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Stressed Zimbabweans Take Own Lives in Diaspora

  • Gibbs Dube

FILE: Refugees fleeing anti-immigrant violence are processed by immigration officers at a transit camp in Beit Bridge, ZImbabwe, April 24, 2015.

FILE: Refugees fleeing anti-immigrant violence are processed by immigration officers at a transit camp in Beit Bridge, ZImbabwe, April 24, 2015.

The pressure of living and working in the diaspora is too much to take for some, having moved from their home countries seeking the so-called milk and honey but sometimes never finding it.

Deaths by suicide of foreigners struggling to cope have been recorded for a long time now.

Though statistics are not readily available, Zimbabweans are being counted among nationalities whose people are taking their own lives in foreign countries due to several reasons, that include taking banned drugs, depression due to circumstances beyond their control and related issues.

In the case of kids, a number of cases have been reported in countries like the USA, Britain, South Africa, Australia and Botswana, in which some children have committed suicide citing bullying by local kids at school.

Psychologists say in some cases these issues can be tackled without having dire consequences if they are detected early, especially in countries where there are health facilities to handle depression and drug abuse.

Social worker, Dr. Ian Ndlovu, a Zimbabwean living in the United Kingdom, says cases of suicide among Zimbabweans appear to be on the rise in various countries.

“It depends on the age group. For the younger ones it is usually to do with bullying; to do with pressure on many angles in their lives,” said Ndlovu.

He added that, “With much older people, most of them it comes out as depression. In an African context we don’t have a definition of what a depressed person is like. But in the UK where people are thinking about what they’re are going to do, where they have been – they go into what we call depression and usually you find them committing suicide.”

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