Though an increasing amount of the general population is experiencing migraines, there’s still serious social and medical stigma surrounding the condition.
A lot of people aren’t even fully aware of the symptoms because of this, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor matt2838822 experienced his first migraine while at his fiancée’s family’s barbecue party, only for his partner to belittle him over his symptoms.
But when he heard his fiancée trash-talking him behind his back, the Original Poster (OP) decided to leave the party altogether.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for leaving my fiancée with her parents at a barbecue and going
The OP recently attended a BBQ with his fiancée at her parents’ home.
“I (28 Male) am engaged to a 27-year-old woman we’ll call Anna.”
“Anna’s parents had a barbecue about 45 minutes away, and we had agreed to attend.”
“Everything that morning went okay, we drove there and chatted, hung out, etc.”
The OP began to feel ill during the party.
“About an hour into it, I started feeling off. I had felt fine previously but started rapidly getting a really bad headache.”
“I attributed it to both the cigarette smoke coming from her family members and these weird-smelling outdoor candles they had everywhere.”
“I went out to my car, grabbed some Tylenol, and came back; didn’t say anything and ate some food.”
“Half an hour later and my head was beyond killing me and making me nauseous.”
“I got up to find Anna, who was talking with some relatives, and asked her if she was okay with leaving a bit early, because I had a massive headache that kept getting worse.”
“She immediately got mad and said, ‘We just got here a little over an hour and a half ago, we aren’t leaving already. Stop being dramatic and sit down for a bit.'”
“I didn’t argue with her or really respond but instead went into the house to use the bathroom and splash some water on my face.”
But then he overheard his fiancée talking.
“When I was on my way out, I heard Anna talking to her parents in the doorway.”
“They must have asked her why she looked upset and I heard her say, ‘I guess Matt doesn’t want to be here, since he’d rather leave than spend time with my family. I swear, he’s so selfish, I was looking forward to this all week just for him to ruin it for me.'”
“Before I thought about it, I walked out, looked at Anna who was still pouting, said, ‘I’m going home, I’ll see you tonight,’ got in my car, and left.”
“The drive home was miserable.”
“I ended up puking when I got home and found out later that I was having a migraine, which isn’t something I’ve ever had before, so I had no idea how to deal with that.”
“Anyways, I got an ice pack and finally fell asleep.”
A big argument ensued.
“A couple of hours later, Anna came storming in and screaming at me, saying that her parents had to drive all of this way to bring her home and I was a selfish a**hole.”
“She grabbed her bag, said she was going to her friend’s house, and left.”
The OP didn’t feel he deserved the reaction he received.
“Am I the a**hole for leaving her there?”
“I wasn’t going to force her to leave or dampen the mood.”
“When I asked her originally if she wanted to leave early, I was respectful and not pushy about it, it was a simple question.”
“If anything, I would have laid down there for a few minutes in their spare room. It was hearing what she said that I found hurtful.”
“I’ve always been very present with her and her family. Holidays, get-togethers; I’m always there and we always have a great time. This type of thing doesn’t happen, which is why I don’t understand the huge blow-up she had.”
The OP felt like his fiancée was changing.
“I didn’t realize how quickly she would say these things about me, and it makes me wonder how often she says them.”
“She tends to have ‘temper tantrums’ often, and I usually just let her go or give her what she wants, but this one took the cake, and to me, it felt like a huge overreaction.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some thought the OP should use this as an opportunity to end the engagement.
“As someone who suffers from migraines, I understand how you felt completely. When I have them, I have to lie down in a dark room with low sound until I feel better. They usually start as ocular migraines or migraines with aura in which I see zigzags for at least 20 minutes and I can’t look at screens because everything is blurry.”
“I have to take prescribed medication or else I will throw up and can barely leave my bed. I also can’t drink coffee because it’ll trigger them too. They usually wipe me out for at least a day or two.”
“If my SO (significant other) acted like that when I was feeling the way I feel, I’d be done. Nobody asks for migraines and I would gladly have any procedure that magically eliminates them for good.”
“If she couldn’t even be bothered to understand that you were sick, then you don’t need her. F**k migraines but f**k her more, OP!”
“NTA.” – Straight_Art7483
“NTA. This was a blessing in disguise. This was your wake-up call. You have been ignoring or rationalizing her having ‘temper tantrums’ often and I usually just let her go or give her what she wants.'”
“What she SHOULD have done when you told her you were ill was to show compassion. Instead, this was all about her. Run, don’t walk away from this relationship.” – patjames904
“NTA. Migraines are terrible.”
“You caught Anna s**t-talking to her parents about you and she’s surprised you left?”
