Look –I know everyone thinks trigger warnings are over done, people are too sensitive, blah blah blah. But I’m here to defend trigger warnings.
As I’ve been open about, I was raped. Seeing rape scenes in movies and television makes me have full blown panic attacks. I’ve had to leave movie theaters because of this. When I’m with someone who’s seen the show and they tell me, “just so you know there’s a rape scene will you be okay?” I have time to prepare. Take deep breaths, or hide if I need to.
I don’t know if I’ve been as open about this, but I did use self-harm as a self-medicated way to feel better. I didn’t know using a razor blade across your arm was an option until I saw an episode of Degrassi. My favorite character, Ellie, started cutting herself. At the time I was like, wow. That seems to be helping her. When she cuts herself she’s able to remain composure and hide her depression.
I’m not sure if I would have come to this conclusion without Degrassi or not. At the time this show was playing (I believe I was in middle school) I was already slamming my head into lockers, falling on to pavement as hard as I could, purposefully scratching myself and pulling my hair. So it’s save to say, I was already using this method. The thing that was tempting about cutting myself was that it was easier to hide. When you slam your head against a locker door, people notice.
Oh, side note, the same time I was doing this there was a rumor that I was going to kill myself when I was 15 and literally NO ONE cared. They just kept checking to see if it was true and then told me I was stupid.
The point of this is, maybe, just maybe, there was a warning before the show saying something like, “Hey, Ellie has problems you shouldn’t do what she’s doing this isn’t a good thing to do” but obviously in a more formal way, I wouldn’t have done it.
That’s actually something I thought 13 reasons why did very very well. For those of us recovering from past trauma, having a trigger warning before the episode allowed us to prepare for what was about to happen.
Anyways, that’s just my thoughts.