Coping, Friends & Family

Faking It

I’ve just realized that most of my posts so far imply that my headaches are fairly mild and easily treated. I’ve actually had an awful month with at least 20 days where my headache has been a 6 or higher on the 1-10 scale.

You see, I’ve been pretending that the pain isn’t too bad for so long that I’m inadvertently doing it here too. I’m not sure if I remember how to talk to anyone except my husband without downplaying or ignoring the pain. For example, my mother-in-law was in town last week and asked one day if I had a headache. My response? “No, it’s not too bad. It’s only intermittent stabbing pain.”

It’s a downer to always be in pain, so I try to avoid talking about it. When I do, I dismiss the severity of it. Is this being fake? I don’t think so – I’m still me. I want to be more than my headaches and I don’t know how to do that without minimizing them. I’m pretty confident that most people living with chronic pain do the same thing.

For the blog, I’m not sure how to balance being positive with being up front about my pain levels. Please bear with me while I try to figure it out.

2 thoughts on “Faking It”

  1. I find that if I talk about it too long to my husband and even some of my oldest friends they don’t want to hear it anyway.

    I know it’s hard for other people to hear about a friend’s misery, but coping with headache is tough without shoulders to cry on. Take care of yourself.


  2. Hey, I tend to do that too. My TMJ specialist got sooo upset with me one day because I passed him in the hallway, and he smiled and me and I smiled back (smiling hurts in large quantities). He was sooo excited and thought I was doing better and asked me if I was, and I said not really. He asked me if I was in pain right then, and I said yes. He was like, then why did you smile at me and act like absolutely nothing was wrong? Sorry, it’s a conditioned response…I hadn’t let my guard down yet…if you smile at me, I’m going to smile back. He couldn’t understand how I could do that, but I do it all of the time…even to my husband who is utterly confused half the time. I have to get better at that.

    I also struggle with it online as well. How do you balance having a positive attitude with being real and letting people see that you struggle too? I wish I knew.

    Some people can read it in my eyes…I can’t disguise that, nor would I want to…the eyes are the window to the soul, but there aren’t many people who look there either, so usually I can pull it off if I want to.

    Interesting topic…Take care, Dana

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