13 Lessons We Learned From '13 Reasons Why'

13 Lessons We Learned From '13 Reasons Why'

There are lessons to be learned from this chilling Netflix drama.

Netflix's newest original hit series "13 Reasons Why," provided the viewer with much more than simply entertainment; the show taught extremely valuable lessons that we can all learn from.

-Spoilers-

1. Don’t be afraid to tell people you love them.

Looking back, Clay had deeply regretted being afraid to tell Hannah he loved her. You never know what tomorrow may bring; it could leave you stuck thinking about all the things you should have said. Everyone wants to be loved, but most importantly know that they are loved. Be sure to remind these special people.

2. Never make assumptions about somebody.

Making assumptions about someone is essentially judging a book by its cover. You may be surprised by the content within.

3. Your actions affect others, often more than you think.

Hannah’s 13 subjects may have thought their actions were minuscule and too trivial to cause any harm. The little things to some may be big things to others. Think before you act, it could trigger a domino effect.

4. People aren’t embodiments of the words of others.

Rumors about somebody, gossip they’re the subject of, and the way in which others talk about them may not accurately represent who they truly are. Hannah was not the negative labels people referred to her as. Get to know people, then base your judgment off of the encounter. Don't take others' words for who someone is as a person, find out for yourself.

5. The truth will prevail.

Hannah’s secret 13 tapes and its subjects eventually came to light. The truth usually always comes out, so try being honest to save yourself the repercussions.

6. Giving consent isn’t always as simple as saying “yes” or “no.”

Consent isn’t black and white. Hannah didn’t explicitly say “no” to her rapist, Bryce, but we all could observe she didn’t want to engage in sexual behavior. Her physical resistance and her numb expression clearly indicated a lack of consent. It’s so important to know how to determine if consent is given or if in fact, it is not.

7. We are all imperfect human beings.

Everyone has their skeletons, everyone messes up, everyone has regrets. We aren’t perfect little angels, but rather imperfect sinners. Sheri ran over a stop sign and didn’t alert the authorities due to fear; it ended up causing a fatal car accident. Hannah’s parents were blind to their own daughter’s struggles with life and soon after lost her. We can’t always flawlessly execute life and do all the right things all the time. It simply isn’t human.

8. Check up on people’s wellbeing.

Ask people how they’re doing, and ask them often. Check up on those you care about and make sure they’re doing okay. Be sincere about it. People like to know you care.

9. Let others know you’re there for them if needed.

Hannah felt like she had no one to turn to, but if someone offered her the proper help and support she needed then she might've live. Everyone needs a shoulder to cry on, a person to vent and pour their heart out to, and someone to just listen to what’s going on in their life.

10. Your high school self is way different than your adult self.

You all remember (or know, if you’re currently a high schooler) what high school was like. Reputation is huge; everyone wanted to be cool, popular, and simply accepted by their classmates. One rumor about you can feel like the world is crashing down. It’s crucial to recognize that the teenage mind reacts much differently to things than the adult mind. Adults: don't deem a high schooler's crisis trivial or "just a phase," it may be more serious than you think.

11. Hold others accountable for their actions.

Everyone is responsible for their actions and for the consequences that arise from them. Don’t let people get away with doing horrible things, rather hold them to it. Bryce needed to be held responsible for cases of sexual assault. It didn’t matter if his friends were hesitant to accuse him of something so atrocious, nor if he had the money to legally defend himself, nor if his crime was exposed by the word of a dead girl.

12. Suicide and rape are significant issues that must be confronted.

The graphic, rather uncomfortable scenes showing suicide and sexual assault truly brought attention to these prevalent issues. They were pretty difficult to watch, but that just reiterates how necessary it is to combat these disturbing atrocities. Just like in the show, these occurrences affect not only the victim but everyone around them. Everyone should be discussing these issues, spreading awareness, making moves to prevent them, and assisting those affected by them.

13. Your truth isn’t the same as someone else’s truth.

Hannah’s truth about what happened to her greatly differed from her 13 subjects’ truths. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes, imagine how they may react to something differently than you would. We all have different perspectives on what goes on in the world around us. There is never just one side to a story.

