I don’t usually post content warnings but be aware that this story is really horrific. I’m writing it on the basis of information collated by Eden’s friends and by journalist Erin Reed. If more details emerge to confirm or contradict the details here, I’ll update the post.
Her name was Eden Knight. “Eden was funny, sharp, well-read and concerned with making the world a better place,” her friends say. She lived in the US, where she appeared to be living her best life. Two days ago, she killed herself.
Eden came from a rich Saudi family and was attending college in the US. She came out as trans during COVID. And in Summer 2022, she explained in her final note, she was approached by a friendly “fixer” hired by her family who said his goal was to find a way to rebuild the bridges burnt between her and her parents. The fixer also suggested he could solve her immigration status, as she was living in the US illegally.
“I thought this was impossible,” she wrote. “I’m transgender and they are strict conservative Muslims, but I decided I would give it a shot because it can’t hurt right lmao?”
According to Eden’s note, the fixer and his associate took her under his wing. After a “traumatic event” he encouraged her to move from Georgia, where she lived, to Virginia, where she would be looked after by one of the man’s associates. Eden was initially pampered, but the tone began to change and Eden appears to have been subject to a clumsy attempt at conversion therapy. “I did not realize fast enough what was happening because I’m fucking stupid,” she wrote.
After a few months “I realised I was entirely dependent on [the associate] for food and shelter.” The fear of deportation kept her from running away. “I did everything he asked,” she wrote. “I cut my hair, I stopped taking estrogen, I changed my wardrobe, I met my dad… my mom kept telling me to repent or I was going to helm and I did, I repented.”
The associate booked Eden on a flight to Saudi Arabia and she was returned to her parents. After a month of apparent normality, things changed. “I was subjected to daily searches of my belongings, my mom searched all of my electronics whenever she got the chance. I was berated for being a freak when my mom found my private photos, my dad called me a failure and an abomination.” Her parents found her HRT on multiple occasions and confiscated it.
“They have found my HRT again, and I am done fighting,” Eden wrote two days ago. “This time I am done. I am tired.”
She ended her message with a wish. “I hope that the world gets better for us. I hope our people get old.”
Her suicide note was posted online yesterday morning. In the afternoon, her family posted the official notification of her death. She was deadnamed and misgendered throughout.