On World Health Day Today, Shweta Kawaatra, Mona Singh And Shruti Seth Discuss Their Battles With Mental Health

In the labyrinth of life, we often find ourselves grappling with unseen battles, silently wading through the murky waters of our minds. In a world that often stigmatizes mental health struggles, the journey to healing can feel lonely and overwhelming. However, amidst the shadows, there are beacons of hope, individuals who illuminate the path with their courage, resilience, and unwavering determination to conquer the darkness within.

Shweta Kawaatra, an esteemed actor, shares her poignant journey through the depths of postpartum depression, shedding light on the tumultuous emotions that engulfed her after the birth of her child. “My struggles with mental health largely began after I gave birth,” she confides. “There was little to no information I had around life, hormones, and even challenges post-delivery, and the realities struck me hard.” With candor and vulnerability, Shweta narrates her battle with anxiety, tears, and despair, culminating in a revelation that marked the dawn of her healing journey. “Eventually, I realized that this was depression, and I began to work towards it,” she shares. Through the embrace of Buddhism, coupled with alternative treatments like Ayurveda and acupuncture, Shweta triumphed over her demons, emerging as a beacon of hope for countless others traversing similar paths.

Most importantly, “I was vocal about my challenges with postpartum depression, which allowed me to connect with a host of other women with similar, shared experiences. This also led me to start my community, ‘My Mental Wellness Journey’, on coto, wherein I could connect with these women, share my experiences and learn from theirs. With this, I also realised how important it is to get support from friends, family and such communities where you can be vulnerable and speak about your challenges and anxieties,” adds Shweta.

In parallel, Shruti Seth, an acclaimed actress and certified mental wellness coach, offers her insights into the intricate tapestry of mental health. “I haven’t really faced any medical issues pertaining to mental health, but I feel that all of us deal with some level of anxiety and stress, and so do I,” she reflects. Through introspection and therapy, Shruti embarked on a transformative journey of self-discovery, unraveling the threads of her psyche to forge a path of healing and empowerment. “The best gift I gave myself is therapy,” she asserts. “Just the fact that I was able to sit with a trained professional and unravel my thoughts, behavior, and reactions, and learn how to deal with them better, has helped me understand myself.”

Shruti adds, “Also, through my own education in mental health, I’ve learnt that we have all the answers, but a therapist helps us reach them. Having said that, I don’t believe therapy is a one-size-fits-all solution, and can bring different experiences for different people. Becoming a mental wellness coach has also helped me change a lot of problematic patterns within myself that were holding me back.”

“I think everyone must get therapy,” believes Shruti. Sadly, even today, a lot of Indian families still associate therapy with chronic mental illnesses, which is a huge misconception. “This is where I feel online spaces such as coto help, wherein women not only find a community of other women to talk to about their issues, but also find live consultations by verified therapists and medical professionals to seek therapy in times of dire need – no matter the time or day. The fact that women can book sessions on the app and get consultations here itself, while maintaining a certain degree of anonymity, is not only convenient, but makes therapy accessible to a lot of women,” shares Shruti.

Women go through so many issues they aren’t even allowed to address, including postpartum depression and hormonal imbalances, which tampers with the ability to function normally. In these situations, seeking therapy can help them find people to hear them out and guide them towards working on themselves better.

Echoing the same sentiments, Mona Singh, an eminent actress, underscores the profound impact of community support in navigating the labyrinth of mental health struggles. “Thankfully, I’ve been blessed with a supportive community and network of friends and family who I can talk to whenever something bothers me,” she shares. Mona advocates for the destigmatization of mental health issues and the importance of seeking timely support from trusted professionals. “One of the best ways to overcome these struggles is by talking to a verified and trusted mental health professional,” she emphasizes.

Ruchi Kochar, a counselor and therapist, amplifies the imperative of collective action in fostering a culture of empathy and support. “With the number of suicides increasing day by day, I believe that the society at large has to come together to help people battling mental health issues,” she asserts. Through proactive outreach, subtle gestures of kindness, and the creation of safe spaces, Ruchi advocates for a holistic approach to mental wellness, where individuals feel empowered to seek support without fear of judgment or stigma.

In essence, the narratives of Shweta, Shruti, Mona, converge to form a tapestry of resilience, empathy, and empowerment. Their journeys exemplify the transformative power of vulnerability, community, and self-discovery in navigating the labyrinth of mental health struggles. As we traverse the intricate pathways of our minds, may we draw inspiration from their stories, forging a collective tapestry of healing, compassion, and hope.

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