During the run of the hit Netflix series 13 Reasons Why, criticisms on how it presented mental health issues and suicide sparked conversation. Some people accused the show of glamorizing suicide—saying it is a potential danger for those who are actually going through something difficult and could inspire them to resort into taking their own lives.
Recently, a 23-year-old guy named Franco Alonso Lazo Medrano from Peru ended his life by jumping from the fourth floor of his apartment, shouting: “I can’t stand a heartbreak!” while his mom watches everything. Though he survived the fall, he was declared dead at the hospital.
In the fictional series, heartbreak, bullying, and rape that led to depression are what made Hannah Baker take her own life by slitting her wrists, leaving behind recorded tapes for those who she believes contributed to her decision.
Police officials found two suicide notes in his home: one for a loved one named Claudia and the other for a list of people who should receive the tapes he had previously recorded on his computer.
The contents of the tapes are still unknown and there’s no confirmation yet whether or not Medrano was inspired by the show. However, People reports that Medrano’s suicide may be linked to 13 Reasons Why, allegedly imitating the heroine of the show.
Netflix already added disclaimers and warnings to the program as controversy and criticism towards the show’s portrayal of suicide and mental health continue to arise.
If you—or someone you know—are going through something and considering suicide as an option, you can contact 24/7 suicide prevention hotline Hopeline at (02) 804-4637, 0917-5584673, and 2919 for Globe and TM subscribers.
Let them know they are not alone, and that suicide is never an option.