Remembering Emelia Worth

In the past few years, media reporting on transgender issues has moved from rare and/or gawking to serious and respectful.

Because of press attention, many Americans now know that suicide is an enormous issue in the trans community. Over 40% of people identifying as transgender have attempted suicide — 92% of them before the age of 25.

But statistics are just numbers. Now, one of those suicides has struck very close to home.

Earlier this month, Emelia Worth killed herself at the Kent School. She was 18, and a few years earlier attended Saugatuck Elementary School. Students there knew her as Carl.

A few weeks before her death, Emelia had given a chapel talk to the school.

According to the Norwalk Hour, she said:

For once, I’ve actually chosen my words very carefully … Let me explain myself to you, not as Carl the experienced senior giving a chapel talk. But as Carl, the really scared child who is worried that they may have waited too long to get real.

After announcing she was battling depression, she said: “I am transgender. I puzzle every day why I came out a boy.”

Emelia Worth

Emelia Worth

Emelia’s mother, Elsa Worth, said that suicidal depression — not a lack of support from family, friends or school officials — led to her death.

Emelia — a 4-year class representative at Kent, senior prefect, orchestra and jazz band musician — had already been accepted to the Universities of New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Her mother told the Hour that she wanted to study linguistics and be a professor.

Worth also said that Emelia also planned to begin hormone treatments in March. The newspaper reported that Kent was planning to allow her to live in a girls’ dorm. No one there knew of any bullying.

Her death surprised a former Saugatuck El classmate. The boy — now a senior — had known Emelia as Carl: “an insanely good artist.” The two had camped out in New Hampshire as children, and played card games.

“I realized that he was gone. This kid who had only been happy, and made everyone around him happy, was dead because she was so sad.”

The senior says that at his public high school in Fairfield County (not Staples), there are 2 openly trans students.

“They are treated with the utmost respect,” he says. They can change in their own locker rooms if they choose, and use non-gendered bathrooms. Staples has the same options for trans students.

The senior says, “We treat our trans friends just like anyone else. They’re some of the nicest people I know.”

We’ll never know how much that feeling of being trapped in the wrong body contributed to Emelia’s depression. Sadly, we do know she leaves behind her mother and father (Steven), and brothers Bo and Orion.

Memorial services are set for Friday, February 10 (St. James Church, Keene, NH) and Tuesday, February 14 (Kent School). In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Emelia Carl ’17 Scholarship. Click here, or send to Kent School, PO Box 2006, Kent, CT 06757.

4 responses to “Remembering Emelia Worth

  1. Tragic

  2. Sends shivers and heartfelt sorrow to his family as I’ll never forget my brother, his confusion, and depression in an age 35 years ago when the words transgender weren’t even used and homosexuals were not coming out. Death was the way out. Must change. Depression is real! So sorry!

  3. A dear friend of mine, a loving parent of a beautiful transgender child, suggests the following links to learn more about what resources are available in our community, and a remarkable documentary with Katie Couric.

    http://www.ctpridecenter.org
    Fairfield County’s LGBTQ Community Center
    Triangle Community Center is Fairfield County’s leading provider of programming and resources to nurture growth and connection within the LGBTQ community.
    TCC is the only organization focused exclusively on the LGBTQ community in Fairfield County. TCC has existed for 27 years and until 2013 operated without full-time staff. TCC offers programs, services and events that provide critical and in some cases life-saving resources and assistance to the LGBTQ community in Fairfield County. TCC offers a co-sponsored housing program that works directly with TCC’s case manager, provides emergency financial assistance to clients in need, and other direct services. TCC works closely with Mid-Fairfield AIDS Project and World Health Clinicians on HIV/AIDS related outreach, testing initiatives, and creating a more informed and healthy LGBTQ community.
    TCC served over 200 case management clients in 2015 alone, after that program’s inauguration in January of that year. We also serve over 300 individuals who attend our programs and services on a weekly basis as well as over 2000 members of the Fairfield County community who attend a TCC program or event at least once a year. While our primary service area is Fairfield County, we often see people travel from Westchester, New Haven, and Litchfield counties to attend one of the programs we offer. TCC’s key target population is the LGBTQ community in Fairfield County, however we welcome all who seek our services and have many clients who do not identify as LGBTQ.

    http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/gender-revolution-a-journey-with-katie-couric/
    Katie Couric travels across the U.S. to talk with scientists, psychologists, activists, authors and families about the complex issue of gender.

    http://medicine.yale.edu/ysm/news/article.aspx?id=14258
    New team helps children, families explore gender issues
    by Carrie MacMillan February 1, 2017

    http://radremedy.org
    RAD Remedy is dedicated to connecting trans, gender non-conforming, intersex, and queer folks to accurate, safe, respectful, and comprehensive care.

  4. how to give gift to the family . my family did same for my sister w scholarship donation but that where her depression came from partly school pressure etc i didnt see why someone benefits from someone elses death vs just helping family n way keep emelia n others like my sister alive. i garden. id help make memorial garden for emelia feed the future students n familys of kent…
    so id rather gift the family ones hurting not schools. helping family after such loss important
    much peace!
    louisa

Commenters must fill out their real full names, and provide their real email addresses.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s