On September 13th, 2005, a little TV show premiered on The WB. (Geez, remember The WB?) The series followed two brothers as they went on the search for their missing father, hunting any evil along the way.
I had no plans to write this article, none at all. It wasn't until I had a conversation with a family member that I felt the need to write this.
Me: This show taught me what family is supposed to mean.
Family Member: How can a show about satanism teach you about family?
Me: Are you serious?
To that family member, I hope what I'm about to write makes you realize how big of a show this really is.
Now, what show am I talking about? Supernatural of course. As of it's recently renewed 12th season, Supernatural is the longest running fantasy tv show in the United States. Over the past 12 years, it went from the little show that could, to the little show that succeed. And succeeded well.
My main reason for writing this article is that, basically, I'm tired of people telling me that things like TV shows and music and artists can't help you in an emotional way. Now, I'm here to prove you wrong.
Not only does the show itself help people, but the actors in the show do some pretty magnificent things.
Jared Padalecki, who plays Sam Winchester on the show, has been very open with his struggles with depression and anxiety. The fact that he's open about it helps people by itself, I know for a fact. Fans struggling with depression and anxiety see a big status celebrity like Jared and it lets them know that how they feel is ok, that it will get better. Even someone as famous as Jared has struggles, and fans know it's ok for them to have struggles too.
But Jared's also started many different campaigns to help. One example of a campaign Jared's started is the Always Keep Fighting campaign, reminding fans to, well, Always Keep Fighting. To read more about the campaign, click here!
Misha Collins, who plays the angel Castiel on the show, saw how much work people in the fandom were putting in and he wanted to put that work into good use. He co-founded the charity Random Acts. (Click here for more information of the charity). This charity has done amazing things over the years with the Supernatural Family. One even includes raising money to build a orphanage in Haiti after the earthquakes, and sending people over to do it.
Jensen Ackles, who plays Dean Winchester, and again Misha Collins, started the You're Not Alone Campaign. The money raised from the campaign goes towards something I've never seen come from a tv show before, something amazing. The money from the campaign goes towards the #SPNFamily Crisis Support Network. Click here to learn about this amazing thing.
Mark Sheppard, who plays the demon Crowley, has a son who has Type 1 Diabetes. He knows first hand how tough it can be on a family, and especially how tough it can be on the kid. Mark's campaign has since ended, but you can read here on the camp that Mark was raising money for!
(I would like to add that the list of campaigns from the actors of this show can go a mile long. I can only include some or else this article would last forever).
The Supernatural Family is also the most accepting group of people I've ever come across. It's given me friends and people to talk to when I thought I had no one. Thanks to the Supernatural Family, I found people who liked the same things I did and for the first time I could talk about my "obsession" with a show and not look like an idiot in front of people. Supernatural itself, as I stated before, helped me understand what family truly is supposed to be. Quoting the show, "Family don't end in blood", and that quote itself helped me figure out who I could trust in my life. The show helped me figure out who my real family was.
However, it's definitely not just me. Before I started writing this article, I put a post out on tumblr.com asking people to tell me how Supernatural has helped them. I got a plethora of responses back. I wanted to include some of them here just to show the world how powerful a tv show can be for people.
"Ok I'll help you out. My name is Rachel I'm 34 years old and live in Northern Ireland. I have a long term illness named Fibromyalgia which is painful and stops me from going much. I've had this illness since I was about 19 years old. It stops me from going out much meaning I don't have many friends, and many of the few I have got have moved on because they have families to look after and what not. But thanks to the SPN family and recently GISHWHES who have introduced me to fourteen other people all from the SPN family who I would call my friends. So i am not alone so long as the SPN family are around who make me feel less alone even of all they did was hit like on a tumblr post."
"Hi! I saw your post about the article you're writing about the supernatural family and it seems interesting. So I figured i'd help out and share a bit about how the show changed my life. I was diagnosed with OCD when I was ten. For years I've been struggling and trying my hardest to cope, but in a family that often pretends you don't even exist, sometimes that's quite difficult. Performing and singing on stage usually helped, but the shows only last so long. I discovered Supernatural at the beginning of 2016. Immediately I knew that this was a show I could invest in. It took one episode for me to know that I found another way to occupy myself from my obsessions and compulsions. Then the fandom came along. I was so shocked to see how caring and accepting everyone is. When my own family isn't around, I know I can always count on my fellow fans to talk to and vent, whether it be about the show or about personal feelings. I've made so many good friends because we've been able to connect through this tv show. Supernatural has really helped me the past several months. I feel that without this show, I would've been in a much darker place than I am now. In a way, it saved me from myself, and I'll never be able to thank the actors, writers, and everyone else involved enough for this."
"How has supernatural affected me: I'm currently in eighth grade and I do suffer from depression and anxiety, and of all the fandoms I'm in, the SPN fandom may be the most helpful for me. The fact that parts of the cast have had first-hand experiences with depression and anxiety, such as Jared, really help me cope with my own problems. Also, the campaigns Jared, Jensen and Misha have started have also helped me a great deal. Supernatural could be considered my escape from my anxiety and depression with the crazy, humorous, one-of-a-kind plot lines the show consistently delivers. What the SPN family means for me: This SPN family means a great deal for me. The SPN family has this inexplicable bond of understanding, The vast majority of the fandom gets along and helps one another out. Through the family, I have made multiple friends who I'm grateful for. Whenever anything happens, I feel like I can always turn to the SPN family."
"Hey. About your article I don't have much of a story but Supernatural and the Spn family let me feel like in not alone in the things that happen in my life and the things that I enjoy. I'm an introvert and I have moved around a lot, I'm not the best at making friends and watching Supernatural helps me to remember I'm not the only one who struggles to open up to people or who can feel alone even when there are people are around. Being a part of the Spn family you know that if you need it there will always be people who will support you. I hope this helps with your article."
"My name is Kit and I'm 23. I started watching supernatural between seasons 8 and 9. This show has changed my life in so many ways, and greatly influenced the person I've become today. At more than one point the cast members said or did something that actually saved my life, as I battle chronic depression. And through the fandom I have met so many wonderful people who have shown me that family is more than blood. One of them asked me to marry him this spring. Supernatural has changed my life."
"Hi! I saw your thing about being in the article, and asking about how Spn was impacted us, and just wanted to add that Jensen and Misha's You Are Not Alone Campaign has really helped inspire me not to be afraid to reach out to people who need help. I firmly believe the spn family is about supporting one another, so whenever I see someone (even just on tumblr) having a rough time, I try to reach out to them to remind them that they are not alone. :) Good luck with your article writing!!"
(Thank you guy for sending in stories!)
The Supernatural Family is big. Supernatural is big. This show has helped so much people and created an amazing group. To that family member I first talked to, I hope my point has been proven.
So, what is the Supernatural Fandom?
A family. And one of the best families ever.
To all my SPN Family who may be reading this, remember, keep fighting. Love Yourself First. You're Not Alone, be Wayward AF. Get a little help from your friends. You are Enough.
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(GIF CREDIT: sam-winchester-imagines.tumblr.com)