Remembering Jane, Nila, Leeze, Sophie and Milo.

It will soon be the Transgender Day of Remembrance, the annual memorial day for all those with gender dysphoria lost to violence around the world.

Some are murdered, some die by suicide.

On Saturday November 20th we’ll be remembering all of them, and amongst them the five we have lost here in the UK this year. Jane McQueen, a lawyer who spent her life looking for a way to make things better for everyone. Nila Gupta, an artist, writer, cultural critic and a co-founder of Bi’s of Colour. Leeze Lawrence, an equality advocate, journalist and producer. Sophie Williams, artist, activist and musician. And Milo Turner of whom we have nothing but a name.

We’ll also be thinking of those dear friends who have been driven to self-harm or attempted suicide this year but are, thankfully, still with us. We’ll be wondering whether they’ll survive another year of prejudice and bigotry. And to let you know what it feels like, here is the poem I wrote on the night, some years ago, that I didn’t commit suicide. Later that night and early the next morning three women told me that I would have a life that was worthwhile, and that I could be proud of. They were right.



Today I realised that the pain will never end never end,

And I wondered why I am still here stuck,

Dying slowly inside,

Every day every day the pain goes on,

God, when I die please make me content or let me sleep pain free,

This life has been too long to bear and I just need the hurt to stop,

Please please let it stop,

Please please let it stop,

God, please let it stop.


So can you please choose to be one of those amazing allies who save a life in the year ahead? I pray you will. And if all you have is your humanity, that it is enough. That and searching ‘NHS Gender Dysphoria’ in your browser to get the basic information on this rare but well know medical condition. That way you can remember Jane, Nila, Leeze, Sophie and Milo in a way that will save other lives tonight and in the year ahead.

For their stories and for a full list of all those lost around the world this year see


Emma Mawby – 10th November 2021

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