Trans boy, 13, takes own life after changing pronouns and facing relentless bullying

The family of a 13-year-old trans boy say he took his own life because of the bullying he endured at school after adopting he/him pronouns.

Australian schoolboy Onyx John was found dead on 16 July at his mother’s home in Beaudesert, Queensland, about 25 miles north west of the Gold Coast.

His death was announced in a public Facebook group by his sister, Ivy Lambert. “This world was just too cruel and nasty,” she wrote.

“I am so sorry you felt this way and got treated so badly at school. My heart hurts so bad, it all feels like a nightmare. We miss you so much.”

In another post, Lambert said Onyx was “an amazing gentle soul” who “dreamed of becoming a vet, adding “your light shone so bright”.

She told Daily Mail Australia that her brother “didn’t have gender issues, he accepted that he wanted to be a boy”.

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But, she added: “The kids at school wouldn’t accept it. The students would taunt him in front of everyone. It got so bad he would be shaking if he was forced to go to school.”

Lambert alleged that there was an incident last year when a group of girls “tried bashing him” in the toilets, and the bullying then continued online.

The school said it would “handle it”, she said. “But there’s never been any consequences for the pack of girls.”

They were lucky if Onyx went to school twice a week after that, his sister claimed.

Daily Mail Australia reported that the high school’s principal, Grant Stephensen, sent a letter to Onyx’s family after being contacted by the news outlet.

“Please know that your family is in our thoughts at this time,” it said, with Stephensen adding: “My staff and I have been deeply impacted by this.

“We have been given pause to reflect and want to ensure Beaudesert SHS [State High School] is a safe place for students to learn. Your voice is an important part of our reflection.”

An email was also sent to parents of students, saying guidance officers were available for children needing advice or support.

The Queensland Department of Education is looking into allegations of bullying at the school, a spokesperson confirmed.

“Beaudesert State High School has extensive support measures in place to assist students and families and encourages anyone with concerns to contact the school leadership team,” a department statement added.

Suicide is preventable. Readers in the UK who are affected by the issues raised in this story are encouraged to contact Samaritans on 116 123 (, or Mind on 0300 123 3393 ( ​Readers in the US are encouraged to contact the National Suicide Prevention Line on 1-800-273-8255.