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Does Attitude Affect Migraines?

Yes!!  Absolutely yes!  Wait, does this mean this is my fault?  No blame game here.  Just some encouragement by looking at what attitude can do in your care and wellbeing on your migraine journey.  So hear me out. Does attitude affect migraines? 

Attitude of the Doctor

Consider these examples and decide if you think attitude would result in better care.

Doctor A: We are going to do whatever it takes to make you feel better and improve your quality of life.  The path we are on is one of finding what works.  Even if you don’t look sick I know what this invisible illness does to people.

Doctor B: This is not a serious condition.  You aren’t going to have a stroke or heart attack. Just get some more rest and see if this medication works. We’ll check in again in several months.

a doctor holding a clipboard

Now, these are what may seem two extremes.  However, I can tell you I have been the patient of a doctor who sounded like the first example.  I have also heard others who have voiced concerns that they were not heard.  

As the patient you must advocate for yourself.  There are amazing doctors in this world and they are a very important part of your migraine health.  They are one part of the puzzle.  So, don’t give up and know that the right doctor will hear you and see you. 

If you feel that your doctor or health care professional is not advocating for your health then you must be your own advocate and you have the right to go elsewhere.  There are other doctors and you can check out your other options.  

It can feel exhausting to sort through the hoops and game of getting the right medicine and getting it approved by insurance.  You need support and you need to feel like your doctor has your best interests in mind at all times.

I wish you well on this journey.  Reach out if you need encouragement or support. 

Attitude of Your Loved Ones

Example A: We are so sorry you are in so much pain.  What can we do to help?  We understand why you have to cancel plans and will be happy to reschedule.  Your health is most important.

Example B: You have ANOTHER migraine.  Can’t you just take something and make it to said event.  You always have a migraine.  

My hope is you do not find yourself with example B.  Unfortunately, migraines do take their toll on even the best of family and friends.  People can lose track of how often you actually have them when it makes things inconvenient for them.  Tracking your migraines and sharing that data with loved ones can be a meaningful conversation and talking point.  It can also shed light on positive insights that might be overlooked.

It is also important for those who care about you to understand the pain you go through.  Pointing them in the direction of migraine education for the basics can be helpful.  You can refer to my post Migraine 101: Knowledge is Power for more information to share. Additional resources are MigraineAgain and The American Migraine Foundation.

Another helpful resource for learning is to include them by taking them to your doctor appointments. Keeping the people in your life aware of what you go through will continue to lead to more empathy and understanding.

Find those who stick beside you and let them be the voice in your head.  You matter and it isn’t your fault. 

photo of family walking on park
Photo by Vidal Balielo Jr. on

Personal Experience

In my life, I have been blessed with big support in many circumstances.  However, I know that I have also probably frustrated my family when my migraine attacks were so chronic.  I have fewer episodes per month now, but we know there is no cure at this point. 

My heart has been sad to drive by the hospital and have my own children say, “Mama, there is your doctor.” The ER shouldn’t feel like a second home. Things are more controlled now, but their awareness of the severity of migraine is real. That is a lot for me to accept as a mom.

As a wife I have had to work to both ask for and give myself grace at times.  This too is very difficult. If I don’t choose to believe I can do this and act on it my migraine life is much more difficult.  

Teaching with migraine is a whole different world.  My mindset there has been to believe that kids will rise to the occasion and that has been true time and time again.  My students’ compassion has been nothing short of inspiring over the years.

woman holding gray ceramic mug
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on

Attitude of Person with Migraine

Does attitude affect migraines? You bet it does.  I just start by thinking about how I felt in each of these situations. Those feelings either resulted in peace and a release of stress or an increase of stress. That is huge because stress is a big trigger for me and for many people.  Finding the positive is priceless in this fight against migraines.

We have to reach out for support and remember that this is not a battle to fight alone.  Remember you are cared about and you have friends on this journey.  Those who hear you and see you for the fighter you are should be the ones you listen to.

 It is sometimes surprising who else can relate to you as well.  You may meet other migraine friends on your journey and you may be an encouragement to them. Find support here and know you can return anytime.  

Finding the Positive

Mindset is a very powerful thing and it would be easy to get discouraged by this disease.  However, we must not let migraines take over our lives. Instead, we must choose to see how they can make us better and how we can choose to find more in life in spite of them.

