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25 Mar 2015


It was only recently, when Deepika Padukone came out with her story about depression, shouting out to the world that SHE WENT THROUGH DEPRESSION!

Depression is a growing epidemic in today’s world, with India having the highest number of depressed people! According to World Health Organization statistics, 36% of Indians are depressed, with 1 lakh individuals (between ages 15-29) committing suicide every year (highest in the world)! YET IT’S A TABOO TO HAVE A MENTAL ILLNESS!

During the interview with Barkha Dutt, at We The People, NDTV, not only was Deepika Padukone present but she was also accompanied by her Mother, her Counselor and her Psychiatrist discussing her journey through the illness.

Most of us may feel that what did she have depression for,  was it a flop movie? A break up?  Or A media controversy? Excess stardom etc. ? But the fact is no one knows the answer.

She like most of us was unaware of the cause of her depression, and wouldn’t have ever figured out of the fact that she was going through the illness, had her mother, who was living with her then wouldn’t have been aware about the symptoms of Depression.

It was only post her mother noticed a difference in her behavior and her mood l, that she recommended her to seek counseling. The changes weren’t sudden, nor did her mother immediately call the counselor, instead she waited to see if the symptoms were momentary or was it really depression.

Deepika too like most others who suffer from depression during her illness, experienced the following symptoms

  • Feeling of Emptiness
  • Directionless
  • Frequent crying bouts
  • Pit in the stomach
  • Bouts of Low energy
  • Low Appetite
  • Loneliness


Post having observed Deepika for a few days, and talking to her, her mother was sure enough that something was wrong. It was then when Deepika and her mother, consulted a Counselor, who was also a family friend, who further confirmed that THE Deepika Padukone ,indeed was going through depression and that she needed medicinal support . 

Her bravery was commendable from day 1 when she consulted a therapist, However like most people in general would resist medicines so did Deepika. It wasn’t her fame or her popularity that was stopping her from taking the medicines, but the fact that she too like most other normal people was afraid to take such a major step.

According to Deepika, what scared her was that even though she had accepted that she had an illness, it was difficult for her to control her mind. “I would often gather strength and knew I had to recover when I had malaria or a broken ankle, because I would tell my mind that I am fine, but this time my mind had stopped taking instructions” said Deepika during the interview.

People around her often told her that she could do it herself, or that she was strong. But deep within she knew wasn’t able to deal with her current state of mind. Hence, after repeated insistence by her counselor and mother, she finally went to a psychiatrist who prescribed her drugs for Depression. Her, counseling sessions went on consistently alongside. 

During her phase of recovery she faced a lot of speed breakers such as negative comments, lack of empathy, etc. but she didn’t let the negative environmental influences come in her way of recovery. Instead she played on the positive ones. She got immense support from her family and friends which acted like a catalyst for her recovery.

No matter what the illness is, good social support is an integral ingredient which helps in faster recovery. Having her near and dear ones understand her illness, made the recovery process easier for Deepika.  

To ensure that Deepika took her medicines on time, someone from her family was always present. Her mood kept swinging for a while before it settled down. While she had moments where should want to lock herself up and cry, there were also moments when she felt like going out. According to her counselor, Deepika had immense grit and used her vulnerability as a strength, hence never letting her work get impacted by her illness.

While her medicines continued so did her counseling sessions and process of recovery. Whenever she felt a low she would often discuss it with her counselor who would help her through the situation at hand.

Her courage to seek help was itself half battle solved. As quoted by Deepika’s Psychiatrist, “ Don’t treat depression as a weakness, you don’t have to suffer!, instead seek help and use it as a step towards positive transformation, self-discovery and optimization of self and mind.” 

And so, did Deepika. By taking a step towards recovery, made her come out of her illness in less than a year.

Some of the things which helped Deepika cope with her illness were:

  • Being Alert
  • Taking to near and dear ones
  • Good social support
  • Counselor and psychiatrist
  • Determination to continue her Work

Today 1 out of four people have depression in our country and being a public figure made Deepika’s Journey to fight Depression no less easy. As per her “she went hell and back”. But, What’s important to note here is though it was a tough phase she is now out of it, back with being herself!

So, if you are depressed or know someone who may be depressed, don’t hesitate to come out. Mental illness is like any other physical illness which needs to be cured. Your one step towards change may save a life! Visit the today and talk to our expert psychologists and help in creating a change and increasing awareness about mental illness. 

Tags: #Deepika #Depression #Crying Spells #Emptiness