Imagine a world so twisted where we would rather not talk about and treat mental illness for the fear of, "log kya kahenge". It is a conversation we would rather not have, not because we don't take it seriously, but mostly because we fear the person in question would be considered a 'paagal'. We just turn away from the problem, wishing that it would go away.
We tend to ask the person to smile, have fun, shake it off — because it is all a state of mind, right? Well, it isn't. It needs immediate medical attention.
Also, here is the thing — would we do the same if it were some physical illness? Would we try and wish away typhoid or tuberculosis, just because "log kya kahenge"?
Obviously, not. Then why do we do not approach and treat mental illness the same way?
In their latest sketch, comedy collective All India Bakchod, is asking the same question. Nikhil has been diagnosed with typhoid. From "You just need to get out and have some fun," "Tu jitna sochega na ke mujhe typhoid hain, typhoid hain, typhoid hain utna badhega," to "It's just a phase," "Ek cheez ho sakta hain, either you are smiling or you have typhoid. How can you have both?" — none of the apparently well-intentioned suggestions make any sense. Much like our conversations on depression, or any other mental illness for that matter.
It is high time we talk about mental health.
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