With less than 5% of the country's health budget going towards the prevention and treatment of mental health problems, health is just another sector in which the Nigerian government has failed its women. For a country whose culture heavily centres around family and motherhood, the lack of funding for maternal mental health care is not only abhorrent but a testament to how much disregard women face daily.
In November 2020, I volunteered at a mental health clinic for women, where I met Imaobong, a 46-year-old woman with a penchant for storytelling. She told me about her son, a healthy baby that she gave up for adoption a few years back. She talked about her induced pregnancy and the fatigue that left her paralyzed in bed for two weeks. She talked about crying every night for two years.