Thursday, 20 November 2014
Selfies and Suicide Notes: A Terrible Title for a Hopefully Not to so Terrible Conversation on Suicidal Ideation and Self Esteem
[Note: I know this is a controversial topic, a taboo to admit these struggles, but how can we thrive as writers, as friends,as neighbours, as co-workers, as human beings without honesty? I am doing much better now but I do not regret posting this and I hope it can bring small comfort to others!]
I think about killing myself a lot. I think about the process of suicide and the audacious process that would propel a mind to think such things. I think that I want it, and I think, why I do I want it? I think about objects and permanence. I often free write when I am suicidal, post it on tumblr and it gets notes. What a peculiar sort of currency! I think of respectability, and how suicide is tenure for some, bankruptcy for others. I think about the difference between Hamlet's soliloquies and Ophelia Pre-Raphaelite portraits. Images vs words. Masculinity and femininity, the intellectual vs the precocious. The tortured vs the shrill. I once wrote a young middle class white girl who knows death, who speaks of death, who goes through a goth phase, is applauded like a cat than can stand on two legs. A party trick. The young girl of colour who knows death, speaks of trauma, is the opposite, common as dirt. (I think about how a mean, rather racist white girl once told me I had eyes the colour of shit, what a horrible thing to say to another human!) Both girls lose. Lose their lives, their 'creative' reputations whatever you want to call it. Susan Sontag said that Diane Arbus legit status was confirmed when she killed herself. I disagree. I think it was regarded merely as another neat party trick for the grown ups, like a child who can sing all the parts in So Long Farewell from the Sound of Music.
I think of the seemingly brittle tension between academic essays and outfit posts on this here blog. I like this tension. I like that my outfits are a bit shit, my photography is a bit shit, my "modelling" is a lot shit. I appreciate that.
And I think of this crappy text post I wrote when I was really bad a few months ago, "there is a thin line between a suicide note and a creative writing exercise", why in all my nonsense, wood for the trees, I may be on to something!