Trigger Warning: Self-harm

“As far as I remember, I was good at studies. I wanted to become a doctor one day. But domestic violence was part of my life. The house I grew up in saw so much violence that it remained my only memory. It was during my time in high school that my parent’s marriage ended. I was in boarding school and every day for the next two years, I don’t remember a single time that I didn’t cry. I had slipped into depression. Every day, I found myself indulging in harmful and dangerous acts.

The tipping point came when I had walked all the way from school to town. When I came to my senses, I had been standing on the road for two hours straight. I felt broken and nothing I did make sense, including school. I went to the principal and asked to drop out. He was shocked. He knew that I excelled in my studies and had high hopes for me. I broke down and told him all about my problems.

I was put under three months of counselling and given all kinds of help possible. My friends and classmates were put on vigilance, and they monitored my every move. In the dorm, all kinds of sharp objects were hidden so I won’t have access to them. When my parents finally divorced, I faced financial problems. My teachers came to my aid and gave me pocket money.

Slowly, I was recovering. There was a lot I learned to be grateful for. The teachers in my school inspired me so much, and all I wanted was to become one. When my examination results were out, I had not done well. During that time, teaching was the last option for many. However, I didn’t even expect to get there. I was about to enrol into a private school to repeat the year when my admission into the teaching college came through. My joy knew no bounds. As a teacher, I could make a difference in a child’s life, just like how my own teachers did in mine. After the civil service examination, my ranking was quite high. I had the option to go to any school, but my drive was to teach in a remote school.

When I slipped into depression, living did not matter. Amidst suicidal thoughts, my mind always went to my younger siblings and my mother who needed me. Life won’t always be sweet and happy, but your resolve to live is what matters. In my case, I am a lone female teacher in this school, and I don’t mind walking for 11 hours every school break to go home and get back.”

Violence against children has many forms. Emotional violence is destructive and has long-lasting impacts on a child’s growth and development.

Humans of Thimphu with the National Commission for Women and Children – NCWC, BhutanUNICEF Bhutan and partners call for communities and schools to come together to help every child in need of emotional support. We must all work together against stigma and hesitations that prevent seeking timely and life-changing support.

NCWC Women & Child Helpline: 1098
Royal Bhutan Police: 113
Nazhoen Lamtoen: 1257

#HumansofThimphu #EndChildViolence


Author: Dechen Wangdi

About the Author

(He/They) is one of the founding members of Humans of Thimphu and currently serves as the editor and content writer on the platform. Enthusiastic writer and photographer, his works mainly surrounds human interest story and advocacy on LGBTQIA+ and Youth empowerment. He also harbours an interest in photojournalism.


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