Mental Health : Education

Kiran Fatima Zaidi
Posted February 4, 2021

 

In general, we all agree how important education is in empowering a woman. However in my opinion it is crucial for someone who suffers from a mental illness. 

 

Lets look at it from the beginning. A girl sent to school and college would somehow gain awareness about mental health. If she suffers from an issue, she might be able to recognize it. Although it takes time to accept a fact like that, it is likely that she would connect with a psychiatrist or psychologist earlier than someone who isn't aware of anything and helplessly depends on others, by default. Perhaps because the a college student would have a future of economic freedom and would not be afraid of bearing medical expenses or being answerable to anyone.

 

In many cultures and societies even today, speaking about mental health, specially for women, is a taboo. Girls and women even slightly associated with having psychological problems and being on medications are treated indifferently when it gets to marriage. This is because societies even in this day and age consider mental patients equal to lunatics and disagree over the possibilities of treatment. 

 

Marriage plays a crucial role for women in many societies, acting as their primary source of sustainable life. So even if someone is diagnosed with a problem, the matter is kept secret. They are married off quietly and left to live a life of misery. Because what else could one do? How can she depend on herself alone for basics of life when she isn't educated enough to earn a living? 

 

 

Dr Anwar Raffay’s study reports that in Pakistan women lose more disability adjusted life years than men. Plus, according to www.hrw.org, larger percentage of girls than boys are out of school In Pakistan. 

The two studies exactly correlate with each other.

 

To me it is a matter of no surprise. 

 

Other than being educated enough to support herself, a woman hasn't any way out to escape the labyrinth of depression, anxiety and so many other problems. And while she suffers from it all, when  unable to carry the burden , she grows violent. She turns into an angry person who fights anyone and everyone around her, disturbing lives of not just herself but of many others; in some cases very severely. This isn't considered the trait of good women in society! Women aren't allowed to fight, only men are. And they do so. Women who “misbehave” are dealt with harsh punishments. 

 

From where I see it, education can save a woman from at least those scenarios mentioned above-if not all the problems in the world. It can at most let her have a choice in the matter. She can then have a back up plan for her life and not have to depend on marriage to provide for her needs. She can escape the taboo of being answerable to others and be free to live her life fully, each day at its most! 

This story was submitted in response to Equal Education.

Comments 8

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rebecca.tang
Feb 04
Feb 04

Thank you for sharing. Both mental and physical health is crucial to everyone. Physical sickness is more easier to detect usually. Women may face a lot of stress on family, career, etc.
At the same time, regardless male or female, everyone should have the equal chance to have the education. Knowledge can change and improve our life.
Tomorrow is always better than yesterday! May Almighty God bless you!

Kiran Fatima Zaidi
Feb 05
Feb 05

Thank You for these amazing words!
I agree with you on everything above
God Bless You too!

jomarieb.earth
Feb 05
Feb 05

Dear Kiran,
Education absolutely creates independence. It also enables women to receive help regarding mental health issues. Or any other issues. There are women in this world that know nothing else other than privilege, education, making their own decisions, being in charge of their own lives, and being independent for the rest of their lives. These same women are discriminated against by the medical system. If she is physically ill, often the diagnosis is brushed off as "it's all in her head". When she seeks and receives help regarding mental health, there is a huge, never ending stigma attached. So it gets buried in a bevy of secrets and files. She may marry and die with her secrets.
Other countries where women are not independent, they are at the mercy of whatever the society and struggle will select to do with them. Both types of women live everywhere. Mental health is a challenge everywhere on every level. Every economic, social, educational, ethnic, and class struggles with mental health systems. The stigma and apathy must be removed.
We have a World Pulse champion advocate regarding mental health named
Marie Abanga...https://www.worldpulse.com/community/users/marie-abanga-0.
You should refer to her posts, comment, and/or leave her a private message. Bravo to you for courageously bringing this to the table.
Hugs sister...JoMarie

Kiran Fatima Zaidi
Feb 05
Feb 05

Thank You for the reference and these wonderful words! I will definitely visit her profile and read her work soon

Nini Mappo
Feb 05
Feb 05

Dear Kiran,
Thank you for sharing news bout the situation in Pakistan. I love learning about other countries. I think mental health is misunderstood everywhere, more so among low literacy communities. Education does a lot to improve any one's life, especially a woman's life in patriarchal cultures where women and girls are already disadvantaged.
Indeed, marriage should be for companionship and equal partnership, not as a means to provide for a woman and subjugate her because she is 'being taken care of.'
We continue to hope for a better world and be the change we can be in our communities.

Kiran Fatima Zaidi
Feb 06
Feb 06

You're right, thank you for looking at it the way you did. It's surely not the story of one place or society but every which where these specific factors exist.

Beth Lacey
Feb 08
Feb 08

Mental health needs to be addressed for all of us. Particularly in this pandemic, the stress and uncertainty we are all under impacts our mental health

Kiran Fatima Zaidi
Feb 08
Feb 08

Exactly, specially when so many are out of jobs, with no medical insurance and having to go beyond regular efforts to put food on the table!