Deepika Padukone encourages depression sufferers to seek help

It’s been almost two years since Deepika Padukone shared with the world that she suffered from depression. She also took the opportunity to launch her The Live Love Laugh Foundation. Back then, people thought that she was doing this in conjunction with her movie release.

Well, she’s here to prove those people wrong. In an interview with Hindustan Times, Deepika shared an update on what has happened since she launched the Live Love Laugh Foundation. It has interesting facts and information that can help those, who are suffering from depression.

 

Here’s Deepika Padukone on depression,

in her own words:

Deepika Padukone encourages depression sufferers to seek help

Depression is clearly a ticking time bomb but sadly most aren’t even aware that they are depressed. The extreme manifestation of depression is suicide and in 2015 alone, more than 50,000 youth in India took their lives

If you take India’s 364 million youth (10-29 years), and carve them out into a separate country, it would form the third most populated country in the world. Like young people everywhere, they are facing a long, hard road to adulthood. Internally, they fight anxieties, personal struggles, hormones, stresses and powerful emotions. Externally, they grapple with a fast-changing India, pregnant with possibility but at the same time, difficult to comprehend and navigate.

These pressures, a changing lifestyle and society, combined with genetic and biological factors make depression rampant among India’s youth. A 2016 study published in the Asian Journal of Psychiatry revealed that depression among university students is at a whopping 53.2%. Other than the emotional pain and suffering, studies suggest that depression also puts them in the danger of self-destructive behaviour, like rash driving, unsafe sex, teenage pregnancy, drug abuse, excessive drinking, dropping out of school or college, self-injury, etc.

The extreme manifestation of depression is suicide!

Did you know that suicide is the leading cause for death among India’s youth, with suicide rates being among the highest in the world? In 2015, we lost 51,792 youth aged between 14-29 to suicide alone.

 

Depression is clearly a ticking time bomb but sadly most aren’t even aware that they are depressed.

 

Some of the common symptoms are pervasive low mood, a lack of interest, low energy, or restlessness, decreased or increased appetite, oversleeping or insomnia, impaired memory, lowered self-confidence, and thoughts of death and suicide. Even if somebody realises that they are depressed, most do not seek help, and suffer in silence due to stigma. There is a general understanding that being depressed means being sad, while in actuality there is a difference. If you or anyone you know is experiencing any of the above symptoms for two weeks or more, seeking professional help is highly recommended.

Back in 2014, when I was in pain, suffering alone, and breaking down repeatedly, I didn’t know I was depressed. I was going about my day, posing for cameras, getting interviewed and signing autographs. But what nobody saw was that I didn’t feel like myself, I felt ‘different’ somehow. My breathing was irregular and shallow, my stomach was in knots, getting out of bed was a struggle and I would break down for no reason. All I wanted to do was to curl up and stay in bed.

Luckily for me, my mother understood that this was more than just passing sadness and got me the help I required. And thanks to the timely expert intervention of Anna Chandy and Shyam Bhat, and the love and support of my parents, sister and friends, I was able to treat my depression with medication, therapy and lifestyle changes.

Soon after, I started The Live Love Laugh Foundation, a charitable trust to champion the cause of mental health in India, with a focus on anxiety and depression in particular. The foundation works towards destigmatizing and creating awareness about mental illness while encouraging people to seek help. We launched our flagship awareness programme, You Are Not Alone in schools. It is an interactive and informative opportunity for adolescent students and teachers to gain a better understanding and increase their awareness of mental health.

As of March, we have covered approximately 30,000 students and 6,000 teachers across India.

Last year, we launched India’s first ever public awareness campaign on mental health, Dobara Poocho that encouraged over a hundred survivors to share their battles with mental illness.

I’d say there’s absolutely no shame if you suffer from depression. Please don’t hide it, feel angry, think of yourself as weak, or consider it a character flaw. It is not your fault if you are depressed. Acceptance is the first step on the road to recovery. Depression doesn’t discriminate; it can happen to anybody, at any point in their lives. Know that you are not alone, that we are in this together and most importantly that there is hope; for in the words of comedian Stephen Fry, “It will be sunny one day”.

Deepika Padukone is actor and founder, The Live Love Laugh Foundation

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10 Responses

  1. Lily says:

    She only talks about it when her movie is going to be released. Spare me with her fakeness. I won’t be shocked knowing it was a facade created by her PR.

    • Admin says:

      Actually, it was World Mental Health Day on that day. That said, whatever her intention is, as long as her foundation is helping people, it’s good. Because mental health issues need to be addressed to kill the stigma around it.

      • Lily says:

        Sorry I can’t. When she was advocating feminism during cleavage controversy, I wholly supported her. But then she became super pally with those same people who were responsible for it. Also when she received flak for “My Choice” video, instead of owning it she put her friend Homi under the bus.

    • Shivanisd says:

      Lol. Did u see how she tried to pretend to the world she was going around wt vin diesel just to get some publicity before xxx released. It was so fake and pathetic. All Indians knew she was with Ranveer at that time. How can u lie about ur relationship. Lost my respect.

      • bucketbot says:

        Eh. I’m not a Deepika fan. In fact I’m skeptical about her, even though i can admire certain things she’s done. But the ‘vin diesel’s babies’ thing – it was obvious she was joking. Everybody knew. Even the foreigners. It wasn’t a big deal. I don’t think any foreign media outlet picked it up and said ‘hmmm…there’s something going on there’. It was as good as filler content for them.

        It was such an obviously bad PR tactic on her part, but she thought it would be ‘cute’ thing to say. All the girl wanted was to be able to give a quotable headline where her name would be visible along side Vin’s. Her PR also knew that this was the best way to get maximum exposure in the international media. It was only the Indians who made a big deal of it. Some went ballistic and said she’s cheating on Ranveer, and what not. So much hype for such negligible impact. Basically, obvious PR tactic backfired.

        Ps. RS might also have been on board with this.

        • Shivanisd says:

          I’ve seen foreigners saying on YouTube that they believe she’s going out with vin so it clearly wasn’t perceived as a joke. It was a really cheap tactic for someone who always pretends to be genuine and principled. She looked so dumb on ellens show talking abt vin and even ellen was kinda put off by her silly talk. If u want to be like pc then atleast learn from her how to handle the media!

          • bucketbot says:

            Yes to it being a cheap tactic. At most a few foreigners started some gossip out of this silly pr tactic. But most were smart. Or decided to google. I think the Indian reports were very helpful in quashing this stunt as the web pages must have been dominated by Indian reports of her supposed ‘cheating’.
            We know sometimes gossip is created for publicity (coughkjocough). This was such a case. And it backfired. Were you a die-hard loonie before?

          • Shivanisd says:

            If she was single i wud be fine. But why behave in india as if ur all lovey dovey wt ranveer and abroad act like ur crazy for vin. It was srsly cheap for a so called genuine and empowered actress. Pc didnt do such drama!

  2. Philip says:

    So much drama happens when a movie is about to release. Haiz….

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