Saffie Johnson was a determined teenage mother who became so overwhelmed with her postpartum depression battle she took her own life.
In an inquest into the 19-year-old woman’s death investigators heard that Ms Johnson was married at 17, had a child at 18 but following a separation from her partner and the stress of parenting the teenager wrote in her diary “today I will die” before taking her own life.
The young woman, from Wythenshawe, Manchester, was living at her mother’s house at the time of her death on October 15, 2015 and was reportedly found by her brother who had arrived home from university.
Saffie’s estranged husband Daniel Johnson tearfully told a Manchester inquest that his late wife was sick with depression and anxiety but refused to get help.
”I tried as best I could to help her to overcome her depression but the pressure of having a baby was too much for her,” Mr Johnson said,
”Saffie never told anybody how she was really feeling, she told them what she thought they wanted to hear.
“She never told her parents because she did not want to burden them and she wanted to overcome her problem alone.
”She loved the baby but it was too much for her and found it very difficult to cope.”
Mr Johnson, 22, who had married Saffie two weeks after the pair had met in 2013 told the inquest being married and having a child early on were both things she had wanted and despite his better judgement he agreed.
”I suggested waiting because Saffie was very young at just 17. But she was adamant. She was young, but she had her own mind and knew exactly what she wanted out of life,” he told the inquest.
“Two weeks after we met, we got married.
“She had been depressed for many years, but it worsened when she had our child. She became paranoid and her moods were very low.
“She loved him but it was too much for her. I believe she was suffering with postnatal depression, but she always refused to visit her doctor.
Sandra Kempster, a support worker told the inquest Saffie had reached out for help before she took her own life.
“She had called a non-emergency number and said she needed help,” Ms Kempster said.
“By the end of our visit, her mood had lifted significantly.
“She was laughing and chatting about her son and how well he was doing. She told me she was happy to go home and she said she would attend a support group for people with depression.”
Assistant coroner Jean Harkin ruled the death a suicide.