Leelah Alcorn’s Mother: ‘We Loved Him Unconditionally’ But ‘Don’t Support That, Religiously’


Leelah Alcorn's mother says she loved her "son" but that they didn't support her being transgender for religious reasons. 

Leelah Alcorn was 17 when she walked in front of a truck this past weekend. She grew up in a tiny town about 20 miles from Cincinnati, Ohio, and was the oldest of four children.

The world now knows that Leelah had a troubled relationship with her parents, who insisted on sending her to Christian therapists because she was transgender and repeatedly have refused to acknowledge Leelah as a girl.

RELATED: Dan Savage: Parents Of Trans Teen Leelah Alcorn 'Threw Her In Front Of That Truck'

Carla Alcorn, Leelah's mother spoke with CNN yesterday, saying they could not support "him" being transgender, "religiously."

"But we told him that we loved him unconditionally. We loved him no matter what. I loved my son. People need to know that I loved him. He was a good kid, a good boy."

Carla Alcorn told CNN that her child was depressed and that counselors and a psychiatrist gave the teenager medication.

"He just quit talking about it (being transgender)," she said.

Her child came to her only once to say he was transgender, Carla Alcorn insisted.

The first time she heard the name Leelah was on the teen's suicide note.

"He never said that name before," she said.

Carla Alcorn recalled her teen asking for transition surgery. She told her child no, she said, because "we didn't have the money for anything like that."

On Facebook, Carla also referred to Leelah as her "son," and "he," despite her daughter identifying as female.

Alcorn, CNN reports, "said that there has not been a service for the teen because people have threatened to protest."

Aidan Key, founder of Gender Diversity says his "compassion is there for the parents. All any parent wants is love for their children, for their children to live good lives. Transgender is such a new thing in society and we've not faced it or discussed it as a society. We've kept it in a dark corner where some people still think it's some deviant sexual behavior."

"If the parents would have reached out for more information, or said 'This is a lot. We need some time,' or if they had access to a group that would welcome them to talk, that might have made the difference for Leelah."

The transgender Human Rights Institute has a Change.org petition: "Enact Leelah's Law to Ban Transgender Conversion Therapy." It currently has over 140,000 signatories.

The Facebook group Justice for Leelah Alcorn has close to 25,000 supporters. 

There is a Stand Up 4 Leelah Candle Vigil on Friday, organized by Have A Gay Day, and a candlelight vigil at Leelah's school on Saturday organized by Support Marriage Equality in Ohio.

On Twitter, the hashtag #LeelahAlcorn is being used by many to comment on the tragedy. 

UPDATE - 1.2.15:
New And Disturbing Details Emerge About Leelah Alcorn's Life From Posts She Made To Reddit


Image via Tumblr

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