Observations

When I went to watch Dear Zindagi, I had Pari in tow despite full knowledge of the fact that she would find the movie boring. But, at the back of my mind I know how much she enjoys our outings together and watching a movie featuring Shah Rukh Khan which also has a song (Love you Zindagi) that she loves inspired me to take her along.

As expected, there was nothing much in the movie to keep her entertained and all the while she was busy with her giant tub of popcorn.

However, today I chose to discuss the movie with her. All this while she had stood her ground that she quite liked the movie and I was very curious to know what exactly she liked because it was no way obvious during the time we were in the theatre.

I started with sharing insights on what all was shown in the movie, gently touching upon how Kaira (Alia’s character) was troubled in her life and was facing sleepless nights (I deliberately avoided going into the details of depression) and how she sought help.

All this while Pari was listening to me with full attention. Once I was done, she said;

“Mamma, I have seen you cry, get angry, spend sleepless nights and worry just like Alia did in the movie. All through the movie I was thinking how much everything Alia was going through resembled what you used to do.”

Needless to say, Pari now had my full attention and I was working hard at keeping my jaw from falling to the floor.

when-my-child-saw-my-mental-health-issues-in-a-movie-portrayal-that-my-parents-refused-toi-was-left-wondering-about-the-extent-of-my-healing-how-far-i-had-come-in-my-fight-against-depression

I gently probed, “And what else you observed?”

To which Pari replied, “Maybe if Shah Rukh Khan could come and talk to you like he did to Alia you too will run, sing and dance like Alia did in the movie.”

Oh well! Of course Shah Rukh Khan (or perhaps the psychologist that he played)paying a visit would heal anything (okay, almost anything) but this conversation left me wondering with a heap of unsettling thoughts.

Kids observe things far more than what we give them credit for and understand things we feel are beyond their know how. While I was touched by my child’s observation skills, what I was left wondering was, have I healed (from depression) the way I think I have?

And I just can’t shrug off the hurt I felt when what my 5-year-old could see, my parents refused to note despite having watched the movie sitting inches away from me. Or perhaps, they too noted but chose to continue living in denial that their daughter too needs/needed therapy to get rid of her emotional baggage.

Like many wise people have suggested, I will leave the extent of my healing be judged by my child because it is her who watches and experiences the person I am up close and first-hand.

The song on my mind: Ae zindagi gala laga le ~ SadmaΒ 

27 thoughts on “Observations

  1. Kids observe everything, it’s just that they can’t express it. Good you made pari talk to you and she told you instead of wondering how to get answers to her questions. A big hug to the darling…she knows that mom is suffering and needs help to come out of it…You are raising a sensible child era.

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    1. Thank you for the love Saritha ❀
      The real point of worry is though my child is showing every sign of being wise and sensible I am now searching for similar wisdom in myself but not finding anything πŸ˜‰

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  2. Kids really do understand everything. They aren’t too young anymore, exposed to so much in the society, school, and home. I think what you did was good. I personally believe they need to be treated as adults gently and their opinions need to be heard.
    Also she may not be too wrong about seeing a Dr. Jahangir Khan. πŸ™‚

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  3. Adults make up their mind before the new idea shows up. They don’t like to accept that they were probably not right. But children see what we even don’t want them to see. Pari exactly saw something from her heart and shared her thoughts. She is right. While you are helping yourself, take all steps to heal soon and the right way possible. Hugs! Both for Pari and you. πŸ™‚

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    1. I couldn’t agree more on how not-so-open-minded we become as we age when the experiences we collect all life’s journey should work in a different way.
      You are right, such issues should never be left untreated and concrete steps be taken. I will take care Parul πŸ™‚
      {Hugs}

      Liked by 1 person

    1. You are spot on Ramya!
      With the kind of awareness kids have today, it is rather foolish to underestimate their level of understanding. I agree, I can actually make Pari my Jug and live happily ever after ❀

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  4. Sara

    “And I just can’t shrug off the hurt I felt when what my 5-year-old could see, my parents refused to note despite having watched the movie sitting inches away from me.”
    😦 It is indeed quite upsetting to hear this.
    I think they have definitely noticed and it must have hurt them a lot to have seen you suffering all these years. Maybe your parents don’t believe in therapy. I don’t know. Or they’re not much expressive with you. Just like pari didn’t express her opinions until you asked her to!

