“Everyone told me that my problems are silly when compared to their problems, but that is not true!”

I struggle with myself when I am thinking to write something down about mental health. Yes, everything I want to tell is within me, it is there every time in my head bothering me. But I still can’t put them into words. However, I am taking the first step to breaking the barriers I have to face. I am trying to write something about my pain and experiences.

I experience a strong melancholic, unpleasant feeling haunting me always. I have noticed this from my childhood. I was very much afraid of this negative emotion. It always hindered me from being happy. At a very young age, I never knew that there are people who share these kinds of experiences. I felt lonely since I was not able to communicate my feelings with anyone completely. I never had a friend to talk about things that bothered me. I was unable to communicate with my family too. All I understood was I am faking emotions when I am in a group or interacting with someone. I was not able to express what I was feeling inside. I was sad and hopeless always. I didn’t find any meaning or associate any purpose to life. I was deeply hurt by a feeling of worthlessness.

I was really good at academics. But then I lost concentration and became an average student. When I reached college, I was in a state of ecstasy. I was free from these negative feelings for three years. I began to excel in my studies again. No one really noticed that I had an intense feeling of pain inside my mind that keeps hurting me always. After these three years, I broke down. I was not able to do anything. I didn’t even write answers for any internal exams. I was not able to listen or communicate anything. By the time I had lost skills to communicate properly. I even never knew which words best described my emotions or feelings. Even I struggled to communicate in my daily life conversations.

I spent most of the days crying, but I never knew the reason. I missed my periods for six months. I had to suffer migraines which I developed from school days. I wanted to sleep but I was not able to. I was in need of a helping hand, but no one was there.

I started sharing my feelings with people. They told me I am creating problems out of nowhere. I am overthinking and cooking up problems. They told me I have everything and there is nothing to be worried about. They told me I have food and shelter. They called me lazy. They told me my pain is nothing compared to the sufferings of others.

This hurt me more. I grew up without loving myself. I started to hate myself more. I thought it was my mistake that I turned into a cynic and a pessimist. It became difficult for me to adjust to my family. Years passed. It was then I joined a course in Psychology, I was able to understand the reasons behind my problems. From my childhood, I wanted to study Psychology as my major in college, but I retracted from it since I was afraid that my teachers could find out what I was hiding in my mind.

I never had the courage to face anything. I always ran away from problems. I had anxiety and depression. But I didn’t know how to save myself. I met many people in life. Everyone told me that my problems are silly when compared to their problems. I didn’t find anyone empathetic.

After some years, I heard one of my colleagues talking openly about his mental health issues and the ways he dealt with them during a function in the school. I talked to him one day and felt relaxed. I understood that taking help from a counsellor will help me to heal.

I am attending counselling sessions now. My counsellor asks me the question ‘why’ for everything I tell her. This is helping me a lot. I am able to explore a lot about myself. She is helping me to view things from a different perspective. I still have communication issues. But believe me, there is no other person who can dig things out of my mind so well. There is no other person with whom I have talked so well. Being a person who struggles to talk to others, I am opening up greatly to my counsellor. Even this is a great achievement for me. I am in the process of healing. I would recommend all those who struggle with mental issues to seek professional help. It can help you a lot to learn about yourself. Maybe it can even change you to be a more kind, and compassionate human being.

– Avarnniya Pookkat

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