PMS is viewed as the bane of the existence of most every woman on the planet (and their families). However, I see it as more of a blessing for us females. Here are the facts:
- No matter what Troy thinks, PMS is real (He once announced on a Men’s panel at MOPS, “I don’t believe in PMS. I mean, you know it’s coming, get a grip.” He wasn’t even out of his 20’s at the time. The older, more experienced men slowly inched their chairs away from him and one even jumped up, right hand in the air like he was having a religions experience, and declared, “I do believe in PMS!” Troy has since “seen the light”).
- PMS is healthy. God in his infinite wisdom decided that the majority of women need an emotional purge once a month. Therefore, He irrigates us with a tidal wave of hormones that flush out all of the junk that has been stuffed for 28 days. After this process you almost always feel fantastic. Yes, men are exempt, but I honestly believe the gift of PMS is one of the reasons we tend to live longer.
- Many people assert (especially men) that when we have a PMS attack, it is over nothing – that the trigger is imagined. Not so. There is always a real trigger; it’s just that we were able to blow it off when we were emotionally stronger, like on, say, day 14. So PMS is how you know that the fact that he hasn’t hugged you in weeks or left his laundry on the floor – just like he always does – needs to finally be dealt with. Think of is as paying an account that is past due…or maybe a healthy day of reckoning.
- Despite the truths of the previous points, it is important that you don’t make any significant life decisions when you are in “your week.” Putting your house on the market because it’s a sty, bullying your husband into marital counseling because he doesn’t appreciate you, depositing the children on the curb for the gypsies to pick up – these are all decisions that should not be made at this time. My advice? Wait a bit. If you still feel the same way about whatever it is after a week or two, it may need looking into (except for the gypsy thing. Never let go of a good tax deduction, and the gypsies I’ve talked with don’t have any government forms to document your donation).
So, what are healthy ways to tame your PMS?
- Keep a record of your cycle. How many times have I tearfully picked up the phone to call a divorce lawyer only to see on our desk calendar that my week has started and then hung up the receiver with an “Oh, yeah…”
- Journal. It is much less damaging to list grievances on paper before vomiting them on family members.
- If necessary, forget your diet. There are times to be legalistic about what you put in your body. This is not one of them. On particularly bad months Troy has been known to throw a Dove bar on the bed and back away slowly, avoiding eye contact. Five minutes later we’re in love again.
- Half a glass of wine can do wonders. Make it red and your heart benefits as well (both your emotional and physical ones).
- Keep bubble paper on hand. Seriously, who can stay in a bad mood after having a go at some bubble paper? And it’s healthier to pop than say, people’s heads.
So, PMS is real, healthy and treatable. Don’t deny that you have it – embrace it – and you will live a long happy life (and so will your family).
Love, Older Wiser You