More teenagers are sharing their struggle at a time when the country is dealing with a spike in suicides of gay teens. It has led to a call to action across the nation and this week, it inspired Fort Worth councilman, Joel Burns, to speak out about his own experiences of being bullied.
The story's for the young people who might be holding that gun or the rope or pills, said Burns. You will get out of that household. You will get out of that high school and you never have to deal with those jerks again, if you don't want to.
Burn's message that it will get better has received more than 500,000 hits on YouTube and in Dallas Friday night, nearly 50 people gathered at Lake Cliff Park for a rally to support gay teens. Not far from the rally at Youth First Texas, gay teens were meeting for dinner and dance class. The center has given them help and hope.
I was pushed I was shoved. I was beaten up in bathrooms. I never could walk the hallway down by myself, said Puckett.
Every week, the 17-year-old and his mother drive 40 miles from Ennis to the center. They have been doing it for the past two years. For Puckett, the center and his mom's support saved his life.
If I did not have the support of my mom, I would not be able to be here right now, said Puckett. I would have probably taken my life.
According to the center, calls for counseling from teens thinking about suicide have increased nearly 40 percentin the last month. The center offers guidance and services to teens who are struggling at home and at school.
From GED classes, to self defense, to support to filling out college applications, to hugs, sometimes they need a mom, said Robin Beckham. He's happy to share me .
Puckett quickly noticed he was one of the lucky ones and with so much support, he found his way out of the darkness.
He sees the positive, said Beckham. He sees the future, the hope and the potential for life.