10. Return of the dreaded PMS
Pre-menstrual syndrome is real. It tends to be used as an explanation for moody behavior among girls and women. Men refer to it in a derogatory tone if a woman is short-tempered with them. But those who experience it will tell you that it goes far beyond being in a bad mood. PMS is a set of symptoms some girls and women feel somewhere in the final ten days before they menstruate.
PMS symptoms cover a broad spectrum. They include a bloated feeling around the uterus. Breasts may feel swollen, tender, and sensitive. A severe headache may be experienced. Some girls and women report sudden, irregular food cravings. Mood swings are common, and so is feeling just plain sad. You may be prone to sudden outbursts of anger, followed by longer bouts of weeping. Television advertisements can reduce you to tears. Something a peer says which would normally not bother you sets you off.
The constant fluctuation of hormone levels in the body during the different stages of the menstrual cycle is the cause of PMS. When you are on birth control, the fact that your hormones are controlled means that you’re unlikely to have PMS. So, you might find yourself awake at midnight, crying, and looking in the freezer for ice-cream soon after you go off the pill. There is a good chance that if you had PMS before the pill, you might have PMS after the pill.
If your PMS is so bad that you have suicidal thoughts or are prone to outbursts of violence, you need to see a doctor. Being a bit irritable and teary-eyed is one thing, but severe symptoms need urgent intervention.