Who and what our community is grateful for during the good, the bad and the migraine
Living with migraine presents many challenges. We often need support from others to lighten our load. It only takes a small gesture to bring welcomed relief, and it’s those moments that lift our spirit and give us the strength to keep going. Knowing who or what we can turn can make all the difference.
We asked the members of our Move Against Migraine Facebook support group: Who or what are you most grateful for as you navigate migraine? Here’s what they shared with us:
Our community expressed gratefulness for supportive partners more than anyone else.
“My spouse is understanding and never asks ‘why’ I can’t do something if I have a migraine,” says MAM member Alyssa. “He only wants to know how he can help.”
Migraine is hard on relationships. Supportive partners are a valuable resource in the fight against migraine. They care for us during attacks, accompany us to doctor appointments, pick up the slack, run interference for us, and give us encouragement when migraine affects our mood and motivation.
“I am grateful for my amazing husband who is incredibly patient with me and takes wonderful care of me through my migraines, but is also my second brain that helps me figure out what the doctor is saying and making sure I remember my meds, etc.,” says MAM member Jenni.
Because our partners are an essential part of our support team, it’s important that we keep the lines of communication open. Check out our tips for talking about migraine with your partner.
Understanding Friends and Family
It’s helpful to have more than one person in our support network. People who understand can be a great source of support. While none can take away the pain of a migraine, all can be a source of comfort and strength.
Our community members expressed gratefulness for those who believed them, validated their experiences, offered practical support and words of encouragement. Several MAM members specifically mentioned their mothers as being especially supportive in their lives.
“[My mom] never once doubted me even when everything was still so invisible to everyone else,” says MAM member Stephanie. “I don’t know where I would be without her love and support.”
“She validated me and allowed me to know this was something I could go down a treatment path for.”
MAM member Jessica echoes these sentiments.
“[My mom] has always been there,” she says. “From the time I was a small child…She always understood because she had them too but she never let it show. She is the strongest warrior I know. I’m so blessed to have her.”
Many people living with migraines hesitate to disclose that they have a migraine. This leads to feelings of isolation. Online support communities offer the opportunity to meet other patients, share experiences, access new information, and build relationships with those who understand.
Our group members, such as Maria, explain it best.
“I am most thankful for this group and the support of people who truly understand what we go through,” Maria says. “It has helped me tremendously. I have learned so much about symptoms and treatments. Not being alone in the actual darkest hours of life. It does not matter if you have a partner, friends, coworkers—you can still feel lonely.”
Many of our members expressed gratefulness for doctors who offered migraine education, as well as a wide variety of treatments. Working with a doctor who won’t give up is greatly appreciated. MAM member Laura is thankful for “helpful neurologists who gave me my life back…and educated me about the complexities of migraine disease,” she says.
Having a good working relationship with your doctor is essential. With just one headache specialist for every 80,000 patients, access to good quality migraine care is challenging. Use our Find a Doctor tool to locate one near you. We’ve also developed tools to help you talk to your doctor and prepare for appointments.
Effective treatments allow people with migraine to work, enjoy social activities, and fully engage in family life. Thus, our group members expressed great gratitude for them.
“I am most grateful for [CGRP-blockers],” MAM member Jane says. “[CGRP-blockers] gave me my life back. I now can do whatever I want. I hardly ever have even a mild headache!”
There’s no one treatment that works for everyone. Finding the right treatments is often a lengthy process requiring patience and perseverance. Take a look at our Guide to Understanding Migraine Medications to learn more about the many treatments for migraine.
Growing Your Support Team
Expressing what you are grateful for is a valuable tool in the fight against migraine. That doesn’t mean you don’t wish some people in your life were more supportive. Fortunately, you can do something about this. Grow your support team by starting the conversation about migraine today. Take the first step by downloading our guide on How to Support Someone with Migraine. Share it with your loved ones, friends, and coworkers. You may be pleasantly surprised by their responses.
Reviewed for accuracy by the American Migraine Foundation’s subject matter experts, headache specialists and medical advisers with deep knowledge and training in headache medicine. Click here to read about our editorial board members.