Endometriosis can be a miserable and isolating condition, so it’s important to be happy and stay positive for your partner. Find those things that you can enjoy together no matter how bad the endo gets and have them on standby for when it strikes.
Have your comfort shows or films. My partner and I enjoy a particularly well-known 80s homage show about strange things happening in small-town Indiana. We love this show and know that no matter how much pain she is in, or how miserable she feels, we can find some comfort and joy in these episodes. There are a few similar movie franchises and series that we use to the same ends.
Get some good (endo-friendly) cookbooks. Cooking is a fantastic way to spend time together when your endo-one is feeling low. It is creative, fun, and satisfying, and can be as simple or as elaborate as you want it to be. On top of that, taking an active interest in what you cook and eat may help with managing the symptoms of endometriosis and is a step toward taking control of the condition.
Know your local endo-friendly joints. If the symptoms aren’t too bad you may want to dine out. Get to know which cafés and restaurants in your area have food that agrees with your partner’s endo, and don’t be shy to call and ask about gluten-free, dairy-free, soya-free, or whatever option your partner may need. How long does it take to get there? Will you have to wait around for a table? Is it cool to wear tracksuit bottoms? Important things to know when taking endo out for dinner.
Walk it out. Gentle exercise has been shown to help manage pain and boost mood, and a good walk in a beautiful area is rejuvenating and life-affirming. The length and difficulty of the walk can be tailored to the level of pain or fatigue your partner is suffering, too. It is a great opportunity to chat, catch-up, and reflect on your endometriosis journey together.
Have people over. Inviting people to your home can be a much less draining way of socializing for a fatigued endo sufferer, especially if the guests are bringing the food! Having friends come to you for cozy nights in or fancy dinner parties relieves some of the anxieties of going out during an endo flare-up, and can even be done curled up on the sofa in pajamas.
Most importantly, stay positive and see the funny side. Humor and positivity will go a long way to making this condition more bearable, and as the oft-quoted tenet goes, laughter is the best medicine. However, it is important to be sensitive to your partner’s feelings with this. Just be sure that you aren’t causing offense or making light of serious concerns and difficulties your partner has.
This is a small and non-exhaustive list based solely on the experience of my partner and me. You will find your own things that make you tick, that bring you comfort, and that put smiles on your faces. Treasure these things dearly because they will help you find moments of joy, even when the endo is at its worst.
Note: Endometriosis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Endometriosis News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to endometriosis.