NOTE: An updated response to comments has been posted at June 26th Migraine & Headache Awareness Month Post – Walking it Back.
The June 26, 2018 Migraine & Headache Awareness Month Social Media Challenge was inspired by a quote from the 33rd U.S. President, Harry S Truman:
It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.
Let’s face it. Working hard to accomplish a goal is most satisfying when we are recognized and rewarded for our efforts. Over the past 15 years, many patient advocates have worked very hard on our behalf. Some get more credit than others. Some have had their ideas and contributions co-opted by others without acknowledgement. Newcomers, eager to get involved, have unwittingly tried to “reinvent the wheel” or dismantle cherished traditions before learning the history of Migraine and headache patient advocacy.
What do you know about the history of Migraine & Headache Awareness Month or the Social Media Challenge? Do you know how our awareness color was chosen and how our specific shade of purple came to be? There’s a lot of awareness activity going on this month. Sometimes, it’s coordinated. Sometimes it’s just noise. When we work together, coordinating our efforts and unifying our voice, much more can be accomplished.
If you are working with a specific awareness activity, in what ways can you better align your efforts with the origins of MHAM?
Ways to participate
- Share this post on your social media profiles. Personalize the post by sharing your response to today’s challenge.
- Respond to the challenge by commenting below.
- Write a blog post, responding to today’s challenge. When published, share the link to your post in the comments below and we’ll promote your blog’s participation in the #MHAM2018 Social Media Challenge.
- Don’t forget to invite your friends to take the #MHAM2018 Social Media Challenge, too!
Want to know more?
- View the full list of this year’s daily challenges.
- Discover the history of National Migraine & Headache Awareness Month
The #MHAM2018 Challenge is a project of MigraineDisease.org.
Thank you all for sharing your thoughts and concerns. Please see our apology and response at https://migrainewarriors.org/awareness/advocacy/june-26th-migraine-headache-awareness-month-post-walking-it-back/.
I personally have respected you for years, but this post comes off as condescending. Do I create my own content? Yes. Does it accomplish anything? Yes. Have I directed people to your challenges and content? Yes.
As a content creator myself, I have always given credit where it is due. Newcomers and their own initiatives have their place as well, and they don’t necessarily have to be part of this one to make an impact.
That doesn’t make them ‘noise.’
I know the history. Teri and Tammy, you have been my advocate heroes for years. I still admire all you’ve done.
Migraine is as different and as individual as we all are. If there is no one-size-fits-all migraine, why should advocacy be any different ?
That our voices are heard is what matters.
But my voice is my own. I won’t be dictacted to as to how I use it.
We are truly sorry that it came off as condescending. In fact, we’re writing an entry to apologize and try to make amends.
Thank you for your honesty,
This article was not intended to “take pot shots” at anyone nor was it written to disparage anyone. We know and work with many young, eager advocates with fresh ideas who are quite effective. It’s about knowing the history and building on it rather than trying to recreate what’s already been done. As for our definition of “noise” — it’s really quite simple. When we all speak with one voice, we are most effective. Some recent examples of effective advocacy include the letter writing campaign to ICER, Shades for Migraine, and the current outrage over Elle Magazine’s Instagram post. We are stronger and more effective when we all work together for the same goal. Our efforts (both new and old) become “noise” (i.e. counterproductive and distracting) when we engage in profanity, stigmatize each other, or purposefully take actions that are not in concert with current efforts. One example of “noise” is when advocates make a conscious choice to avoid joining in on nationwide efforts, such as National Migraine and Headache Awareness Month which has a specific theme each year. The most effective use of our efforts each June is to join the established activities and use the official theme and images. Use of themes or images from previous years or creating our own creates confusion, not a cohesive message.
I am not quite sure what the point of this post this. The post leaves me feeling like you would prefer that us “new advocates” not participate unless we fit into your view of what advocacy is. I though we were an inclusive group, but obviously I was wrong, unless that isn’t how it was intended. If it wasn’t , maybe you should edit your post to be less condescending.
Indeed I would like to know the answer to that question as well, how can advocacy be considered “noise”? Taking pot shots at the younger generation of advocates, is unfair and wrong. I see no set of rules in your piece, for cherished traditions of Migraine and Headache Advocacy. Times they do change and we need a dedicated, younger generation, with energy and love for advocacy, to carry on the torch. They should be encouraged, not put down! No one can remain top dog forever, who’s taking credit now?!
I’m curious what types of advocacy are consider to be “noise.”