15 March 2023

Young Saudi Arabian trans woman Eden Knight was forced to detransition, leading to her suicide

"She has been a light in the trans community. Everyone who speaks about her mentions her humour and her kindness," a friend wrote of Knight.

Eden Knight, a Saudi trans woman who was living in America, says that she was forced to detransition in a note she posted on Twitter shortly before she died by suicide on Sunday. The popular Twitter user had almost 20,000 followers at the time of her death and was considered “a light in the trans community.”

Knight on Sunday tweeted her “final message” that states, “If you’re reading this, I’ve already killed myself. I have given life every opportunity, I have given myself every chance to get better. But I couldn’t do it, I wasn’t strong enough,” Knight wrote. “I don’t think there was a universe where I was ever strong enough to survive this.”

A document about Knight’s life and death, created and made public by friend Merrick Deville and others, explains that Knight made friends via Twitter before coming out as transgender during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Since then, she has been a light in the trans community. Everyone who speaks about her mentions her humour and her kindness,” the document reads. “She possessed an inner strength that we admire and know deserves recognition.” The document also alleges that Knight was “tricked into financial support” and abducted by two American “fixers” and a Saudi lawyer, all of whom Knight mentions in her suicide note.

In her note, Knight wrote she was forced to detransition by the Saudi lawyer whom she had met under the pretence that he was going to help her repair her relationship with her parents, who are Muslim and live in Saudi Arabia. In a public statement, Knight’s former roommate Bailee Daws says the fixers claimed that they would help Knight “achieve immigration status.”

According to the statement, under the lawyer’s care, Knight wrote that she repented for being trans and then returned to Saudi Arabia to live with her family. The family told Knight they had hired the lawyer and fixers that she had contact with.

“I was berated for being a freak when my mom found my private photos, my dad called me a failure and an abomination,” Knight wrote in her note about her experience moving back in with her family. “I didn’t want to live if I couldn’t transition… I am done fighting.”

In her Twitter statement, Knight wrote to the trans community and talked about her hopes and dreams for trans liberation. “I wanted to be a leader for people like me, but that wasn’t written to happen. I hope that the world gets better for us. I hope our people get old. I hope we get to see our kids grow up to fight for us,” she wrote. “I hope for trans rights worldwide.”

For more information about suicide prevention or to speak with someone confidentially, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (US) or Samaritans (UK). For additional support from those with experience dealing with transgender issues, you can also visit the Mermaids website here.

  • Writer Chris Saunders Banner Image Credit

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