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Community Perspectives: Narcolepsy in Love, Life, and Relationships

It's no secret in this community that living with narcolepsy and maintaining relationships at the same time can come with unique challenges.

Many people often associate the month of February with Valentine's Day and romantic connections. But the ideas of "love" and "relationships" are so much more than that.

We've gathered together stories, advice, and support from our community members and our Community Health Leaders to celebrate love in all its forms. Read the following poignant and heartwarming insights by clicking the blue buttons labelled "Read the full story," and share your own experiences with love and relationships by voting in the polls at the bottom of the article!

Marriage, family, and parenting

Building and maintaining healthy and happy relationships isn't limited to dating or romance! Community members and Health Leaders have shared what it's like to try to foster relationships with family members and close friends, too. Here are a few stories and pieces of advice they've shared:

Flybum4: "My 16-year-old daughter was struggling tremendously over the past 2 years. And as I watched her, it hit me really hard one day what I was seeing."

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Lindsey Kizer: "I did not receive my narcolepsy diagnosis until about year after I took my vows with my husband. At the time, neither of us knew the health journey we would take just after we celebrated our first wedding anniversary."

Community members who are parents and caring for children while managing their narcolepsy have also shared their stories with us.

"I cried my first day on medication because I finally understood I wasn’t a bad mom — I was just tired!"

"Give yourself grace. My kids and husband know I need a nap every day."

Dating with narcolepsy and hypersomnia

We once asked our Facebook community, "What tips do you have for dating with narcolepsy?" Here are a few of the answers you shared:

"Find someone who is accepting."

"Date another person with narcolepsy. I'm doing it. It's worked great for 4 years."

"Think outside the box and don't put too much stock in movie dates."

"I feel it'd be similar to how I have my friends. They are 100 percent understanding and supportive. If I'm dozing off they ask if I need to take a nap. And if I say I am gonna go lay down and take a nap, they are 100 percent fine with me taking as little or long of a nap as I need. Even when I'm hanging one on one with a person. So, I think if I had a partner who was supportive to that degree, that'd be the best."

A few of our Community Health Leaders have written about dating with narcolepsy, too. Check out their stories and advice below!

Tatiana Corbitt: "There are a variety of strategies I use when dating with narcolepsy that help me advocate for myself while also appropriately tending to new relationships."

Lauryn Craine: "Overall, dating over these last 4 years has been a mess. But I'm still hopeful I'll find someone who likes taking naps with me."

Kerly Joy Bwoga: "Dating someone with narcolepsy can bring unique challenges, but with understanding, communication, and empathy, you can build a strong and fulfilling relationship."

How do you maintain relationships with narcolepsy?

Share your experience in our community polls below, and leave a comment to tell us more!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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