“He would tell me that kids would say things to him that would hurt his feelings.”
The mother of ninth grader Nigel Shelby, who committed suicide last week after being bullied at school is speaking out. Camika Shelby says that Nigel was bullied by kids at Huntsville High School in Alabama as he battled depression and accepting his sexuality.
“He would tell me that kids would say things to him that would hurt his feelings,” Shelby says. “I didn’t think it was as deep as things I’m hearing now.”
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This Nigel Shelby story has been haunting me for days. It’s so heart breaking to think about a child so young being bullied - literally - to death for living out loud. And as the mother of a queer child who was bullied I know how far kids go and how close to the edge young folks are pushed. As much co-opting as there is of queer culture there’s still way too much stigma and, of course, danger on queer lives. Praying for this child’s family and community. ???? Image Created by @kendrickdaye of @equalityequation
Shelby says she left for work while he was still sleeping and came home to Nigel taking his own life, “I knew he was depressed, we were going to see doctors…I’m still shocked,” says Shelby.
The principal at Huntsville High School issued a memo that sided with the Shelby family and asked parents and students to discuss the death of Nigel and to talk about ways they can make a difference.