How women can boost themselves in terms of mental health issues?

How women can boost themselves in terms of Mental health issues? 

The book by John Gray, “Men are from mars and women are from Venus” is an entire bible classifying the traits of both Genders in a lucid manner. This New York bestseller book takes us on a tour covering all the aspects one needs to know about the opposite gender. Most of the serious topics are covered in a glee manner in this book, which helps both the genders understand, implement and become gender tolerant.


Men and women differ not only in physical aspects but also in psychological, emotional and physiological aspects. Men usually tend to go inside their caves when they face an issue and usually refrain from opening up. Whereas women tend to indulge in others’ problems or pain to overcome their own problems. Men and women often tend to visit a specialist whenever a physical problem occurs for e.g., headache, tooth decay, eye sight issues, etc. but usually skip visiting a specialist for mental health issues.

 Mental health issues have been observed in every one out of four adults, but speaking about it and finding a solution for it remains a taboo. Common mental disorders (CMD) include depression, anxiety and bipolar disorders.

1.      DEPRESSION -  It is not a one-day thing; it involves a series of events due to piling on. This results in a Domino effect, which begins with loss of appetite, feeling sad, missed out, unsuccessful, worthless and unheard. It is very common in almost all generations. The school going kid feels left out if not selected in the football team. The college going teenager feels worthless when not selected in the interview for placements. The working person feels stuck when their efforts go in vain. The married person feels hopeless when they are unable to meet the requirements of family, partner, children, office, etc. The last stage of life often leaves everyone aloof due to limited physical strength and more dependency. Every stage has its own set of problems and methods to overcome, but if the individual is unable to overcome the situation and fight back efficiently, it results in a serious mental health problem which requires a veteran to pull you out of it.

2.      ANXIETY – A situation in which a person undergoes fear, stress, restlessness due to certain reasons. One might face anxiety due to work pressure, exams, phobias, physical condition like thyroid, etc. The condition is a result of constant worry in different age groups. The students face anxiety due to the increased competition and syllabus. The college students face anxiety due to unemployment. The working category faces anxiety due to increased responsibilities with only a handful of money. The married category faces this CMD due to financial crunch, inflation, lack of basic facilities, etc.

3.      BIPOLAR DISORDER – A Common mental disorder involves regular highs and lows in a person. The one suffering from this kind of disorder usually has an adrenaline rush and a noradrenaline rush at certain times. A student feels high when they are selected in the school team and at the same time feels low when replaced by someone else. A college student can have an adrenaline rush when they do well in exams but can face a nor adrenaline rush when the results are not up to the mark. This CMD is a mixed episode of feelings.

All these common medical disorders need to be heard and solved by professionals. Piling on cannot be helpful to any gender. When comparing mental health issues, women tend to be more sensitive and vulnerable in facing these issues.


Women Health Statistics Throughout the world

The PROJECT HOPE has been working tirelessly since the past 60 years in the area of health services during natural disasters, non-communicable disease, communicable disease and beyond. Its work is spread around the globe and covers even the underdeveloped countries of Africa. One of the works the team has addressed is the silent killer, i.e., Mental health.

According to the reports published by Project HOPE, women carry mental health burden even when they shouldn’t. Every 2 out of 3 don’t receive proper mental health care. After depression, Suicide has become the second leading cause of death in age group of 15-29. The report highlights women facing mental health the hardest in under developed, war torn, disaster hit countries than developed countries. The reason behind this is due to lack of health facilities in their vicinity, gender based violence, low socioeconomic status, household biasness, societal biases, etc.

It is reported that one in five women face rape or attempted rape in their lifetime. Most of the time rape, molestation, violence is observed to be done by a family member only. This shakes the belief of a woman and reduces her desire to live further. This results in increase in suicide attempts.


Inshiya, mother to 3 children, was forced to leave her home during the Rohingya crisis. A victim of household violation, an alcoholic husband and a crippled father in law; Inshiya had faced a lot since the day she married Khaled when she was only 18 years old. The forceful evacuation of one’ own home with 3 children was another challenge for Inshiya and many women like her in the neighborhood. 

Women faced brutality by the armed forces, lost their family members, did not have a home to live in, faced hygiene issues and became more vulnerable to communicable disease. 

Looking at this, Inshiya decided not just to sit and tolerate injustice and insecurity, she and other fellow women got together and collaborated with an NGO, near the border, who provided food, medicine and proper counseling to the victimized women.

Here we observed that an initiation and proper platform did wonders. Effort from a person can transform the lives of many. 

India and the World View Stand

Experts say that mental illness in India is a ticking time bomb. According to a report from the World Health Organization, 22% of Indian women face Postpartum depression (PPD) due to which they keep having suicidal thoughts, unable to connect to their own kid or sometimes become over protective for their kid. According to the statement given by a renowned psychologist, out of 10 depressed patients, 2 suffer from Postpartum depression. A woman undergoes gazillion changes while giving birth to a child; from her sleep habits to eating habits, her blood pressure, everything changes with the child’ birth. In Indian society, child birth that too with son meta preference is given more emphasis than the mother’ health.

Currently India has only 9000 psychiatrists, i.e., 0.75 psychiatrists per 1,00,000 populations. Our policy formation also needs to be revisited, there are only a handful of schemes covering mental health and its impact on women. The landmark Right to persons with disabilities, 2016 act covers various disabilities and lessens the taboo of mental illness to an extent. The Pradhan mantri Matru vandana yojana and POSHAN scheme are few women empowerment schemes of the Indian government but they still do not cover the Mental trauma and illness and the way forward for the women.

India has been in the list of highest human trafficking, which include mostly children and women. In form of bonded labour, prostitutes, etc. the condition of women has not improved since a long time. In one end of the country in Assam, where we observe the Kamakhya temple’ Ambubachi festival; which marks the menstrual cycle of goddesses, we are addressing the taboo and not putting an end to the sentence. Whereas on the other end of the country, the Sabarimala temple was shut for women until the supreme court verdict. Places in Tamil nadu and Andhra Pradesh still follow the Devadasi system, where a girl who has reached puberty, is offered to the priests of temple or in the name of local deity. This has just resulted into more rapes and deteriorating condition of women.


Arya, a passionate woman in her mid-twenties, shifted to a new city from her hometown in search of better career opportunities. At first she was praised and appreciated for her work and creativity, which kept her on cloud 9. Over a span of a few months; over time, pile of work and criticism just swept in from nowhere. The passionate and enthusiastic Arya now had to take support of drugs and alcohol in the unknown city. In the initial days she kept a limit in the intake of all these toxins, but with time she lost control and did not keep a cap on it. This resulted in her getting molested in public transport, attempt of rape, etc., as she did not have her senses in control.

A well-wisher from her office took her to rehab where she spent nearly 15 months becoming sober. Due to the memories she had from the old place, she decided to start a venture on her own to reach out to the women who have been deprived of their rights, voices and standing. Arya with a team of 3 strong female contestants launched a startup or a Fem-tech based on women's health and hygiene.

Today the team has grown into a proper office in 4 metro cities, continuing to emphasize on women's health and creating a difference to many women's lives.

No matter how many legislations are formed, women representatives are elected and top positions in the workplace are given to women; we’ll be successful only when we can talk about thyself – mental, physical, emotional wellbeing openly. When the barriers are broken, gender neutralization occurs and human empathy restores, only then there will be no existence of taboos.  

Reference - Indian express, Hindustan times, Project HOPE, WHO site, Citizen matters.





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