We complain how our parents don’t understand what mental issues we’re going through, and maybe the generation gap will prevent them from ever understanding, but how many of us can honestly say we have patiently tried?
Often when trying to explain our inner struggles to our parents they disregard it, not being acknowledged by the people we seek validation from the most hurts. I believe we value our parents’ opinions about ourselves more than we’d ever care to admit, therefore we tend to get annoyed when they don’t take us seriously. We need to make them realise that just because we’re younger doesn’t mean our problems are not important.
It is not easy for many parents to learn that their child is going through mental disorders. Indian society especially does not conventionally accept mental issues as something common or something to talk about. For that reason most of our parents have been brought up being taught this, they might not have recognised any mental issues they may have gone through in their lives. They probably learned to live with their mental disorders, and naturally expect us to do the same. Often parents feel they have done their duty, provided us with shelter, food, education and other basic necessities and it should be enough for us. For that reason, while trying to speak to our parents about our mental health we feel as though we have disappointed them. This is not true. Simple. This is not in your control and is nothing to be ashamed about. Sometimes parents may want to conceal their children’s mental disorders fearing society will look down upon them. The problem here is more with the society as a whole and not parents alone.
For us, we don’t feel like we’re asking for a lot. Just a little support and understanding. The concept of mental health is something new for most parents. Therefore when speaking to your parents about what you’re going through make sure to have a completely open vulnerable conversation with them. The more honest you are the more they will see how real the consequences are. Time changes mindsets, and it is up to us to change our parents’. It is vital to be calm when discussing and accept that it will take time for them to open their mind, when they eventually do they will want you to get the help you need whether it’s in the form of therapy or medication. Trust that your parents want the best for you and they just need time to process and realise the gravity of your situation.