Dave Navarro has been a surprisingly thoughtful voice in the dialogue that followed the death of a gay teenager – at least the fifth in just three weeks – who committed suicide after being bullied. On September 29, Navarro tweeted a succinct, supportive note:
Gay Teens: You are SO much more interesting than those who bully you. Don't leave us with a world full of homophobic predators.
Later that same day, the ex-Red Hot Chili Peppers and Jane’s Addiction guitarist posted a lengthier Open Letter To Gay, Bi & Transgender Teens on his website, in which he admitted having previously considered suicide, and encouraged teens to look for other options:
Personally, I have seen a lot of darkness and tragedy that has felt insurmountable. The murder of my mother, my battle with drug addiction, the loss of friends and family. Utter depression and despair. Of course the thought of suicide has crossed my mind a time or two. Let me share this. THANK GOD I never took that action. The friends I have made, the experiences I have had, the laughter I have shared would have all been missed … To those of you contemplating such a course, please do us a favor. Seek counseling first. Find a network of people who have gone through what you are going through. Help others in even more turmoil than you. I am certain that you can find peace.
Navarro also acknowledged that while high school can really suck, it’s pretty much all uphill from there:
DO NOT LET THEM WIN! I know how overwhelming the feelings can get and how small the reality can feel, but the bottom line is that this is but a drop in the bucket in terms of the magnitude of life. You can get through this. High school is full of plenty of bullies and fear based hate, as is the world. With any group of people comes a percentage of people who just don’t get it and probably will never get it. That’s OK. We all deal with this to an extent. The truth is that in High School, you are kind of stuck in the group you are a part of until graduation, but trust me… You can pick and choose who you associate with and there are plenty of like-minded people in the world that are understanding, accepting and loving. Sometimes, we just have to stick it out to meet them. The hard cold reality is that once you have chosen suicide, that’s it. No going back.
National attention has recently been drawn to the suicide deaths of five gay teens from across the U.S.: Asher Brown (13), Seth Walsh (13), Billy Lucas (15), Tyler Clementi (18) and Raymond Chase (19).