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    1. It is a painful truth that I have not been able to come to terms with especially because my parents well aware of my agony, are well-educated and my father personally knows all psychologists in our area being a specialist doctor himself. Long story short, they don’t believe in therapy or its healing powers and hence I never got to see a psychologist. I believe there is a difference in the perceptions of a parent and child owing to personal life experiences. Especially when a child is showing all signs of suffering and sickness and all you can do is turn a blind eye to it (despite full understanding), you register yourself in the bad books of the child for a lifetime. Maybe someday I’ll write a post on this too.

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      1. Sara

        Your parents have this social stigma regarding therapy for mental well being. I honestly do not understand why therapy is so frowned upon, just like divorce and single parenting. Now that you mention their professional background its even more disturbing. I so wish i hadn’t asked. Next time I’d voice my opinions if I were you.
        Hopefully there won’t/shouldn’t be a next time. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Well that is actually quite the case. But I have finally found a few real friends who have been very patient listeners and have helped me immensely in my journey of returning to my normal self.
          Thank you Sara for always asking the right questions that have helped me see things in a different light.
          {Hugs}

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  5. sometimes i feel my one year old boy understands my trauma… though in my case my mother (single parent) is supportive of my views too. u r raising a very sensible child Era. Kisses for her ❀

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    1. Supriya, our kids have levels of understanding way beyond their years. They might not have the experience to help them join the dots but they can peep within our souls through our gestures & eyes to know if we are truly happy, sad or hurt.
      Lots of love to your little angel ❀
      {Hugs}

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  6. silentoneinlondon

    WOW you have a very perceptive 5 year old. Its quite incredible that she noticed. Parents not accepting or willing is a generational thing of that era i think.. doesnt make it right but they prefer to sweep it under the carpet and hopefully thought-provoking movies like this will make them see a different view point and accept that depression is just like any other physical illness that requires treatment. Hugs and hope you find a good therapist, if that’s what you think will help.

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    1. I agree with you totally. It is more of a generational thing to not consider mental health issues grave enough to seek treatment or to belittle the merits of therapy. This is the attitude that I want to see changing in my family that’s why I have encouraging my child to see more of such movies and even talking to her about it in general.
      {Hugs dear}

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  7. Though I don’t know the extend of your emotional baggage (if you’ve blogged about it in clear terms, I’m not sure I’ve read it), I sure know two of the cause…and I understand quite a bit of what you’re going through. I will say only this: unless someone lives your life, they’ll never fully grasp the depth of what you go through. Be a rebel, be the one who nobody can accept — but decide to be the reason for your own happiness. Your regrets will fade off much sooner than you think they can. And, in time (which again will be a shorter time than you imagine), you’ll run, dance and sing with pure joy, right from the heart.
    Hugs! πŸ™‚ And, I think Pari is your SRK πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You said it right Priya πŸ™‚
      Healing once it begins happens pretty fast. It is just a matter of acceptance. Things are looking brighter and better from the phase of life I am in.
      Thank you dear for the love & for being around ❀

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  8. I hope you are feeling better now. I am new to this blog, and pardon me as I am yet to read the rest of your blog. Mental health need to be talked about more in the open and they need to be stressed too in school. The taboo stifles any measure that ought to be taken to diagnose and cure the disease at the earliest and unless and until we are reasy to shed the inhibition as a patient and as a care giver, the situation would remain bleak for many more years to come.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welcome to my blog Maliny πŸ™‚
      You said it right, the social stigma associated with mental illnesses forces the patients and more so the caregivers to brush all signs under the carpet. We are lucky to be born in the times when people are slowly but surely talking more openly about their mental health issues. I have been vocal about them since I noticed the first signs. I agree, talking to our children about these and also making it part of normal topics of curriculum is a must in the times we live in.
      Thank you sharing your valuable insights, hope to hear more from you.

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