Don't shy away from seeking help

Don't shy away from seeking help

Don't shy away from seeking help

Dear Madam,

In the last few months, I've become terrified that I somehow pushed my friends away. Nobody is interested in spending time with me outside of school, and whenever I ask to do something they always have something else to do or just don't respond at all. It's been a long time since I've done anything on a weekend with friends. Am I being avoided? I don't know what I said or did to deserve this. I just can't figure it out anymore. I can't survive the last few months of high school being anxious. What do I do?

A Student

Dear Student,

Very often what we think others are saying about us is really a reflection of what we are telling ourselves about us. There is a strong link between what you think, how that makes you feel, and therefore how you behave. There is nothing we can do to control what others think, feel or do. But there is one thing we can control, and that is what we think about ourselves and how we process the world around us.

I think it will be very helpful for you to see a counsellor who can help you understand what is going on and help you believe in yourself. If you can access a counsellor face to face that is great. If not try calling the free Parivarthan Counselling Helpline on +91 76766 02602. All the best!

 

Dear Madam,

Of late, I feel demotivated to do anything - right from reading books for leisure to taking a walk outside and spending time with my friends. I am not sure as to why this is happening. How can I motivate myself and overcome this situation? Please guide.

Shivapriya

 

Dear Shivapriya,

Do you know what started this? And for how long have you been feeling this way. I would suggest you speak to a counsellor to help you understand what is happening. Also read up about the symptoms of depression and see if they match with what you are feeling. If they do, it is possible that you may be depressed and may need the help of a psychiatrist who will give you medication to feel better. And the medication, coupled with counselling, will equip you to get back on track to lead a more fulfilling path.

 

Dear Madam,

I have the tendency to repeat some acts and check it again several times, and I get anxious if I have done my work properly or committed any mistake. Of late, it is affecting my life and influencing my thoughts. In the past few months, I have noticed my 15-year-old daughter showing these symptoms and I am worried as to if she is influenced by my habit. Is it obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)? How do I overcome it? Please help.

A Parent

Dear Parent,

Please get help for yourself and your daughter. It is possible that it is OCD, but you do not need to panic about it. You can learn to manage it and so can your daughter. I urge you to consult a psychiatrist who will help you diagnose it and guide you on the best path forward. If the symptoms are severe, then a combination of medication and Cognitive-behavioural therapy will work best to equip you to live a fruitful life.

Please get the help that you need. Don't shy away from it. And if your daughter sees you take the path of acceptance and getting help, she will be open to taking help herself. All the best!

 

Dear Madam,

My son, who is studying in PUC, has attended various sports and fine arts classes since his childhood. He has taken all these classes out of his own interest. But he has not completed any of the activities. Recently, he joined karate but is irregular in attending the classes. Now, he wants to join some other activity and I don't know how to proceed. Can you please suggest a way out?

A Parent

Dear Parent,

I really cannot comment on why he does not follow through on some activity unless I talk to him, but having said that, what do you mean by not completed any activity? Does he not go for the classes, or does he not persist in them to a level where he is excelling. It is possible that he does not find them interesting (which he can only find out once he starts them), but it could also be that he feels pressured to achieve a certain level, and that pressure makes him stop enjoying or engaging with the activity.

It may be helpful for you to engage in a non-judgemental conversation around this. The objective of this conversation should be listening to learn and understand, not talking to admonish and reprimand.

It is okay to do things and not necessarily achieve excellence in everything one attempts. But if there are some fears and anxieties he is facing around his performance in these activities, it is helpful to be able to understand them and give him the space to share these. Again, at the risk of repeating myself, I will say the most important component of that conversation, for it to be meaningful, is for you to be able to be non-judgmental, and for most parents that is easier said than done. Good luck!

 

Dear Madam,

I am 16 years old, like watching movies and of late, have been watching one each day. My mother is concerned that it may affect my behaviour and studies. But I am so addicted to TV that I can't eat without watching it. Is it bad to watch movies? Please suggest how I can come out of it.

Suman

Dear Suman,

Nothing is bad if done in moderation. But to use your own words, if you say you are addicted to it, it means it is something you have lost control over, and that cannot be good. Why would you give up control of your life and time to something else? That obviously can't be good.

Just like you should not allow other people to control your life, you should also not allow other things and substances to control your life. Any kind of addiction, whether it is to substances like drugs and alcohol, or to gaming or gambling, or to social media and entertainment, is not helpful.  

Addiction only serves one purpose, and that is to provide some kind of escape. So the question to ask yourself is what are you escaping from, and why, and then get some help to address that. It can be helpful to talk to a counsellor who may help you understand your need to escape and work with you to come up with a strategy that does not make it necessary for you to want to escape. All the best!

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