Photo taken by contributor Uday Narayanan, a 26-year-old from New Delhi, India. Uday has an uncle who suffers from Schizophrenia. His uncle has been living with him for the last 20 years. Growing up, Uday remembers his uncle as being a loving man who would play with him every evening, but who would get extremely moody at times. As a kid, the frequent switches in his uncle’s behavior would annoy Uday. It was only after his parents explained to him about his condition that he realized how tough it is for him. In a country like India, mental illness is still a taboo. No one talks about it openly. Going to a psychiatrist or even a psychologist raises several eyebrows. It is very important that people are educated about mental illness so that they don’t shy away from seeking professional help. Uday’s uncle takes medication regularly and is leading a very healthy, content and normal life. Uday stresses that mental illness should not be considered different from any other disorder. Like in any other illness, it’s a case of a certain body part not functioning exactly the way it should. With proper medication and care it can be treated effectively.
About this photo: “I saw this woman sitting outside a shop in New Delhi, India. Her family sells earthen pots and containers made from clay. Too old to walk around, she was sitting on a cot, supervising her sons who were attending to the customers. One look at her eyes and you know they have seen many things in life. The wrinkles on her face were full of stories about her experiences, both good and bad, joyous and sorrowful.”