Satan’s Shadow by Adam Slosberg

It is a beautiful day. The Sun is out; not a cloud in the sky. Yet I am in the Depths of Darkness where light cannot penetrate and reach me. I am in the Depths of Darkness where objectivity and clarity are nowhere to be found. I am in the Depths of Darkness where I am alone. All alone. In bed I lay, within the Kingdom of Satan’s Shadow. For over 27 years now.

When I was abducted and held prisoner by the government, the message that I received was that I was not good enough. That I was a bad apple. That I was Evil and deserving of torture. That no matter the good I had done up through my 25 years of age, that I was inherently flawed. Warped. Deranged. How else could my very Freedom be taken away from me without my having any right to voice myself or even any right for someone else to voice themselves on my behalf?

You see, with Involuntary Commitment, the prisoner has no right to go before a Judge and plead their case. No right to an attorney. No right to represent themselves. No right to a Jury. No right to due process. No rights at all. No Human Rights.

And so I sit in my own shit and soak in my own urine. For I have somehow failed so miserably to warrant such forceful arrest. My opinions matter not. My intellect matters not. My emotions matter not. I matter not. I am but a waste of space. An inconvenience to society. A derelict. A nomad. A scavenger. A wild beast that needs to be put down. I am no one. I am but only a ‚Äėmental illness‚Äô that needs to be eradicated and scorched from this Earth.

And these are the messages that I received. And how do I go about maintaining my life with such travesty and atrocity that has been branded into my very skin and my very soul? How do I cope? How do I survive? I cope through Depression. I cope through Self-Mutilation. I cope through Anger. And, unabashedly, I cope through the contemplation of Suicide. Although I have no statistical evidence to state the following, I will bet my last dollar that suicide rates for those Involuntarily Committed are far higher than those not treated that way. This is as clear as day to me.

And so I continue, for over 27 years now, waking up, sitting in my own shit and soaking in my own urine. I wake up as an outcast. An undesirable. I wake up as a disease born as a ‚Äėmentally ill‚Äô person. Stigmatized, disenfranchised, and maginalized.

And I yearn to die to stop the pain of not Belonging. Of being a misfit. Of being Evil…

…of being Darkness within the Kingdom of Satan’s Shadow.


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Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion‚ÄĒbroadly speaking‚ÄĒof psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.


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