Migraines, Media, Mental Health.

Last week, I checked in with my doctor, the WONDERFUL Dr Mason, who has taken me on in the past year after my GP retired in 2016 and the doctor who I was seeing has left the practice.

For him, I think I am a bit of an experiment. I mean, picture it: a well informed, 28 year old woman with a complex health picture including fibromyalgia, hip dysplasia, ongoing mental health issues, persistent acid reflux resistant to medication, a history of hemiplegic migraines, but a permanent smile and sense of humour about it all.

I like to get down regularly because I hate being on all the medication. At the moment I’m not on much – propranolol for migraines and anxiety, tramadol for severe pain, lansoprazole for the reflux, and metoclopramide for persistent nausea. This time last year I was on 17 pills twice a day, with a smaller dose at lunch time. I couldn’t even get a pill pack that fit them all in. Rougher times!

The outcome of the appointment was 1) don’t stop taking the propranolol since your having bi-weekly migraines, silly, 2) if they don’t work, please can I experiment on you by trying ACE inhibitors for your migraines, 3) how is your mental health, have you considered giving up social media?

Seeing as I’ve had a bad couple of days – severe anxiety yesterday followed by another migraine today – I’m definitely trying to remember to take the propranolol, although it’s harder when Bryan isn’t at home to remind me. That’s the fibromyalgia’s fault, I’m led to believe. They call it “fibro fog”.

But today I addressed his third concern – would you consider giving up social media. Well actually, it is something I have considered in great depth, and so here are my thoughts, as well as the plan of action I have taken:

  • Sadly, the way I engage the world with my blog is by promoting that on social media. While in the past I have blogged for myself, I’m enjoying the feedback from the community, and it inspires me to share more of my thoughts and ideas with the world.
  • I also have a lot of friends who I cannot see as much, and so social media is the main way I talk to them. Without social media, I’d be cutting off some vital contacts.
  • My biggest issue is trolls, negativity, hating by the trolls, politically motivated and racially motivated hate speech, and competitive assholes to whom I feel it necessary to justify my life to.
  • Today I’ve been through my Facebook and I have unliked over 370 pages, I’ve removed myself from 50+ groups in which the content either triggers my angry side, fuels the drama triangle, or just disinterests me. My next challenge is to remove people with whom I’ve no intention to engage, who post absolute rubbish, and to unfollow the ones I can’t bear to delete but don’t want to hear from as much.

It is a sad time when half of social media is fuelled by hatred and misguided opinion. Most people will know that I hold a heavy pro-vax stance when it comes to my family – but I don’t ram it down anyone’s throat, although I may post about it occasionally if it follows most of the THINK guidelines (true, helpful, inspiring, necessary, kind). And I’m embarrassed to admit I discovered I was a member in a group throwing hatred and shade at anti-vaxxers – although I must point out that I never posted there. There’s a massive difference between disagreeing with someone, and publicly bullying them as was going on in that group. Even if they do post something insane about believing a vaccinated child was killed ‘by the vaccine’ because ‘the heavy metals attracted a car and they got run down’…. yes, I’ve actually read that post, I think the term for that particular young lady is “whackadoodle”. I hope someone enlightens her one day that it doesn’t work that way! Educate, don’t hate.

I’m off to try and sleep now, I’m not sure I’ll do too well due to the migraine nap. I’d really like some feedback today if you don’t mind – do you think social media NEGATIVELY or POSITIVELY affects your mental health, self confidence, body confidence, or anything else? Leave me a comment or drop me an email at stephaniewardofficial@gmail.com. I may contact you about using your comments in a future post!

Goodnight darlings, dream of unicorns and rainbows.

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