Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Is PMS a real excuse anymore?

I'm a woman. That being said, I am one of the 3 billion people on Earth unfortunate enough to get a period. No, it's not fun. And for those still curious: YES, PMS is very real. It is real and it is dire.

Amidst cramps, bloating, crazy dreams, moodiness, hypersensitivity, and a condition I have lovingly and sophisticatedly labeled "ouch boob", though, we've gotta hand it to the people who take care of us. Really. Swallow your pride and ignore the fact that you might, in fact, painfully carry and give birth to the children of the person you primarily take it out on and take it down a few notches. You want to kill me right now, but just listen.

The PMS thing has been around for eons. As poorly developed as we still are, and as painfully slow as evolution is (for both sexes, ahem), we are aware of PMS. It is routine. And to every routine, we can adapt, can we not?

I do know that, regardless of our awareness, it can be difficult. Like, really difficult. And sometimes, we take the idea of our obvious PMS and we run with it. We let its known presence affect us even more. This, my friends, is a cop out. PMS does not give someone a free pass to be abusive or downright bitchy to anyone else. If you do, then you own up to it, and you try your hardest to not do it again.

The best thing to do when dealing with PMS around a partner, friend, or family member is to let them know. Honestly, it's best for both parties to be aware. Not only will they take your monthly quirks with a grain of salt, but they'll be less apt to say something to provoke you. If you have certain things that you do to help alleviate PMS, do them--granted that they're healthy. (Bleeding out of your vagina doesn't give you the right to go binge eat, chain smoke, or break into cars.) If you need space from someone, ask.

These are just my thoughts, but I'd appreciate yours, too. I hope I didn't send anybody into a feminist tizzy or a desperate search for amenorrhÅ“a, though. That would not be good. I'd definitely need to remove my fake doctor prefix.

--Dr. O.

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