Conrad Roy III, the Massachusetts teenager who took his own life after being encouraged to do so by his girlfriend, Michelle Carter, was heard in court Thursday via two video diaries where he laments his difficulties dealing with social anxiety.
“This is Conrad Henry Roy III, reporting about social anxiety,” Roy says at the start of the video. “Social anxiety to me is the inability to function properly in a manner that you want to in social situations. And, one of the things I’ve realized is that all eyes aren’t on you at all times. People don’t necessarily judge you, particularly, in a situation where you’re not feeling very good about yourself, you’re making mistakes.
“People understand that you come across as awkward. They’re not going to judge you and make fun of you, that’s just who you are as an individual. And, the quicker you are to realize who you are, the better,” Roy said. “Like, you don’t have to be this amazing, like, thought-out, drawn-out, like superhero, like Incredible Hulk, Superman, I don’t know. The people who are portrayed in the media are like perfect. Well, they’re not perfect.”
He added: “Nobody’s perfect. You just have to accept yourself as an individual. The hardest thing for me is to be comfortable in my own skin.”
Rather than help her boyfriend to find comfort in his own skin, Carter encouraged him to take his own life. In text messages she told him that he could end his life by hanging himself, stabbing himself or using a generator to gas himself, the court heard.
She also expressed anger at him for “putting off” suicide and egged him on: “You just need to do it!” she told him.
Eventually, he did. Roy was found dead in his pickup truck in a store parking lot in July 2014. Carter, now 20, faces a charge of involuntary manslaughter. The two were not traditional boyfriend-girlfriend. Though they only lived 35 minutes apart, they rarely saw each other and communicated mostly via text messages and phone calls.
In the video, Roy expresses that he is not a happy person. His mood fluctuates as he talks about positive aspects of his life and then delves into dark corners.
He talks about how he is a “minuscule particle on the face of this Earth that’s no good, trash, will never be successful, will never have a wife, never have kids, never learn. But, I have a lot to offer someone. I’m introverted, nice and caring — that’s some benefits. I’m a nice kid. But, it comes to a point where – too nice.’
He continued: “It’s going to be difficult to accomplish, but I need to, for personal growth, accomplish this sense of self-pride in myself. Because depression, it means you don’t like yourself. The sooner I like myself, the better I’m going to be. I do have a lot going for me. Like, I’m a fucking captain. I just got a job from the Boston Duck Tours to captain their boat, like, that’s a huge accomplishment, to be a captain.”
“Listen, I just have to get the cobwebs out. Turn the gears. The gears need to be turning. Turn them gears,” he continued, his voice rising. “That’s what I do. Look at me, I’ve got nice teeth. I got a nice smile.”