In Mumbai on April 3, a 24-year-old college student ended his life by jumping off the 19th floor on a hotel. Before taking the drastic step, Arjun Bhardwaj live-streamed a Facebook video, which immediately went viral on social media. According to the Bandra Police, the third-year BCom student, who was studying in Narsee Monjee College of Commerce and Economics in the city, left a suicide note in which he had said he was depressed. The incident has evidently shaken many and people have raised concerns over the taboos attached to mental health that stop people from talking about their problems. Mallika Dua and Biswa Kalyan Rath, stand-up comics who are known to have people in splits with their jokes, this time took to Facebook to assure those battling depression that it’s all okay.
Rath, popular for his ‘Pretentious Movie Reviews’ Web series, wrote extensively about his depression and how he felt like a “spectacular failure”, lost weight and fought depression for eight years. In nine points, he wrote how to deal with the low phases that seem never-ending. Dua, popular for her hilarious Instagram series called ‘Makeup Didi’ too insisted that it is important to hold onto the loved ones to not fall prey to depression. “Treat it like a stomach ache. You would take a medicine for it right?”, she encouraged people to speak up about and get assistance for battling depression.
“Young people in my newsfeed. College students, school students.
Another suicide has taken place. Another life is lost. I don’t know any other way to motivate you than saying this.
My CGPA in college was 6.83 out of 10 or less, I can’t remember or find that grade sheet. I almost failed in many subjects. I don’t know anything about biotechnology.
I did not get placement in any company. To put that in perspective, IITs have a near 100% placement rate.
I wasn’t good at anything then. I could play some shit on a guitar, or write a poem on some blog or click horrible photos with a DSLR camera. Complete lack of skill, completely unhirable.
My first job was a sales job and I was fired after 3 months. Monthly salary was 15k, which seems decent but all my friends were earning at least thrice the amount.
I was also going through personal problems as well, which I don’t want to get into but I was emotionally fucked as well.
These things made me feel like a spectacular failure.I was depressed for a couple of years and I lost around 8 kgs. I was thin to begin with. Thankfully I had friends to support me throughout.
After a couple of years, as I kept doing what I believed I would be good at, things started getting better slowly and steadily. I was a horrible graphic designer, a horrible web designer, a horrible coder, a horrible writer and a bad comedian for quite some time. I have embarrassed myself enough and been bad at multiple fields. But with support from close friends, I kept working at it.
Suddenly one day, things changed for the better and people who I assumed thought of me as a failure started messaging me saying they were proud of me. People started appreciating my work.
Today, I don’t feel like a failure despite whoever feels whichever way and I am happy with my life. And that’s a big deal.
Not everybody has as good friends as I did. Which is why I would like to tell you the following which I needed to hear then.
Moral of the story:
1. Failure at education system/college/school doesn’t mean failure at life, if there is such a thing. There is no correlation. Our education system focuses on competition more than knowledge. It’s outright bad.
2. If you work hard and do what you love, you will be happy. Success is secondary and it will also happen. You will win solely because so few people dare to try. Just work hard.
3. You have enough time to fail at multiple career options. Every failure is an opportunity to learn.
4. Don’t be afraid of failure. Embrace it as part of life. Life is a series of failures, punctuated by brief periods of time where things seem to be fine. The amount of success people have in a year fits into a magazine. Everything else that billions of people have done that year is considered failure.
5. Nobody will believe in you for a few years. It’s just how it is. Please believe in yourself and work hard.
6. Don’t end your life. At least give it 30 more years. Dekho, kya hota hai. Maje lo duniya ke. Life is fucking spectacular and there is so much to learn and do. Life will change so much in the next few years you won’t be able to recognise yourself.
7. Don’t be ashamed of asking for help. There is nothing wrong with depression. It is a very natural outcome of the kind of society we live in. Hota hai. Sabke saath hota hai.
8. If you notice somebody behaving odd, talk to them. Be kind. Stop judging others, stop judging yourself.
9. Don’t do drugs. Just fucking don’t. They will ruin your life.
Life sucks most days and it has nothing to do with what and how much you’ve got going for you. Understand that and act upon it. Please seek mental help. It’s as important as any other form of medical care. Just give that a chance even if you don’t want to give yourself another one. There’s people and medicines out there to MAKE SURE you feel better. A lot of times you may not even realise what’s making you feel and act the way you are. Chemical imbalance is almost entirely correctible. You are very very valuable to your family and loved ones. Please don’t put them and yourself through this. Reach out for professional help if you sense something is wrong. It’s normal. You are normal. Please dont let anything and anyone make you feel otherwise. Don’t end your life. There’s more to it than you think. Hold on to it for the ones that love you. It will get better. Treat it like a stomach ache. You would take a medicine for it right? If it persists, you would see a doctor right? It’s the same thing, except the brain is even more important than the stomach. Probably the most important of them all. This too shall pass.
AIB (All India Bakchod) founder Tanmay Bhat also spoke on depression, hope and healing in a video. He took to Facebook to share it with his fans and followers. “Apne problems Ko apne dosto se milaiyye,” he captioned the video.
Well, it’s time to see the light at the end of tunnel, isn’t it?