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A story of two great buddies, untill...one slashed his wrists

Is putting a full stop to your life the solution to feeling depressed? Read Keshav's story of overcoming the mental illness.

Rahul and Keshav were best of friends. They used to go for Maths tuition together, spend hours jamming and listening to The Beatles, argue over Nadal and Federer, go on school trips together and make fun of each other by posting embarrassing videos on Instagram.

It took ten years to build their rock solid bond only to be broken into ten million pieces one fine day. This was the day Keshav broke down and cut his wrists. Family members came to his aid trying to figure out the reason for his attempted suicide, but they could not understand why Keshav took such a life-altering step. Slowly, Keshav could not concentrate on Maths, would get irritated while listening to music (even his favourite Hey Jude! song by The Beatles could not cheer him up), lost interest in Tennis, spent most of his time locked up in his room and withdrew himself completely from social media.

Friends assumed he was going through a phase. Rahul was clueless, but carried on with his life. In no time, Rahul had become the school captain for Tennis, and Keshav was left behind the net, feeling shredded with jealousy towards his best friend. It was only when Keshav's mother read about Deepika Padukone's journey of depression that she instantly figured what was wrong with her kid. She got in touch with a psychologist, and set up a meeting. It was soon revealed that Keshav was suffering from depression.

How you should not confuse Depression with a 'phase'

We all have phases in our lives, bouts of sadness, a span of loneliness, even a month of melancholy. But, they come and they go. Depression is a mental illness that has to be treated by a doctor. Imagine this, you are running wildly in a 400-metre race with wind slamming your face and your adrenaline pumping to unimaginable levels. All of a sudden, your lace opens and gets caught underneath your feet, and you fall, face-down on the ground. The next second, your shirt is covered with blood. You immediately rush to the hospital to get the wound healed. Similarly, when our mind faces a similar accident, we should consult a doctor. Just because a wound is not visible, does not mean it does not need medical attention.

How Keshav felt:

- He lost interest in activities he earlier used to enjoy doing.

- He would cry frequently and could not come up with a valid reason.

- He easily felt jealous of his friend's accomplishments.

- He briefly got addicted to substances such as drugs.

- He experienced suicidal thoughts.

Teentalk India Expert Kshitija Sawant gives tips on how to deal with depressive thoughts: 

1.Force yourself to do some work and get involved in activities. Try doing small tasks each day and rewarding yourself each time you finish working on them.

2. When you start doing small things, it will motivate you to take the next step and that’s how you will be able to move ahead in life.This is easier said than done, but once you take the first step, you’ll realize that it was worth the try.

3. Your competition should only be with yourself. Focus on your strengths and be aware of your weaknesses.

4. Ask yourself, what are the advantages of taking drugs? What are the disadvantages of taking drugs? What are the advantages of not taking drugs? What are the disadvantages of not taking drugs? Responding to each of these will give you the much needed clarity.

5. When you are thinking about suicide, it’s because you‘ve come to believe there’s no other way out. Instead, try to focus on looking for solutions, no matter how serious the issue is. Talk to a Counsellor, reach out to a Psychiatrist  will go a long way in reducing and eventually eliminating suicidal thoughts.

What Keshav's parents did

- Instead of worrying about society's stigma attached to mental illness, Keshav's parents listened to what he had to say.

- They became more patient and tolerant to his mood and habits.

- They scheduled weekly trips to the psychologist and began Keshav's treatment.

- They increased "family time" and encouraged Keshav to express himself without judgement.

- They got Keshav a pet dog.

- They never stopped loving Keshav.

The journey is more important than the end

In this journey of helping Keshav overcome depression, his parents learnt a fair deal themselves. They became more accepting, loving and humble individuals. Keshav has started enjoying life again. His current favourite band is Daft Punk, his favourite subject is Political Science and has a lovely girlfriend. It is evident that Keshav could not have survived without the support of his parents.

If you have a story from your life where you have overcome a personal tragedy, write and send it to edit@teentalkindia.com.

We will edit and publish it. Furthermore, if you have a query regarding any issue, email at expert@teentalkindia.com.



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Suicide is not the solution to your problems in life

A teenager's tale of surviving comparison with his elder brother
Nishtha JunejaTeentalkindia Content Writer

Growing up with an elder sibling who is a rank-holder in school has its pitfalls. As a young boy, Rishabh was subjected to comparison from his teachers and students. Every time Rishabh would score good marks, the teachers would often give credit to his elder brother for inspiring him. On the other hand, at home, his parents would often criticise him for not being as good as his elder brother.

The pressure to be as good as his brother doubled when the board exams were around the corner. Every time Rishabh would sit to study, his attention would drift to the gold medal his brother received when he topped in 12th board. In a fraction of a second, he would lose some part of his self-confidence. Some part of his self-esteem slipped a notch.

On the outside, Rishabh would project an image that everything is alright, from the inside he was sinking. His heart sank even lower when relatives would pop up in the house and would automatically start praising his elder brother for his achievements, completely side-lining Rishabh for his efforts.

Soon, with trembling confidence and the pressure to out-perform his own brother, he appeared for the grade 12 board exams. After every exam, he would build a façade of cheerfulness but deep inside he knew that he might not get as many marks as his brother.

He started to self-blame. He started to criticize himself. He started to internalise the belief that he is not good enough. This ruminative thought pattern stuck with him for months till the exam results did not come out. But once they did, and he did not score as much as his brother, he felt his self-esteem going down the drain.

Soon, he lost all hope and started contemplating suicide. Believing that ending his life will be the solution to his problems seemed the perfect idea to his fear-ridden mind. He would wake up every morning with suicidal thoughts. His brother happened to visit home during this phase and realised that things are not right with Rishabh. He started talking to him and understood his depressed state of mind. Furthermore, he understood that Rishabh needs professional counselling.

Teentalk India Expert Kshitija Sawant suggests tips on how to combat suicidal thoughts:

1. It is important to focus on what you’re good at and start working towards those goals.

2. Most importantly, while working hard, make sure, you’re persistent and stay positive.

3. This is easier said than done, but if you believe in yourself, then one day the world will come to believe in your potential as well.

4. The power of positive thinking is one of the best ways to combat suicidal thinking.

If you have a query, you can email at expert@teentalkindia.com and talk to the Teentalk India expert on Google Hangout between Monday-Friday, 10am-6pm.

If you have a story to share,Click Here

If you have a query,Click Here.

You can also chat with the counsellor by clicking on Teentalk Expert Chat.


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Disclaimer: TeentalkIndia does not offer emergency services and is not a crisis intervention centre, if you or someone you know is experiencing acute distress or is suicidal/self harming, please contact the nearest hospital or emergency/crisis management services or helplines.