When I go to sleep every night, I have a friend. A friend who talks to me and whispers to me. A friend who sometimes warns me harshly, but for my own good, and asks favours of me which I obey. We have come to many agreements, the voices and I. What would I do without them?
I started hearing the voices a while back. I was sixteen at the time, and I was going through a very rough period in my life. I used to believe that the voices were an angel sent down to me, invisible and kindly.
Then the commands started, and I came to the conclusion that they were more than that, that maybe they were the commands of someone watching over me, that we were physiologically linked, so that they could speak to me and guide me through my life.
The speaker was invisible, and I often found myself switching off in lessons to listen to the speech which was only audible to me. Of course, I only informed my parents of the voices' presence about a month or so after they had first spoken to me. They told me that I perhaps had a severe case of tinnitus and were concerned. A week later, I found myself sitting before an overly happy ENT specialist doctor, staring blankly at his outrageous grin, and blanking him out to tune into the voices. On that day, the voices were rasping and cold. I don't think they liked the ENT specialist. As his cold metal instrument probed slightly into my ear, I heard them shriek.
"Get it out, crazy woman!" They hissed at me
"Tell him to back off!"
Startled somewhat by the hostility of my friend's voice, I shivered and wrenched myself back into reality. Dr. Fuhrman smiled at me once more over his glasses and told me that there was no sign of impacted wax which may have otherwise been catalyst for the sounds I were hearing. I remained silent and began to fidget as the voices screamed and hollered in order to be heard.
'Noises?' They bellowed furiously,
"They called us noises... Tell him who we are or we'll destroy you from the brain downward. DO IT!"
Sweat began to seep from the pores in my skin and I clenched my fists, observing Dr. Fuhrman's concerned expression with amusement and dread both at once.
"But I don't know who you are!" I shrieked through tears, bringing my hands up to my ears and covering them. I noticed the doctor's efforts to silence me, but his pleas for me to sit were muffled by the insane laughter which pressed the sides of my skull trying to be free. Never before had I longed for silence, pure silence, so much. Never again would I know it.
Upon fleeing the doctor's office, I waited outside of the door as I listened to the whisperings of the calmed voices in my head. They were too muffled and entangled with one another to make out, but I knew it was them. I recognized the sheer insanity in each and every uncertain word.
As I sat with my head in my hands, I heard Dr. Fuhrman invite my parents into his office. His expression was grim and solemn, the smile missing from his creased old face. From the mutterings and gasps in the office, I made out the words: Mental, ears, responses, hospital and faculties. Whatever they had planned for me, it wasn't good.
Ten years since then I am in a mental hospital, confined to a padded cell where I am observed 24, 7. Sometimes, the voices will speak to me in a nice way, telling me stories of what I've missed over the years I've been here and how my parents miss me so. Sometimes they are as hostile as the day at Dr. Fuhram's office, but most of the time, they are worse. They often speak of my own suicide, and try to force me into killing myself, and always, always, always: I respond to it by saying:
"Yes, friend... someday."
I always have to call the voices my friends, for it helps them to be kinder to me, perhaps by sparing me words of death by drowning and swapping it for a tale of me being shot in the heart. The only satisfaction I get from being in here, is knowing that all around me, people are slowly dying, and so am I.
When I go to sleep every night, I have a friend. A friend who talks and whispers to me. A friend who sometimes warns me harshly, but for my own good, and asks favours of me which I obey. We have come to many agreements, the voices and I. What would I do without them?