Thirteen Reasons Why has been circulating social media and conversation circles since its debut on Netflix in late March. The series follows a group of high school students reviewing the struggles of a peer who ended her own life through a set of tapes. Throughout the tapes, Hannah, the maker of the tapes, lists the reasons she chose to end her life. While this series brought to light a lot of important issues, I feel it’s important to address the idea that you have more options than suicide. I’ve compiled a list of thirteen reasons to continue your life.
1. The darkness does not last forever
No matter how hard this is to believe, there will be a breakthrough. There will be someone or something that makes the difficulties of life worth living. Things can seem irreversibly miserable but this feeling and this time cannot last forever.
2. Too many dogs to pet
Maybe you aren’t a fan of dogs (who are you), but in any case there are little things worth living for. Whether it’s to pet a dog on the street, to drink a really good coffee, or to read a tactfully written novel, there will always be little things that bring you joy.
3. Your family
While suicide may be a solution for you personally, the family you leave behind will not be relieved. There are people that love you unconditionally that will suffer tremendously when you are gone. Their lives will never be the same.
4. Things to see, places to go
You may feel trapped in your surroundings right now, but the world is boundless. There are so many cultures to experience, histories to embrace and people to meet. Traveling is one of the wonders of the human experience and in order to embrace this wonder, you need to live.
5. Learning to love yourself
As tacky as this may seem, it serves truth. Once you move past these struggles, you will be able to embrace your true identity and learn to love who you are. When you get to this point of absolute acceptance, all the obstacles you have tackled will seem worth it.
6. Others will be helped by your story
If you persevere and get through these tough times, you can be a guide to others in your position. You have an opportunity to influence and help others. Your story will not be forgotten if you choose to live and tell it.
7. The first day of summer
Small things like waking up to the sun streaming through your window on the first day of summer, or Christmas morning. These are the days you would miss if you were gone.
8. You’ll become another statistic
Don’t let the media make you into another number. Live to be more than a percentage.
The friends you have now and the future friends you will have. Friends make life worth living, don’t miss out on all the ones you haven’t met yet.
10. The memories you haven’t made yet
Much like friends, there are so many memories you haven’t made yet. There are so many photos to be taken, laughs to be had and times to enjoy.
11. Your feelings and emotions are only chemicals
While they may be overwhelming you, remember they are only chemicals reacting at the moment. The intensity of what you’re feeling can be helped and managed and fought.
12. There is help out there
Whether it’s through a close confidante or a health professional, there are outlets that will help you. Do not give up without exhausting these options.
13. You are worth it.