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Arpita Anand
Monday , May 28, 2012

Dealing with a crisis: coping with extreme thoughts


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A young woman in her early twenties, sat across me in my office a while ago telling me she had no will to go on. She saw no hope for the future and the thought of going through life was very painful. Her solution to end this pain was to end her life. She sat in a chillingly composed manner but as I gently probed she broke down and shared that her boyfriend of two years had decided to end the relationship leaving her devastated. But fortunately, she had a moment of clarity in the midst of all the devastation that led her to my office in the hope that she can get help. She put her 'plan to end her life on hold' and came to see me. We worked together to help her through this crisis. But the reality is usually more disturbing. Many young people do....


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Relationships: the big teenage stressors


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We, as adults, often reminisce about our adolescence with fondness. Those great years with no worry about life and career, the first crush, the first party, endless summer afternoons with friends and so on. The mind has this incredible ability to fade difficult memories like the constant struggle for independence, the academic pressures or that heart-wrenching break up. Yes, the pain, the rejection, the confusion, all forgotten because that was just 'teenage stuff'. Any serious talk about relationships with the opposite sex and everything that goes along with it is often considered to the domain of adults. If teenagers struggle with infatuations and break-ups, oh well, they will get over it. And of course most do, but there are a few who are not able to cope with these pressures. The distress may become serious enough to trigger depression. Among the most significant stressful events during....


Monday , January 16, 2012

Next time in Goa, party responsibly


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'There's something about the air in Goa.' I am sure you have heard that before. I have heard it, said it and felt it many times over. Now I say it every single morning. The best thing about living in Goa is that you never have to experience the sinking feeling when you board that outbound flight. This is home. Having been here for almost a year now, I have seen the character of Goa change as the seasons do. I arrived here a little before the onset of the monsoon last year and experienced the calm and beauty for several months before noticing a distinct change in the pulse of Goa. Sure, there have been visitors right through (and I had been warned about that by an old friend who once lived here) but it's almost like the character of the visitors changes too as the year....


Friday , October 14, 2011

Mental health challenges in India


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Working in India in the field of Psychology for over a decade now has been a challenging and fascinating experience. We have come a very long way in terms of understanding mental health needs and issues. Starting from a point where there was complete ignorance or may I say denial to a point where there is an acknowledgement of the needs and finally a constructive attitude towards the profession, a long journey has been covered. Having said that, there are still several hurdles every step of the way. As a psychologist, I have often asked myself the question, "What is the desired changed in people's attitude towards mental health that one is seeking" and repeatedly the answer I get is "awareness". While there is no doubt that the past decade has seen an incredible change and levels of awareness have increased substantially, I have often felt that these....


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