Reel Caregiving: Glimpses of Caregiving – Anand



Movie Review Courtesy: Mona Sarraf

The hindi movie ‘Anand’ revolves around the main character Anand Saighal, who has a rare type of cancer, Lymphosarcoma of the intestine, and Dr. Bhaskar Bannerjee’s helplessness towards his dying patient. Anand came to Mumbai and lived with Dr. Bhaskar Bannerjee because he wanted to live the last months of his life, to the absolute fullest, and not residing in a Nursing home, waiting for death.

#Impact of Caregiving on Bhaskar’s well-being.

Bhaskar becomes a primary caregiver to his patient, Anand, after he was diagnosed with Lymphosarcoma of the intestine. He, as a doctor, was well aware of the severity of the disease.  On one hand, Anand brought a ray of hope in Bhaskar’s life while on the other hand seeing the gradual deterioration of Anand’s health added to Bhaskar’s helplessness and frustration. Bhaskar had a habit of journaling wherein he wrote about frustration about his occupation and the system in general. He wrote about his helplessness and his frustration over not being able to control and treat death. Journaling is highlighted in the movie as a great way for caregivers to take care of their emotional and mental well-being. Even after knowing Anand was at his last stage of Death, Bhaskar went to bring medicines, knowing that it would not help him. This can be perceived as his unwillingness to see him die and let go of him.

#Impact of Caregiving on Suman’s well being

Suman is Anand’s friend’s wife and the secondary caregiver to Anand. She was always there to help him. Though they didn’t have a blood relation with each other, Anand referred to her as his sister. Initially, everyone was hiding the incurable disease from Suman because they knew it may affect her psychological well-being. When she did find out it took an emotional toll on her. She constantly prayed to God waiting for a miracle to happen. Suman had a hard time accepting Anand’s condition. On many occasions she did not have the courage to face him, which is similar to the situation of many caregivers of patients with a deadly disease. A caregivers’ helplessness has been highlighted in the movie where seeing their loved ones’ health deteriorate and the fact that they can’t do anything about it affects their psychological and emotional well-being.

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