Salma Hasan: “Taking therapy was one of the best things to happen to my life”

The actress opened up in an interview about her decision to take therapy, and how it led to making positive changes in her life

Mahnoor Jalal

Mahnoor Jalal

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Actress Salman Hasan sat down with Fuchsia Magazine where she opened up about her decision to undergo therapy ten years ago when her marriage had begun to fall apart. She said as a newly mom, it was quite crucial for her to seek help since she was undergoing post-partum depression and a lot of new moms are suffering from anxiety and depression at this stage:

A lot of women after pregnancy begin to suffer from post-partum depression because they undergo body changes, and then they get stressed and anxious while taking care of their baby because we keep questioning and blaming ourselves if our baby doesn’t stop crying. It’s a challenging process, and I decided to take therapy when my daughter was two years old, and I went through for six years.”

Salma opened up about how she came upon her decision to begin pursuing therapy, and said that it was after she decided to stop hiding from the bad experiences she had faced in her life because her actions were effecting the people around her.

“I first visited a therapist when I noticed how my two year old daughter won’t stop throwing temper tantrums, and this was during the time my marriage was falling apart. The therapist saw her and told me that the problem was not with her, but with me since she was copying my behaviorisms. I did have a hard time accepting this fact, and I think that this is what our society tells us to do. Instead of recognizing our flaws, we blind ourselves to the truth and keep blaming others. Then after another therapist told me the same thing, I decided that I wanted to be a better mother to my daughter, and decided to continue my treatment.”

Salma revealed that after taking therapy, she had learned to let go of the misogynist concept that tells mothers to handle everything on their own. She said that society teaches mothers to keep everything within their homes, but there should be no shame in reaching out and asking for help:

“Our society tells mothers that they must handle everything on their own, and asking for help means that they’re weak. A few close people in my life had said that I was mad for taking therapy. But I’ve accepted that we humans have a capacity of how much pressure we can handle, and if it succeeds the limit then we do need to seek help to re-adjust ourselves.”

On the advice she would give to young women, especially to the one’s who were becoming moms for the first time, Salma said that they should start by gradually visiting a therapist, and try to make at least three visits before making a decision to pursue it further or not.

“My advice to newly moms or anyone deciding to pursue therapy for the first time would be to at least try to make three visits before making a final decision. It’s a difficult to overcome the toxic mindset our society tells us that we do not need other people to  help us. But we must remember that we alone cannot recognize everything that is hurting us. We tend to shove our negative experiences in the back of our minds in order to ignore them, but they keep showing up in our personal relationships and our present decisions. So it’s better to learn to encounter these bad experiences and learn to let them go rather than hide from them.”

On what were the important life skills therapy had taught her, Salma said that one of the most crucial things she had gained from therapy and also teaches to her daughter was to let go of the toxic concept of “what will people say” since we need to learn to accept our emotions instead of hiding from them:

“Therapy taught me the importance of accepting and controlling my emotions rather than shove them in the back of my head. The reason why I am so calm today is because I can analyze my emotions better now. Our society has taught us to keep everything inside us and not show the world if we’re crying or upset. I tell my daughter now that she needs to let go of what other people say. If you’re sad, cry. If you’re happy, then laugh.”

You can watch the complete video below: