After my marriage some years ago, I felt empty.
Before the marriage, society made it seem like tieing the knot would give me a sense of accomplishment, yet here I was feeling empty, tied down and stuck (nobody's fault, i.e. husband, family, friends).
Although I knew suicide was wrong and never had the guts to attempt it, I constantly prayed to God to end my life.
Not that I doubted God's care for me but I felt like there was nothing more to live for; like I got to the self-actualization stage only to find out the apex was upside down.
Feeling like I won't be missed and I wouldn't mind not waking up the next day.
It affected my drive at work, at home, everywhere. I didn't want to be present at any event. I didn't want to apply to make up on my face or look good. I just wanted to fade into the background.
What helped was taking an interest in others.
It felt good when I was helping others, volunteering my time but as soon as I got back home those feelings started again, at a point I wanted to run away, but to where?
It seemed like I was bound, a prisoner in my own home although it was all in my mind. I couldn't talk to anyone about it because I was the counsellor and hope-giver.
Getting to know another lady who was battling depression helped me.
Although I do not get migraines as she does, her daily battles make what I go through look like nothing. From time to time I feel that way momentarily but I have to force myself to count the blessings, keep busy and be of help to others so that I don't go back to feeling that way.
I have not been diagnosed because I don't see the need, but I do read a lot about depression and I'm certain that I am suffering from it.
Dzifa is my name. I'm a Counselor and an Administrator at a basic school. A graduate of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST).
I am passionate about empowering girls and the physically challenged and I hope sharing my story helps someone out there.
If you are suffering from DEPRESSION or any other mental illness, don't be afraid because you're not alone. There are countless people like you who are suffering yet doing their best to survive.
Talk to a confidant. Always remember you are worthy and can be of immense help to others.
Pay it forward if you're depressed. If you're not, show more understanding to those who are battling it. Listen to them. Don't judge or gossip about them. Be a safe haven for them. If possible, cry with them.
About the Writer: Dorcas Efe Mensah is a Mental Health Advocate battling chronic, recurrent depression. She describes herself as a ‘millennial girl boss’ striving to empower people like her to be the best version of themselves irrespective of whatever hard place they may be.
For more information about her and her work, visit her Facebook page #Otherslikeme or @otherslikemeGH to learn more about the struggles of persons suffering different kinds of Mental Illnesses in Ghana and what they are doing to make their survival less stressful.
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