As per WHO, One in four children in the age group of 13-15 years in India suffers from depression.
But we, Indian parents, shut our eyes to ignore the mental illness in our kids. Though Indian parents are one of the most dedicated parents, we struggle to understand why they choose to stay quiet as their kid suffers in depression all alone.
And, one such child who lost her life to depression is Krittika Paul.
On Friday, Krittika, a Class 10 topper of GD Birla School, was found in the school’s washroom with her wrist cut and her head wrapped in plastic.
She was rushed to the hospital after the police arrived with a forensic team. Unfortunately, it was too late, and she was declared dead by the doctors.
But, what has shocked the police and the parents is the three-page suicide note that was recovered near her.
The suicide letter shows that she was in tremendous depression and how her mind was battling with the illness.
In this suicide note, she wrote-
“Give me a nice funeral. A NAICE one.
My mind is messy. What I write it’s not chronological. I hold myself and only myself responsible. I do not want police to bombard random people with random questions.
And, I was long battling with this thought.
Some saw it some didn’t.
Some people had the arrogance to think that I cannot kill myself.
They thought their arrogance would suppress her.”
However, it is not clear yet who she has been referring to here by ‘they’, as repeated various times in the three-page suicide note.
As per sources, it was reflected in multiple places in that she was tremendously unhappy with her parents. The letter reads,
“Mom and dad better keep your nose out of stuff. You don’t get it. I know you have done a lot for me. Okay, yeah, a lot. But you know, not everyone pays back.”
The letter brings out a serious issue of stress that Krittika was burdened with. It is heartbreaking to see the amount of pressure she was going through without anyone even noticing.
She also revealed how she hasn’t slept for the past 3 months. In this letter, she confesses that she had a death wish, and at various times while traveling by Metro she had crossed the safety line.
“I didn’t sleep for many days. I will sleep now. And, I had a death wish since Class I as far as I can remember.”
Near the end of her letter, she stated,
“If me committing suicide is too far fetched for you to grasp, just convince yourself that I was murdered, for who said I wasn’t?”
Sources say that she was highly ambitious and her parents supported this too. Reports say she had wanted to get into the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) after Class 12, for her higher studies.
In every verse of her suicide note, the suffocating air of depression and her simultaneous anger towards her parents is reflected.
Moreover, it is being assumed that she had planned for her suicide, as certain portions of her note seem to have been written beforehand.
Pointing towards the fact that her issues were not ever taken seriously, she had said,
“It’s sad. I needed help and they only said I was doing everything for attention and I did not have the guts to kill myself and here you go.”
Though police authorities are investigating the case, we can’t deny the dire need to make Indian parents understand that depression is for real.
Common Signs and Symptoms of depression include:
loss of appetite
feelings tired and,
agitation or physical restlessness
suicidal thoughts or acts
If we shed our inhibitions and start an open dialogue about depression, we will not only seek the better understanding of signs and symptoms of the condition but also would be in a stronger position to help ourselves and our kids if they experience depression-like symptoms.
So, please next time when you kid complains about any of these symptoms, please don’t tell her/ him –
“Subha jaldi utha karo, healthy khana khao, exercise karo. Kaam na karna pade toh isliye yeh naya bhana hai (You should wake up early in the morning, eat healthy food and exercise. You just don’t like to work so this is your new excuse)!”
At I For Her, we urge all parents to understand the challenges their kids are facing, and not ignore their mental health.