The Mighty Logo

When a Hair Stylist Said She Was Happy I Had a Boyfriend Given My 'Situation'

The most helpful emails in health
Browse our free newsletters

I have been in a committed relationship with a wonderful man for four years. He is honestly the best blessing I never knew I needed. When I met him I had medical issues but was nowhere near as sick as I am now. We all know being chronically ill can have a tenuous strain on any and all relationships, especially romantic ones. It can cause all types of issues.

One that was hard for me to get used to was the surprised looks and comments you get from healthy people when they find out we (the chronically ill) are in happy, healthy, loving relationships. You know those looks you get, the comments people make. I’ve heard it all. Someone has told my man before how good of a man he is because he takes care of me. But yesterday I experienced the most offensive comments thus far.


While at the hair salon, a random hair stylist standing next to me watches as my man comes in to kiss me and let me know he is there to get me whenever I am done. After he leaves she turns around and says, “Oh, I’m so happy you have a boyfriend – you know, with your situation and all,” and she points to my cane. As if my cane restricts me from being loved. I guess my “situation,” as she calls it, is that having a cane means I’ve been shunned from society and could never be found attractive.

I could not believe her words. I’ve had people look at me with relief when they find out my illness hasn’t left me alone and rejected by all men, but this shocked me.

After giving this woman a piece of my mind, the anger left and the shock continued to set in. After that passed I realized I was a little sad. Sad that in this day and age someone who may be a little different is chastised. Yes, I am different, but only because I am ill. I did nothing to cause it, I cant do anything to stop it and I have no control over it, but my peers think this means no one would love me. Or I am not worthy of a partner willing to put in the extra work it takes to be with someone chronically ill.

Well, my man? He loves me with a love stronger than many people may ever feel, healthy or not. And my illness does pose some challenges, but in other ways it enhances our relationship. We appreciate the smaller moments most people take for granted. We know what it’s like to spend nights in the hospital and see your significant other on what could be a deathbed. It helps us to love harder.

I decided to write about my experience in the hair shop to hopefully let others who have experienced anything similar know that no matter what people say or think, no matter the looks they give you, the pity they may feel… you deserve to be loved. You deserve that kiss your man gives you, the smile your woman gives you across the room, the love of your spouse. It doesn’t matter if they are your sole caregiver or not. Others’ opinions and pity are their problem – not yours. Don’t let others’ ignorance make you feel like you’re less than or stop you from finding true love. Everyone deserves someone to love. No matter what illness you have or medical device you carry around, you have the God-given right to be loved.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Thinkstock photo via avemario.

Originally published: August 26, 2017
Want more of The Mighty?
You can find even more stories on our Home page. There, you’ll also find thoughts and questions by our community.
Take Me Home