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How Stanford Teaches Students to be Fragile Victims

“Every remotely bad thing that happens to students could send you spiraling towards a mental breakdown”

Our interview subject Lucy Kross Wallace has dealt with autism and other severe mental health challenges throughout her life. In a span of two months, she moved from a locked psych ward to the Stanford campus. 

She thought she was beginning her college experience on the right foot, but then the campus environment (as well as other factors like social media) pulled her back into the darkness. 

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It took lots of hard work, but now Lucy has escaped from the harmful thought patterns that made her miserable for so long. 

In this DVD extra, Lucy reflects on the campus environment at Stanford, specifically the prevalence of the “oppressor-oppressed” framework and how students were taught to be fragile:

[I]f someone says something that offends you, instead of kind of diving into that emotional pain, you can contextualize it and say, ‘Okay, I don't even know this person, that's just one thing. That's their opinion, I don't have to let my day be ruined by 10 seconds of another person talking to me.’ 

Whereas it seems like at Stanford, the predominant attitude was that all of these things we experienced, would inevitably translate into this, like devastating, maybe not devastating psychiatric trauma, but they would add up and like crush our souls. And if we didn't take care of ourselves with self care, then we were going to just go spiraling into nervous breakdowns. And I wondered why learning to be resilient wasn't a main solution being offered.

Check out past DVD Extras:


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