10 Pakistani Celebs Who Have Spoken Up About The Importance of Mental Health Awareness

With the news of Bollywood star, Sushant Singh Rajput taking his life broke over the weekend, it opened up the discourse on depression and mental awareness once again. Many stars on both sides of the border have reflected on the fateful news, and have put forward ways to help each other during such trying times.

Many have now realised that depression and mental health awareness are topics that deserve our attention, and celebs have played a huge role in making people understand that around Pakistan.

From Mahira Khan and Meesha Shafi to Imran Abbas and Mawra Hocane, a major chunk of our stars have talked about dealing with depression and the much-needed empathy we all need to show.

Who else from the industry has talked about it? Diva has the lowdown…


Momina Mustehsan

The singer who has made a massive career since coming into the limelight with Coke Studio, Momina Mustehsan has spoken about suffering from depression on countless occasions. Momina had also taken to Instagram in 2017, where she essayed her feelings in a three-part video post.

“There was a time in my life where I was very depressed, I had lost all self-esteem. I came to a point where I couldn’t even look at myself in the mirror, I had gained weight,” she said. When people tell you to just get over it, it’s not one thing you’re sad about, it’s just this feeling…The change has to come from within you.”


Imran Abbas

When the news of an aspiring model Anam Tanoli’s suicide broke in 2018, actor Imran Abbas took to Instagram to share an important message of introspection. He implored that we as people stop looking down on those who suffer from mental illnesses.

Mental illness isn’t a joke, Please don’t look down to people suffering from depression, mental ailment, stress and anxiety,” Imran wrote. “We must look around and try to be nice to people who are suffering from the circumstances which can lead a person to suicide.”


Mawra Hocane

An actress who has seen many highs, Mawra Hocane has boasted a booming career in the past few years. However, despite the successes, she has also spoken about the lows with her mental health that came with the tidings of stardom in the shape of anxiety.

View this post on Instagram

A contemplating girl: We all have our days of weakness & breakdowns, I am lucky my job allows me to express my grief on screen. It’s been over a year since I’ve been diagnosed with anxiety & I’m no longer embarrassed of it. It’s a part of me like the sky is blue but I’m definitely better equipped to deal with it as I’m growing with it & beginning to understand it. I don’t run away from my friends & family when I’m having a panic attack I share with them & I feel I’m stronger than my condition. I’m putting this out because I want all of you who fight anxiety everyday to be okay with it & not be ashamed of it. I went to a therapist in Sydney at the end of 2018 who told me that even though certain deficiencies contribute to my anxiety, it gets worse because I’m fearful of it. I decided that day to no longer be afraid of it or hide it from anybody at all. In 2020 I can easily identify when my body starts to feel anxiety & more often than not I’m able to control it without any help. I drink a lot of water & I pray. Anybody reading this can have their own method or seek help from a therapist or a family member. Having said that I want to tell you that even if you break down , you’re brave, even if you cry you’re not weak. Whoever you are I want you to know that every new day will be a better day. InshAllah❤️ #AnxiousButAble #anxietyawareness P.S this is a clip from #Daasi & it’s been a very very special project for me as I’ve been able to channelise my inner fears & pain as sunehri. My director would ask me to cry & on days I would howl & he would be let me. I have been honest & worked very hard . I hope you all enjoy tonight’s episode. P.P.S Thankyou @adeelhusain78 for being an amazing supportive co-star & for everything that you are💫

A post shared by MAWRA HOCANE (Hussain) (@mawrellous) on

“We all have our days of weakness & breakdowns. It’s been over a year since I’ve been diagnosed with anxiety & I’m no longer embarrassed by it,” Mawra wrote. “It’s a part of me like the sky is blue but I’m definitely better equipped to deal with it as I’m growing with it & beginning to understand it.”


Mahira Khan

Actress Mahira Khan has spoken up about the importance of mental health awareness on various occasions, and she’s been vocal about the need for empathy, constantly. She went on to become a part of a TED-talk in the past, where she spoke about the mental health effects of cyberbullying.

The actress also took to Twitter, when the news of chef Anthony Bourdain taking his life became public. “What is depressing is that there isn’t enough awareness about depression/mental health itself,” she wrote.


Meesha Shafi

The former model and singing sensation, Meesha Shafi has been quite vocal about mental awareness and has always advocated for keeping a check on our health with therapy and professional help. She took to Twitter to speak about it when the news of popular chef, Anthony Bourdain’s suicide broke.

“Near and dear suffering from depression needs professional help/healing/therapy plus all our compassion, patience and understanding,” Meesha wrote. “This will only come if we educate ourselves and raise awareness.”


Juggun Kazim

Actress and host Juggun Kazim has been a long-time advocate of mental health awareness, and in many of her past interviews, she has recommended going to a therapist, especially, to her industry counterparts.


“I have been seriously committed to therapy for two years. I don’t go for therapy because I am schizophrenic or manic depressive or because I have a psychological problem, but I go because I feel people in this industry should go to a psychiatrist at least once a week to vent out all that is inside them.”


Mushk Kaleem

New-age supermodel, Mushk Kaleem has been quite vocal about the issues of mental health, and she recently went on to speak about her struggles with it, on former supermodel, Iffat Omer’s show.

“Mental issues are real,” she wrote on her Insta post. “During these stressful times of the Corona, mental health-related crimes such as domestic violence have also skyrocketed. So let’s start, by not only taking care of our hearts, body and soul but also our minds! Let’s all come together and embrace acceptance, help, hope and always taking care of our mental health!”


Hina Altaf

Actress Hina Altaf, who rose to fame with her role in Udaari a few years ago, was perhaps one of the first few actors from the younger lot who became vocal about mental health. She even went on to speak about domestic situations and their effects on the child’s mental health.

Hina opened up about how the environment in her house affected her mental condition, and how her doctor totally turned her life around.


Nausheen Shah

Actress Nausheen Shah has been quite vocal about her bout with depression and mental illnesses in the past, and she’s spoken about her experience on several occasions. She attributes her getting better and healthier mentally to her cleansing her soul.

“During the phase that I was depressed, I felt there was something missing from my life and that I was constantly looking for it,” Nausheen told Iffat Omer on her show. “I felt I needed to disconnect myself socially and get closer to my family. I had to cleanse my soul and for that, I had to stay away from that empty, glitter social media life.”


Hira Mani

Actress Hira Mani may have become a successful name in the industry today, but it has come with a price for her. The actress took to Samina Peerzada’s show to talk about how the competitiveness of the industry had an effect on her mental health, and how she suffered from depression.

The actress went on to speak about going to therapy, and how that helped her. She also cited how it got better when she realised she was seeking happiness in the wrong places.


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