26-year-old Nigerian actress and TV personality, Nancy Isime, recently took to Instagram to share a very intimate story about how she overcame depression and suicidal thoughts, which she admitted to struggling with since her childhood.

Fortunately for the former beauty queen, she was able to silence the voices that tried to keep her down by confronting her fears.

Here’s what she said:

“You know, growing up I suffered Depression. I was so young to understand life, yet I wanted out. I was in a dark place. I had several suicidal thoughts but somehow I found the strength to live through all of them. As a younglin, I was shy and really withdrawn. Where there were several people talking I wouldn’t dare speak for fear of being asked to shut up. I knew I was funny and smart inside my head, but will just crack the joke/give the opinion in my head. I envied those with “great personalities”.

I was lonely. I had a few friends but I was Lonely. I was sad but really didn’t understand why. This continued even till my late teenage years, suicidal thoughts were gone But I was still unhappy. Constantly looking for what/who would accept and maybe make me happy. One day, I decided I was going to find my voice. I was gonna speak when I wanted to, I was gonna crack a joke when i felt like it and if no one laughs at it I’m gonna laugh anyway cos I’m funny as heck! I was gonna do whatever I wanted to do. I knew I had a great personality and I decided it had to shine! Guess what, the universe worked side by side me on this one. It became a TABOO for me to hang around anyone who makes me feel less of myself. A TABOO! Life handed me a huge scissors and i just chopped away! Cutting off, moulding and protecting myself.

I’m writing all this today because I want to speak to you who’s going through depression especially at a young age. The suicide rate amongst the youth is alarming.

I’m sorry you have to go though this phase for whatever reason. Yes that’s what it is, a phase! Please hang in there. You have such a bright amazing future ahead and the devil is just trying to mess with your mind. Please fight back. Distance yourself from whatever/whoever brings you to that state. Spend time with yourself and only people who brightens your mood. A bad day isn’t a bad life. Listen to uplifting music. Invest your energy in positivity.”

We’re really thankful for the new wave of Nigerian youth who are starting to speak about their mental health. Before this era, mental health topics were a no-go area. It was almost believed that it was non-existent within our communities and struggles with mental stability were strongly limited to the ‘mad man’ on the street with torn clothes eating from trash cans. With more celebrities and known faces speaking out about their battles, it’s helping to make the subject less of a taboo in our communities. We applaud Nancy for her bravery, as speaking out in itself is a show of facing fear.

A wise person once said, “everything good lies at the other end of fear” and I solemnly believe that. What’s fear keeping you from achieving?

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