Dogs are known to be therapeutic, not just figuratively or as a phrase but also quite literally. We often hear about Therapy Dogs changing the world by healing mild to serious mental illnesses in kids and adults.
Fortunately, these mental illnesses do not have much stigma attached to it these days as it did before. One such happy incident was addressed by one of our Digital Pet Fashion Show 2.0 contestants, Aditi. Aditi, is a 12 year old girl, who was diagnosed with Anxiety Disorder 2 years ago. She took part in our event last month & spoke up about how her dog Chess helps her in dealing with her anxiety.
Throwing some light on it now, Aditi comments, “Before Chess came into my life, I always thought the time wasn’t right to tell anybody about my anxiety (or before I was diagnosed, my symptoms), but it got to a point where if I didn’t, I would have nervous breakdowns frequently. My anxiety began in 2015-16 and it was due to various factors, including the school environment I was in, the people around me and a few other things. It was okay at first, but as it progressed, it got worse- so bad that I had suicidal thoughts and panic attacks every day. I even fell into depression for a while at one point and had no idea what to do. But then something changed. In mid of 2018, we got a puppy, & I named her Chess. She was two months old and extremely tiny. When she first came home, she distracted me from any negative thoughts & anxiety that I had. As she got older, she comforted me, as if she was letting me know that she was there and I would be okay.”
“Now, while I still suffer from anxiety, Chess has made me so much better. Chess saved my life. A few months ago, we found out that Chess suffers from anxiety as well, and now I am to her, what she was to me. If Chess hadn't entered my life, I don't know what would have been of me. A dog CAN save your life, the same way, this one saved mine.” she continues proudly.
As someone who suffers from anxiety themselves, this piece is extremely close to my heart. It’s not always that one can get inspired from a 12 year old lovely little girl who owns up to this issue & wants to do something about it, which most people might not even have the courage to do so in their mid-40s.
Let’s spread love, affection & compassion as much as we can, just like Aditi & Chess, and the rest shall fall into place.