Depression is a mental disorder. At its worst, it can prove to be fatal. A study by the Government of India shows that one out of five Indians suffers from a mental disorder. Such an alarming statistic places a large number of families at severe risk of multiple issues such as chronic depression, suicidal tendencies, and work-related stress.
A person suffering from depression has ‘n’ number of thoughts going on in his or her mind, and those thoughts are generally so negative that they even extend to suicidal thoughts. During depression, people distance themselves from the world. They create one of their own, and by not sharing their feelings, they eventually slip into a different zone. They criticise themselves and feel they are good for nothing. But that is not the case.
I have been suffering from an anxiety disorder for the past 3 years, and I am still on medication. I have experienced all the things mentioned above. There have been instances when I would snap and lose my temper for even the smallest of things. I would vent my anger out unnecessarily on my close ones. I have had the worst kind of thoughts enter my mind: from losing my loved ones to committing suicide. Tired of this, I decided to visit a counsellor. The advice I was given by her was that I needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle and spend time with my near and dear ones.
And yes, that is the best thing people suffering from depression need to do. They must not isolate themselves from the world. Instead, they need to share with others what they are going through. Whenever you have thought about committing suicide, think about your close ones: what would their state of mind be if you did such a thing? Do not hesitate to speak about your problem, because sharing it will only provide you with a solution and cause no harm. There is nothing to be ashamed of.
Never take a drastic step. If you feel something is wrong with yourself, share the same with your friends and family. One drastic step of yours could hamper the lives of your close ones. Visit a counsellor. He or she may provide you with the best possible solution and help you overcome this phase.
In recent years, many celebrities have opened up on their struggle with depression. This has, in a way, encouraged people who were hesitant about sharing their problems to gather the courage to speak up. When you have a headache, you consult a doctor and take medication. The brain is also a part of the body. So why neglect it? Proper medication is required for the brain as well.
The recent incident of a 24-year-old boy who recorded his suicide live on Facebook has raised concerns and is a wake-up call to society to think about people in our midst suffering from depression.
Share, talk, exercise. Do not suffer by keeping it within yourself. Be a warrior, rather than a sufferer.
This piece was orginally published on ‘The Daily News & Analysis’ April 9, 2017.