“The time has come,” the Walrus said,
To talk of many things:
Of shoes –and ships –and sealing-wax–
Of cabbages –and kings–
And why the sea is boiling hot —
And whether pigs have wings.”
– The Walrus and The Carpenter, Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There, 1872 (Lewis Carroll)
Yes, the time has come to talk openly about many things which the society considers taboo. All around the world, millions and millions of people are suffering in silence because of the stigma society has about mental health and due to the fear of being misunderstood. It is high time we start treating this matter seriously and give the attention it needs. The number of people experiencing psychological issues are constantly on the rise.
My journey has had debilitating obsessions and compulsions(will talk about it more in the coming posts) for hours and hours as part of my OCD and anxiety. And there are lot of undercover symptoms of social anxiety, anxiety personality disorder and depression within me. Quite often I suspect that I exhibit a lot of symptoms of adult ADHD only to be denied by professionals because I have not had them since my childhood. A diagnosis of ADHD requires many of the symptoms must be present since childhood. Nevertheless, I have always been tormented by impulsiveness and inattention.
To be honest, it is unfortunate for a person to suffer a mental health disorder in India where literally one needs to spend years and years going around doctors to get a proper diagnosis. The quantity and quality of psychotherapists in India is pathetic. Unless one tries to help himself out of the situation, the picture is quite gloomy here.
I have undergone therapy with several therapists and doctors combined with nearly a decade of taking medication to reach to a point of stability. There are virtually no support groups for anxiety and mood disorders in India. And yet the number of people suffering from psychological problems are constantly on the rise. I have come out of my anonymity to reach out to the people and let them know that they are not alone in this battle.
But there is lot of hope. There is vast amount of support and guidance in the internet, if one is careful in choosing the right source. Online support groups and therapy are available for people who can afford it. Just the awareness about one’s symptoms and the knowledge about the illness makes the job half done already.
Everyday as the awareness of my mental health increases, I march one step forward in my life. I feel it is important for people to recognize that many people are fighting these silent battles. 1 in 4 people at some point in their life will experience a mental health problem. So it is almost 25% of people around you who could be having a mental health issue at some point of time in their lives. Hence it is no more a secret illness. Its high time we come out in the open and speak about it to break the stigma. The time has come so that no one has to suffer in silence. Let’s talk about mental health.