I know the cause

Today, I woke up with a migraine. I’ve had trouble with migraines in the past, but recently they had left me alone — until the past few months. I think part of the reason for these migraines is hormonal, but I believe there’s another reason.

People have often told me that I am an unusually strong and composed person. No matter what happens, I rarely let it show on the outside. This is very typical, though, for people who have experienced domestic abuse. That abusive relationship taught me to be quiet and composed, the “never let ‘em see you sweat” kind of attitude. No matter what I felt on the inside, I had to come across as mild-mannered and meek. Any sign of confidence or strength was a threat to my abuser.

But I was — am — a naturally strong person, so this “walking the line” between my true, strong self and this outward appearance to him of submission created serious inner turmoil. Inner turmoil compounded by the outer turmoil of living with an abusive husband, of course.

Now in the recovery process, I’m hit, pardon the expression, with migraines. But in addition to hormonal fluctuations, I know what’s causing them.