Actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui has said that he suffered from depression when he didn’t have work or money, and said that he “felt as if I am going to die.” Conversations around mental health have been reinvigorated after the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, who was reportedly suffering from depression.
In an interview to Hindustan Times, Nawazuddin said, “I have always had mazdoor-like hardworking, fighting spirit. I don’t think that I am bigger than them. I had the same intentions as theirs. I didn’t dream of becoming a star. My only intention was to survive and earn for the next meal. It continued for 10 years. I did odd jobs and walked to my friend’s house for food. There were difficult times but we were happy even then. But yes, I did feel depressed at times because of lack of work. Depression and frustration start when you dream big.”
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He said that people are more likely to feel depressed if they take on big challenges. “It won’t happen if you don’t put yourself under the pressure,” the actor said in Hindi. “Success doesn’t guarantee happiness,” he said. “If happiness isn’t in your nature, you will be unhappy even if you have the world.”
He continued, “Because I wasn’t eating well, so I was getting weak and my hair started falling off. I used to get tired after walking 2 kilometres. I felt as if I am going to die soon. Because of which I used to stay out all day to see the world because I didn’t know how many days will I survive.”
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In response to Sushant’s death, actor Deepika Padukone, who has a history with the illness and is an advocate for mental health awareness, wrote on social media, “As a person who has had a lived experience with mental illness, I cannot stress enough about the importance of reaching out.” She urged her legion of followers to “talk, communicate, express and seek help” in such a situation. “Remember, you are not alone. We are in this together. And most importantly there is hope,” her post read.
If you need support or know someone who does, please reach out to your nearest mental health specialist Helplines: Aasra: 022 2754 6669; Sneha India Foundation: +914424640050 and Sanjivini: 011-24311918
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