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When things go wrong.....

Two things before you read on:

- The events depicted in this blog are fictitious. Any similarity to any person living or dead is merely coincidental.

- "The mind of man can imagine nothing which has not really existed." --Edgar Allan Poe

Do law schools need to employ psychologists? During five years of law school, the students go through a lot. Apart from relationships,  they are affected by their peers, teachers and family.


It was in my third year of law school when I realised that I needed counseling. A string of bad relationships had left me wounded. I was having mood swings and had isolated myself. One day while walking to the library, I sighed and called up my mother and told I wanted to meet a Psychologist. A week passed and no word from my parents on the topic. Finally, after another week of frustration, I spoke to my father. My mother hadn't had the courage to tell him what I had told her.  I later found out that she just couldn't accept that her child would need the help of a doctor. After a week of telling my father, I was on my way to meet a doctor. 


Slowly things started getting better. It's been a year now and I'm still on my medication. Apart from making me better, it gave me the courage to talk about the issue with other people in my University. I started to find out it wasn't just me. There were at least ten other people from my batch who were on medication. Its a secret for most of us because once you tell people you're visiting a psychologist, they think you're being strapped onto a chair with electrical wires connected to your body. Luckily, its a much simpler process and none of the people I know had to visit shutter island.


When I was in first year, we had a psychology teacher who was very passionate.  I got to know her well during the one semester I spent being taught by her. She told me how over four years she had taught here, she had seen students desperate for help. Those fights we ignored, the suicide attempts we never spoke about and pictures on facebook of students smoking up were the signs. When she went to speak to the Vice-Chancellor, he told her that he didn't want the University intruding into the personal space of students. It was the duty of the parents to see that their children were up to better things. When we got a new Vice-Chancellor, she went again. This time she was told that she should stop getting worrying about such issues. There were more pressing issues.


It wasn't the money. It wasn't the lack of psychologists. The administration wasn't willing to walk into new territory. Like my mother, they didn't want to talk about the issue.  My Professor chuckled and told me this was the greatest possible sign that we were now an industry (irrespective of what the Courts thought). This was where they manufactured us; defective at times.


If you're city runs out of alcohol or drugs, visit my hostel. On this floor, you can find smokes, weed and alcohol. I started drinking in my first year and it's been a year since I started smoking. The reason I began drinking was because my hopes of a different life here broke after a few months. It began with beer but by now I've tried every possible combination of alcohol. I've been at parties where everything was mixed just to see what they could do to our bodies. The smoking was because I couldn't keep up in class. The medicines made me sleepy. I had seen how my friends would smoke a lot before their exams.  It helped them tackle the pressure and remember things. And help it did.


I was ashamed of myself in the beginning. I was spending my parent's hard earned money on abusing my body. This reminds of a short analogy from Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder. It's the rabbit analogy - All mortals are born at the very tip of the rabbit's fine hairs but as the grow older, they work themselves ever deeper into the fur. My thoughts about my shameful behaviour got lost over the years. I no longer thought twice when I was buying alcohol or Marlboro cigarettes.


We keep talking about how we need to be innovative as a system. Here is a chance. We have the option of creating a quality life for these students. I don't think I can quit drinking or smoking now. Maybe if I had someone to talk to in the beginning, things might have been different. I might not have gone into depression for six whole months. I wouldn't have started losing my grades. I wouldn't have had to make that call to my mother. My father wouldn't spent sleepless nights worrying about what was wrong with his son.


I'm not blaming all my actions on my University. The call for psychologists is not even a new idea. However, it needs serious consideration. Life is getting tougher here and we could all use some help.

See John2010's other blogs:

8 disturbing signs that our elected representatives have forgotten us.

My Facebook Feed

How comrade whistle blower lost his ethical virginity

The PM on legal education: What he said and did not say.

Dear Prudence: ....... Litigation is really interesting but ........?

The 26/11 Judgement fails the maturity test and how we can still salvage justice.

Confessions of a chronic cheater.....

How not to be inspired.

When things go wrong.....

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