Under the bed with Mr. Self Destruct: A #HoldOnToTheLight blog post.

Hi, come on in. You can’t really. You have to push back the mattress, to the space made by the raised shelves and drawers. Makes a space about three feet high, and it’s the size of a twin mattress. Excuse the mess, but I’ve been down here for about forty years.

Welcome to Under the Bed. When Gail asked me to write about mental health, it scared me. I’ve been shot at, knifed and raised kids. This terrified me worse. Because it meant peeling back layers, to show what’s underneath all the ranting, rambling teddy bear of a man.


That noise? Oh that’s Mr. Self Destruct. Used to call him Pazuzu, when I liked him. I really don’t these days, mainly because he’s every little bad thing I’ve ever said,felt or believed about myself. We have a continual debate about whether I’m really a person or not.

You are nothing.

People will use this forum to tell you about their lives. I had planned to write a long history of my life, one with few joys(my wife, my daughters, music, books) and lots of pain(abuse, alcoholism, suicide attempts), but I’ve already lived it, and I do my best every day to not go back to it, because all it takes is one fight with someone, one car wreck.

And I’m back under the Bed.

It used to be real, I slept there from six until fourteen. It was furnished with books and a pile of stuffed animals,handmade by my grandmother.. It hid me from the weekly parental fights, from my mom’s alcoholic rages, from other kids when I was a latchkey kid and they were threatening to break down the door and kick my ass.

You’re boring them, dumbass. You told them you weren’t going to talk about it.

He’s right, though. You’re not going to care about my life, if you’re reading this as part of the series. But that’s OK. Because what I’m here to talk about is selfishness. Because it might be the only thing that keeps you alive.

Selfishness is a touchy subject in mental health circles. If you lay in bed all day because of your depression, you’re seen as lazy. If you sleep 16 hours, you’re a horrible person. You didn’t write 500 words today? You’re never going to be a writer.

Quit using my material, or I’ll flash back to your first attempt to feel up a girl.

I’m finding it hard to write this, because I haven’t posted in a year. I could lie and say I’ve been doing great things, but I haven’t. I’ve been doing the hardest thing to do when battling depression:


People without depression think it’s feeling sad. Not in my case. When I’m depressed, it’s Nothing. There is nothing there. When I’m depressed, it’s like there’s no point to anything.

My favorite time of the day. When you’re wondering exactly how much you’d be missed.

Nice try, asshole, but these people are here for help and advice, and I think I’ve bored them long enough, so here goes:

1)Recently a friend killed himself. All I could hear was people talking about how selfish an act it was. Really pissed me off. Nobody showed any gratitude for every day that person was in their lives, every day that he fought the dragon and won. Because every day, the dragon is there. In my forty odd years, It’s been there every morning. People without these kinds of problems don’t get that. My best days,ones that I will cherish until the day I die? Mr. Self Destruct was there, peeing in the sink.

    1. use a lot from pro wrestling, and you can like it or don’t. But there’s a great promoter named Paul Heyman. I’m going to paraphrase here, but he said that every day, he’d lie, cheat and steal, promise what he had to, lie who he had to, just so he could survive and do business every day.

The takeaway here is that do what you have to do. Go back Under the Bed. Go howl at the moon all night, or argue politics until 4 AM. Becuase every day, you have to fight yourself, and every day you fight, is a day you win. And I’d really like you to do that, so I can too.

What, you think I’m doing this for you? I’m a giving guy, but I do have something to gain. I get another day of another person not losing the battle. I get maybe a person who one day stops someone I love from dying, or makes the world better. Because you do make it better by being here. Because if 2016 is about anything, it’s loss. We’ve lost a lot this year, and not sure if we know what all we’ve lost.

So please, lie cheat, steal,drink. Go overspend or write horrible emails to celebrities. As long as it gets you to dawn. Good night.

 PS. Yes, I do know I need professional help
PPS. This blog post was soundtracked by “Cats in the Cradle” by Harry Chapin, “Mr. Self Destruct” by Nine Inch Nails, and “Goodbye Cruel World” by Pink Floyd.
About the campaign:
#HoldOnToTheLight is a blog campaign encompassing blog posts by fantasy and science fiction authors around the world in an effort to raise awareness around treatment for depression, suicide prevention, domestic violence intervention, PTSD initiatives, bullying prevention and other mental health-related issues. We believe fandom should be supportive, welcoming and inclusive, in the long tradition of fandom taking care of its own. We encourage readers and fans to seek the help they or their loved ones need without shame or embarrassment.
Please consider donating to or volunteering for organizations dedicated to treatment and prevention such as: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Hope for the Warriors (PTSD), National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), Canadian Mental Health Association, MIND (UK), SANE (UK), BeyondBlue (Australia), To Write Love On Her Arms (TWLOHA) and the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.
To find out more about #HoldOnToTheLight, find a list of participating authors and blog posts, or reach a media contact, go tohttp://www.HoldOnToTheLight.com and join us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/WeHoldOnToTheLight