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My sister has wrong impressions of marriage, how can I help her?

Q: My 26-year-old sister is a professional graduate. Presently she is not employed and is depressed due to a lot of reasons. She feels that our father is her greatest enemy. He is not educated, and he used to fight with our mother daily, which has created a wrong impression about marriage in her mind. Her next enemy are our relatives who live in the village. They expect her to follow the traditional culture, which she cannot accept. She does not allow any of us to meet them as she feels that she will get separated if we become close to them. She wants to stand on her own feet. She is in a desperate search of a job. She has attempted suicide twice, as she feels that she is a burden on us. All the friends of her age group have got married; this might be the initiator of her attempt to end her life. Can she get married? Will she break up with her partner with such behaviour? Kindly suggest a lady psychiatrist based at chennai.

A:I can understand your concern for your sister. It would be helpful if you can consult a psychiatrist/psychologist who can get a better understanding of the problem and then guide her, and you, through the treatment process. The fact that your sister has attempted suicide twice suggests that this is not a problem that should be taken lightly. It becomes imperative for her to seek professional help as soon as possible. A psychiatrist/psychologist is a trained professional who is non-judgemental. Therefore, the gender of the person is insignificant when you go to seek help. Unfortunately I do not know of any female psychiatrist in Chennai. However, you can ask your family physician for assistance in referring you to someone. Marriage is a relation where there are a lot of new responsibilities and challenges, and if during this time the person is under any kind of stress, it becomes doubly difficult to handle the situation. So, it will be wise if your sister seeks proper treatment first and then moves on to taking such kind of a decision.

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