Lil Nas X has received a unique accolade: He’s the inaugural recipient of the first-ever Suicide Prevention Advocate of the Year Award from The Trevor Project, the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ+ young people.
Accepting the award, the “Industry Baby” rapper said, “Discrimination around sexuality and gender identity is still very real, and our community deserves to feel supported and totally free to be themselves.”
“I often get messages from fans telling me about their struggles with depression and suicidal thoughts, and it made me realize that this was something bigger than myself,” he adds. “If using my voice and expressing myself in my music can help even one kid out there who feels alone, then it was all worth it.”
Trevor Project CEO Amit Paley said in a statement that the rapper’s “vulnerability in his journey to self-acceptance and expression has created space for candid conversations around mental health and sexual identity, signaling to LGBTQ youth that they are not alone.”
In particular, Nas’s video for “Sun Goes Down” depicts his present-day self supporting a younger version of himself, during a real-life time in high school when the future star was contemplating suicide.
The Trevor Project notes that more than 80% of LGBTQ youth say celebrities positively influence how they feel about being LGBTQ. Sadly, it also notes that 42% of LGBTQ youth have seriously considered taking their own lives in the past year, including more than half of transgender and nonbinary youth. September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.
If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, or worried about a friend or loved one, help is available. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 [TALK] for free confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Even if it feels like it, you are not alone.
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