19-Year-Old Gay Trevor Project Intern Commits Suicide
19-year-old Eric James Borges is dead, a victim of both suicide and the ongoing what? – Societal wave of anti-gay extremism? Being an impressionable teenager in a country where each of the Republican candidates for president speak openly about wanting to strip him of rights and make his very act of existence illegal? Christian extremism and neglect?
Eric’s death is a tragedy three times over as he was both an intern at The Trevor Project, the LGBT call center tasked with talking people in crisis down from suicide, and a participant in the It Gets Better Project.
His It Gets Better video paints a sad picture. Eric grew up in an extremist Christian household, and was tormented and assaulted for being gay throughout grade school. When his parents learned he was gay, they performed an exorcism on him, before kicking him out of their home.
We normally wonder how someone’s life could lead them to this when reporting stories like this, but in Eric’s case, I think the bigger question here is how could this boy possibly have even stood a chance?
I hope nobody minds, but I’m reminded of the first day of The Emerging Self in college.
They fuck you up, your mum and dad. They may not mean to, but they do. They fill you with the faults they had And add some extra, just for you.
But they were fucked up in their turn By fools in old-style hats and coats, Who half the time were soppy-stern And half at one another’s throats.
Man hands on misery to man. It deepens like a coastal shelf. Get out as early as you can, And don’t have any kids yourself.
Information about planned memorials can be found over at Queer Landia.
If you’re having thoughts of harming yourself or ending your life, please don’t. The Trevor Project is available 24/7 at 866.488.7386.