Because of actors in Hollywood and Bollywood speaking out, Depression has finally become a topic that is being discussed as a real disease that affects millions of people over the world. Actor Shardul Pandit currently seen as the lead in Kuldeepak is the latest actor to come out and talk about it, and says that he has battled depression himself. He says,
“The sad thing is, the moment you say it openly, people look at you differently. My depression was post my stint in the show Bandini. And one thing to remember is that depression doesn’t happen in a day. For the longest time, I wasn’t even aware I was depressed. I was making loads of money in Dubai with a number one radio show yet no one knew what was happening inside. I used to feel sad for no reason. Slowly my friends deserted me. In fact, some of them went on the extent of blocking me on phone. Their reason was that I was depressed. They said I used to sound sad. It was excruciating for me.”
He says adding that it affected him even more and drove him in a shell. He reveals
“First, a person has to battle depression and on top of it, he has to deal with abandonment I was doing well on the surface, but inside, I was broken. I went through a very bad break up. In fact, it was the worst I ever had. I was away from India and was missing home. I was also missing acting. I felt like I was dragging myself every day to live. I felt choked wanted to cry but couldn’t as I was a celebrity. I felt I was strangled.”
As far as as people abusing substances is concerned, Shardul didn’t go down that road. He says:
“However, thankfully I have a strong family background and good upbringing. I absolutely hate drugs. I have seen someone close to me suffer and that stopped me every time. What prompted me was my sister crying. Normally, she doesn’t cry and she is the strongest human being I know. But she said one line to me, ‘Bhai, I can’t see you like this. your pain troubles me” that was the turning point in my life. I was at the breakage point but those words from her somehow gave me a magical strength. I don’t know about others but the only cure is willingness. So many people can get healed but they don’t have the willingness and support system. I had it and that’s why I decided to come back and take the right approach. It’s my sister’s love and support that I am even living and did not crumble and give in to it.”
Way to go Shardul. We hope your example motivates others to battle the dreaded condition and that they find their own support system to beat the harmful blues.