Suicide Of One Of His Patients Changed This Psychiatrist Goal To Work Towards Preventing Student Suicides
Dr Kannan Gireesh was a practising psychiatrist. Among his patients were some school-going children who had difficulties coping with academics and problems with their parents and family members. One day, a mother and a son consulted Dr Gireesh and the mother complained of her son being extremely naughty and restless. The boy is then diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder). Dr Gireesh prescribed some medications and asked the mother and the son to visit him back after a week. But they never return. After nearly 6 months, Dr Gireesh happened to run into the mother and upon being asked about the boy, she broke down. She then told Dr Gireesh that after the consultation, the boy’s teacher complained to his father about his naughty behaviour in school and expelled him from school. The furious father came back home and whipped the boy with his belt. This traumatised the boy so much that he told his father he’s going out to play, ran up to the fourth floor and jumped off from there to hit the floor and died immediately.
It is this incident that changed Dr Gireesh’s purpose in life. Ever since then he has been working towards preventing student suicides and towards bettering relationships between parents and their children. He believes that a child’s personality is significantly determined by the parenting style they are subjected to.
Dr Gireesh and his team have curated this programme which spans for 3 days. They go to colleges and schools and conduct this programme, where they help students realise their potential and discover their interests and abilities. Dr Gireesh says we ought to acknowledge that different individuals have different styles of learning and we should cater to them accordingly instead of forcefully subjecting them all to a single style of instruction.
Students after having attended the Leader-in-me programme seem to have a better knowledge of themselves and they also acquire the confidence to pursue what they believe is right for them. In a country where almost every kid is forced to believe they should either pursue medicine or engineering, this programme is more than essential. Peer learning is one more concept Dr Gireesh hopes to nurture in our education system. Teachers and parents should not be the only ones doing the process of teaching but students should teach their fellow students. This develops in them a sense of harmony and coexistence while boosting their self-confidence.
Parents and teachers play a role in determining a child’s productivity
Our current education system shatters children’s dreams and keeps them from realising their potential. Training kids to dream and follow their potential will be useless if they are going to go back from training to classrooms and houses where their teachers and parents subject them to the same old treatment. That is why Dr Gireesh and his team train the teachers. They believe if the teachers are trained and transformed, they will transform the kids and the kids, in turn, transform their parents back home.
Live Life Education also conducts what they call ‘Gratitude Sessions’. These sessions are designed to make children realise the value of their parents and to help them improve their relationships.
Upon being asked if shifting the centre from education to life is going to come at the cost of productivity and employability of students, Dr Gireesh laughs and says it’s entirely the other way round. If you let kids decide what they are going to do for a living, their productivity is bound to boost. If children are taught to lead an emotionally balanced life, their productivity is bound to boost. If children are encouraged to take control of their lives and develop leadership qualities, their productivity will hit the roof.
What has Live Life Education achieved?
When we asked Dr Gireesh what his achievements are, he didn’t mention the ‘Award of Excellence in Adolescent psychiatry’ bestowed to him by the President of India, he instead narrates a story of a girl with mild muscular dystrophy who had attempted suicide owing to her physical disability. After attending Dr Gireesh’s programme, she went on to complete her under-graduation with a gold medal and is now working in a prestigious company. The girl came back to Dr Gireesh after having secured a job and thanked him for making her realise that it was her mental obstructions that were keeping her from her dreams and not her physical disability. Dr Gireesh continues working for the cause. He has been delivering a lot of speeches not just across the nation, but the globe. His work has been appreciated by a lot of celebrated figures around the world but he believes it’s not these appreciations that should speak for him but his work itself should.
The Logical Indian applauds Dr Kannan Gireesh and his team for their much-needed work and we hope the nation witnesses the transformation envisioned by Dr Gireesh.