Two Weeks After Attempted Suicide, Gay Ohio Teen Remains Unconscious

Austin Rodriguez - image via WYTV
Austin Rodriguez - image via WYTV

It’s been two weeks since he attempted suicide, and Austin Rodriguez’s mother is asking for prayers in preparation for surgery next week. The Wellsville, Ohio teen remains sedated and on a ventilator at Akron Children’s Hospital after taking over a hundred prescription pills and collapsing in his family’s home on March 16.

This Thursday, Austin’s mother shared the following update with a Facebook group formed to relay information on his condition.

Austin has been fighting with Neuroleptic Malignate Syndrome. A lot of people were asking the name of it. Look it up, it’s really serious. He is looking at surgery mid-week next week to remove the tubes and put in a trach so after a week or so they could try to take him off the muscle relaxers and medications that have him paralyzed, which will be great. No real improvement with his lungs yet. His temp went up overnight to 104 again, but they put him on a cooling blanket again and his temp has come down and stayed down through the morning. His blood pressure is good for now. So please keep him in your prayers and if you have an extra minute please pray for our family. Thank you for all the support.

The Advocate first reported Austin’s attempted suicide last Friday. Local NBC station WFMJ followed up earlier this week.

Bonnie Rodriguez says her 15-year-old son declared his homosexuality just six to eight months ago. First telling family, then friends, and then no longer hiding it from classmates at school.

The teenager’s mother says it was shortly after coming out that her son, who is a straight-A student, began getting bullied at school.

She says at first her son appeared happy and relieved, and then she thought he may have been going through a depression and asked him about it several times, but he never really explained the extent of what he was going through.

From what his mother has learned, the bullying was not only cruel, but enough to make a teenager who was already introverted, feel like an outcast. “It was electronic, it was face to face bullying, they were hiding his gym clothes because they didn’t want him changing in the locker room with them. They didn’t want him to eat by them, or in the school lunchroom,” Rodriguez said.

As he enters week three in critical condition, here’s hoping we’ll soon have some good news on Austin’s recovery. If you have a kind thought or prayer for him, I know he and his family would appreciate it right about now.