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Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Shelja Sen


Shelja Sen is co-founder of Children First, a child and adolescent mental health institute, and author of Imagine: No Child Left Invisible; All You Need is Love: The Art of Mindful Parenting; Reclaim Your Life: Going Beyond Silence, Shame and Stigma in Mental Health.

What is neurodiversity and where does it figure in the spectrum of social justice and human rights
Sat, Dec 19, 2020

Working towards a just world, one that honours all kinds of minds, requires us to be and do better

What we want our parents to know
Sat, Nov 14, 2020

That they have got our back even when we mess up, that they’ll be there for us, no matter what

Tyranny of Obedience
Sat, Oct 24, 2020

Learning ought to be a disruptive and subversive process. Otherwise, it perpetuates proverbial bricks in the wall

How our children are not consumers but the products on sale on social media
Sun, Sep 27, 2020

Likes, shares, comments keep them engaged like zombies while their minds are speedily being colonised and harvested, by prompt ads and Instagram influencers promoting lavish lifestyles and looks

How different types of discrimination can overlap in our identities
Sat, Aug 22, 2020

This is why the personal is political and why everyday acts of micro resistance matter

Imagine: Why it’s time to stand up to anxiety
Sat, Jul 18, 2020

It speaks with such conviction, using our thoughts and our brain to work against us until, unwittingly, we are recruited as its voice

Mental health is a collective responsibility: The person is not the problem
Sun, Jun 21, 2020

Imagine: We have created the toxic society in which young people are struggling to survive.

Kindness is our hope in the post-COVID-19 world
Sun, May 31, 2020

It is easy to forget in a crisis, but being kind to each other is what has helped the human species survive over two millennia

Talking About Consent with Young Boys
Sat, May 16, 2020

There are no greys in affirmative consent -- it is black and white.

Imagine: Are our children safe at home?
Sat, May 02, 2020

The memories of the pandemic will stay in our children's memory banks forever. The question to all the parents is, 'What deposits are we making?'

Let’s imagine a brave new world: What is your Zihuatanejo?
Fri, Apr 17, 2020

Keeping the overwhelming tragedy aside, maybe COVID might help us to dream of a brave new world – our very own Zihuatanejo where we can let go of the memory of our stale old world which had literally started rotting and stinking.

Corona panic: Courage is not a trait or a quality; it is a practice 
Sat, Apr 04, 2020

Imagine: It reminded me of A Letter to the UK from Italy by the writer Francesca Melnadri, “Old resentments and falling-outs will seem irrelevant. You will call people you had sworn never to talk to ever again, so as to ask them: ‘How are you doing?’"

Love in the time of corona
Sun, Mar 22, 2020

The question to ask is not “what if” the virus strikes, but “so what”? The damage will be irretrievable but maybe it will leave us stronger, wiser and more grateful for what we have.

Love in the time of Corona: Let’s appreciate tiny things to be grateful for
Fri, Mar 20, 2020

Imagine: The families that I have met have talked about how they are doing things they had forgotten brought them so much joy – goofing around with their children without any agenda, spending time in nature.

Imagine: The tyranny of being social and outgoing
Fri, Mar 06, 2020

Preference for solitude and quiet is a way of being and not an illness. Many times, through repeated messages that we give an introverted child, he might become shy as he starts thinking something is wrong with him and therefore fears social rejection.

When home becomes the most dangerous place for the child
Fri, Feb 21, 2020

Imagine: Violence towards children is culturally sanctioned, especially when it is at the hands of the parents. This usually comes with a convenient justification: “They know what is best for them”

Imagine: Dear students, here are 7 tips to rock your exams
Thu, Feb 06, 2020

Despite all the fuss made about exams, remember they do not define you or the rest of your life.

Imagine: Is society’s idea of success harming our children?
Fri, Jan 24, 2020

The idea of success is hugely problematic when from an early age, we are recruiting our children into believing that there is one right way to live their life.

Imagine: Let’s smash the myth of work-life balance for working mothers
Fri, Jan 10, 2020

No man is ever asked how he manages to keep the work-life balance; it is an expectation from women only.

Watch out for the ‘study abroad’ industry that is luring our kids
Sat, Dec 28, 2019

When we do something because everybody else is doing it, then it is problematic. It is like getting on a treadmill which is not going to get us anywhere

Imagine: Watch out for the ‘study abroad’ industry that is luring our kids
Fri, Dec 27, 2019

When we do something because everybody else is doing it then it is problematic. It is like getting into a treadmill which is not going to get us anywhere.

Imagine: Children will lie. It’s not a flaw but a necessary milestone
Sat, Dec 14, 2019

Lying is a pretty smart and sophisticated protective strategy children adopt when faced with oppressive and so-called “disciplinary” practices.

Imagine: Less is more — escaping the grip of ‘affluenza’
Fri, Nov 29, 2019

We are trying to buy our way out of misery, but paradoxically, getting more stuck than ever. I am sure you will remember your childhood when old sofas were refurbished, furniture repaired, clothes passed on from older to younger and everything used until it was threadbare and turned into dusters.

Imagine: Raising girls — misogyny shows up when we’re least aware
Sat, Nov 16, 2019

Let’s start by becoming more mindful of our language. Just observe the words we use to praise little girls — “gentle”, “nice”, “sweet” and the ubiquitous “good girl”; and for boys — “strong”, “tough”, “brave”.

Imagine: Parents, create boundaries without any double standards
Mon, Nov 04, 2019

It is only when they feel valued, loved and safe in a relationship that children can even be open to coaching. A red light is for behaviours that need a zero-tolerance, non-negotiable approach. The yellow light could be for habits the child is still learning to master.