I love a good dead body. Not in my house, thank you very much. On TV, or on the big screen (although I rarely get out to the movies), or in a book. I don’t like violence too much, so it suits me if they are already dead. Because I like what happens afterward, the puzzle of it, the triumph of justice (because, of course, it usually does), the happy ending. The fantasy of good winning out.
So, I’ve spent the last few weeks playing through episodes of Inspector Lynley, and yesterday I caught a new episode of SVU: Law and Order, and today I watched CSI. That’s 3 dead bodies in 3 days. A good weekend, I suppose.
Except, actually, my weekends are never good. They are basically wretched. I need them–I can’t work all the time–but mainly what I do on the weekends these days is cry. Everything I haven’t had time to think through or sort out for myself surfaces on the weekends, and a lot of that isn’t pretty. If you haven’t read some of my earlier blogs, you might be a little puzzled by that. But, for the sake of brevity here, I’ll just say I’ve been through a lot. And most of it sucked.
So I was thinking that my dead body habit was a good bit of escapism. But then I started thinking about the kinds of stories that are told And, yes, there is the element that justice wins out. That’s important, because the perpetrators in my life were never sentenced–never even charged with their crimes as far as I know. And it is nice to fantasize about a world that’s a tad bit fairer than my life.
But, also, a lot of these stories are no longer about ordinary murders anymore. Killing someone is kind of boring. There are a lot of tales of murder tied up with sex crimes, especially of the organized variety, or with human trafficking, or both.
And that’s been my life. And it’s not just that the perpetrators in the crime shows are usually caught and brought to justice, but that someone cares enough to rescue the victims. That’s good for me to see, because no one rescued me, and it’s hard for me to imagine that someone might have, since it never happened.
The idea causing me so much distress these days is that I am worthless. That I deserved everything that happened to me. What arises out of that is an intense depression about the future. If I am worthless, and deserve bad things, there is really nothing for me to live for.
I am aware that this is incorrect and that it’s a result of the kind of brainwashing that results when victims are regularly tortured, but I’ve also found the only cure to my wrong ideas is to engage with them, instead of trying to suppress them. So I let myself think them. That’s why I cry so much.
Anyway, today’s CSI episode centered on a pair of teenagers kept in a state of captivity by their own father and used sexually–whether by himself or someone else, I don’t know–for most of their lives. One girl was shot (the dead body). The other girl is alive but unable to say what has happened to her because her father cut her tongue out and she has never been to school–so she is unable to write. All she can do is draw.
And I know this is all TV, that none of this is real. But I also know that things like that really do happen, and that real life in these cases is not always any better than what someone can imagine. The girl in the box really happened.
It made me realize that, as much as I’ve lived through, it could have been worse. I don’t mean I realize I shouldn’t feel sorry for myself–because I really could have had it a lot better. It’s just that it interrupts the logic that is causing me pain.
Let me explain.
If I deserved what I got,
And if I am worthless,
Then I should have gotten it as bad as it gets.
I didn’t. What this means is a) what happened to me has nothing to do with my worth or b) I am not as worthless as I think I am or c) both.
What that probably also means is it’s likely that the floor of my apartment is worth sweeping, because I probably won’t get the rest of what’s coming to me in the night.
Guess I’d better get going here. There’s laundry to fold as well.
Links to media sources:
Inspector Lynley. BBC One. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007rr0c
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. ”Wildflowers.” http://www.cbs.com/shows/csi/video/