Meet Daphne Dorman, The Trans woman who Killed Herself After Dave Chappelle Humiliated Her

Mia Satya (L) and her bestie Daphne Dorman (R) in better days.

Transgender woman, aspiring comedian, and beloved human Daphne Dorman was tricked by Dave Chapelle into thinking he liked her style. 

After she opened for her newfound mentor Chapelle attacked her very being, destroying her confidence. She committed suicide a week afterward. 

But that's not the last of it. Dave Chapelle didn't respond to invitations to three memorials held on both the east and west coast, but he did use her posthumously as a transphobic prop in his last Netflix specials.

As told by her best friend Mia Satya. 

"Daphne Dorman was my best friend for over 5 years.,,,

She said we met at Trans March, (her first pride) but there are so many people there I don’t really remember meeting her but she swears she told her friend she was with “Mia and are going to be friends, I know it!” Shortly after that, we hung out at a photoshoot for the #HireTrans campaign, and our pics appeared alongside each other on the ad campaign. 📢 

 We bonded over both having eclectic interests including loving history, sociology, psychology, comedy, and cartography. 🗺 🧠 📚 

 We also had a lot of differences. Like I’m a vegan Buddhist who can’t code or remember acting lines to save my life, and she was a carnivorous atheist software engineer and actress. When we would eat together and I would order a meal with no meat, dairy or eggs and she would order a meal with all three she would always joke “how are we friends?!” 🤣🤣 

We were there with each other through relationship drama, job changes, moving, and more. She met up with me for moral support the day that I announced my candidacy for the Board of Education. Daphne helped coach me for my first stand-up comedy performance, and I was there for what she alleged was her first comedy performance, but it was so funny that I hardly believe it was her first. 🤣 

She was always proud to introduce me to her friends as her bestie, and the way she listed my accomplishments made me remember “Damn, I really am that bitch!” I saw her start to get booked for more and more comedy performances and I felt like “Damn! She’s about to be a celebrity and I’m going to get to say - I knew her before she was famous” 

And then she killed herself. 

Today marks 2 years since she left us. . .

 Daphne Story Continued (Trigger Warning/Ramble Warning)⚠️ (This is going to piss some people off, but I ran out of fucks to give when Daphne died.) 


Today has been two years since Daphne chose to end her life. I don’t say ‘committed suicide’ because committed implies that it’s a crime. 

It seems surreal that she missed the COVID pandemic, Tiger King, the insurrection and so many moments from her friends’ lives. I miss her jokes and know she would have made COVID quarantine sooOo much more bearable for many folks that appreciated her humor on social media. 

People ask me if she killed herself because of Dave Chapelle (henceforth called DC) mentioning her in his 2019 special because she ended her life just one week after it came out. 

Daphne met DC at a comedy club while he was performing..

He was telling controversial jokes and she was laughing because she always had a dark sense of humor. But Daphne never told racist jokes or punched down on groups of people. She used humor to heal from pain, she told self-deprecating jokes and used humor to educate people about trans issues. 

She never used humor to be hateful. 

Before DC’s 2019 special he really buttered her up, promising to mentor her, and take her under his wings. I was suspicious of his antics and didn’t really appreciate his style of humor but I was happy for Daphne if she was happy. 🤷🏻‍♀️ I watched part of DC’s 2019 special when it came out because Daphne was so excited for it but I couldn’t even finish it because I felt like it was so offensive to different marginalized groups. 

But I didn’t want to criticize it because I knew Daphne was excited for the shoutout, even though the mention of her was so quick you could miss it. 

Then after Daphne died it was crickets from Dave Chapelle for months and years after it happened. When a group of her theatre/comedy friends threw a memorial for her in San Francisco, DC didn’t say anything. When her funeral in Pennsylvania happened a couple months later, DC’s team hadn’t reached out to her friends or family. When we planned another memorial for her in SF, we didn’t hear anything from his team.

 It was like if he said something about her, he would admit that he was responsible for her death. I’m not going to say I know for sure 100% that Dave Chapelle making fun of Daphne in his 2019 special is what caused her death. I don't think it was the main cause, but who knows. 

