Nothing wrong in reaching out for help: Deepika Padukone


Four years ago when Deepika Padukone opened up about depression, the Indian society was not ready for it but that did not stop her from picking this battle.
Opening up about her experience of depression and sharing it with the world was more than just about being honest for her. "I don't think at that point, four years ago, I was being brave or revolutionary.
I felt it was important for me to share something that was very personal, something that had changed my life and something that I felt had a lot of stigma around it," spoke Deepika, in conversation with Pinky Reddy (President of FICCI Ladies Organisation FLO) and Anna Chandy, in an interactive session at a city hotel.
She shared how there was not much awareness about depression. “People around me weren’t familiar with what I was experiencing and going through. Apart from the lack of awareness there was also a lot of stigma, but for me coming out was really about sharing what I had gone through,” she said.
Anna Chandy, her counsellor helped her through her journey to recovery, “Anna told me that if by sharing my story I can save even one life, I think the purpose served. We are definitely headed in the right direction but we still have a long way to go,” said Deepika.
Feeling low emotionally for a prolonged period of time can be called depression, the actor explains. “There is a difference between feeling sad and feeling depressed. Sadness can happen more often and it is more of a passing emotion and I feel it is very important to understand the difference. They are very similar but when you are depressed, it is for a longer period of time.
The professionals can see what it actually is and people should take online tests or visit a therapist in the first stage. You don’t feel self worth or any drive; there is no motivation to do anything. There is no motivation to life at all.
There are suicidal tendencies involved. It is a clinical condition while some people say it is self-inflicted, bad karma and even some other reasons. In my case, my mother recognised it at a very early stage. My mother had called Anna and from my voice on the phone she knew I was depressed and I needed medical help,” adds Padukone.
On a final note, Deepika said, “I felt lighter and felt as if a huge load from my shoulders had been removed when I spoke about my condition. Therefore, I would want everyone to understand that there is nothing wrong in reaching out for help and finding the actual the root cause. By talking to teachers students and parents, we are trying to prevent depression,” she signs off.

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