Let’s face it: we all have experienced bullying in one way or another. Whether as victims, perpetrators, passive observers or those who encourage the bully by laughing, making jokes and also just not doing anything against it – we all are guilty. Well. Maybe the victim isn’t necessarily guilty of being bullied. But you get the point. All of us can do something against bullying. At least we had the chance to, at some point in out lives.
For those of you who feel detached from the topic of bullying there is an opportunity to raise your awareness on it by watching the TV-Show “13 Reasons Why”. If you haven’t watched it yet go ahead and do it now, because in the following I will shortly elaborate on how this Series teaches us about bullying in school and whether it was realistic or not.
So once again: 13 Reasons why is a TV Show about bullying. Hannah committed suicide and left 13 tape recordings which Clay, the main character of the TV Show, listens to from episode to episode, very slowly and with lots of hesitation.
We learn about how Hanna was being bullied in school by several people, all in a very different way. While one person sent disgracing pictures of her another person rapes her in a pool.
Yet the question rises whether her suicide was legitimate. Is suicide ever legitimate? And if Yes, did Hannah have reason enough to kill herself?
I mean: Yes some of the reasons were pretty solid in the sense that she had to live trough some serious threats and dangers. In other words she got bullied quite strongly, at least people made her feel bad about herself. Be it by lying or shaming her.
Nevertheless I don’t believe the 13 reasons she exposed were big enough – great enough for suicide. There has to be a very big thing happening to you, much more hurting or frightening, abuse or mistreatment. Also Hannah didn’t seem vulnerable enough, compared to those who supposedly bullied her to death. The bullies on the other hand didn’t seem that much emotionally stronger or more powerful than her.
All in all one can conclude that the TV-Show was exaggerating to get across the message that bullying is bad and the possible consequences even worse.