35-year-old Saudamini Gamle had lost interest in life. She passed through each day with a dull monotony that she couldn't get out of. She felt fat, worthless, guilty and irritable very often and preferred to be in her shell at parties.
She had lost interest in friends and even her 6-year-old son's antics couldn't make her laugh with joy. The only thing she found solace in was eating, and she could easily polish off an entire chocolate cake alone. She knew she was depressed but she couldn't talk to anyone about it with the fear of being stigmatised.
Speaking about mental health issues has always been considered taboo in our country. It is only recently that urban India has began to notice that mental illnesses also require as much timely attention and intervention as physical ailments do.
The World Health Organisation(WHO), depression will become the second largest illness in terms of morbidity by 2020. It also says that it affects one of every five women and one out of every twelve men.
Why are our urban women so depressed? The underlying causes are many, but here are the chief ones.
Ah yes. It is still expected that housekeeping and child rearing is largely a woman's responsibility. No one seems to consider that she’s after all human, so juggling work, the house and her children taxes her. Bias in the workplace is also something that she has to go through.
We are glad that the #MeToo movement is finally catching on here. Women are breaking their silence after years of suffering in agony. It's no surprise that molestation and sexual assault can lead to mental issues.
Many educated, working women suffer domestic violence even today. Some speak up and decide to do something, but many others just keep it pent up due to several reasons.
The stress of doing it all and meeting up with society's expectations gets to women and ultimately, some of them slip into depression.
Keeping the mind healthy is a priority for women all over. Reaching out, speaking out and believing in yourself is the first step to begin the battle against mental illnesses. So stand up for your health dear sister, for your body and your mind.