"My name was not Eric, but 'Faggot...I was stalked, spit on, ostracized, and physically assaulted,'" said 19-year-old filmmaker Eric James Borges, speaking for an "It Gets Better" video to support lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth who suffer from bullying.
His dark eyes filled with sadness in the video, he recounts how he was tormented by bullies from his earliest days in school, the attacks intensifying as the years went by. Despite his message urging gay youth not to give up, Borges took his own life just one month after filming the video.
Borges, born to an "extremist Christian household", was rejected by his family and kicked out of the house shortly after he came out. Despite suffering from severe anxiety and depression, he managed to complete high school early and worked as an intern at The Trevor Project, an organization working to prevent suicide among LGBTQ youth.
Laura McGinnis, communications director at The Trevor Project, called Borges' death a "tragedy" and issued the following statement: