Getting the flu is truly, truly horrible. Ask anyone who had it last year and they’ll tell you, there’s not much they wouldn’t do to avoid getting struck down again.
There is however one thing that just might be worse than getting the flu yourself – and that’s when your partner gets it.
Because when one person in a relationship gets sick, you both get sick.
Need proof? Here are the 10 emotional stages every couple goes through trying (and often failing) to dodge the flu during the cooler months. Any of these sound achingly familiar?
1. Casually bringing up flu season in conversation.
“Gee, remember how bad the last flu season was?”
“Everyone at work is starting to get sick, it’s horrible.”
“This flu season is meant to be even worse than last years’, right?”
The first step to making it out of flu season easily is acknowledging its existence. Some are more reluctant to do this than others, hence you will start dropping mentions of it and how nasty last years’ was into casual conversation. You hope this will have a brainwash-like effect and your partner will book in a flu shot on their own. This, of course, is highly unlikely, which brings us to…
2. Reminding your partner to get their flu shot.
It's common knowledge almost nobody remembers to book in their flu shot. That's why you, the loving and thoughtful person that you are, will be there to remind your partner to book in theirs.
Three weeks later, you will discover they still haven't made their appointment with the pharmacist or GP, so you'll decide to take a more assertive approach.
3. Reminding them again. And again. And twice more.
This stage involves annoying your partner with incessant, unrelenting nagging. Text messages, calendar reminders, email invites, Facebook messages, tagging them in videos about how bad the flu is, embarrassing post-it notes, more text messages, text messages from their mum you may or may not have had a hand in...
Eventually, they will sign up for their flu shot out of spite.
4. Forcing them to go to the doctor.
So your partner is now sick but is in denial, huh? There's only a finite number of sniffs one can hear before it becomes too much.
At this point - give or take 53 sniffs - you will tell your partner in no uncertain terms they must drag their sniffly nose off to the doctors tomorrow. Or else.
5. The quarantine phase.
Once the sickness has been confirmed by a GP, it's time to go into quarantine mode.
The sick specimen will be confined to a small isolated space while the rest of the house is doused in disinfectant spray.
On the TV remote. Door handles. The disinfectant spray can with another can of disinfectant spray.
No surface will be spared. Because there's no way you'll be getting sick too.
6. Stocking up on all the medicines.
Next is a trip to the pharmacy where you'll do a stockpile of all the medicines. The cold and flu section will become your second home, and a beacon of health, wellness and vitality.
7. Doting on their every need.
At this stage your nurturing side will kick in, compelling you to wait on your partner hand and foot. They want chicken soup? You will (attempt) to make it from scratch, only the best for your loved one.
They want Vicks rubbed onto their chest in anti-clockwise circular motions? You shall ask for how long.
You also might start talking exclusively in baby voice for no apparent reason.
8. Resenting them and their flu.
The above phase will last for approximately 11 to 12 hours before it is replaced by a strong sense of resentment.
Why did they have to get sick now? Why aren't they getting better already? So inconsiderate, didn't they remember you have a huge week at work? You did tell them, like, four times. Why are they being such a sook?
Please, make it stop. Image: Giphy.
9. Planning a health kick.
After realising how much you've been taking your health for granted, you will then proceed to overhaul your entire lifestyle.
Every trace of your former junk food, late-night snacks and frozen meals life must go in the bin, replaced by organic green, leafy, locally sourced and carbon neutral vegetables.
You will also suggest getting your daily step count up by walking to and from work, and around the block during ad breaks.
10. Getting sick yourself.
Despite all your best efforts, the cycle begins again because you will inevitably get sick too.
Unless you get that flu shot before winter kicks in. Yes, let's try and avoid step 10 at all costs!
What's your best tip for tackling flu season? Do you have a flu-busting home remedy that always works a treat? Hit us with your thoughts below!
This content was created with thanks to our brand partner TerryWhite Chemmart.
Because your health is our priority, we offer a number of different health services right here in the pharmacy. Our approachable and accessible pharmacists also provide professional assistance for many different health and wellbeing issues. TerryWhite Chemmart, helping to keep you Alive & Well.