Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Medicowesome secret project: Let's talk about depression

What is the "Let's talk" project? How can I talk about mental illnesses?
The sun is shining brightly outside her window, sunlight peeping through the drawn curtains, birds chirping on the huge mahogany tree in her backyard. Her dog comes into the room to wake her up with a loving lick on her face, like he did everyday. Yet today after a long time she feels it is a beautiful day, she feels happy to wake up.

There was a time when she hated the sun, it felt like a burden that it shone everyday with the same intensity, the birds chirping was more like someone screaming in her ear reminding her that she had to wear that plastic face again today, smile when she really wanted to sit in a corner and cry.

She was depressed. She was a medical student and she was well aware of this condition. Yet she couldn’t talk to anyone about it, as she knew what happened in the psych ward, what people thought of going to the psychiatrist meant. The days were long and the nights longer. She feared talking to someone because she feared to be judged. She had everything anyone could dream of, a loving family, amazing friends, she was studying what she felt passionately about, so what reason did she have to be depressed? She didn’t know the answer herself, so she never spoke to anybody about it. Everyday was like a task, waking up and going to college and laughing drained her off her energy and all she wanted to do was just sit in a corner and cry.

Finally it took her a lot of courage to talk about it to her best friend. They decided to meet with a psychiatrist anonymously and they did. He prescribed her antidepressants and regular counselling sessions, took her two years to come out of it, but she did. It was not an easy road, but the constant support of her family and friends made her come out of this. Gave her a reason to move ahead in life.

Not everyone is that lucky, and that’s the reason why this topic should come out of the closet now. The stigma and fear associated with depression is so huge that the person feels suffocated, fears to talk about it, fears to be judged. That’s why it is very important to make people aware that this is a medical condition, it requires treatment and support and a person does come out of it.

So now, instead of fearing this, running away from this, depression - Let’s talk.

Ashita Kohli


  1. Nice piece. I'm wondering how many health workers and medical students have experienced this.


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