With news of people taking their own lives such as the news of the recent passing of Bollywood Actor Sushant Singh or the doctor in Sindh, Tahir Almani, who was fraught with the anxiety of contracting coronavirus, the debate on mental health has sparked once again on both sides of the border. Many celebrities in Pakistan have expressed solidarity in grieving the loss of the young actor and followed suit in opening up a conversation on the importance of mental health.
The conversation around depression and suicide has been started many times but to little effect. Progress has been slow and though it is slowly becoming more socially acceptable, mental health is still a taboo subject in Pakistan with much shame associated with it. However, now more than ever, we need to be resolute in the face of the pandemic and a collapsing economy. We cannot let paranoia and depression dampen our spirits amidst self isolation and social distancing. Be safe and talk to someone if you need to.