PMS: The Monthly Hate-fest

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I have always been a victim of bad pre-period blues (or should I call them rages?). And they always sneak up on me. A giant zit here and there, a snappish comeback which otherwise would not have left my mouth, or someone reprimanded for something I normally would have let slide. When this happens, all I have to do is check the calendar to know that I’m about to get my period.

I call it my monthly hate-fest because this is the time hormones push sanity aside and completely take over. And I notice things I never noticed before. My husband is more impatient (or maybe I’m the one impatient and he’s reacting to me), my helper is less respectful (or is it me being less respectful when I correct her), and my daughter is even less cooperative (or am I the one with a much shorter fuse?).

I can’t control how I feel. I get irritated so easily, I let words I would never have thought into my head (breastfeeding has a way of keeping me silent because I don’t want to disturb the baby—but I am screaming inside), and I hate my life. My life that I have worked so hard to build, so hard to nourish and care for—my life that I love. I hate myself—the self that I try to build up every day, the self that I try to encourage with equal parts gentleness and determination, the self that I am extremely proud of. And I want to escape. I want to run away. Because I don’t want to unleash this demon on anyone else.

So what is the point of PMS? Why do we have to suffer from insanity once a freaking month? Going crazy once in a while is fine, aren’t we all entitled to a decent, self-indulgent breakdown at least oh, maybe five times in our lives? Or more? But once a month? Like clockwork? Why, God, why? Why the self-loathing? Why the hate-fest?

And here’s what I came up with: So that we can be stronger.

Really?! Are we that weak a gender that we need to work on it every single month? And with that reasoning, does it mean men are either already very strong (yeah, right) or incredibly weak because they don’t get the glorious opportunity to better themselves the way women do every month?

Another idea I came up with: It can be considered self-imposed time out.

Which is something I will definitely put myself on if I were watching myself and my thoughts and could see how, in my mind, I’m slowly destroying everything I care about. So why the hell not?

Every month, at the onset of the dreaded PMS, it is mandated by Mother Nature—who probably experiences it too—that women who have reached a certain age (aka puberty) must take a time out. Or better yet, time off. To be by themselves, to recharge, to cleanse. The angry thoughts, the rages, and the gritty, despicable little hormones will come, armed with everything they’ve got. And we aren’t meant to fight. We’re meant to ride them out by taking a break. This is the best reason I have come up with for PMS. And I dare you to come up with one better. Or maybe I don’t want to hear it today. Try me again next week.