Mental health experts wary of series depicting suicide, depression

Season two of a controversial Netflix series about teenage suicide starts on Friday, and some mental health experts are warning parents of the potential triggers families need to know about.

The pilot of "13 Reasons Why" centers around a teenage girl who took her own life.

Teenagers are especially vulnerable to depression and suicide, which is why some argue the show sends a convoluted message.

Mental health experts say families need to have a discussion together about whether or not to watch "13 Reasons Why."

The series was one of the hottest and most controversial shows on Netflix in 2017, but with season 2 starting tomorrow, Dr. Ralph Buonopane has a warning for parents. He says it's a show that could trigger a strong reaction from teens already feeling vulnerable.

"One of the things they spoke most about is that suicide was depicted as inevitable," said Buonopane.

Buonopane heads the inpatient mental health program at Franciscan Children's Hospital. He says they saw an increase in patient admissions after season 1 aired.

"People can get help, depression is treatable," said Buonopane.

Miranda Gonzalez works with teenagers, which is a big reason as to why she hasn't watched "13 Reasons Why". Gonzalez also says she doesn't think it's a necessarily a good idea for teens to watch the show.

"I don't love the idea of the show, I feel it's a little bit exploitative of such a serious issue, especially for young teen girls," said Gonzalez.

However, Buonopane says the show can be used as a learning tool, where healthy family discussions about teen stress, the signs of depression and suicidal thoughts can help teens understand and better cope with their feelings.

"Often it's friends who will recognize these signs, many lives have been saved in high school because we have friends coming forward," said Buonopane.

Experts do maintain that younger children watching this show may not be able to differentiate between reality and TV.