I began writing this yesterday night, and I wanted to talk about a movie called Chhichhore (The Frivolous Ones) and what a beautiful message it sends out. The movie shows how everyone talks about the glorious life after success, but no one talks about what to do if at all, one fails in the endeavor. I wrote two lines and took a pause. I felt so many things, my hands did not move so I shut the laptop down and decided to resume it in the morning.
Fast forward to an hour before I start writing this, my inbox and notifications got flooded with a piece of recent news. Sushant Singh Rajput commits suicide. My heart sank when I read it because I knew there was a chance this could be true. I proceeded to read about it and confirmed the news. I put my phone down and took a deep breath. For someone who admired him so much, this was something I could not process. Depression has done its job again, and I was dumb-founded.
Of course, the media dived in. With insensitive headlines and illogical speculations, they made this their “Story of the day”. This got me in a whirlpool of thoughts- how we often associate levels of success to inner happiness, how people start debating about if suicide was the best idea. They come up with their so-called “If I were in his place…” and “He should have…” views and choose to remain as oblivious to the whole situation as they were.
Well, guess what? You were not in their places. What they were going through did not have a description. Depression looks different on different people and that’s exactly why it’s so hard to pinpoint and tell. With all the generalization of how -“You’re just feeling low, it’ll go away”, “Go, take a walk”, “Sleep on it!”- are frequently advised to someone who even musters the courage to talk about what they feel, and people undergoing depression really start to closet themselves. They find it hard to talk about it since they have no idea what is going on themselves. Their belief systems do not hold much water anymore for them. They lose their usual self and yet, it’s hard to say which is which. When people do things out of depression, they do not do it out of cowardice.
Very much evident from the journey of people like Robin Williams, Goo Hara, Avicii, Jonghyun, Chester Bennington that depression doesn’t leave visible symptoms, but when you observe closely, it leaves trails of signs, little calls for help; sometimes too hard for us to notice. But, all I can urge you to do is to listen. These cries for help are so loud, yet so silent. Pay attention. Be considerate and compassionate. Never dismiss anyone of how they feel. If you do not know what to say, just listen. That’s all. Urge them to take professional help, if possible.
How many suicides will it take for us to realize that mental health is not a taboo? That one’s happiness is not defined by money and fame? That depression is real and “Don’t worry, be happy” is not the solution?
So, here I am, writing this, doing my bit in making you realize how very real and existing depression is. Email me if you have doubts about this. I can try and clear it or forward you to someone who has a broader and better knowledge of it.
P. S.: DM me if you want to talk about anything that’s going on in your mind. I am no expert in mental health, but I am here to listen.