13 Signs You Should Look Out For If Your Friend Or A Family Member Is Suffering From Depression

By Momina Mindeel | 25 Feb, 2017

The fact that there is an intense taboo attached to mental health in Pakistan is vividly reflected in the number of people suffering from the same in the country, that is 50 million. A lot of us suppress our depression and anxiety mainly because no one understands. People tend to belittle the illness by associating it with the ’emo’ phase, kala jadu and similar terms. Here are, therefore, a few signs you should look out for if your friend or a family member is suffering from depression:

1. When an otherwise clean person stops taking care of their hygiene or stop taking frequent showers

Source: Giphy

2. When they stop taking interest in things that they are otherwise very passionate about

A general loss of interest in all things significant and pleasurable including sex is another indication.

Source: Giphy

3. When they complain about tiredness, exhaustion, headaches and decreased energy more than ever

Source: Giphy

4. When they constantly complain about ’empty’ feelings and how they do not find any meaning in life

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5. When they sleep in for days in, days out and continuously skip meals 


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6. Or vice versa. Some people start craving for fattening foods and their appetite increases considerably 

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7. When they constantly talk about how poor their every life choice has been and how absolutely and completely they hate themselves

Please don’t mock them for all the self-hate or say things like ‘kham kha main sad hona band karo

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8. When the outburst of emotions become frequent. They can go from being angry to crying uncontrollably in less than 5 minutes 


You will make things worse for them.

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9. When they start indulging in activities (smoking for example) that they don’t really appreciate otherwise 

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10. When they excessively apologize for burdening you with their personal issues

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11. Or when they do the opposite and complain relentlessly about how you’ve not been there for them

Please try and not take such comments personally.

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12. When they start getting upset because of your non-stop intruding questions about how they are doing or what happened

It is understandable that you are trying to be there for them but most of the time, they just cannot pinpoint one particular thing that’s causing them to act the way they are acting

Via: Tumblr

13. When they start terming themselves as the ’cause’ behind their depression 

‘It’s my own fault’

‘I probably deserve this’

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Ms. Mutta, the famous Canadian YouTuber, recently uploaded a remarkable 15 minute video on her channel detailing how mental illness is perceived in the Punjabi households. Although, the video stars Canadian-Indians, the video is equally applicable to the households in Pakistan. The short film is titled as ‘Haneri‘ which literally refers to storm.

Haneri is a story of a girl who suffers from extreme depression but her family belittles it by attributing it to her apparent tactics to stay away from school, kala jadu, buri nazar, nasha and what not. 

Source: Ms. Mutta/Youtube

The lead actress Kiran Rai says, “the route that we are trying to go with this film is to talk about depression and the stigma attached to it rather than why the person is actually dealing with depression.”

The way Haneri addresses the pressing issue of mental health in Punjabi households is not only remarkable but highly relatable as well. I urge all the readers to watch the vide  and understand that mental illness is a genuine illness and needs to be treated accordingly. Let’s vow to never turn our friends and family away if they are acting bizarre. Let’s promise to stand by them through this difficult phase in their lives and play our part.

You can watch the video here


Cover Image Via: Ms. Mutta/Youtube 

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