The Aftermath – 13 Reasons Why

**spoiler alerts…be aware**

Last night, I finished 13 Reasons Why on Netflix. The scenes of sexual assault, rape, and suicide are graphic and real. These things happen every day. As a society, we brush it under the rug and do our best to cover it up or pretend it’s not there. As the bystander, it’s easy to ignore it or go on with life. As a victim, it is not (as one could see with the character Hannah Baker).

Last night, I could not fall asleep until 5:00 AM in the morning. Prayers were just rushing in my head for people who suffer. I couldn’t help but place myself in the parent’s shoes (for Hannah Baker’s character I mean)…to think that everything was fine with your child and then to “randomly”, or surprisingly lose them is soul crushing. Like we see with Alex who attempted to kill himself after Hannah’s death, he decided it was too much to take. It’s too much to bear to think that you would be the one to blame…and in Alex’s case, he felt there was nothing to live for. So.Much.Pain. So much anguish is felt for each of these characters. So many tears were shed for the people who suffer. For the people around the world.

At 3:00 AM last night, memories of when I was spanked in high school rushed into my mind and I began to cry for my own experience. It made me realize why I was so protective of myself, always wanting to cover myself up completely and never wanting to be touched. As stupid as a spank may sound, it was not wanted. It was hated. Even as a Christian my freshman year of high school, I thought to myself, “What the Hell was that??” I was so angry. I was so mad at this boy who was “dared to do it”. When I turned around to see his wicked and evil smile, I could feel myself boiling over. I did nothing but stare at him and his friends and wonder, “What the heck just happened and why?”. Why would he do such a thing to me? Why would I not speak up to the teacher? Why did I not speak up to the teacher? In my stupidity, I didn’t want him to have a record of something like that. I thought, “Well if I tell, this could ruin his life forever. It was just one spank, right?” I should have known that if he did that to me, he would definitely do it to others. That was definitely my mistake.

I spent last night looking him up on Facebook only to find that he seemed to be the same guy as he was in high school. It made me sad and actually caused me to have sympathy for the life lost in just living for this world. Pictures of partying, beers all over. What a waste! There’s so much more this world has to offer. I could only hope that one day he’ll see that. I can only pray that he’ll come to see the goodness in knowing a good, gracious kind, merciful God.

As I contemplate all these things, I do still pray for those who suffer. I pray for the victims…and I pray for the assaulters. I pray for justice and an overwhelming peace that surpasses understanding.

May God bring rest to the souls who need it.

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