Fighting The Battle of Despair and Destiny with the Sword of Patience – Shankar’s Transformation with Therapy

7 minutes

Our destiny is not written for us but by us – Barack Obama

Things happen for a reason. This is something that has been said and done a hundred times, but it is a fact. Sometimes destiny takes us to places we least expect and tries to push us down even more. However, your life’s course lies exclusively in your hands, which can even mould your destiny into your plans.

Meet Shankar, a person who was met with several setbacks in life, but is still determined to make the best out of it. The 36-year-old financial specialist works in Atos and hails from Chennai, Tamil Nadu.

“I tried to become a CA but didn’t happen for me, and I got into the corporate world. I worked in several different companies that had different shifts, and worked for a night shift for 12 years of my life.”

Shankar is the youngest in the family, preceded by two older brothers and sisters. One of his sisters didn’t opt for a marriage as she had some mental health concerns. Shankar lived with his parents and sister and took care of them till the age of 30.

Shankar learned about the YourDOST platform from his organisation as they collaborate with YD as their official mental health partner.

“I met Ms Deepti K Acharya on the platform, and she has been my therapist ever since. She’s the one person who knows the whole story and helps me figure out my life.”

Shankar got married in 2019, and contrary to his expectations, his marriage day wasn’t as pleasant. Even after marriage, many issues sprouted in their life due to his work shift timings. 4 months later, his wife conceived and moved to her parent’s house. Around the same time was the onset of the pandemic and lockdowns.

“I hated working from home as my routine of going to the office was set for years and this sudden change was not favourable to me. I also missed my wife and couldn’t go and meet her for 6 months due to the pandemic restrictions. My daughter was born in 2020 and I was the happiest. However, that did not last long.”

Shankar’s wife had a relationship before marriage and continued with it after the wedding. He was devastated and pressures from the work front and his family pushed him to alcoholism. He tried to go forward with therapy and medication but found no improvement with them at the time. His personal life started affecting his work and he began performing poorly in his career, but he moved on for his baby.

“I was asked to resign as I couldn’t work better. Around the same time, my wife conceived for the second time and I was financially at a low point. I became obese with working from home and stress and paid no attention to my physical health.”

Shankar’s wife went to her parent’s house before her delivery and refused to come back to him. He was not allowed to meet his children for a few months at a stretch and was on the verge of separation. He felt as if he had lost everything in his life.

“We fought through calls and tried to persuade her to come back. In 8 months, I visited my wife’s hometown 4-6 times, but could not meet my kids. I have worked hard for my career, but all that was in vain. My health deteriorated significantly because of my stress and I found support only from my mother and siblings. Even my friends stayed a bit away from me and I knew who all were the real ones after that.”

Shankar’s counsellor, Ms Deepti knew his story and lent a helping hand and a kind ear to all his concerns. She helped him out in several ways that guided him in overcoming his grief.

“I missed my family. My two kids are 3 years and 10 months old respectively and I hadn’t got to see them much. I could always work more to improve my finances but what about my family? I could sue for custody but I didn’t think it was right to separate my babies from their mother.”

Shankar was almost certain that his wife would not come back now. His family wanted him to move on with his life, but he couldn’t do that. The biggest dream in his career was to work in a managerial position but through all these issues, he found it absolutely impossible to focus on work.

Ms Deepti helped him with certain exercises to channel his emotions elsewhere. She helped him with ASMR techniques for lowering his stress level, but as his living arrangements were unstable, he couldn’t follow them all. He also started practising box-breathing techniques for anxiety relief.

“I came to know through YourDOST that there are people who go through the same issues as me and I’m not alone. It gave me a ray of hope to move forward. Deepti was a great listener to my concerns and helped me understand that self-love and compassion are the most important. I don’t know if I could return to the old me before my marriage but improvement is a slow process and I’m fine with it.”

Shankar misses his kids but is happy they’re living securely with their mother. He promises to be for his kids when and where they need him. He is determined to get his financial stability back on track and work towards his physical health in the coming days

“I’m extremely grateful to Ms Deepti for providing a third-person perspective to my problems. She was not judgemental and made me see things from a different angle that helped me understand matters a lot better.”

Shankar rates himself a solid 4 out of 5 for feeling better after therapy sessions. He feels improvement is a slow and steady process that takes time but makes you a better person. 

For someone who has gone through extreme hardships in his life, Shankar is the epitome of patience and determination, who fights through the battle no matter what. We are honoured to share the story of Shankar and wish him all the happiness in the world.

Shankar’s Warrior Tips:
1.“Be patient with yourself and let improvement take its time.”
2.“Focus on practising different art forms like painting, singing and dancing to take your mind off things.”

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