To Fight Stigma…

April 18, 2014 at 9:15 PMApr (Friends, Musings, Slice Of Life, Soliloquy)

[A Facebook note from 23 March 2014]

Exactly ten years ago I walked into the psychiatry department of the hospital in Manipal for the first time. I was feeling unwell and did not know what was happening to me. After almost a week trying to overcome a perpetual state of disturbance, melancholy and suicidal thoughts I had decided to consult a doctor.

It was not the first time that I was going through such a phase but never before hadthe intensity been so strong. If that was one of the reason for me to consult a doctor, me being a student of psychology had also made me wise enough to take the step towards the department. But even then, because visiting a psychiatrist/ psychologist was considered as a matter of “shame” I did not even inform my parents or anyone. Even when accepting the ‘problem’ I was not able to fight this idea of ‘shame’ which is a social phenomenon. This stigma burdened the already troubled mind quite a lot those days. To fight this idea of “shame” it took long.

In the following years I have gone through similar phases quite a few times and quite a few times the intensity has been extremely troublesome.

I remember that day from a decade ago on this day to thanks my psychiatrists Dr.Hema Tharoor and Dr. P.V. Bhandary for being there as doctors and also as concerned human beings.

I also remember all of this because I have to assert that psychiatric, psychological problems are not a matter of ‘shame’ nor a taboo. Fighting this stigma is important.

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