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Social Side-Effects of Chronic/Constant Migraines

There are all kinds of systemic effects from having migraines, which are compounded when they move into the chronic/constant state… Having x3 types (migraine with aura, ocular migraine, brain stem migraine) just ups the challenges…

On any given day I look like:
♦ drawing down one side of face - making me look like I’m relaxed and uptight at the same time
♦ drawing up one side of the face - making one eyebrow look like Star Trek’s Spock upon being surprised
♦ very red in the eyes, and swollen around the eyes, with deep dark circles - ocular migraine
♦ pasty faced - yes, I do know that I am “white as a sheet” today

On any given day I can act like:
♦ I can be a little lost
• I will eventually figure out that holding up my building front door fob in front of the elevator button doesn’t work
• time and place are difficult to grab hold of when I start shutting down
• the more spiking triggers in the place, the shorter the time I have before I start to shut down
• I know I just told them I live on the 3rd floor; no, I have no idea why that came out of my mouth
the right word just isn’t coming to mind, although I can describe it in detail
• you know, that thing that’s round at the end that you use to pick up food to eat… yeah, that’s it… “spoon”
♦ train of thought keeps becoming like a hamster wheel going nowhere fast
• by the look in your eyes, I’ve already asked you that… several times
♦ I know it looks for all the world like I’m tracking with what you are saying, but your words are filtering through so much pain and cloudy-headedness that the info just didn’t arrive fully loaded, and certainly didn’t stay for very long

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Interacting with someone with chronic migraine:
♦ a severe neurological/migraine disorder does not take away my intelligence
• my ducks may not be in a row right now, but the ducks are still present
♦ don’t talk louder and slower
• I’m wincing because it hurts my head, not because I’m not getting what you are saying
♦ please be done with telling me constantly what I should be or shouldn’t be doing
• I am 65 years old, and I’ve not run with scissors yet
♦ It Just Is What It Is…
• the “why” I have a migraine is because I woke up today… for 7 years of days
• just flow with what is for me, please don’t tell me I must not be so bad because I’m not _________
• don’t compare me in this moment to others in their moments; my journey is unique to me
• BTW, lying flat in bed just increases the pain in my head; please stop insisting that I go back up to my apartment and lie down – I need distraction from it all when I can get some
• I’ve learned some amazing coping skills in the last 7 years of living with this – or I wouldn’t be out of my apartment for this little while right now interacting with you
• I’d love a smile… just be OK with me… the fact that I am out of my apartment at all is a good thing

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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