Twitter Trolls Deepika Padukone For Her Mental Health Posts, Says Dealing With Depression Doesn’t Make Her An Expert On The Issue
Sushant Singh Rajput’s sudden passing left the nation in a complete shock. While no one still knows what happened to the actor, everyone started making their own assumptions when the news first surfaced back in June (now that the CBI has taken over the case, hopefully, the fans will finally get a closure). However, this heart-breaking incident sparked debates around nepotism, campism and favouritism in Bollywood and a tad bit about mental health too. While a lot of celebrities have spoken on the former topics, Deepika Padukone went vocal about depression and how deeply it affects someone, pointing to the actor’s demise.
Her first post about mental health came on the same day as Sushant’s death. She wrote, “As a person who has had a lived experience with mental illness, I cannot stress enough about the importance of reaching out. Talk. Communicate. Express. Seek help. Remember, you are not alone. We are in this together. And most importantly, there is hope.” For the next three days, she continued to write about how depression is an illness, a mental illness that is like any other illness. “Repeat after me. Depression is an ‘illness’,” she wrote on June 15. “Repeat after me. Depression is a form of ‘mental illness’,” she wrote on June 16. “Repeat after me. Depression is an illness ‘like any other illness’,” she wrote again on June 17.
While this may seem like enough measures being taken to address the fragility of mental health issues, turns out, Deepika’s mental health posts didn’t go well with the twitter clan. #Repeatafterme was trending yesterday on Twitter as netizens were targeting the actress for her posts regarding mental health, especially depression. She is being trolled for posing herself as an expert on mental health and using the illness for sympathy and personal gain.
Deepika has battled with depression in 2015 and has been vocal about it ever since. She set up Live Love Laugh Foundation which is aimed to spread awareness about mental health and help people struggling with the issue. She even launched ‘Dobara Poocho’ (Ask Again) campaign to urge people to check on their friends and family member and ask them if they are okay multiple times so they open up about any kind of mental issue they could be going through.
IMO, she was at least doing her bit and a fab job opening up conversation around a topic that doesn’t get the spotlight it deserves in India. However, later she posted a photo on twitter that read, “Repeat after me, depression is treatable. Repeat after me, depression is curable. Repeat after me, depression is preventable.” I am guessing this is where it all went downhill and twitter users lost it. Clinical depression is treatable yes, but not curable and in no way preventable. It is an illness that’s completely out of someone’s hands and can only be controlled with medication until you have the next episode.
— Deepika Padukone (@deepikapadukone) June 21, 2020
Here, Deepika’s intentions were good but she made a misstep labelling depression as preventable and curable. This made Twitterati troll the actress saying dealing with depression doesn’t make her an expert on mental health. Also another concern twitter users had was that she presumed Sushant’s death was a result of mental health problem.
A user wrote, “Self-proclaimed mental health expert #Deepika tried very hard to push depression theory right after Sushant’s death even without waiting for investigation to conclude and she is hiding now Bollywood is full of fake people. #RepeatAfterMe #depression (sic).” Another tweeted, “Deepika is a depression expert as she suffered a depression bout a decade ago. Similarly I’m a wildlife expert as I suffered a wild monkey bite in class IV. Repeat after me, monkey bite is real. Tell me what expert you became after what you suffered. Use hashtag #RepeatAfterMe.”
Some twitter users also defended the actress saying that the message she wants to put out is still about mental health and how it should be seen as any other illness. A user commented, “I get that DP is in a way using her depression towards certain agendas and I don’t agree with her. But are you seriously saying the words she said are wrong? How? If she said it at any other time, would you still mock it? The overall message still stands right?” Another user wrote, “The entire #RepeatAfterMe trend is setting back the conversation on mental health several decades. People are putting up photos of Ranveer Singh in strange clothing and saying that Deepika thinks Sushant is mental, but not her own husband, and that’s why she must be vilified (sic).”
Deepika is a depression expert as she suffered a depression bout a decade ago.
Similarly I'm a wildlife expert as I suffered a wild monkey bite in class IV. Repeat after me, monkey bite is real.
Tell me what expert you became after what you suffered. Use hashtag #RepeatAfterMe.
— THE SKIN DOCTOR (@theskindoctor13) August 19, 2020
Honestly, I don’t see any personal agenda in Deepika’s motives. Having suffered from the illness herself, she is just trying to open up conversation and give mental health problems and people suffering from it the attention they deserve. Plus, how is making memes on her posts and trolling her helping the issue? It is not, right? It just takes the focus from the message she’s trying to send, just like it happens every time. Besides how is slamming someone who has previously suffered through mental health issues not insensitive and hypocritical in itself? Food for thought.