Issues in the relationship began after two years and they never seemed to die down, leaving Favor Hilda Brown stressed out in her determination to hold it together.
After five years, the relationship broke down and Favor Brown says she broke down, too. “I felt that the relationship was everything to me,” she recalled the gloom that engulfed her afterwards.
In her closet, it was all crying, brooding, sulking and engaging in mental monologues. Outside the closet, Favor Brown’s sunny side would burst open, sanguine laughter, hearty character.
“Nobody knew I was suicidal”, she revealed how the raging war within her soul was camouflaged by her peaceful-looking exterior.
“I woke up one morning and said…let me just take some parazone,” the Chemical engineer decided.
“I just gulped it”, she drained the strong detergent and its unadvertised solution to the depression. She was taking her life.
But those close by, noticed her attempt and rushed her to the Tema General Hospital.
She spent two days in the hospital and recovered. The doctors treated her to live again but nobody asked why she wanted to die. “Unfortunately, they didn’t refer me to a Psychiatrist,” she saw lapses in the health delivery system.
Back home, word had gone round she had tried to kill herself. “I even became more depressed. Several people got to know [that] I was trying to commit suicide. There was stigma and I was embarrassed.”
It gave her much more determination to try a more clinical death and she “planned a very sure means” to end it.
Other people offered plans to end her depression. See a pastor was a popular refrain in a deeply religious society.
While at work one day, police officers came in and arrested her for the criminal offence of attempting to commit suicide.
She laughed recalling this moment. “I didn’t even think that it was a crime”, the woman who was determined to check out of life had no time to check Ghana’s laws.
It was the police commander at the station who realised the woman was suffering and referred her to an officer with the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU).
She would later travel to the US at the invitation of a friend. And that was where she received professional help from a psychotherapist. Later in Ghana, TV show host Gifty Anti would direct her to another professional.
It was these professionals who pushed back the suicidal thoughts that stalked her for more than a year and closed the closet door of death.
Favor Hilda Brown says she now has a Masters in Counselling Psychology from the University of Winneba obtained in 2018.
Her morbid episode has proved life-changing enough to set out looking for victims of depression as she has established an NGO, Favor Foundation for Life in 2011.
“Relationships come and go but your life is what God has given you,” she said.
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