Migraines have made me more patient with others and willing to discover what stories others have to tell.  I believe through the pain I have actually become stronger and more grateful.  How could I be thankful for pain right?

I am thankful for the blessings of kindness from others and the chance to see so much good in the world.  Through migraine, I have seen real compassion and empathy.  Those do not come around for everyone every day.

To find more meaning I want to live what good I have been given.  I want to be that compassionate and kindness to others.  I believe I live a blessed life.  It is not perfect and has definitely had many challenges.  However, it is a life I am very thankful to have.

Looking Ahead

The road ahead brings more resources and stories to be told on Please return and you are invited to join our Facebook group on the contact page.

This migraine life is better lived with friends. Thank you for being here.

photo of woman leaning on each other
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on

41 thoughts on “Does Attitude Affect Migraines?”

  1. This is such an important way to look at migraine care and treatment. As a medical social worker, I work with teens that have migraines and make sure to have a sensitive and compassionate attitude in my care and assessment of their needs.

  2. Migraines are such life altering events. Your posts are always filled with such helpful and insightful information. I always appreciate your posts.

  3. I suffered from migraines my entire life until my mid 40’s when they basically disappeared. I get one every once in a while. There are so many more remedies and much more openness and understanding than what there used to be. It was a pain for my family and for school!

  4. Totally think the people you’re around are huge for supporting your health. And attitude and mindset is so key to having greater well-being. Thanks for sharing! Having a support system is so key!

  5. Pingback: Migraine Patient Journey: Gratitude - Migraine Road

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  7. Yes, I agree with all of that. One of my close friends suffers with migraines, yet she says when those around her truly understand, it makes it easier.

    1. Thank you for your response. I am sorry you deal with, but hope this was helpful. I will continue to put out posts about different topics. Feel free to reach out on the contact form if there is something specific you would like to hear about.

  8. Thank you for sharing! I work with concussion patients and some of them have a history of migraines. The combo just makes the whole thing worse. I tell them I can’t imagine what it feels like to be them but I can use their help to help me understand and empathize better!

  9. Wow, I didn’t know that attitude affects Migraines. If this is the case a healthy mindset is very important because we can’t control others around us but we can control how we think, so it doesn’t affect how we feel and how we act.

  10. I love what you said about how tracking it and showing your family can be beneficial. I never would’ve thought about doing that, but it seems like it can help so much. I loved getting to know more about migraines by reading this, it definitely helps me understand my best friend better who has been getting them all the time for years too. I wish you luck and you are doing fabulous!!! You are so good at writing, too!

  11. Charlie-Elizabeth Nadeau

    I feel for you, migraines are hard to explain and go through. Thank you for being so open and sharing your personal experience while reinforcing the need to advocate for ourselves. It’s challenging but I agree attitude does have a positive impact on the process. How amazing it would be if everyone could have lots of support! Hopefully your blog inspires more people!

  12. There’s so much power in the positive. I suffer from migraines, and they always impair my days when I have the most planned! Thanks so much for sharing this post!

  13. This is so validating! I have been on both ends of the attitudes of others, family and doctors. Having loving support makes ALL the difference!

  14. Amazing post! You’re absolutely right, finding the positive and reaching out for support are very very important things to do and I love what you said about the pain making you stronger! Thank tou for sharing this

  15. Wow, it sounds like you get a lot of migraines. I’m so sorry to hear that.
    You’re right, it is so helpful to have supportive people to help you get through migraines and I find it allows me to recover faster when I know I can rely on that support and rest until I’m better rather than struggling through.

    1. A very thoughtful post. And it is is is true you have the right to choose which health care provider is good for you. Do not always relay on your doctor’s opinion be there for yourself first.

    2. Thank you so much for your thoughts and kindness. My migraines are better than they used to be, but I have gone through some challenging times. My hope is to use these times to support others. I am glad you have good support!

  16. Can I just say as a migraine sufferer this really hit me in the feels. I’m new to your blog and so far am loving this! I’ve had migraines for years now and it has taken me quite sometime to find the right doctor and the right treatment plan. The part where you talk about the people around you really hit home. I’ve had so many people say, “wow, really again,” as if I was praying for another one. It would be so much more helpful to hear “what can I do to help!” Great post!

    1. Thank you so much for your response and honesty. This is very powerful as we all walk on this journey and are here to support each other. It is important for people to be understanding and it is so hard when they are not. Remember this is not your fault and you are doing your best. So glad you are here at migraineroad:)!

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