Man dies by suicide after being bullied for dating a transgender woman
A Philadelphia man who was bullied in a viral video for his relationship with a transgender woman has now died by suicide.
Maurice Willoughby, also known as “Reese Him Daddie”, took his own life aged 20 after being harassed on social media.
The aspiring rapper was open about his love for his girlfriend, Faith, and announced he was dating her in a Facebook Live video that quickly gained over 15,000 views.
Following this Willoughby was reportedly bullied both on and offline. A video of him being harassed in the street subsequently went viral.
The footage, which has not been included by PinkNews due to its content, shows Willoughby surrounded by at least four men filming him on their phones as they shout at him, “You f*ck what? You f*ck what?”
Willoughby later defended his relationship with his girlfriend in a widely-shared Facebook post.
He wrote: “Y’all can say whatever about Faith I really don’t care if she not passable I don’t care if she wasn’t born a woman she is a woman to me & I love her flaws that’s what makes her Faith if you heard her story it’s motivating….. I’m happy you should be happy for me.”
But as the video gained traction online it appears the bullying became too much for him, and on Monday (August 19) it was reported that he had died by suicide.
A close friend told Aazios that Willoughby suffered from mental health problems, including depression.
“”He was getting picked on and joked on all the time,” the friend said.
“Where we are from, if you like trans woman, and you black, the streets will talk about you, fight you, even try to kill you. He was dealing with a lot.”
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As the news of his death reached family and friends, tributes poured in on social media.
Felicity Noire wrote: I’m sorry the world couldn’t accept your truth, I’m sorry you had no support system around you, and I’m sorry MOST sat back, watching you use abuse drugs, and cry out for help as you slowly spiralled out of control until your last breath. May you now have peace.”
The activist, model and Instagram influencer Yves Mathieu also drew attention to Willoughby’s tragic death.
In a post to his followers he wrote: “IGNORANCE, HATRED AND TOXIC MASCULINITY KILLED OUR BROTHER.”
View this post on Instagram
No matter how shitty the times are in which we live, sometimes you find something out and you’re just like, how could this happen? how could we let this happen? The couple in this photo is beautiful Reese and his girlfriend Faith. Reese was a black cisgender male, his girlfriend Faith, is a black transgender woman. Over the weekend Reese killed himself after the relentless taunting, bullying, mocking and disrespect he received after publicly proclaiming his love for his girl, and you know what breaks me about this? Is that when it comes to discussing the weight of transphobia and homophobia in the black community, especially amongst those who should speak up on it, all you hear is crickets? It’s no secret that every community has its issues no matter how beautiful the painted picture is, but damn we oppressed people are still out here oppressing our own people? don’t say black lives matter if that bracket doesn’t include black trans people and mental health in the black community, Reese fucking DM’d ME, and when I responded I never got a response back, this is garbage, and this hurts, Reese I’m so sorry, Faith, I’m so sorry, I lové you, I lové ya’ll, we lové you, we lové ya’ll. This is so trash, and I hate everything about this. IGNORANCE , HATRED AND TOXIC MASCULINITY KILLED OUR BROTHER. Rest in all power family, a lot of our sisters are up there with you.
If you are in the US and are having suicidal thoughts, suffering from anxiety or depression, or just want to talk, call the National Suicide Prevention Line on 1-800-273-8255 or speak. If you are in the UK, you can contact the Samaritans on 116 123.