Men vs. Medicine
The painful sound of my husband’s dry, hacking cough woke me in the middle of night. He was tossing and turning, clearly uncomfortable yet somehow still sleeping. Unable to fall back to sleep because of his persistent coughing, I gently nudged him and suggested he take some cough syrup.
“Mmmmm,” he replied, in what I assumed was agreement.
The minutes ticked by but my husband didn’t budge. Cranky and irritated, I elbowed him a bit harder. “Psst…” I whispered. “Your cough is really bad. Please go take some medicine.”
He never got out of bed—and neither did I. I supposed I could’ve retrieved the bottle of cough suppressant from the medicine cabinet and poured some down his throat, but it was 2am, and I was too tired to play nurse.
I wasn’t too tired, however, to be annoyed. What happened was not a unique situation. My husband has a history of not taking medicine when he’s sick, and it’s not because he doesn’t believe in the power of medication. It’s usually because he doesn’t think to take something or because he simply forgets.
Case in point: My husband will come home from work complaining of a headache, so I’ll suggest he pop an ibuprofen. A couple of hours will pass and I’ll notice he’s pressing against his temples, clearly in pain.
“Did you take a pill?” I’ll ask.
“No,” he’ll reply “I forgot.”
Now, I don’t know about you, but when something is bothering me—a headache or a stomachache or a cough—I don’t hesitate to take the appropriate medication. Why be in pain any longer than necessary?
An informal survey of my friends revealed that my husband’s lack of urgency when it comes to self-medicating might actually be a guy thing. “I’m tough, I can deal with the pain,” explained a friend’s husband. “But I’ll eventually take something just so my wife stops bugging me about it.”
When it comes to taking medication, are your husbands forgetful (or uninterested) like mine or are they quick to open a bottle of pain reliever?