An Interview With My Husband About My Migraines
Last updated: June 2021
I’ve always loved The Beatles. So on the first night I met my husband and noticed he had a Beatles poster in his room, I was intrigued. What if we both liked The Greatest Band ever and then saw eye-to-eye on other important issues like The Empire Strikes Back being the best movie in the Star Wars saga? It turns out we agreed on these important issues and many more. Our common interests set the foundation for a solid relationship. Eventually, we got married, started a family, and I started having migraines.
Knowing my migraine signs
“I can tell you’re getting a migraine because your mood gets very subdued and focused,” my husband says. After being together for close to twenty years, he’s able to read my migraine stages almost as well as I can.
Increasing attack frequency
I didn’t start out as a partner with migraine disease. My debilitating head pain increased over time. During the course of our marriage, my husband witnessed me going from a migraine that lasted a couple of hours to a migraine that lasted a couple of days, to a migraine that never stopped.
“Our marriage changed when your migraines increased because we now had a third party in our relationship—your migraines,” my husband says. This could prove difficult at times because our third party wasn’t a “partier” at all. My migraines invaded our space and forced me to bail on plans or settle in bed for a long weekend nap. This could lead to disappointment and frustrations. My husband says he learned that when his initial reaction came from a place of understanding, our relationship moved to a deeper connection. “Ultimately, this attitude shift resulted in a more open heart and a deeper relationship,” he says.
Managing a relationship
It can be hard to keep a partnership solid and true when one member suffers from migraine disease. Migraines are the great plan stealers. My husband says, over the years, he’s learned to be “flexible, kind, and supportive.”
We’ve had long talks about how my frequent migraines affect our relationship. Knowing that he’s there to support me in those moments when I’m not able to support myself helps me know I can make it through the worst of the pain. He’s driven me to doctor's appointments and sat with me in the dark during an attack simply so I won't feel so alone.
It's not just a headache
To those that still think a migraine is just a headache, my husband is my biggest advocate. “Well, they’ve obviously never dealt with migraines,” he begins, “A person can’t even function, much less roll over in bed when they have one.”
What makes our relationship?
I wish that one of our common concerns didn’t happen to be my migraines, but when in a relationship, some elements that affect one partner can impact the other. It’s all of our other shared interests that bond us and keeps our connection thriving — oh, and the fact we kinda like each other a lot, listen to Beatles music, and just Let It Be.
Are the family and friends you will be seeing this holiday season understanding about migraine?