This trans woman's last moments were soured by anti-LGBTQ trolls.
As friends and family watched with horror, Trump supporters rallied together and essentially encouraged a woman to commit suicide after she posted her suicide note on Facebook. The people that saw the note didn’t know that she had already taken her own life, and it didn’t affect their decision to say awful things to a woman that was already in pain.
The woman was Lizzy Waite, a transgender woman living in South Dakota who had a 5-year-old son and whose mental health was in steady decline over the past several years. Just before Thanksgiving, she could no longer face her demons and decided to take her own life. Based on the content of her note, it seems that after she ingested many pills, she took to Facebook to schedule her last note to the world.
“I’m so sorry to all the people I hurt by killing myself. I truly am. I’ve been hurting so bad and I can’t form words to communicate it to you,” Waite wrote. “I’m so lonely.”
According to The Daily Beast, Amanda, Lizzy’s longtime partner and co-mother of their child, saw the post when it went up and called the police to conduct a wellness check. Though they still loved each other, they had been living separately for some time and had jointly declared bankruptcy in the days before Lizzy’s suicide. Amanda told The Daily Beast,
“When they opened the door, she was already gone. She knew exactly what she was doing when she set it for the time she did, so someone could save her cat.”
After a long day of informing family members and making funeral arrangements, Amanda settled down to comment back on Lizzy’s Facebook post as a sort of “last note” to her wife. As she sat there, she saw the first of many troll comments appear below the suicide note.
This was not Lizzy’s first encounter with trolls since she transitioned into being a woman, as her name had been put on a list on a website where anti-trans threads exist to unite horrible trolls. These trolls would periodically show up on Lizzy’s profile to wreak havoc, and apparently her death was no less fair game than the rest of her posts.
While some of the trolls downright referenced Trump in their comments, the rest are presumed supporters because the Republican party is staunchly anti-trans and LGBTQ. A person invoking Donald Trump’s name commented #TRANSLIVESDONTMATTER, and another used Trump’s face in a photo and said “America just became a little greater” in reference to Lizzy’s death. See below for more of the horrible comments posted.
Since Amanda and Lizzy were living separately and Lizzy had changed all her passwords, it was virtually impossible for Amanda to gain access to her Facebook to delete all the comments and prevent future comments. The existing ones haunted them for days as they rolled in, terrorizing Lizzy’s friends and family as they stood by helplessly while terrible people took over her last words before Facebook finally memorialized her account to cut off public access.
The behavior of these Trump supporters and people in general is inexcusable and should not be a common occurrence, and yet it is. No one should root for the death of another human being that has done no harm to them, even if they disagree with their beliefs and values. The only fortunate part of Lizzy’s passing is that she was already gone before the comments appeared so she didn’t have to spend her last minutes in the company of cruel strangers.
As for Amanda and their son, she said she’s cleaned up the post and has kept the photos that Lizzy most liked of herself, which are all after her transition. She told the Daily Beast,
“I don’t want him seeing this awful, last-day-of-her-life bit. If our son googles her name in 15 years, I want people to see the good stuff.”
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