Shubhrata Prakash, an officer with the Indian Revenue Service spoke to psychiatrist Dr Jai Ranjan Ram on 28th March 2017 at Taj Bengal at an engaging session of An Author’s Afternoon. The event was presented by Shree Cement in association with Prabha Khaitan Foundation, Taj Bengal, Siyahi and t2.
Shubhrata shared her journey of living with depression and her book on the subject The D Word: A Survivor’s Guide to Depression. Writing was a therapy for her as she said that it helped when she was in one of her deepest phases of depression. This book was the result of her unpleasant experience about how others perceived mental illness. “I realised that the awareness about any kind of mental disorder is very low in our society. That is when I decided that probably if I write about it people will get to know what the disorder is all about.”
Shubhrata says that people are not hesitant to talk about their physical illnesses but they are not comfortable talking about mental illness as a lot of stigma is attached to it. She clarifies that manifestation of depression is not sadness. One may find it difficult to eat or sleep or feel lethargic too in this disorder.
Talking of negative thoughts seeping into mind during depression Shubhrata says that this can be tackled with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. She also spoke of other techniques to prevent depression.
An avid reader, Shubhrata also likes to paint. She has a book of poems called “Ink on Water.”