“When I was 15, I started having differences with my parents and family. Until then, I had never spoken out differently against my culture or ever expressed a desire to be different from my parents expectations. However, being educated and learning about equality made me want to learn about things my own way. I started incorporating my culture with western ideas, and I began to date, go out with friends and pursuing my own career path. This didn't stand well with my parents. They disliked the way I dressed, the fact that I was dating and they wanted me to stick to their idea of what life should be like. I expected this, but I didn't know to what extent they would actually try to stop my "acting out." They restricted my phone privileges, didn't let me go out with friends or buy any clothes I liked. You might think this was just a spoiled child not getting her way for once, but it was more like a repression of my freedom and expression. They made me see a therapist because they believed something was wrong with me because I was dating someone. Once, I wanted to go to an event with friends and they insisted on tagging along. When I told them they were being disrespectful and they should let me have some freedom, they called non-emergent cops and had them read my rights to me, which were that I didn't have many until I turned 18. Eventually, they decided they wanted to move back to India due to issues with our citizenship with the US and so that I would learn the "values" my parents did. I was diagnosed with depression, and I once attempted to take my life. I'm no longer like this anymore. I am happy, and my parents and I are on better terms. I have never forgiven them for their intrusion and disruption of my life. They've gotten better at understanding their roles as well as their mistakes too, and I understand that they were trying to do what they thought was best for me, but I no longer abide by their rules. I dress however I would like to, hang out with whomever I want and I make my own choices. I've made it clear they no longer have a say in my life.
I've faced a lot of issues regarding barriers to care. Many people, including my parents, don't entirely believe in mental illness. With a lot of time and education, and my pursuit of a degree in psychology has helped them understand that mental illness is a real thing despite age, gender, race or any attributes and it can happen to anyone. cultural competency. It is extremely difficult and frustrating to try and explain your cultures and traditions to a practitioner or counselor who doesn't understand. People in India related too much to what my parents would say, and people in the United States didn't understand my background. There is no diversity and little culture among counselors in the US (in my experience). I've never felt like I interacted with an impartial therapist whom I related to until a year ago.
There are so many aspects of minorities and mental health care which need to be improved upon. Our mental health is important. It affects our daily functioning and can have a more serious effect in the long run. One of the most important things is to improve the diversity and cultural competency of mental healthcare providers everywhere. Issuing cultural training programs and understanding of diverse backgrounds goes a long way. Raising awareness of mental health and educating minorities about the impact of mental health is really important. Many people don't understand mental health conditions and can be very dismissive of them. I wish I had interacted with someone who understood what happened properly and could give me solutions that I could implement in my life.”