Mental health stigma remains a significant issue in Pakistan. Many people in Pakistan, as in other countries, often associate mental health conditions with shame or weakness. This stigma can deter individuals from seeking help and support, leading to untreated mental health issues. Efforts have been made to raise awareness and reduce stigma through education and advocacy, but it’s still a prevalent issue that needs ongoing attention and change in societal attitudes.
Moreover, the lack of empathy by doctors also add to the dilemma. An individual who often tries to seek support is either met with unsupportive families or ends up in the hands of doctors who know nothing better. If cultural norms, stigmatization, and lack of awareness weren’t enough, add poor counseling and lack of sensitivity shown by the doctors are something that majorly refrains people from going to counseling.
A Pakistani’s Experience
A psychologist who is meant to be a safe space often ends up traumatizing the patient even more. Such an incident was shared by a Twitter user on her social media where a lack of support by her doctor led her to stop seeking therapy.
Here’s what she had to say about her experience.
Tbt when I visited a psychologist in mayo hospital and after telling her whole of my history nd explaining her how i feel at times, she rudely asked me"tw ab ap chahti kia hn".I was so traumatised d/t her response that for a good time i never visited any psychiatrist/psychologist
— Midhat Fatima (@Midhat_Maken) September 25, 2023
The response to her tweet was met with significant support and many users shared their own experiences.
HAPPENED. AND NEVER VISITED MY OWN HOSPITAL PSYCH EVER AGAIN
— Assad Bajwa (@oyebajwey) September 25, 2023
Apni mental health evaluation honi chiye inki before they get to deal with patients😞
— Minhal Chaudhry (@ChaudhryMinhal) September 25, 2023
Mine was even worst it was a session over call and that psychiatrist said“spend a day with me hug me ,you will feel better” (ayda tusi imran hashmi ty muna Bhai MBBS)
Wo din or aaj ka din I never took a session from any psychiatrist/psychologist specially the male one.
— Ayesha javed (@iamayeshajavid) September 25, 2023
However, some users also reflected the mental capacity of such doctors by spewing hate on social media. Disregarding the struggle and the need to seek support, some of these tweets downright show what’s wrong with our society.
Ap logon k problems he kiya hein? Prof, break up? Yeh koi depression waghaira nahi hy.👍🏼
— Mishkat. 🌻 (@dosto_whiskey) September 25, 2023
I think it was a simple question? She asked but you could be perceived as a rude question
— Bilal Sohail (@bilalsohailuniq) September 25, 2023
— Momin khan (@NawabRathore1) September 26, 2023
What are your thoughts on getting psychological help from Pakistani therapists? Have you had an experience? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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