Are you concerned that migraine might interfere with your Valentine’s Day celebration? We need to invest the time and energy into maintaining healthy relationships. Yet migraine can threaten our plans for a romantic Valentine’s Day event.
We romanticize the day by imagining the perfect scenario. We can get so caught up in our ideals that we forget why we celebrate in the first place. It’s easy to fall into this trap. Societal norms reinforce these unrealistic expectations. When reality fails to live up to these impossible standards, it’s easy to give up trying. What matters most is connection with our loved one. Making time for one another need not be an elaborate affair. Some of the most meaningful times start with take-out dinner and an old movie on Netflix. With a little advanced planning and an open mind, we can enjoy that connection with or without migraine.
Look for trigger-free alternatives
Don’t set yourself up for frustration by trying to do something you know will trigger a migraine attack. Look for trigger-free alternatives to traditional gifts. Is chocolate a trigger? Try a heart-shaped cookie instead. Skip the red wine, choose an edible arrangement instead of perfume-soaked flowers, and trade in those scented candles for some artificial tea lights.
Worried about noise, smells, or food ruining the night? Skip the loud concert or 3-D action movie in favor of a quiet night at home watching an old romantic comedy. Order in or make your own dinner rather than stressing about food triggers at a restaurant.
Some traditional activities might even be beneficial for migraine. A couple’s massage, for example, can be a great way to unwind and relax. Just make sure to let the massage therapist know about any scent triggers in advance.
Adjust your expectations
The celebration isn’t about a specific day. It’s about your love for each other. If the weather forecast signals migraine trouble, why not celebrate a day or two early? If unexpected circumstances trigger an attack on Valentine’s Day, there’s no harm in pushing your plans to the next day. By staying flexible, you can enjoy a special day of celebrating your love together.
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Reviewed by David Watson, MD.
© Tammy Rome, 2017.
Headache disorders advocate and patient expert, blogger, and mental health therapist, Tammy Rome maintains a private practice specializing in behavioral pain management, as well as writing for her own blog, Brain Storm. She also volunteers as vice chair of the American Headache and Migraine Association and as president of The Cluster Headache Support Group. You can read more of Tammy’s work on her blog and follow her on Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.