The voice started when Shawna Ervin was 16 years old, and it hounded her for two years.
It told her to hurt herself.
“It was relentless and wouldn’t stop laughing at me until I burned myself on my face,” she said.
When she finally did burn her face, the laughter turned maniacal. Then it stopped.
Ervin’s mental illness is not rare. She is one of thousands of Idahoans whose disorders can be severe enough to warrant hospitalization.