Growing up I deliberately subdued my mental, physical and emotional exhaustion at the expense of being a burden to my family and to my community.

Mental health is often not discussed at all in south asian communities and when it is, with overbearing stigma. I was conditioned to believe my problems were not real and I often wondered how I could possibly be selfish enough to worry about my mental state knowing people all over the world suffered tremendously in our post imperialist, capitalist era. when I got to college the buildup of suppressing parts of my subconscious that I didn’t even know existed began to manifest in physical, very real, forms. between seeing my grades suffer and not eating at all to self harming and frequently thinking about ending my life, I realized helping myself would be the only meaningful way to help others.

it’s a hefty journey, but understanding how the sociopolitical climate, intersection of oppression, body dysmorphia, amongst other influences, contribute to my depression, anxiety and bipolar 2 disorder has helped me seek healthy coping mechanisms.

I think coming to terms with my own mental health and being part of a community like MannMukti will undoubtedly do good. alhamdulillah for my support system of friends and family.

My name is Rimsha Syed, I’m 21 and alive, and this is part of my story.

In alignment with our mission to encourage others to #SpeakUp about mental health, we’ve created this blog – a passion project highlighting those who wish to share their stories with the world.

Open to anyone, the series features personal anecdotes from members of the South Asian community who have struggled with mental illness – and the stigma that comes along with it.

To submit your story, click here.

More Posts

Get the latest MannMukti news and volunteer opportunities straight to your inbox!