Get-hooked June 16, 2020
Sushant Singh Rajput’s death underlines need for greater openness & conversation about mental health
Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput, who was just 34 years old, was found dead in his Mumbai home on Sunday. The death has been ruled a suicide by the police. On the surface, Sushant was living the dream life so what made the actor take such a step? Police say Sushant was undergoing treatment for clinical depression and the tragic circumstances point to the need for greater openness about mental health.
Fame, money, popularity – Sushant Singh Rajput had it all. So what pushed him to take his own life? Reports are that the actor was undergoing treatment for clinical depression. According various social media platforms, along with the shock and grief over his death, the overwhelming call out is for greater openness and conversation about mental health. This is even more critical in today’s context when various experts are sounding the alert about the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown triggering a mental health crisis.
Talking about mental health is crucial
Even today, most people are hesitant to seek medical help for mental health problems. Stigma is a major factor, and this is something people face even within the family.
K Bhavani is a counsellor with an NGO in Kochi that reaches out to people experiencing mental health issues. “Mostly, people diagnosed with depression do not take proper medical help and this may aggravate their condition. Medication with counselling often gives good results but fear of rejection prevents some people from sharing their problems”, Suicide, says Bhavani, is a cry for help. “With timely intervention, it can be prevented”.
But that cry for help is often heard too late.
The film industry, with its euphoric highs and equally dark lows, can be especially testing. Ann Augustine, a renowned Malayalam actor with 10 films to her credit, has said Sushant’s death underlines the need for greater kindness. “We never really know what the other person goes through, be it inside your home, office or even amongst your own friends. Mental health is important and people must talk about it. If needed, get help without hesitating. It is not easy, but help is inevitable. Do not give up and keep fighting. Bad times don’t last forever”.
Vivek Harshan, a prominent film editor in Tamil and Malayalam cinema and national award winner, hopes Sushant’s death will lead to greater openness and empathy. “I really hope more people step forward to talk about their problems to their loved ones. Or at least seek for medical help. This is not something to be brushed aside”.
Common signs of depression
Many a time, a person who is feeling depressed can be pushed away without finding the support he/she needs. Some are even called attention seekers or told they are being overly dramatic.
Do you someone who is showing signs of depression? get help without delay.
Some of the most common symptoms include a hopeless outlook towards life, fatigue and sleep problems, change in appetite and weight, or talking about death.
Bollywood actor Deepika Padukone who is also the founder of Live Love Laugh has aptly put it, “As a person who has had a lived experience with mental illness, I cannot stress enough about the importance of reaching out. Talk. Communicate. Express. Seek. Help. Remember, you are not alone. We are in this together. And most importantly, there is hope”.
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