In India and all over the world, mental health has increasingly become a prevalent focus in media and society. Raising awareness of mental illness and psychological functioning is more important than ever before, as several individuals who are suffering and in need of mental health resources do not receive the care that they deserve. The Live Love Laugh Foundation recently released a video titled “Dobara Poocho”, highlighting the importance of reaching out and providing support to those experiencing depression.
This video does a great job of promoting awareness of mental health issues in India, a country where there is still much stigma surrounding depression and other mental disorders. It is a call to people in society to talk about these uncomfortable issues and bring them out into the open. Deepika Padukone’s public disclosure of her own experience with depression has helped to begin the dialogue surrounding mental health, particularly through her Live Love Laugh Foundation.
An issue I have with this video is that it seems forceful in pressurizing individuals with depression to share their struggles. Sometimes people who present with depression are irritable and may respond with anger or frustration if they are repeatedly asked by friends or family members to share their experiences. At the same time, that doesn’t and shouldn’t stop you from asking. If you ask and they do decide to respond and share their feelings, ensure you are open to listening and empathically being there for them, rather than asking or listening out of obligation or necessity. Encourage them to seek help from a mental health professional. Make them feel heard, loved, and validated. The mind matters!