By Mitch Kellaway
Originally published on Advocate.com May 29 2014 4:46 PM ET
Ethan Smith's emotional spoken word performance of "A Letter to the Girl I Used to Be" has begun making the rounds on the Internet after being released by Button Poetry earlier this month.
In the poem, Smith invites listeners into a private conversation between his former female self and the man he has now grown to be. He poignantly discusses feelings of not wanting to live past 11 years old, to which his audience has responded with gratitude and heartbreak.
"People are afraid to talk about [suicidal feelings], much less learn about it," George Takei writes about the poem on Upworthy. "But if you and I don't take the time to … see the humanity in each and everyone one of us, who will?"
Watch the full performance in the video below. And for more from Smith, like him on Facebook.