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The Benefits of Suicide

June 13, 2018

The deadly serious suicide attempt that left me alive was back on the agenda.


Blister packs of pills stroked my fingertips, antibacterial cleaner filled my nose and the sound of duct tape tacking off a roll sent a shiver up ears.

The pills were ready, ant eggs on my duvet.


The flat was clean, no one needs to find a corpse and grimy work surfaces.


The letterbox and front door lock were sealed with tape.


I was ready, the flat was ready, the sun was shining.


I sat on the bed, circled by the dead parents, the wonderfully alive son and the girlfriend I was sending to purgatory.


I swallowed the pills in three mouthfuls, minutes of nothing then a dull blur crept across my neck, temples, brow.

Turning back now didn't feature for a moment.


'Mr. Scott, could you just tell me which medication you took?'.


I had woken up from Autumn in Spring, a dreary DWP office replacing the floor of my flat.


Along the walls were stainless steel trollies full of medical supplies, props to add some sort of surgical ambience to a Work Capability Assessment which demanded compulsory attendance no matter how elsewhere my mind was.


The smiley 'Health Professional' valiantly insisted our meeting was for my own good, I favoured a coma and being left alone.


Her hands were tied behind her back, decision making bound tight with silver duct tape.


She read from an Orwellian script and asked questions which arrived with a tick box still attached.


Attempted suicide, waking up, in-head chaos and different pills in different doses, none of this would fit the Universal Credit strait jacket.


I stared at the floor in front of this Cosplay medic, saw a couple of dozen antidepressants in my palm eight months ago.


Drugs with capability to work based on an assessment decision made by white noise crackling my brain.


Thoughts not fitting, everything dislodged by a single-minded compulsion to clean, then tape, then die.


Every stop motion moment of the untidy helix twisting towards tablets aimed to satisfy the DWP that I wasn't one of those many charlatans who mimic suicide to defraud the system.

My trial by loaded questions had ended, crawl into coma more persistent.


Pills appeared like a close-up magic act.


I floated over my hospital bed, felt the sole of my foot grip a bulging IV drip.

I appear, as if by magic, in my flat and sit on the edge of my bed as suicidal me claws at the endgame. Eyes as puffy as a new born baby, lips fringed by drool, any second now the drugs will take full control, push face into pillow then finish with a knocked-out slump onto the floor.


S. taps the back of my leg with a Doc Marten snaps me out of the whirlwind and back to my own Kansas.


Swindon’s Brutalist buildings are behind S. as she grips my hand.

Finally, I am safe, connected to the relentless grey concrete world we stride through staring at S. who’s never less than real and an expert in curtailing hideous images of me alone, measuring the overdose and choking the pills back. 

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