Nairobi News


Why I share my depression story – Onyango Otieno

Onyango Otieno is a childhood trauma therapist who tells stories for healing and connection.

This stems from a tragic sexual encounter when he was 20 years old that occurred when he was battling depression.

In a past interview, he was quoted saying that following the abuse, he was not angry but rather confused because it had been his first sexual encounter and it occurred in such a tragic manner.

He revealed that he contracted an infection from the encounter and it was ten years later- after seeking therapy- that he realized he had been violated.

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On Tuesday, August 23, 2022, Otieno took to social media to reveal his experience with friends who held him up in the wake of this trauma.

“When I was depressed and suicidal in 2017, my close male friends would come home to keep me company. They’d do my laundry, my dishes, wash my house and open the curtains for me. 

None even knew what depression was, but they knew I was down and needed help. Their love lifted me.”

She continued, “I would later get into therapy for the first time in my life. And I met terms like anxiety and PTSD. 

Finding a language for my pain was liberating. I’d gravely suffered for 15 years trying to understand myself. Finally, I had hope of having a life. Never looked back since.”

Onyango explains that his friends gave him a lifeline.

“The best gift I got from this experience was the love of my friends. Some even came from far to bring me food. Many of those friendships were people I’d known for a number of years. 

I learned that communities are the oil that really sustains us. Love heals.”

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He noted, “This is why I share my stories. When we share we liberate each other and the generations to come.” 

“We also heal our lineages. Me today. A man who’s been loved and has dedicated his life to helping others heal from deep-rooted traumas. 

Because I really want everyone to feel this peace that I’m feeling. We all deserve it. A story at a time,” shared Otieno on his social media pages.

He brands himself as a Healthy Masculinity Ambassador. He also works with sexually abused boys and men by holding therapy and healing circles for them.

“Please donate what you can so I may reach more men. Kindly share as well. Thank you!” concluded Otieno.

NB/ Medical professionals advise that you can always reach out for help when experiencing any mental health issues. Kenya Red Cross runs a toll-free line; 1199 that provides 24-hour free tele-counselling to the public.


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