Blake Brockington was homecoming king. Blake Brockington was 18. Blake Brockington was found dead last Monday.
He’s the latest transgender teenager to take his own life, but I doubt he’ll be the last. “Throughout my life, I haven’t really been treated equally as a male, so I’ve always wanted this, always, and everybody has always told me I couldn’t do it,” Blake told local news last year. He used that short life to campaign for greater acceptance of trans people, but reading back his words of hope today breaks my heart: “Even though you go through some things, and you have some negative encounters in your life, anything is possible, you can do anything you set your heart to.”
Sadly, despite such messages of hope, too many trans teens feel like they can’t carry on.
In February, 16 year-old Ash Haffner stepped in front of a car after years of bullying. He, too, left a note: “Just remember me as someone who understood and stayed strong for as long as I could.” Ash was lucky enough to enjoy love and support from his family. When he started a relationship with a girl, his mother offered support, telling her child: “I will not love you any differently. I will not look at you any differently.” Even with this family acceptance, though, life clearly seemed too much Ash.
More wasted life.