Daphne had PTSD from a life of trauma and she had battled suicidal thoughts for years. I think the final blow was a combination of her losing custody of her daughter, losing her job, and dealing with a lot of transphobic harassment on the streets of San Francisco. I lived with her, and yet I didn’t know how bad she was feeling. I heard from a friend that Dave Chapelle mentioned her last year in a stand up comedy routine, and he mentioned how he let her open for one of his stand up routines but that she “bombed it”. For him to patronize her, demean her, and minimize her talent AFTER her death is cruel and crass. 

For him to invoke her name as a free pass to continue being transphobic is beyond fucked up. 😤 😤 In the latest Netflix special he starts off his piece about trans people with “I’m not saying trans women aren’t women” but then he calls trans vaginas “beyond pussy”. *rolls eyes* And he says he is a TERF (trans exclusionary radical feminist) and self describes himself as transphobic MULTIPLE TIMES in this special 🤬🤬🤬 He mentioned the story of when he met Daphne, and when he called her to invite her to open for him, and that he didn’t know she was an amateur. He says she was dressed well for the performance and admits “I’m transphobic and even I think she looked nice.” 


“This bitch bombed for 45 min straight. . that show was terrible. . but here’s what impressed me. . Any other comedian I’ve ever seen, if they bombed as bad as she did, would have snuck out of the theater and gone on home and cried. But she found a seat right in front. . she laughed hard like (she didn’t bomb). She was talking to me while I was performing like she was watching the TV alone, but the crowd didn’t like that shit because she sucked. .” 😤😤 

And then Daphne told a joke to a heckler and then they went back and forth and told jokes. He tells about a touching moment they had together, but then he said her performance “stunk” again. That’s what 4 times he said she wasn’t funny?! This is how you speak about your dead “friend”? Then he realized she was funny after the performance by the way she genuinely interacted with the audience . then he says when she hugged him he pushed her off violently because “I’m transphobic”. 🙄 “My friend Daphne killed herself. .She identifies as a woman _____((Then he describes how she killed herself)),___ clearly only a man would do some gangster shit like that” 🤬🤬🤬 

I don’t even know how he found that out because her friends and family didn’t say that publicly because IT’s PRIVATE AND PAINFUL! And beyond that, studies have shown that mentioning specifically how people kill themselves only causes more suicides. 

But Dave doesn’t care. He continues..“As hard as it is to hear a joke like that, Daphne would have loved that joke” Maybe she would, maybe she wouldn’t but SHE KILLED HERSELF AND CAN’T DEFEND HERSELF ANYMORE! He goes on to say “I don’t know what the trans community did for her and I don’t care because she was my tribe” 🙄 

He says Daphne killed herself because trans people were criticizing her on Twitter…So he’s blaming trans people for causing her death? WTF. That’s some next level victim blaming / gaslighting. 😡😡 

He ends his mockery of her saying he said he wants to tell Daphne’s daughter “I knew your father and HE was a wonderful woman.” 🤬🤬🤬 

Dave Chapelle doesn’t give a fuck about trans people. He deliberately goes out of his way to make fun of us, even making fun of his alleged friend AFTER her death. If you are reading this and made it this far, please take a moment to ask Netflix to remove this hateful special. Not because it might offend trans people, but because it might inspire more people to end their life. Daphne Dorman deserved better.


Rest in Power Daphne Dorman.


Ruschelle Lilley said...

I hope Karma does a job on that asshole. I am definitely going to let Netflix have an earfull. I doubt it will have them pull the special but I will be cancelling when they don't. She sounds like a wonderful women and friend.Ruschelle Lilley.

Ruschelle Lilley said...

I hope Karma does a job on that asshole. Your friend sounds like she was a wonderful women You must be so sad and at the same time so mad. I will definitely give Netflix a piece of my mind and should they not remove the 'special' I will end them.
Always with my sisters and brothers, Ruschelle Lilley.❤❤❤

AlexReynard said...


“No one knows what life was like for my siblings and I,” she added. “We are products of how we were brought [up]. Dave was the biggest bright spot for Daphne; she was enamored for the first time. Blaming Dave is beyond the wrong thing to do. He helped her and let her be comfortable while talking with him. She had many demons; Dave Chappelle was NOT one of them.”