Conversion Camps: The Asylum For “Sick” People


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Day 1: My name is Christian Walters and this is my first entry in my journal. My backstory is that I am 15-year-old white, Catholic boy, I’m a sophomore in high school, and live in the Bay Area, California. Today I’m heading off to some conversion camp to get treatment. They said that the treatment is supposed to cure some sickness that I have, but I haven’t been feeling sick. All I know is that I told them that I like boys and that they each nearly had heart attacks. I don’t know what the big deal is about liking guys. Some kids at school said that if VP Mike Pence ever found out who I was that he would surely say that I’m “mental.” I don’t really follow politics so I don’t know what they meant by that. Considering that my parents freaked out so much I felt the need to document my experience in this so-called conversion camp. I’m currently on a bus filled with other kids and adults heading to Nevada. I overheard some guys in front of me saying that even though there are camps nationwide they need to keep them in very rural areas. I assume “they” are the people who are in charge of all these camps across America. Tomorrow we should be getting to the place the bus driver is calling “our salvation”.

Day 7: So far this camp wasn’t what I thought it would be like. I thought it would be a bunch of assemblies teaching us about other ways to live our lives. I also thought that the people working here would be friendly and try to make us feel as comfortable as we can. I was wrong. I’ve had 4 days of therapy and they were all horrible! The first day I was strapped to a chair with wires attached to my head, chest, arms, and legs for 1 hour and was shown a bunch of images on a screen. They were pictures of same-sex couples and each time a new picture popped up I would get a really painful shock. The doctor showed me about 25 pictures and each shock was more painful than the last. The second day of therapy the doctor said he was going to double the number of pictures being shown to me. I stayed strapped to that chair for at least 2 hours. The doctor told me that this would continue for the next couple of days. I eventually started begging him to stop it but he just decided to leave me alone in the soundproof room. Today was my final day of “shock therapy” and that gives me a bit of hope. Hopefully, the people in charge of this facility realized that the doctor was going too far and fired him.
Week 3: I can’t believe how wrong I was about this place. Every day I’m tortured with the new form of “treatment” to change my sexuality. The doctors physically abused me by locking me in the cold naked each night for three 1 week, beating me whenever I didn’t give the answer they were looking for, and starving me by only serving me food when they feel I’ve learned the lesson they taught, which in their opinion is almost never. I’ve also been verbally abused too. They don’t call me by my name, instead, they call me “f****t”. They’ve made me believe that God hates me for being gay and the other people and I will rot in hell. I wished I would’ve never told my parents that I’m gay if it meant going through this. I’ve decided that this will be my last entry, not because I’m being released but because I’m going to end my life later tonight. I just hope that in the future people will realize that what we are isn’t a disorder. We are just like everybody else in America. If these camps don’t cease in the future then more innocent like me will die.

Conversion Camps: The Asylum For “Sick” People

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