Why” covers several important subjects affecting teenagers — mental health, depression, bullying, sexual assault, and substance abuse — which is helping create a national conversation around these issues.

“13 Reasons Why” has been connected to several suicides and suicide attempts among teenagers since its premiere on Netflix.


While the show has achieved critical success, it hasn’t quite escaped controversy, as several suicides around the country have been blamed on the show. As the San Diego Tribune reported, many experts are concerned about how teenagers interpret the show’s message. “The show is out there. Everyone is talking about it,” clinical psychologist Azmaira Maker told the San Diego Tribune. She warned, however, “For one group of teenagers, it can be educational. But for others, it can be a high risk for triggering feelings, thoughts and ideas that may push them to more impulsive actions.”

Gomez also discussed what people can expect from season two of “13 Reasons Why.”


As Entertainment Weekly pointed out, Gomez dropped some hints about what’s in store for season 2 of “13 Reasons Why,” saying:

“In season 2 we’re going to answer a lot of questions, and a lot of resolution with the characters is going to come. We go into the resolution of where these characters are going. I was freaking out about where they were going because it was really encouraging and empowering. We’re going to take a little inspiration from the first, and bring it into the second.”

Check out Gomez’s thoughts on “13 Reasons Why,” starting at the 10:09 mark.

Elvis Duran Show / YouTube

As of now, no date has been given for the second season for “13 Reasons Why.”

(More: Entertainment Weekly)

READ: This Amazing Foundation Was Inspired By 9-Year-Old Who Built A Cardboard Arcade

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‘Jane The Virgin’ Actress Opens Up About How Anxiety Kept Her From Showing Up To Set

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‘Jane The Virgin’ Actress Opens Up About How Anxiety Kept Her From Showing Up To Set

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Even though depression, anxiety, and mental health are becoming more publicly discussed, there is a stigma attached to it. It’s still seen as a weakness instead of a disease. Mental wellness is not regarded in the same way physical wellness is. It isn’t discussed at home or at schools — making the important topic all but taboo. That’s why it is so important that we talk publicly about our struggles with mental health.

It’s with that in mind that “Jane the Virgin” star Gina Rodriguez opened up about her own experiences.

Rodriguez has been open about her personal experience with her mental health in the past.

Twitter / @HuffPost

In 2017, in fact, she posted about her journey with anxiety in a very candid Instagram post.

She has now opened up even further in an emotional sitdown with NBC’s Kate Snow during the recent Kennedy Forum.

The actress explained:

“I think I started dealing with depression around sixteen. I started dealing with the idea of…everything is going to be better when I’m gone. Life will be easier. All the woes will be away, all the problems. Then I wouldn’t have to fail or succeed, right? Then all this surmounting pressure would go away.”

The pressure Rodriguez refers to includes the difficult time she had while filming the final season of “Jane the Virgin.”

Twitter / @enews

According to the star, she began suffering from panic-induced, debilitating anxiety attacks while on set.

“There was a point where I couldn’t, I couldn’t push through every single time anymore,” Rodriguez shared with Snow. “And I’m one of those human beings…I’m just like, ‘I’ll handle it later. I’ll deal with it later. I’ll figure it out later. I just have to do this now.’ All the while dealing with this, you know, your silent little dragon in your head.”

Rodriguez went on to explain that this struggle caused her to stop production on the series for the first time ever.

Twitter / NFINorth

“I had a really tumultuous season, she confessed. “I was unafraid for the first time to be like, ‘I can’t.'”

That courage motivated Rodriguez to get the help she needed and to take the time to prioritize herself. It’s a milestone that anyone who fights against their mental illness would recognize. We can only imagine the pressure Rodriguez faced in the midst of a busy production schedule.

Her ability to speak openly about mental health is motivated by the girls and women who look up to her.

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“I can’t just tell them to go out and make their dreams come true and then to ignore everything else,” Rodriguez explained.

The actress has long been a mentor in the fields of art, body positivity, immigration rights, and feminism. In 2016, Rodriguez launched the We Will Foundation to promote young artists through education and scholarships. In 2018, she worked with P&G to start the Always Campaign to benefit Feeding America.

This candid conversation is another example of her commitment to being the sort of mentor the world needs most.

Poor mental health is often a side effect of other illnesses; which is the case with Rodriguez.

Twitter / @CrisisTextLine

Anxiety and depression are complications of her Hashimoto’s Disease. Rodriguez shared in a 2017 SELF interview that the medicine she takes for her thyroid causes heart palpitations. This disrupted rhythm sometimes triggers panic attacks.

The illness has forced the actress to reassess herself and become more self-aware. After adjusting her medication, she noticed improvements.

Still, Rodriguez had to face the bigger issue of her underlined mental health. That self-awareness has helped her and hopefully, her experience can help others struggling with the same issues.

After Two Parkland Students Commit Suicide, Community Unites To Share Mental Health Resources

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After Two Parkland Students Commit Suicide, Community Unites To Share Mental Health Resources

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One year after the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., two students have died in apparent suicides, compelling the community to come together and share mental health resources.

On Saturday, a sophomore at the school, where 17 people were killed in a mass shooting last year, took his own life. One week prior, Sydney Aiello, 19, a recent Stoneman Douglas graduate who lost her best friend in the massacre, also ended her life.

As the Florida’s emergency chief Jared Moskowitz calls for the state Legislature to send more mental health resources for the high school’s students and faculty, calling mental health a “bipartisan issue” on Twitter, the community has stepped in where the state government has been slow to respond.

On Sunday, more than 60 school, county, city, child services and law enforcement officials, as well as mental health specialists, teachers and parents, met for an emergency meeting. Ryan Petty, father of Alaina Petty, a 14-year-old freshman who was murdered on Feb. 14. 2018, said that the school district will be giving parents the “Columbia Protocol, six questions that parents should ask their children, the Miami Herald reports. Based on their answers, they will know what emergency resources are available to them. Additionally, nonprofits are offering free therapy groups and services.

Online, it’s students, former and current, who are using social media to offer resources to those still suffering from the trauma and loss of last year’s school shooting. David Hogg, who graduated from Stoneman Douglas in 2018 and has become a fierce anti-gun advocate, took to Twitter, reminding Parkland students and grads that trauma doesn’t go away quickly.

“Stop saying you’ll get over it,'” he wrote. “You don’t get over something that never should have happened because those that die from gun violence are stolen from us not naturally lost. Trauma and loss don’t just go away, you have to learn to live with it through getting support.”

According to Dr. Joy Harden Bradford, who spoke with Teen Vogue, witnessing traumatic events can lead to symptoms consistent with acute stress disorder, including recurring memories, dreams or nightmares of the event; mood changes; irritability and more. These memories, she adds, can lead to negative thoughts, hopelessness, trouble sleeping and more.

Hogg wants youth to know that these symptoms are normal and that they can be managed through help, like therapy, talking with friends and family, meditation and self-care practices.

He, along with others, shared his own self-care routine.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, know there is help available. For immediate support, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. If you’re experiencing a mental health crisis and are unsure where to turn, you can also reach out to the Crisis Text Line by sending HOME to 741741.

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