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Mental health is very much a thing as physical health. And trust me, it is sometimes just as palpable too. However, quite unfortunately, in our culture, nobody even tries to take it seriously and every time the topic comes up, it is shoved off as something that is self-created and propagated. The age most people attend colleges and universities in our country are mostly in their mid-teens and early twenties aka Young Adults. This is the age-group that struggles with literally everything; from their appearances to acceptability to relationships to career and future.
At such a tender age, all they sometimes need is a boost to their morale, their self-confidence. In such conditions, there arises a dire need for these institutions to provide the students with a haven to go to and confide in. Ironically, mental health is such a stigma that is so repressed yet so overrated in a country like Pakistan.
Affording therapists’ skyscraping fees and going particularly at a dedicated time and place to one and juggling with family and friends’ rising suspicion on the sudden MIA’s seems too much of a discomfort to them in comparison to something as significant as their own mental wellbeing. Such is the condition in our society!
Being a 24 year old myself and having gone through sheer ups and downs in my personal and professional life, there have been multiple occasions where I wanted help a step away, where I did not have to maneuver with its accessibility! There have been phases in my university life where one day I felt like I could conquer the world and other days where even the struggle of getting through a day seemed almost impossible for many reasons this age offers.
There were many incidences when I used to come across certain classmates looking extremely happy and carefree in the university with people around them and those same people used to put depressing, suicidal statuses and posts in the night when alone. It was evident how hard their struggle of keeping up with people’s expectations of them were. This tiring routine often pushed most of them to take abode in drugs, multiple self-sabotaging relationships, harmful friendships and what not!
Have you ever imagined how convenient and helpful it would have been if there had been a platform for all these people to go and seek help from? How easy would it have been to be on campus and just know it’s okay that I had a bad day, I will just go talk to my counselor and start afresh? How self-restoring would it all have been? Think! It’s high time that the authorities try and shift their focus from just renovating and extending university infrastructures and pay some heed to this issue.