But then all hell broke loose in the direction of Aussie quasi-celebrity Charlotte Dawson on Wednesday. She ended up in hospital on Wednesday night. Long story, short- after outing a Twitter troll to their employer, Ms Dawson was attacked beyond the point of human decency. If you’re very brave, check her stream from the last few hours Wednesday night, when she began retweeting the worst of the worst tweets tagged with #DieCharlotte. I wish I were joking. I’m not.
I know that my reaction to this, the anger I feel, is tainted by what’s happened to me, and exsapreated by the fact that Twitter has always been one of my soft places to fall- Tweeps have been nothing but good to me.
But fuck I am pissed off. People are idiots. You think this is funny?
To just compound the bullying culture we’re so immersed in here we can’t even see it, a stack of articles have come out further attacking Charlotte Dawson. For not ‘just ignoring it’. For taking something as ‘stupid’ as someone telling her to hang herself seriously. And because, hey, she’s been nasty herself in the past. Because, shame on her, she should have just shut up and not retweeted the disgusting nastiness coming her way.
What crap. If we can find a way to blame the victim, that makes the shame less for the perpetrators and the cowards who allow bullies to stand behind freedom of speech.
There is no excuse for this. None. Nada. Nothing. Full stop.
And, as Charlotte Dawson has said, if you’re going to say this kind of crap, be prepared to stand up and put your name to it.
Because this isn’t funny. This isn’t something you use a schoolyard taunt, a joke, a stir. THIS IS FUCKING REAL.
This is what I live with everyday. This is the reality of what a hundred dickheads where ‘joking’ about on Twitter the other night. And if they weren’t ‘joking’, this is the reality they wanted to see.
I just can’t comprehend it.
*Trigger, trigger, trigger. This post contains graphic imagery, suicidal themes and references, and would not even be allowed to be screened in this country, never mind classified anything.
I wish, vehemently, that I remembered what it was like to consider a post of this nature inappropriate or shocking. Welcome to my reality– what you are about to read is a matter of fact to me, a matter of every day life… I think about this stuff every single day.
I want a vacation.*
There is a certain inert posture that you know. You know that you know it, you can visualize it in you remind right now if you try… but you couldn’t tell me where the image originated, I’m sure.
If you’re lucky.
There is a certain set of the body, a certain posture that tells us when a person is unconscious. Never having seen a corpse, I can’t speak with certainty, but I’m imagine it’s much the same, only different– something about the way their body sits that just is not right. Something that screams at your primal neurons that something has gone very, very wrong here.
The posture of a person hanging by their neck is the same again… only worse, in that it’s so goddamn fucking unnatural.
I see it in my sleep.
The weight of a person, unconscious, suspended by the back of their neck. Head shifted slightly forward on an angle that, again, is just not right, that screams that something is wrong… deep down, you know a lot about your own biological psychology, and everything you know pumps your heart with the kind of adrenaline that is only released when your psyche senses mortal danger.
Fuck not being able to discuss suicide– I couldn’t get what I’m writing right now published in any newspaper on the country. But watch MacGuyver in the middle of the night on free–to–air TV and see a gallows, a noose… a drop. No warning, no foresight; just the room suddenly spinning and me sobbing to my friends to change the channel, change the channel, change the fucking channel now please.
My mate Bunny brings me a present, it’s a Papa Smurf stuffed and happy, a short white cord attached to his hat with a suction cap to hang him on the window. And I do and it takes me weeks, weeks to look at it properly… there is something about the posture he hangs with, the way the cord and the suction cup make him sit that terrifies me, that make my heart skip every time I see him from the corner of my eye.
A skit on the radio laughs about our prime minister jumping off a roof. The Simpsons (Halloween episode twenty two, for those of you playing along at home) has Bart and Milhouse and they have nooses around their necks and as the scene finishes they drop and that’s not funny, that’s so not fucking funny I could scream until I die.
The drop. And the posture, that awful dead cold posture of someone who’s weight is suspended in a way no one’s should ever be.
That… and the slightest, most chilling sound…. another one of those things that chase me in my sleep, torment me in my dreams…
The tiniest, slightest creaking sound… the rope, creaking slightly as I shook him. (Why didn’t it break? It never occurred to me until know, that creak, what it did… it stopped me in my tracks, unwilling and unable to shake him too hard because all I can see is taught rope cutting into flesh and I don’t want to hurt him and why didn’t the rope fucking break?)
Ahhhh… Fuck. Sometimes I think it will be so simple to write things out… and obviously, it’s not.