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BYU Students Speak Candidly about Suicide

USGA Releases “Just Be There” Video

Understanding Same-Gender Attraction (USGA), a BYU group for LGBT students, has released “Just Be There,” a 6-minute video featuring LGBT BYU students who describe candidly their experiences dealing with depression and their attempts to take their own lives.

The students describe some of the negative messages that made them feel lonely, sinful, and hopeless. For instance, one student says he heard the message that homosexuality “was a mortal experience [that] didn’t exist in the Spirit World, and we would be immediately freed from its bonds when we died.”

“In a weird way, that did the opposite of comfort[ing] me,” the student explains. “In my mind the option was, ‘Well, if things really get that bad, if you just die, then suddenly it’s not an issue any more, and you’ll be right with God again.’”

Another student says he found comfort in reading the scriptures and realizing that “whatever I was going through, Christ had gone through, too.”

“If you’re trying to reach out to somebody, the most important thing you can do is just be there for them,” a student explains.

USGA at BYU meets each Thursday, with weekly attendance growing to 70 to 80 students, professors and church leaders. The individual interviews used in this video will be made available on the USGA YouTube channel in the coming months.

Posted 18 months ago, BYU’s original “It Gets Better” video has been watched over half a million times.

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