Periodically Cranky Wife

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Your head is pounding, your back is aching, and you have cramps that make you feel like your insides are being wrung out like a wet rag. Sounds like someone has her period! And because you're suffering so, you feel like everyone around you should too, especially the love of your life: your husband. You may think that it's unfair that you're plagued with this monthly nuisance, and resent the fact that your husband has no comparable affliction to endure, but being mean simply because you’re menstruating is just plain wrong.

Come on ladies. We've spent the last century fighting for all the rights that men enjoy, and we're still playing the PMS card? Get over yourselves! So you don't feel well. And you're super cranky. And every living being is annoying you beyond explanation. AND you're so bloated that you feel like a tick that's about to burst. So what? Suck it up and put a smile on your face. Be pleasant and charming despite the fact that you feel like snapping your husband’s head off every time he dares to speak to you.

Imagine if your husband treated you like dirt for the better part of a week - twelve times a year! Say his favorite team lost the big game, or he had a bad day at work, and what does he do? He comes home and chews you out for breathing the wrong way, or not folding his socks right, or for simply being alive! You’d be hurt, right? Well just because you married the toughest, manliest man in the world, or so you think, it doesn’t mean he has no feelings. He can be hurt just as easily as you can. Give the guy a break!

So, I know what you’re thinking. Being nice to your husband during your period is easier said than done. The last thing you want to think about when you’re feeling emotionally and physically miserable, is coddling his fragile ego. But the simple fact remains, it’s not his fault you’re menstruating, and therefore, he should not be punished just because it’s that time of the month. There are several strategies you can use to prevent the monthly smack down you inflict on your hubby.

First of all, get control of your emotions. It may be best to pretend your husband is a stranger when you have your period. Talk to him with the same politeness and grace you would with someone you’ve just met. Even though you may feel nothing but hostility towards him, put a smile on your face and be cordial. Of course, it won’t be easy, but once you come out of your hormone-induced insanity, you’ll be glad you didn’t leave a path of marital destruction behind you. 

Pamper yourself. There’s no better time to treat yourself like gold than when you’re feeling your worst. Long, hot baths can be soothing to both body and mind. Surround yourself with scented candles and play calming music to increase your level of relaxation. When you’re finished in the tub, wrap yourself up in a plush bathrobe and sit with a heating pad behind you to reduce the back pain often associated with having your period. Have a hot cup of herbal tea and rest. If you’re not feeling more tranquil after this ritual, there may be no hope for you! 

Exercise. It may seem counter-intuitive to go pound the pavement when you’re tired and achy, but a brisk walk can release enough feel-good hormones to counteract the nasty ones that crop up during that time of the month. For an even gentler, and perhaps more therapeutic workout, go for a swim. Yoga, Pilates, bike-riding, and dancing are other wonderful options you can enjoy to take the sting out of these few rough days. 

Create. You’re mind is swimming with all kinds of thoughts and feelings when the hormones have taken over. Instead of barking at the love of your life, channel your passion into something productive and fruitful. Paint a picture, write a story, bake some sugary treats, or cook up some salty ones. Going outside and beautifying your garden checks both exercise and creativity off the list. Accomplishing something positive can make you feel better in more ways than one. 

Nap. If you truly have no energy to do any of the above, then take a nap for heaven’s sake! Not only will your body get the rest it craves when you’ve got your “friend”, but you’ll also be unconscious and unable to yell at your man for a few hours!  If you’re one of those gals who wakes up on the wrong side of the bed, rest in your room until you feel well enough to be charming and pleasant to your guy.

In the end, if nothing works to make you feel better, just let it all out. If you’re married to a man who’s understanding and sympathetic, he’ll get that this is a temporary thing that will pass in a few days. After all, you ARE suffering, and of course you’re not going to be on the top of your game when you’re down for the count. Just remind him that when HE’S not feeling well, he acts like a big baby, and you have to deal with his misery until he recovers. 

If you’re a man who’s married to a woman who menstruates, you can make your wife’s monthly curse go by much more smoothly by being an extra good husband during these rough times. Help your wife out a little more with the household chores and parenting duties. Think before you speak, and have a little more patience than you usually do. Offer to rub your wife’s feet or shoulders, and maybe even pamper her a little bit. Buy her some chocolate, or surprise her with a bouquet of flowers. Soothe the savage beast that is her period, and you reap the benefits of a happier, calmer, sweeter wife. And remember, you’ll get some practice in for when she’ll REALLY be cranky…during menopause!

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