Cover Image Credit: Popsugar

Popular Right Now

One Year After..

A take on my experience dealing with the death of a sibling. 

          As a young impressionable girl, you always looked up to your older brother in many different aspects of life. Mostly, learning what you can and can’t get away with. An older brother is someone who gives you Indian burns on your arm until you scream but will take you out for an ice cream date afterward. He will teach you how to ride a dirt bike and take the blame when mom gets mad. An older brother is someone who was born with a main goal of protecting his little sister and loving her more than she could ever know. He teaches his little sister to not take sh*t from anyone and that it’s okay to be stronger than the boys she plays with on the playground; “because if they push, you better push back.” He teaches you to love sports because you grew up watching him play baseball. He prepares his little sister for pain, for the many heartbreaks he knows that she is going to have to live through. Your parents are there to keep you on a straightened arrow but your brother is there to make sure fun can be included in that plan. Unfortunately, what all of these lessons he relayed over the years don’t teach you, is how to live without him. 

It is impossible for others to understand what was going through your mind when you found out. One second you were sitting in your apartment, trying to get your already crazy life together and  then, at the blink of an eye, everything changes. Life as you knew it was broken. Anger, confusion, and sadness suffocate you until you completely black out and just stare, emotionless at the lights going by as you’re traveling down the highway to your childhood home that you shared with your brother who, you now realize is never coming home again.

 “Why did this have to happen?” is the never ending, never answered question that races through your head. I eventually learned you can’t ask why because it will absolutely tear your sanity to shreds. 

When you lose a sibling, you lose a piece of you. The biggest part of your childhood is gone and it’s hard to actually face the fact that you will never get to see this person again, hear their voice that one last time, see their smile again and at this point, you’re begging for one last Indian burn. Only being able to see him in your dreams is this uncontrollable feeling of constantly wondering if he is going to visit you tonight while you’re sleeping. He has become the angel you never knew you needed, until now. 

In your darkest hours is when he will show the most love and protection. 

When you walk down the street, you see someone that reminds you of your brother and for a second there’s a sense of hope that this entire mess was just a bad dream. But, then you must come to terms with the fact that this isn’t a dream, its your new reality. Your new reality will become more real with time and you’ll start to get back into a routine. As one year passes by, you notice your brother in your actions and through your words and that’s kind of scary because you know and can feel that he is smirking at you for making the same dumb mistakes that he did in the past.

Of course you wonder what it would be like to have never lost your big brother. To have never experienced such an immense loss that spins your world upside down. There’s not a day that goes by that you don’t think about him, but there is so much more to him than just his death and what has happened as a result of it. 

When the day that I had to burry my big brother came, I somehow muddled up enough strength and composure to read the poem that got me through his death in front of 2,000 people. The outpouring of love from his friends and my friends who drove over 2 hours to support me on this terrible day will never be forgotten or unappreciated. I didn’t quite know how to act or what to think. No one ever gave me a handbook on “What to do when your brother passes away while you’re in college.” I was given this poem by one of my brothers friends, who lost his older brother as well and this poem is truly is one of the most special things in the world to me. This poem was a light that was meant to lead me to where I am today. I would love to share it. 

If Tomorrow Starts Without Me…

Author: David Romano 

If tomorrow starts without me, and I’m not here to see,

If the sun should rise you find your eyes all filled with tears for me;

I wish so much you wouldn’t cry the way you did today,

While thinking of the many things we didn’t get to say.

I know how much you love me, as much as I love you

And each time that you think of me, I know you’ll miss me too.

But when tomorrow starts without me please try to understand,

That an angel came and called my name and took me by the hand.

He said my place was ready, in heaven far above

And that I’d have to leave behind all those I dearly love. 

But as I turned and walked away a tear fell from my eye.

For all my life I’d always thought, I didn’t want to die.

I had so much to live for, so much left yet to do.

It seemed almost impossible that I was leaving you.

I thought of all the yesterdays the good ones and the bad.

