I imagine you’ve all heard by now about Leelah Alcorn, the 17 year old Ohio teen who killed herself because her parents did not support her transition. She left a heartbreaking suicide note, which has gone public on the internet and I’ll link to here: http://abcnews.go.com/US/leelah-alcorn-transgender-teens-reported-suicide-note-makes/story?id=27912326
I have been thinking about this story for two days and I can’t sleep because of it. In a year where Laverne Cox was named a woman of the year by Glamour magazine, this is a terrible reminder that we are still a long, long way from trans equality. And I don’t know what to do about that–how to change it. I have donated money to Trans Ohio in Leelah’s memory, and if you have the money and are so inclined I urge you to do that, too, or to any trans rights organizations. http://www.transohio.org/wordpress/
But that’s not enough. Being a good person and praying for peace and never mistreating a trans person myself isn’t enough. So I am reaching out on the internet, the vast connector of beings, on the biggest platform I have–this silly blog.
Trans People–Any People–if you are struggling, there is hope. There are SO MANY people out there who love you and are rooting for you and wish you joy. Many others have linked to suicide hotlines and other professional resources, so I won’t do that here. What I will do is take an example from Sydney, Australia earlier this year. When a Muslim attacked a cafe and other Muslims feared retributive violence, the people on Sydney offered to ride with Muslims on public transport, to show friendship, solidarity, and protection. They had a twitter hashtag, #Illridewithyou.
So to anyone out there struggling–I’ll listen to you. I will be your friend. Email me: email@example.com. I will email you back. I will listen and not judge. I will cry with you. You are not alone.
Please share this widely, if you are so inclined. Because I refuse to let one more trans person die thinking nobody cares about them.
Tomorrow we will go back to regularly scheduled programming, but this is too important not to discuss. I love you all. Be safe and good to yourself this New Year’s Eve. May 2015 bring equality and joy for all of us.