Mental health Taboo
The world has been on the moon. Has seen mars. People can get their face transplant. But.. but mental illness is still taboo.
“Tch tch tch Pagal Hogai”?
Take a leave from work saying you’re facing depressive episode and then take a leave when you’re sick, sick means physically sick. You will notice that people will be more concern and caring when you’re physically sick and will avoid interacting with you when you’re mentally sick. Why?
Because in our society, there’s almost no concept of mental illness. Like I belong to a Desi Punjabi family, and never heard anything about mental illness. Even if someone in my village is facing some issues with the daily routine because of mental illness, people will say he/she has been possessed by evil spirits. They will never for a second think of any mental issue. Why? because they never even heard of it. People remain untreated for the rest of their lives. Because there’s no concept of mental illness there.
Why is it a taboo?
Why does opening up about mental illness feel vulnerable? It feels vulnerable like opening up about any weakness feels vulnerable. If you share your feelings, your anxiety, your mental instability, people will judge you. People will consider you a weak person you are open to people they might start taking advantage of you or misunderstanding the nature of your condition. And that can affect your personal life and your career too.
What can we do to combat the stigma related to mental illness?
First of all, we need to spread awareness, although almost every other person is facing depression, it is still taboo. Being aware of the mental issues and creating awareness about it, among others will go a long way in reducing the associated stigma. Stigma and discrimination have long been major barriers to people with mental illness.
Another way is to talk about it, just recently many celebrities accepted that they had or have a mental illness. Which made a huge impact on their fans and followers and people did start talking about it. So, we need more initiatives like these.
Science helps people with crippled bodies and now it should help people with cripple minds as well. If you are battling with it step up for yourself and go for professional help. Seeking a psychiatrist or psychologist ain’t an issue. God forbid if someone gets a heart disease they will go to a cardiologist. So, why can’t you go to a psychiatrist if you feel something wrong in your behavior.
There are some online websites in Pakistan too and they’re working great regarding mental health so if you are seeking help you can check this out here https://live.roohbaru.com/?