Feelings, Health, India, Sharing views, Wellness, Women, Writing

Changing mentality about Mental Health #CauseAChatter

A cat closes its eyes while drinking milk and thinks that no one is watching. Our understanding about mental health isn’t much different from it. We carry on with our lives indifferent to the illusion of hiding what’s really going on.

However, are we right in assuming that only unhappy people go into depression? Is committing suicide a spur of the moment thing? Surely there must be telltale signs? How do we identify them? Why can’t someone just share what’s bothering them?

A study done by the World Health Organisation (WHO) labels India as the ‘most depressed country’ since every one person in seven is supposedly suffering from mental health related problems. That’s reason enough for us to delve into the basics of how it affects us, right?

There’s still a lot of stigma around mental health. People judge you when you’re disturbed about something and when you try to get help for it, they judge you even more. First things first, this mentality of vilifying mental health as a taboo topic needs to go. Let us shed light upon the most common ways in which people misconstrue its meaning.

Mental health_avibrantpalette

Mental health is a fancy term to mint money

If doctors want to milk you dry, trust me, there can be many ways for it. People spend lakhs of rupees on expensive treatments of lifestyle and other serious diseases, annually. Would anyone spend even a quarter of it on mental health?

Our body’s like a machine and our mind and heart work together relentlessly to keep it going till we breathe our last. We use healthy oils, eat nutritious food and keep ourselves fit for the sake of our heart. Doesn’t our mind deserve this preferential treatment too? There’s nothing fancy about it at all!

People use it as an excuse to seek attention

While this may hold true for other attention-seeking behaviour, faking bad mental health is an unfair and slanderous accusation. No one enjoys being looked down upon or wants you to show them sympathy.

The turmoil that goes inside one’s head can only be experienced by him and is not always felt by even their close ones. Do them a service and don’t denigrate the severity of their situation.

Happy people can never be depressed, sad or anxious

Happiness is subjective. Imagine someone having a loving family and a well-paying job, being in great shape, looking like a million bucks and still saying that they’re not happy. Would you believe them? Possibly not. Are they lying, then? Certainly not.

Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide, although still under investigation, opened a huge debate around mental health. People found it impossible to believe that someone who thrived in the limelight and was seemingly well off could have mental health issues. That’s not really how it works.

People don’t project their vulnerabilities to keep the delusion about their happiness alive. They’re not absolved from carrying the burden of their own demons though. It keeps gnawing at them. Be gentle and don’t question their feelings, please.

Mental health needs acceptance; by the one who has issues and also by those around him. Changing our mentality can normalise it and make it open for discussion in our homes. Let us not be embarrassed or try to brush it under the carpet. We can start with communicating better with our family and friends, being there for each other and not judging anyone’s choices or reservations. Sounds doable, yes?

Disclaimer: I’m not a Mental Health expert but have gone through the grind of getting professional help at one particularly low phase in my life. I have shared my honest thoughts and feelings in this post. If you disagree with any of it, I respect your opinion.

Health and Wellness Series_avibrantpalette

This was my fifth post in the Health and Wellness series with #CauseAChatter. Do suggest any topics you would like me to write on. I will definitely consider them.

18 thoughts on “Changing mentality about Mental Health #CauseAChatter

  1. Mental health need to be talked about. Not for attention gaining but to make people comfortable with it. People suffering from mental health need to talk openly and the one at the receiver end should try not to judge them. give them a listening ear and a kind gesture. They don’t need sympathy, they need the company and an assurance that they are not alone.

  2. Mental Health is a topic that is slowly gaining prominence and it is good that more people are talking about it. While it is shocking to read that India is the most depressed country, there is hope that now that people are acknowledging the issue, there will be some solution.

  3. Depression is really bad we never know when it is going to occupie our mind we seriously have to be strong to face it… Being mentally strong is really important…

  4. This is true, initially, mental health was the subject which is less talking about but after some incidences, It came into the focus. It must be understood, how mental health is as important as physical health.

  5. Truly appreciate your efforts in spreading awareness about mental health through your blog posts, Varsha. This is high time that we change our mentality & how we look at mental health issues.

  6. Wonderful article, Varsha. We are a society where we want to live in denial and believe that we are invincible. We not only deny getting affected, but also deny that those whom we know can get affected. People live with mental illnesses for years and years without uttering anything about what they are going through. This has to stop. Now. It’s high time.

  7. I agree Varsha, the pain the person who is battling it is unfathomable, I have observed by brother closely and I feel getting help at the earliest is the best.

  8. This is a very important subject that you have written on. Its high time that we all understand the need to help people around us and ourselves too. How being happy on the outside may not necessarily be happy from within.

  9. Mental wellness is a subject way too close to my heart. I feel like Indians aren’t ready to talk about it. One more topic we are ashamed to discuss is postpartum. We feel like it’s normal, but the impact on a new mom (and her baby) can be deep. Thank you for this blog. Here’s hoping – that one day we will all be more self-aware and mentally aware about mental wellness x

  10. That’s a very well-written post Varsha. Acceptance here matters a lot. Both by one suffering through an issue and by others around it. I really appreciate the disclaimer you’ve put at the end of the post, respecting others point of view 👏🏻

  11. This is informative read.. everybody face mental health issue at some point of life and this is very common these days .. love your write-up.

  12. I agree with you – Mental health needs destigmatization, especially in a country like India where the population is so dense and cases of mental stress which is manifesting in so many forms is preceding known reports. Your opening lines really bring the message home so clearly! well expressed!

  13. So rightly said Varsha mental health need acceptance not only from the person who is showing the signs but also from the ecosystem around him or her you have written a thought-provoking post. Kudos

  14. Exactly I get a lot of the “seeking attention” explanation from highly educated individuals when it comes to mental health. I wish we become more sensitive and understanding.

Liked what you read? Tell me. Thanks!