“Reconsider the engagement, because a barbecue is more important to her than your health, and you have learned she gets through life by putting down other people to make herself look like a victim.” – bubblyshawl
“Fiancée sound like a walking migraine. NTA.” – juliaskig
“My fiancé has horrible migraines, and one of the triggers is strobe lights. If we go to a concert with strobe light I immediately cover her eyes like a good partner would do.” – mrik85
“I’d rethink the engagement if she cares so little for your health.” – Automatic_Yoghurt_29
“But also, a sudden migraine in a 28-year-old male with no history is abnormal as all h**l and counts as a medical emergency on its own.”
“He could have had a blood clot, aneurysm, tumor, severe infection in his brain, or meningitis. He may still have one of these; migraines are a process of elimination usually.”
“Someone (like his fiancée) should have driven him straight to the ER or called an ambulance.” – officially_anxious
“If she is willing to trash OP to her family so easily and completely dismiss his concerns about his health, she is not a keeper. Change the locks while she’s gone.” – nolan358
“I have sensitivities to candles and smoke. I have never had a partner who wasn’t supportive and understanding of that.”
“NTA. Protect your health. And find a better girlfriend.” – Lurker_the_Pip
Others agreed and said the OP was lucky to have driven home safely.
“She could’ve easily offered to drive him home and then go back to the BBQ.” – Alze-Pang
“While it’s usually my peripheral vision that goes weird when a migraine is coming on, sometimes it’s my central vision.”
“That has happened when I’m driving a few times, and it makes for dangerous driving. (When it has happened, I’ve been able to pull over and let someone else take over.)” – Trini1113
“My migraines give me severe lightheadedness and these weird strobe feelings that mess with my eyesight!”
“Also, as soon as I feel ill, my body’s natural defense is, ‘S**t, we’re sick, sleep it off!’ and so much so, I fell asleep at a Guns N Roses concert during the guitar solo for ‘Paradise City’ because my period cramps were stronger than usual, and this happens with my migraines, too.”
“So driving would be an incredible no-no for me.” – Wolfpawn
“I was 29 when I was diagnosed with severe chronic migraines. The pain never goes away. I’m 31 and currently on botox 4 times a year but even that isn’t helping anymore.”
“When they get really bad, my vision goes black and half my body goes numb. It’s not fun.”
“It’s happened twice while I was driving. I pulled over both times and my husband took me to the ER both times.”
“After the 2nd one, my husband, doctor, and I decided it was better if I no longer get to drive.”
“Another time it happened while I was walking down some stairs. I fell and hurt my ankle and wrist.” – Mean_Layer_9340
“This dude was lucky he didn’t crash his car or hurt someone while he was driving home in blinding pain. Let me be blunt: YOU COULD HAVE DIED, DUDE.”
“You may not feel threatened by your girlfriend’s tantrums, but the fact of the matter was she should have driven you home or to the ER if your migraine got worse on the drive.”
“The fact that the one time you were disabled by pain, she was too selfish to be there for you is ludicrously telling.”
“To be blunt again: THE FIELD OF F**KS SHE HAS TO GIVE FOR YOU IS EMPTY, DUDE. NTA.” – Whole_Recover_8911
After reading the comments, the OP shared a bleak update.
“It’s unfortunate that I’ve come here to update this way, but Anna and I finally had what I believe is a conversation that got to the root of the issue.”
“I won’t go into every word and detail, but there is a cause for her recent animosity.”
“When we first met, I had an office job while going to school in the evenings, and I did okay. I had an apartment of my own, and she seemed happy.”
“I eventually started my own business and I’m not rich, but I do pretty well for myself. I have my own house, everything I need.”
“Recently there’s been an uptick in work, and we’ve been bringing in more money than before.”
It seemed the couple had miscommunicated about work.
“After talking with Anna, she was upset because she thought I would support her wanting to stay home instead of finding her new recent job.”
“I thought she wanted a new job, she seemed excited to do something she enjoyed. I didn’t push her too hard or demand she work, I just expected she would want to, as we are both equals more or less.”
“She told me that she told her parents about my higher income, and they were surprised she still had to work, as her mother has never had a job before.”
“I didn’t know what to say, and I still don’t.”
The OP admittedly wasn’t sure what to do about the future.
“I told her we should take some time apart for the week while I focus on work, and we can figure out where to go from here.”
“After reading all of these comments, I’ve decided that I’m not okay with just telling her to quit her job. I am not forcing her to work, but I’m not welcoming the idea of her depending on me financially in this way at this time.”
“She’s upset, I’m upset, and apparently her parents are upset, which I knew nothing about, and I feel very blank.”
“Looking back, a lot of her tantrums revolved around money and things.”
“That’s not something I think I want to be a part of, she wasn’t this way when we met.”
The subReddit was just as lost as the OP about his fiancée’s behavior, and they were both grateful that he had made it home safely and concerned at his partner’s apathy in the face of a potentially serious medical situation.
But in light of the OP’s update, it seemed there might be an underlying issue that would cause his partner to potentially take issue with any disagreement, even needing to leave a party while ill.