I thought of all the love we shared, and all the fun we had.

If I could relive yesterday, just even for a while,

I’d say goodbye and kiss you and maybe see you smile.

But then I fully realized that this could never be,

For emptiness and memories would take the place of me.

When I thought of worldly things I might miss come tomorrow

I thought of you and when I did my heart was filled with sorrow.

When I walked through heavens gates I felt so much at home.

God looked down and smiled at me from his great golden throne

He said, “This is eternity and all I’ve promised you”

Today your life on earth has passed but here life starts anew.

I promise no tomorrow, but today will always last

And since each day is the same there’s no longing for the past.

You have been so faithful so trusting and so true.

Though there were times you did some things you knew you shouldn’t do.

You have been forgiven and now at last you’re free.

So won’t you come and take my hand and share my life with me?

So when tomorrow starts with out me don’t think we’re far apart,

For every time you think of me, I’m right here in your heart.

If my brother never passed away, I’d probably still just be a girl selfishly enjoying college and making mistakes without a care in the world. Don’t get me wrong, I still do those things, but my outlook on the world has definitely changed. 

This whole situation as a whole sucks but it just forces you to become a stronger person. You become a different person after the death of your sibling and are eager to live life in honor of them. You’re eager to do things that you have never done before because you know you have an angel looking out for you. You become brave because your older brother embodied that characteristic. You become obsessed with bettering yourself because you now have a bigger reason to live.

Now, one year later, you live every single day to the fullest since you really don’t know when your last could be. Valuing relationships you never thought you needed to take a second to be thankful for, being closer with your parents because you aren’t the only one who lost part of your life, and cherishing life in a different light are just a few of the many things that this whole experience encouraged me to do. You really find the simple things in life that are often overlooked and appreciate its presence in the world. 

I hope anyone going through anything similar can read this and have hope that it will get better. Yes, there will be days that you want to scream but the better days, where he shows you that he’s with you are worth it. Im forever grateful for the twenty five years I was able to spend with him, even though it doesn’t seem like its enough time. We beg for more time and thats something that we always cant salvage.

 Thank you for the lessons you’ve taught me and thank you for the strength you have given me, My sweet angel. I live everyday for you. 

I’ll always love you Dylan. Xoxo. 

Gracie, your little sister. 

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

What I Learned From The Absolutely True Diary of a Part - Time Indian

My opinion about The Absolutely True Diary of a Part - Time Indian

Everyone wants to make decisions that will not disappoint, betray, and harm the people they care about. In the novel The Absolutely True Diary of a Part - Time Indian, Arnold has to make tough choices, but does not want to deceive his tribe, friends, and family. Arnold is displayed as an emotional and tough character which leads to him landing at crossroads often. The bold choices Arnold makes change his relations with the members of his tribe, his best friend Rowdy, and some of his family members. Arnold’s choices shape his character and his affiliations throughout the book.

When Arnold is at crossroads he makes decisions that disturb his relations with his tribe, his best friend, and his family members. These conflicts surface when Arnold decides to enroll into a rival school (Alexie 51). This event befouls his relationship with most of his tribe members, as they hate on him for betraying their trust and not meeting their expectations. Arnold also loses his best friend my enrolling into Reardan High School. Rowdy yells, “WHITE LOVER” and then punches Arnold in the face and walks away (Alexie 52-53). This indicates that Rowdy abandoned all trust and faith in Arnold for seducing him. Arnold also breaks the morals of his tribe and his personal morals by joining Reardan. Arnold’s tribe was always rivals with Reardan as it states in the text, “We all got really mad and vowed to kick their asses the next game” (Alexie 50). This suggests that Arnold and his teammates hated Reardan and wanted to get revenge. Transferring to Reardan breaks all his morals, as he is going to the school that demolished him and his friends. This quote also shows that it was wrong of Arnold to join Reardan because of the long scarred history between the two rival schools. All in all, Arnold’s choices put him at odds with his tribe, best friend, and personal morals.

Cover Image Credit: Audiobooks

Related Content

Facebook Comments