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Mental health is crucial at every stage of life, and it affects how you think, feel and behave. Rapper Adjnamedroach has been struggling with mental health issues for as long as he can remember. As a result, his life has been dominated by a series of wrong choices and bad decisions, the brunt of which he paid by spending 10 years in prison.
Adjnamedroach, born Bryan Andrew Dunn, has led a life full of insecurities and seclusion but has grown tired of being misunderstood by everyone. He just wished people could know what was going on in his mind.
In a recent post on Facebook, the rapper confessed, "I have tattoos and a shaved head, but I never joined a gang. People think I like being viewed as a criminal, but I don't. I'm embarrassed and feel like all I've done is let my family down. I have caused fights between my father and his brothers. I've done things my mom blames herself for, which drove her to the brink of a suicide attempt."
As I recently talked to Adjnamedroach outside a basketball event, I saw another side of the rapper. The event was organized by Bryan himself for children on the Eastside of Atlanta, Georgia, and I noticed he was the last one there, playing a pick-up game with 12-year-olds. Despite his jazzy appearance, I realized that he was a simple yet generous guy at heart when he ordered 15 pizzas to be taken home by the families there.
"I really don't care about money at all. People think I do. They see the jewelry and the things I've done, and I'm viewed as a drug dealer and criminal. Everyone thinks I just want to be some kind of big shot, but the truth is, I hate it all. Money is poison, and I wish it didn't exist."
It's hard to believe his perception of wealth when you see him wearing diamond rings while playing basketball.
Adjnamedroach is a rapper, and he understands what that entails. If you see his music videos, you can see flashing money, drugs, and alcohol. His Instagram feed is filled with exotic cars. But this is all a façade. He successfully delivers what is expected of him as a rapper.
Talking to him made me see that there's much more to him. In fact, looking at his religious tattoos and listening to the things he talks about in person made me realize that he was, in fact, a sad man who is very insecure in his own skin. The man can barely finish two sentences without saying something self-deprecating, which shows his mental state.
Adjnamedroach has been hospitalized in multiple health hospitals over the years. I checked his records in the Florida Department of Corrections and found that he spent the last 24 months of his 10-year prison sentence alone inside a Transitional Care Unit. That is where inmates with severe mental health conditions are held in the Florida prison system.
Looking at his medical records, I found that Bryan Dunn has attempted suicide 6 times in his lifetime– the first time at 14. He was a juvenile when he slit his wrists inside his childhood home, and his mother admitted him into a mental health facility.
The most recent attempt occurred this year in May 2022 when the rapper's fiancé found him unresponsive at his Lawrenceville home outside Atlanta, Georgia. It took three rounds of Narcan to save him.
"I just wish people knew how much I hate myself and that I wish I could just be a Christian man. I don't want to go to the club and buy bottles of alcohol anymore. I don't want to waste in strip clubs. I never even really liked those things. I was just going along with whatever my friends or some family members were doing and was trying to fit in or be liked. I always felt like a failure– disillusioned by the views of society, thinking that I needed a certain of money to be a success."
"And I felt like such a letdown to my family for not doing the college thing and getting to a place in life where I owned my own company or made six figures with health benefits. I was willing to do anything to change that literally."
The charges against the rapper make you wonder how his life became so messed up. With the long list of charges of fraud and drugs, his misdemeanor and lack of regard for the law often make him a target for severe criticism and speculation.
Talking about how his life turned ugly, he says, "I felt so obligated to buy people's love. I was willing to give my wife any and everything. Wanting to do more kept building immense pressure on me. I spent hundreds of dollars on clothes almost every single day. Trips out of the coin try because that's what everyone else was doing on Instagram, and I had to do it, or I was a failure."
"I was a damn cartoon character for money. In the strip club, I did drugs and drank every night just because I hated who I was. I just wanted to get messed up on drugs and forget who I was. I wanted to blow money and go to the strip club and be that person because I hated looking in the mirror. I couldn't stand the person I was and still can't. It's a miracle I'm alive right now, not just because of how hard I tried on some of my suicide attempts, but I literally think about it every day."
Battling mental conditions is not an easy feat, especially when you are misunderstood. Rapper Adjnamedroach has had his fair share of bad luck but is adamant about changing his life. He assured me at the time of this writing that he wasn't really suicidal all the time.
"I'm not like going to kill myself right now. Don't freak out. I just think about it. But I also think about my son. And I want to give him a good life. I don't want him to see who I am and think that I enjoyed being that person. I don't want him to emulate me or the things I did. I want him to know that I suffered, and that's why I did some of the things I did. I beg God every day that he's nothing like me."
Everyone has the right to make things right and earn a fresh start in life. Rapper Adjnamedroach is one of many people whose choices have been gripped and influenced by his mental health issues. Instead of stigmatizing their efforts to make a difference, they should be accepted as positive contributors to our communities.