Mid November... the time of year for early Christmas adverts, romantic late autumnal scenery, walks in the park and past Christmas number 1s being prematurely played in department stores.
Like Valentines Day, a joy if you're in a relationship... not so great however if you're not.
Along with the discrimination at job interviews, one of the most common side effects of a lack of epilepsy awareness is when it comes to relationships.
But I suppose for somebody without epilepsy, why would you take on the baggage of the condition? The learning how to deal with generalised seizures, getting used to seeing someone take potentially multiple tablets to control their condition every night... nah, too much hassle!
...If you're reading this thinking: "WHAT! THIS IS RIDICULOUS, HOW DARE SOMEONE THINK THAT ABOUT ME?!" Then you're right. They shouldn't.
If you're reading this thinking: "WHAT! THIS IS RIDICULOUS, HOW DARE SOMEONE THINK THAT ABOUT ANYONE?!" Then you're right... and there's light at the end of the tunnel.
In international cities like London, I think it can be worse sometimes. There's a fast and loose culture of finding the perfect person and I suppose when there's so many single people in the one place, I can understand why someone would be freaked out and move on quickly, because you're not 'perfect'. But it doesn't make what that person did right.
I'm happy to be open when I say that many of the relationships I've had in the past have been easier because my boyfriend at the time had a link to neurology, or had a medical condition himself, so they weren't phased by my epilepsy. But I've also had that look when I've got round to explaining about my condition... or the dreaded text that night, or the next morning. It's horrible and it's unfair, but in a funny way, it has a silver lining to it as well.
For every arse - male or female, who can't deal with the fact you take anti-epileptic medication, or that there's a chance you could have the seizure, there's the good guy or awesome girl, who isn't shallow enough to look at you as a label. In a way, disclosing your condition is a very quick way of sorting out someone who isn't worth wasting time on.
I generally take the opinion that people with epilepsy can be brave, resilient and more sensitive. So why wouldn't someone want to go out with someone as awesome as you?
The biggest thing to remember though is this:
Not explaining what to do if you had a seizure, or worrying about wearing your medical ID, could be dangerous for you. So not only are you making sure you're going out with someone worth your time, but you're keeping yourself safe too.
Above anything else, you have to think about yourself and your own safety first. It's never worth it to take a risk because of a group of people who are shallow and will likely end up worse off than you in terms of a relationship.
You're awesome and that means every part of you, so you should never be ashamed of any of it...
...it's what makes you, You.