Depression Is Real

Posted by Safeer Bhola in #LetsTalk
April 14, 2017

NOTE: This post has been self-published by the author. Anyone can write on Youth Ki Awaaz.

This story is in response to Youth Ki Awaaz’s topic for this week – #LetsTalk to start a conversation on the stigma around depression.

Ever felt how it would be to be stuck in a dark tube slide at the water park?
Ever felt the pain of being stuck in a closed box elevator without help?
Ever felt the helplessness of being locked in an office with dead communication lines and just one possible exit and no help for days because of back to back festivals?

That is how I felt having suffered depression for years, and without help.
No! I’m not mad or dumb or an idiot.
No! I’m not possessed by evil spirits and hell no it’s not a contagious disease.
No! I’m not a shame on mankind because I’m addressing my emotional problems through professional help.

All those years of being stuck in a dark void that kept pulling me in deeper and deeper were simply because I had no help.
When I shared with you, you simply laughed and shunned away my feelings.
You said come let’s drink and everything will be fine.
No. Everything won’t be fine because drinking is going to make me even more vulnerable to my emotions and thoughts.
I shared with you thinking you’ll help,
But who was I kidding?
You spread the word about my problems like mayonnaise on a burger bun and added fuel to the fire.

I just wanted a listening ear, not a judgemental mind.
A helping hand, not a condescending mouth.
An empathising soul, not a sympathising body.
The struggle is real and nowhere close to that of having a common cold.

Years later I stand here, proudly donning the semicolon.
And society should be proud too,
Because depression is a real problem
And those who deal with it are warriors.
People have met dead ends and made extreme choices.
But we decided to make our own paths.

So next time you come across a person who shares his story of mental agony with you, ask him to talk it out and assure him you won’t shout it out.

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