Amidst the unforgettable torment Mona Vanderwaal doled out on the Pretty Little Liars, she endured just as much, if not more, of the torment from their mutual stalker: Charlotte DiLaurentis.
She hit Hanna, her “best friend” at the time, with a car to keep her secret. Probably the worst thing Mona has done. Unless you count the murder of Bethany Young, the girl that was mistaken as Alison’s body.
Mona challenges Spencer intellectually in a way that not even Melissa can. Mona’s second and third personalities challenged Alison and the other girls. She was now a real threat to them, and not just the dorky girl in the glasses.
After all of the terrible shit Mona Vanderwaal accomplished, she was knocked down worse than the others when Charlotte took charge. She didn’t have friends to fall back on; Mona had to survive on her own, while trying to put an end to the madness.
Instead, Mona’s murder was faked, and she was taken as a prisoner in Charlotte’s underground dollhouse. For months. The others were in there for three weeks. Mona was for four months. We saw what horrors Charlotte did to the girls, but not how traumatized Mona was.
Before her “death,” Mona was trying to put an end to A’s game and help the five girls, though they never accepted her assistance. She was ostracized once again, cast aside by Alison and her friends, but no longer was she “loser Mona.”
Her confidence after her Radley release seemed to prompt the girls to take the offensive side against Mona. Before she had just been a black hoodie, but she was promoted to mastermind with a face.
Five years later, Mona is still outcast by the only girls she can truly relate to. It was hinted at that Hanna and Mona grew close again, but Hanna’s actions toward Mona prove otherwise. She was treated like a virus at Hanna’s bridal shower.
With A.D. coming after the Rosewood possy again, Mona wanted to help, and she’s desperate for answers, too. Even as the all-knowing A, Mona didn’t have nearly all of the information, and Charlotte was a complete mystery to her, too.
Mona Vanderwaal is the type of person that needs complete control of her life and everything in it, much like Spencer, and being on the outside has never worked for her.
Maybe she hadn’t changed before she was held indefinitely in the dollhouse. Mona was considered dead, nobody was looking for her. Charlotte could’ve had her for the rest of her life. How she held on? The strength she received from countless years of Alison’s torture.
But five years later, Mona has had a chance to move on and cope with her past, and let go of her rage toward bitter high school memories, with the help of a few shrinks.
Mona: Do you still have nightmares? I do. Three shrinks and a whole lot of prescriptions, but I still have bad dreams.
On Pretty Little Liars Season 7 Episode 1, Mona is so concerned with Hanna’s safety that she joins the group to help save her from Mary Drake and “A.D.”
She even works with Caleb, the person she despises even more than Alison DiLaurentis. That’s how dedicated she is to Hanna, and partially toward the other girls.
With the reappearance of a new tormentor, Mona genuinely wants to help them out. Especially Hanna and Spencer. And she desires to become friends with these girls. That’s all she’s ever wanted.