From Depression to Financial Independence: Inspiring Journey of an Afghan Woman
From Depression to Financial Independence: The Inspiring Journey of an Afghan Woman
Mursal, like many other women, faced the hardships of depression in the past two years, which brought numerous challenges to Afghan women. However, Mursal’s struggle with this burden ultimately became an opportunity, leading her towards financial independence.
Mursal is a talented and determined individual, evident from her aspirations and the way she speaks. She completed her education during a time of power struggle in the Taliban administration and had dreams of entering the workforce to support her family.
However, recent events turned Mursal’s dreams into unimaginable turmoil.
Like thousands of Afghan families, Mursal’s family faced financial instability, constantly plagued by economic concerns. This reality is all too familiar for two-thirds of Afghanistan’s population, especially women and girls who have become victims of instability and face the denial of their human rights and citizenship within the power structure.
As Mursal eagerly looked toward the future, proud of her diligence, the unexpected rule of the Taliban shattered her aspirations, confining her to her home and plunging her into depression.
She recalls, “I was hurt. I was sick, but my body didn’t feel the pain. Doctors told me that my pain was not physical and recommended seeing a psychologist.”
The words “psychologist,” “mental problem,” and “depression” terrified Mursal. The stigma surrounding mental health labeled them as “crazy,” and she felt consumed by her depression. Isolated in her room, she seldom shared her struggles with her family, feeling obligated to join them on occasion. She even experienced hair loss and skin problems.
Mursal is not alone in this battle. Since the return of Taliban rule, Afghan girls have seen their efforts and dreams vanish, confined once again to the corners of their homes. Uncertainty, loss of financial independence, social exclusion, and challenging economic conditions have left Mursal and many others feeling stranded.
Mursal refuses to accept this state of “stagnation” and starts exercising to combat her depression. She says, “I’m cautious about medication; I’ve never used tranquilizers. I decided to divide my time with activities, so this illness doesn’t overtake me. I walked, met friends, and gradually started sewing.”
Through sewing, Mursal discovers her talent for design and hand embroidery. Suddenly, she transforms into an independent young woman who can financially support her family. Overcoming her depression, her designs and handiwork gain popularity among her friends and on social media. Mursal sews bracelets, necklaces, mirrors, and decorative foot covers, tapping into her talent to the extent that she receives more than ten orders in just three days.
Despite the limitations and restrictions, Mursal motivates herself to find a market for her work. She visits the local “Lisa Maryam/Mary’s Market” where she sells her handcrafted items. She even shares the story of a woman in America who purchases all her products, allowing Mursal to focus more on honing her craft.
However, Mursal sees her current job as more than just an ultimate goal or aspiration. She dreams of pursuing higher education abroad and becoming an inspirational figure for herself and others.
In Mursal’s perspective, these circumstances are challenging for all young women. She advises them to find motivation from within and not succumb to the grip of depression.
Subscribe to BNN Breaking
Sign up for our daily newsletter covering global breaking news around the world.