Chronic sensitivity to light restricts many portions of our lives, but it does not take away our collective sense of humor as patients. We connect, commiserate, laugh, cry, share our frustrations, and more as we manage the daily ups and downs of living with the symptom (as well as the conditions that cause it).
Memes in particular put a fun spin on—and in some cases even bring broader awareness to—the most common and relatable experiences of light sensitivity. These are some of our favorite memes that our team created to describe what we go through every day.
1. Light Sensitivity Pain
It can be a challenge to accurately describe with words the discomfort associated with chronic light sensitivity so that someone else understands it. So naturally an exaggerated visual representation—as shown by this meme—can paint a better picture of the eye pain and other symptoms that come along with photophobia.
2. Even Our Doctors?!
For some reason, one of those shared frustrations faced by photophobic persons revolves around the lighting in their doctors’ office. How ironic that the place where we go to find healing from our light sensitivity has become the very spot that brings us more pain. This meme uses an iconic Star Trek expression to drive that point home nicely.
3. Dark Mode For Life
Dark mode settings and apps for our smartphones may be one of the better inventions for photophobia, and we just want to extend it to the rest of our lives. Is that too much to ask? Judging by the reaction to this meme on social media, a lot of us seem to think the answer is no.
4. Costco...Enough Said
You know you have photophobia problems when those bright, fluorescent lights inside Costco hit you the second you walk in the door. Dizziness, blurry vision and/or headache pain all can rear their ugly heads in the store, but sometimes we just have to go! Here is a fun compromise to stay protected for the next time.
5. All Of The Lights
We love the holidays as much as the next person, but this time of year does lean toward brighter surroundings. And it seems like holiday light displays are becoming more and more elaborate with enhanced effects that dim, flash and everything in between as well as bring out the worst in our sensitivities. Leave it to Michael Scott of “The Office” to put the perfect face on what we’re already thinking.
6. Bird Box Problems
The Netflix show Bird Box made significant waves in pop culture recently. The premise centered on a mysterious entity that would prey on anyone who looked upon it—thus forcing people to blindfold themselves. Naturally this concept leant itself well to those of us who have been avoiding the less-mysterious, yet equally-painful light our whole lives.
7. Instant Migraine
Who hasn’t felt the immediate and sudden pain of photophobia when face-to-face with a bright light? In this case, the opening of a window to let a little sun in backfires—triggering the onset of a migraine attack and creating a ‘head nodding’ meme for all of us light-sensitive people.
8. Car Headlights, No Thank You
You really haven’t been initiated into the photophobia club until you have had an eyeful of bright LEDs from an oncoming car at night. It seems like car manufacturers make them with the express purpose of disrupting our lives and shooting terrible pain into our eyes and brains. And naturally, an adorable dog would be the best character to communicate this on our behalf.
9. Like A Vampire
People who are sensitive to light share a common characteristic with the undead: any exposure to brightness causes MAJOR problems. So of course when Halloween comes around, and everyone is excited about dressing up as vampires, we like to remind the world that we have been that way for years.