Utah Trans* Woman Commits Suicide–Share Her Final Words

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Yesterday, the world lost another person to transmisogyny. Ashley Hallstrom of Logan, Utah was twenty-six-years old. She tragically took her life by stepping into oncoming traffic where she died on scene. Ashley posted a suicide note on her personal Facebook page before ending her life. Yesterday also just happened to be Spirit Day, “Observed annually since 2010, individuals, schools, organizations, corporations, and public figures wear purple, which symbolizes ‘spirit’ on the rainbow flag.” Remember that although it’s progress to see corporations “go purple,” and it’s wonderful that Laverne Cox was on the cover of Time, but trans* folks are committing suicide and dying disproportionately.

Ashley wanted her story shared. Please read, take a moment to reflect on how you perpetuate cisnormativity and transmisogyny, and ask yourself how you can do better. Share her words:

These are going to be my final words. I can’t stand to live another day, so I’m committing suicide. The reason why I’ve decided to do this is because I’m transgender. For those of you that unsure of what that means, it means that even though I was born in a male body, I am and have always been female. I’ve known I was female for as far back as I can remember. This caused me to become severely depressed from a very young age. From a very young age I was told that people like me are freaks and abominations, that we are sick in the head and society hates us. This made me hate who I was. I tried so hard to be just like everyone else but this isn’t something you can change.   It wasn’t until I was 20 that I found out I wasn’t alone. I had hope that I would finally be able to live as and love who I am. I finally came out as transgender and began transitioning.

For the first time in my life I could say I was genuinely happy. Despite this huge change in my life I never completely got over the depression being trans caused me. Everywhere I’d turn I’d see the hated that society had for us. I had already been poisoned by a society that didn’t understand us and, even worse, didn’t want to even try. I saw the pain it caused to people like me and going though this same hurt myself it has just become to [sic] much for me to take anymore. I wanted so much to help those going though what I had to because nobody should ever have to feel that they hate their life so much that they want to end it all just so they won’t have to experience another moment of this sadness. I’m not the first to feel this way and sadly I know I won’t be the last.

I’m writing all of this because I’ve need my story to be shared. I don’t want to be just another number of a tragic statistic. People need to know that I’m not just another face of someone they never met. I was alive. I have a family and friends that I love very much and I’m so sorry to them for the hurt this will cause them. I loved being around those that I love. I loved listening to music and singing. I loved going out to eat with friends and enjoying good food. I was a real person. I still want to help people and I believe I still can. Please share my final words. I believe my last words can help make the change that society needs to make so that one day there will be no others like me. Please help make this change because trans people are everywhere. You may never know who you’re hurting until it’s too late. Please help fix society. Ashley Hallstrom

My heart goes out to Ashley’s family and friends. I also hope that the driver of the truck receives counseling and support for what he endured. If you or someone you know is struggling, share the Trans Lifeline phone number (877) 565-8860 (US); Canada: (877) 330-6366. There is a GoFund me campaign to cover Ashley’s funeral expenses (at last report, the page was not verified).

Ashley’s final wish was that her story was shared. Spread the word and help educate people in your life.

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