An instant response from her parents… and, what Sushma heard was,“you are thinking too much”, “you shouldn’t care much about it”, “you are stressing yourself too much on this”…  Even before they heard her out and listened to her problem, or her side of the story, everyone around Sushma hurriedly jumped into asking her to brush it under the carpet. No one really wanted to talk more about the emotional aspect.

There is a huge social stigma about depression and other psychological problems. Everyone, including the one who is suffering, considers it as a personal weakness if expressed. Hence they choose not to treat it as another issue that may need medical or psychological intervention.

When humans go through physiological problems, say a cough, common cold and fever or any ache, they will run to a physician for consultation and medication…. why? Simply because they want to be healthy or they are fearful that it may lead to serious consequences or health problems. It is always good and necessary to take care of our health; this in turn keeps the person happy and bodily fit. However, is only physical health accountable for happiness and fitness? Doesn’t emotional wellness too account for happiness and fitness?  Do we realize that stress, pressure and anxiety, which are not attended to, will lead to bigger problems like depression, anxiety disorders and other psychological problems? Further, it may also lead to chronic physical problems like high blood pressure, diabetes and so on.

We tend to overlook and brush aside emotional or psychological problems many a times; more so when people are forced to get to work and keep the job. It could be so because of factors like huge commitments and financial constraints. Since it is not a physical problem, and they appear fit to work, the emotional problems are often masked until these things become too much to bear and reaches a stage of outburst. At the workplace too, emotional or mental ill health could cost the person his job or career growth due to the stigma it holds. Hence, we choose to hide most of our feelings rather than talking about it or going for help.

The support system an individual had in the earlier days, being in a joint family system, living with the extended family in big numbers helped to talk and share naturally. Members were closely knit and connected to each other.  Emotional support and sharing were easier. But today’s family is more a nuclear one, consisting of maybe four to five members. Listening, connecting and hand holding by near and dear ones matter in today’s world where there can be many challenging situations in different areas of life.  This can make a difference and work wonders, aiding the process of healing.

It is essential for every society to treat emotional issues, and psychological disorders like stress, depression, anxiety, etc., on a par with physical problems. Therefore, it is important to reach out and seek professional help in stressful and difficult situations.

We, at LeanonMe, are always there to listen to you. Please feel free to reach out and share. If you are looking for employee counselling, get in touch with our EAP services team based in Bangalore.

AUTHOR: Nagesh, Lead Counsellor


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