Blah blah blah

Badrya Darwish

I loved a report that came out from the ministry of health last week. First of all I want to thank them for their efforts, for the first time, in bringing out such a scientific document about the mental health of people living in Kuwait. According to the statistics released by the ministry on Thursday, around 5-9 percent of the nation suffers from varying degrees of depression.

Are you kidding guys – who’s depressed?! How could you be depressed with all the trees and fountains and lakes surrounding you? No traffic, lots of comforts and plenty of justice and freedoms and money for us all. Social equality and no prejudices and no hatred and no MPs shouting over trivial matters and calling for injustices among the nations. Enough guys of the beautiful things!

But on a serious note – the study says that some of the main reasons triggering depression are family, social and financial issues. They didn’t elaborate, but what I understood was that the study also includes expats as well as Kuwaitis. They did not state what the percentage amongst Kuwaitis alone was.

If we Kuwaitis are suffering financial problems to the point that it causes depression, then I feel even more sympathy for the poor expats, because their financial situation is typically 180 degrees worse than ours, as they pay their rent, with no subsidy for housing, healthcare and schools. These are the major issues in the life of all nations. Unfortunately, expats do not get any subsidies to help with these expenses. So you can imagine their financial situation. Plus, they also have to pay, like us, for their food, cars, other demands of life, blah, blah, blah.

If we come to discuss some of the other reasons for depression, like family and social matters, I agree that there are many factors under this terminology that can shake the psychological situation of any person. But also expats are lesser fortunate in this because they don’t travel as much as we do to take a break. It’s nice to take a break, even if it’s a small holiday to Dubai for the weekend.

Also, they don’t have the facilities and comforts in their homes and don’t have gardens or balconies or even spacious rooms to accommodate their children and furniture. Instead, they live in pokey flats with high rents and not enough space under the building for their children to run around, because we made sure that every building is fully occupied, even the ground floor – for profit – and there is no space for children to breathe and play. As for the third, family, I don’t know what they meant by that, because family pressures could exist everywhere.

As for me, the weather is one of the most depressing issues in Kuwait. Unfortunately, it cannot be helped – only escaped – and that too only temporarily. And we are all depressed on that level. Please don’t get me wrong guys. I think that the percentage is probably smaller than reality and that someone who is really depressed should get help, whether Kuwaiti or expat.

This article was published on 08/04/2017