Today, when so many people are suffering from depression, we need to start caring for them and being there for them!
I smile, but the eyes are ready to burst out,
I want to talk, but these words don’t come out.
I have so much to say, but the voice just dies out,
Even in a crowd, the lonely heart pounds faster to cry out loud.
This could be the state of mind of a person confronting depression. But do we care? Well, the more apt question is do we even know or even want to know?
It is the undoubtedly an era of hashtags, but it seems like we have been judging and tagging people since eternity. When someone behaves in an odd manner that we fail to understand, we end up tagging them a maniac, mad or even sometimes depressed. We are habitual of treating such people as carriers of negativity and try to avoid them.
Nonetheless, if we look around, almost every other person is battling with some sort of mental stress. Some are not able to cope up and need therapy and medication to deal with, while others end up kneeling down to test of times.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), “Depression is a common illness worldwide with more than 264 million affected. It doesn’t happen overnight & is even not same as usual mood fluctuations. And can have long-lasting effects and at its worst can lead to suicide.”
Studies on women’s health show that women are nearly twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression as men. As per the analysis, the causes may vary from various biological changes to life circumstances & culture.
Biological reasons include hormonal changes that a female body undergoes during puberty, pregnancy, post-partum and during menopause. This is also related to irregular sleep patterns, weight fluctuations & other stressful life events.
Food for thought: From worrying about what to the next day’s lunch to being the alarm clock for everyone in the house, a woman’s daily routine is filled with thoughts and calculations.
On the other hand, culture plays an important role in how women are treated in day to day life. Workload, sexual and physical abuse, access to health care services, freedom of speech, the fear of ‘what will people say,’ also contribute to the underlying stress, negativity, low self-esteem & lack of control over life.
The stats and resolution rate of mental illness or depression depends on how frequently people come forward seeking treatment. And also on how vigilant we are in finding if anyone around us needs help. We are so busy in our lives, that we often fail to stop and look around what some of our loved ones could be going through.
If you know someone battling depression, you can offer them emotional support and sympathy. You need to be patient with them and offer them encouragement. Help them understand that being depressed is akin to having the flu or viral fever. Stimulate them to talk to their healthcare provider and remind them that with time and treatment, they can feel better.
Food for thought: While there are many stages & intensities of depression, battling it isn’t easy for anyone. If you know anyone going through this, do what you can to help them.
Mostly when someone is going through a turmoil, they try to hide it from the world. Perhaps they don’t even know how people will react or sometimes it is how actually people react that makes them think so.
A thought may strike us that it’s none of our business. But if they were to do something extreme due to these life events, the guilt will continue to haunt us. We may wonder if things would have been different had we talked to them or helped them. And by this time, it will be too late to do anything but put up a post about them on social media.
Failures and heartbreaks need courage and someone you can rely on. Consequently, when someone even tries to open up to us, instead of disregarding their feelings, one should be considerate enough to help. Let them confide their feelings and unburden themselves.
If they feel like crying, tell them it’s okay and that there is nothing to be ashamed of. I have also talked about this in my article about how crying helps you heal. Help them realise their potential and remind them of their blessings and achievements. Remind them that life is precious. Help them comprehend a reason for surviving and continuing life.
Food for thought: Sometimes words are much better than pills. All someone in an emotional pain need is empathy and a feeling that there is someone who understands them and is there for them!
This life we have is short and we don’t know what awaits us the very next moment. Anything other than emotions is merely materialistic.
For any of our relationships that are wounded, try to look back and see if you can give them a benefit of doubt. We may not always know what the other person is going through or which battle they might be fighting that we are unaware of.
So, pick up that phone and make a call and ask, ‘How are you?’ A more pressing one would be, ‘Hope you are in a safe neighbourhood!’ Make it a point to visit your loved ones occasionally (I know it’s not possible now but maybe once we are back to normal). Let them know that you are there for them & they are in your thoughts and prayers.
Food for thought: It is the brain that controls the heart and both work in coordination to control our entire body. Hence, it is imperative we take care of our thoughts and control our actions when our heart feels pain.
Voice, language and words are the most powerful tools that we are blessed with. We just need to ensure that we make full use of them. In a day to day life, we should make sure that we have open communication in any relationships we have.
Also, ask yourself, ‘What will I do with all that money and time when there will be no one left for me to talk about it or enjoy it with?’
After all, life becomes happening when we make it happen!
I request you all to make that phone call, lend an ear and be a good listener. Maybe be a dumping bag for someone, lend a shoulder for someone to cry on. I do and feel fortunate enough to help someone vent out the steam!
Picture credits: Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels
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A Creative Writer by choice and an IT person by profession, Shruti likes to make
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