Last Thursday, Rachel Bryk committed suicide by jumping off of the George Washington Bridge, the span that connects New Jersey with upper Manhattan. The tragic decision came after she was subjected to what she had described as “constant transphobia” online. Her final heartbreaking words, posted on Twitter and scheduled to publish after she’d killed herself, read, “Guess I am dead. Killed myself. Sorry.” Bryk reportedly grew up a shy teen in suburban New Jersey and spent her time playing and developing video games, ultimately making a name for herself doing the sort of grunt development work that others programming video games are reluctant to do. In addition to her gender struggles, Bryk battled rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia. In a post on Facebook, Bryk’s grieving mother wrote, “Next time you think it’s funny to make fun of someone transgender, think about who you’re hurting.” The problem of online bullying and its sweeping and often tragic impact is an issue that believe needs a larger platform for discussion and was the topic of a panel last week at the Women in the World Summit.
Read the full story at The Washington Post.