THE mum of a teenage boy who commit suicide after suffering years of online bullying says the investigation into his death is being “obstructed” by Facebook.
Lucy Alexander is fighting to raise awareness of online bullying and the tragic consequences it can have after the death of her 17-year-old son Felix in April 2016.
Her 17-year-old son Felix killed himself earlier this year
The teen jumped in front of a train after being subjected to torment online.
She believes Felix’s Facebook messages could hold vital clues that could help bring the bullies to justice.
But the mum, from Worcester, cannot access his profile because of the social media giant’s privacy restrictions.
She told the Sunday Mirror: “Private messages were where the real nastiness took place. It could hold clues about what Felix was going through.”
Felix killed himself when he was 17
She added: “”I appreciate Facebook has rules but given the circumstances it feels like they are being obstructive.”
A court order is required to access the profile and police can ask for the information is it can be proved there is a “legal sufficiency”.
The Sun has contacted Facebook for a comment.
She said: “He decided to do this because he couldn’t see a way to be happy. People who had never even met Felix were abusing him on social media and he found that he was unable to make and keep friends as it was difficult to befriend the most hated boy in school.
“I’m appealing to children to be kind always, never to stand by and leave bullying unreported.
“Be that one person to stand up to kindness – you’ll never regret being a good friend. Our lives have been irrevocably damaged by the loss of our wonderful son.
“Please don’t let it happen to any other family.”
Lucy Alexander spoke on This Morning to raise awareness of the impact online bullying can have
When asked by Holly Willoughby what her son had been like when he was younger she replied that he was “known for his smile, his massive smile – with more teeth than most children should have”.
She continued: “He was funny, he was active and very loving – very bright, a very bright boy. My brother’s a teacher and he always said that he thought he was quite gifted.
“He was very sharp and had a good memory.”
The online bullying began in 2009 when Felix was just 10.
Holly asked whether there was anything that tipped her off and she said it was just “little incidences of unkindness” that she noticed: “It was more exclusion than anything else.”
She said that she thought it would settle when he went to senior school but instead she said it “started to escalate and become more and more”.
Mum reads heartbreaking letter she penned about teenage son’s suicide
Phillip and Holly mentioned that he was such a good looking boy but his mum said: “He never saw that, he only ever smiled for family pictures… he said, ‘oh, I’m really ugly when I smile’ – he never saw it.”
When asked whether he was sensitive to the bullying she said that he may well have been: “Because he reacted to it, he couldn’t dismiss it. He would come home and be sad… it was only when he came home that he would cry.”
She added that no one noticed because he kept a “fixed grin”, adding that he was the “class clown and he got into trouble”.
“It just became progressively worse,” she explained.
Lucy said that her son’s self-esteem and confidence was “eroded on a daily basis”: “He was called a name by somebody every day… his social life was his family.
“As a teenager you like your family but you don’t want to spend all your time with them.”
She also tragically revealed that as soon as he made a friend outside school it wouldn’t be long before they got a text or Facebook message asking why they wanted to be friends with him for.
His mum said that he became known as the “most hated boy in school”.
Lucy revealed that she and her son had been “very close” and that they had “talked a lot”. She said that a friend of hers who was a psychotherapist had told her when he was 14 to “get him some help”.
Lucy said that she and her son had been close
She said: “He admitted and said ‘I can’t do this’. And so he saw a psychotherapist for about a year and she did give him some coping strategies… but he said he wouldn’t change schools because it was social media and it would go with him wherever.”
In the last two years she said that he shared less with her so wasn’t as aware that it was still going on.
Lucy tragically called him “damaged” and even though he went to a new school the people were really nice but he “didn’t know how to have a friendship because he had never had one”.
When she talked about the day her son took his own life, tears welled up in her eyes and said that the school had called and said that somebody had seen him getting off a bus in a local village.
She thought he’d gone to speak with a friend because he’d been upset so they went to look for him.
She shook her head and said that there was no indication that he’d throw himself in front of a train.
Struggling to hold back a sob, Lucy revealed that they’d talked about the subject of suicide before: “He’d said ‘No mum, I won’t do that because I’m not brave enough’.”
Asked whether she thought she could have done anything to prevent his suicide, she said: “Felix was very resistant to changes… he dug his heels in.”
Lucy said that she’d written the letter after the words were “circulating” in her head and wanted to raise awareness.
She added that people just need to “learn to be kind”.