Rejection made me suicidal
Khanyiswa saw suicide as the only way to escape the pain of being rejected by her father. She was already attending services at the Universal Church when she became a disrespectful child at home and later attempted suicide.
"I was in grade nine when I started visiting my father who lived with his family. I felt unwelcome and unloved because he only greeted me and continued having conversations with my cousins who were the same age as me. Feeling rejected by my father made me rebel against my mother at home. I disrespected and blamed her for not introducing me to my father when I was much younger," she said.
That year she joined a notorious group that bunked classes and went to parties during school hours.
"Not even the wild lifestyle I led with my friends fulfilled me. The desire to build a relationship with my father became stronger daily. I developed suicidal thoughts after I realised that he was not willing to love me. One day, after I had a heated argument with my mother, I went straight to her room where she kept her tablets and I took a handful of them. My mother got in just before I swallowed them and stopped me," she said.
Khanyiswa's mother decided to send her to live with her grandmother without telling her and that fuelled her anger.
"I thought I was visiting my grandmother, but was surprised when she told me that was going to be my new home. I became angry towards my mother and father whom I believed did not love me and always wanted to get rid of me," she said.
She continued attending church services and decided to commit her life to God when she was in grade 10.
"I received counselling from the church and that was when I understood that there was no greater love than the love of God. I attended services on Fridays for deliverance from suicidal thoughts and bitterness. I found courage to approach my mother and ask for forgiveness for the pain I put her through. After a month in the church. God delivered me from suicidal thoughts and I was able to forgive my father. Surrendering my life to God has given me the peace and the love I always longed for," said Khanyisa.