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Jessica: "We're survivors, you and me. F.M.L. forever."
Alex: "F.M.L. forever."
―  Jessica and Alex[src]


F.M.L. was the acronym used by Hannah, Jessica and Alex when they met for drinks on a regular basis at Monet's. The acronym stands for and means "Fuck My Life" and was used to introduce each topic that they wanted to discuss between them that negatively affected one of them. "F.M.L." was first used in "Tape 1, Side B" when Hannah wanted to discuss Justin Foley's up-skirt picture of Hannah at Eisenhower Park that was sent around Liberty High School.

Purpose

The "F.M.L." acronym was used by the three friends to introduce a topic they wished to discuss within the group, hoping to solve their issues by discussing them with their friends. Hannah uses this to talk about Justin's picture of her at the park being spread around the school by Bryce, the others tell Hannah that she didn't have to talk about it if she didn't want to. After this, it seems that "F.M.L." became a regular thing for the group who would use it to bring their issues to the rest of the group.

It seems like this does well for the group as it helps them talk about their issues and seems like a cathartic exercise for the three. This eventually dies out unfortunately after the group disbands before Hannah's death. However, after Hannah's death—and Bryce's—Jessica uses the acronym one last time in "Let the Dead Bury the Dead" to comfort Alex after he asks how they're supposed to live with what they did. She tells him "We're survivors, you and me. F.M.L. forever".

Through the Season

Season 1

In the first season, before the group had fully formed, Jessica and Hannah met frequently over hot chocolate to talk, Hannah found Alex staring at them and they joined him, they gave him a test involving knowledge about a painting that hung in Monet's and he passed with a "good enough". He then joined their group and they formed into "F.M.L". The trio then frequently met at Monet's, Hannah and Jessica ordering hot chocolate, and Alex made his way through Monet's drink items and called himself a "searcher". The group and friendship ended, when, according to Hannah, Jessica and Alex began dating. After that, Jessica refused to have sex with Alex, which prompted Alex to contribute to the Hot or Not list to piss of Jessica, unfortunately it ended Jessica and Hannah's relationship instead. Jessica thought that Hannah and Alex were dating and Hannah made Alex add her name to the list. However it is said that it was really Jessica's fault because she took it further than necessary, because of her own thoughts.

Season 2

In the second season, through Jessica Davis' testimony, it is revealed that the trio's friendship stretched further than just school and Monet's. One night, they all went to Jessica's house and played "Never Have I Ever", and when Alex said "Never have I ever kissed my best friend", all three of them took turns in kissing each other. Jessica and Alex's kiss which starts to turn more affectionate as they kiss for longer, which Hannah watches. Unknown to Hannah and most likely to Jess and Alex, this is where Alex and Jess's romantic relationship started to begin.

Jessica took Alex on their first official date to the Crestmont Cinema, where Hannah worked. Jessia did not know that Hannah was working that night, because it wasn't in her schedule. Jessica was reluctant to enter the cinema hand in hand with Alex, so she made Alex wait behind and go in after her to make it seem like they're not going together. Alex ditched their plan and joined Jessica only a few seconds after, Jessica commented in court that "He didn't get what it would feel like for a girl". The two went into the theatre after seeing Hannah.

Later on, in the present, Alex and Jess are at The Crestmont and Alex calls himself an asshole, when Jessica asks him why, we flashback to see that during their film, Alex came out and saw Hannah. Alex revealed to Jessica that he lied about what happened between him and Hannah. When Hannah saw him, she asked him if he was "trying to have sex with her", Alex got embarrassed and lashed out at her, telling her it was none of her business. He went back into the theatre and lied to Jessica and told her that Jessica was right and Hannah was pissed at them for dating and that they should lay low and slowly back away from her. Back in the present, Jessica told him that they're both assholes, because she couldn't get up on the stand and tell the truth about Hannah, instead, unfortunately and accidentally she made it worse for the Bakers'.

Season 3

After Alex and Jessica's involvement in Bryce's murder was revealed and covered up, Jessica told Alex that she'll always love him and he's the best friend she's ever had. They used the phrase "F.M.L. forever" and put their hands together.

Quotes

Do adults understand how friendships work?
— Hannah Baker


It was a hot chocolate friendship, good for cold months, but, maybe not perfect for all seasons... For a while, we were the kind of friends you wish you had. We did disgusting things, like, shop together. And compare what we bought.
— Hannah Baker on her friendship with Jessica on the tapes


I'm not great at Math, but, here's one thing I learned for sure, one plus one plus one, is not a simple equation. Alex was the first to stop coming, he found some other friends, he traded up. We were still friendly in the halls, but, that's it. Then it was down to Jessica and me, but, then, Jessica stopped coming too. We all went our separate ways. Or so I thought...
— Hannah Baker on the demise of the group and the friendship.[src]


Alex, little did I know, you'd F My L forever.
— Hannah Baker to Alex Standall on the tapes[src]


I'm a fucking weak, pathetic loser who ruined the one good thing that I ever had because I wanted a rapist to think I was just like him. Hannah was my friend and we should tell the truth about her because I know that if I had still been friends with her, if any one of us had still been friends with her, she'd be alive.
— Alex Standall talking about adding Jessica's name to The List to piss her off, breaking up Hannah and Jessica's friendship[src]

Jessica: "We're survivors, you and me. F.M.L. forever."
Alex: "F.M.L. forever."
―  Jessica and Alex[src]

Trivia

  • In the book, the group instead use the phrase "Olly-Olly-Oxenfree" when bringing up their issues. "F.M.L." was most likely used instead to appeal to more teenagers.
  • On the map used in the book, Monet's is starred by Hannah with the quote "Olly-Olly-Oxenfree". It is unclear whether it had been changed to F.M.L. in the Netflix Series.
  • Hannah and Jessica refused to call each other by their names, sarcastically and jokingly after Mrs. Antilly paired them together, they eventually started calling each other by their actual names when they became each other's only friends.
    • Jessica's names: Joanne, Jezebel, Jennifer
    • Hannah's names: Hazel, Hillary, Harriet

Gallery

References

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