Her Period and You – A few Survival Tips

 

 

Re-posted from a previous post…..

Yes, I’m going where few men dare to go. Believe me, it took some time to talk myself into doing this post, but here I am. Now why would a guy do a blog post about a woman’s period? Well, because if you’re married (and I’m assuming you are if you’re reading my blog), let’s just say your wife’s period tends to “effect” you also (like causing you to hide in the garage for 3 or 4 days). So, what is it about that time of the month that strikes fear into the most hardened “manly men”? It could be the thought of your wife turning into an irrational, irritable ball of emotions, but I think it’s mostly because we don’t understand itAt all. So in the interest of being a “student of our wives”, let’s delve into this “terrifying subject” that few men are brave enough to think about – let alone address – and see if we can’t learn how to at least support her through it, and not lose our minds in the process. Ready? (Um, why are you still hiding behind that chair? You realize I can see you right?) Here goes…

Now obviously I don’t know ANYTHING first hand about periods, but my wife sure does, and after a few years of dreading that time each month, I decided to actually ask her some questions about how she feels during “that time”, and what I could do to help her get through them better, and with less frustration aimed at me. Here’s what I found out – They don’t like them either – You think you’re wife’s period is hard on you? Try being the one going through it! Without mentioning the obvious effects, there’s the bloating, cramping, back pain, and need we mention being the passenger on the runaway rollercoaster of emotions that they can’t find a way off of? Doesn’t sound like something I’d volunteer for.

Don’t run the other way – I know this is like saying to “run towards the house fire, not away”, but understand this – most times when they are “going off” about some little thing, and acting like it’s this HUGE issue, it all comes down to a self-esteem thing. Right now their hormones have them feeling like they aren’t doing well at anything, and everything they do is failing or not working right. So your wife yelling at you about putting one white sock in the dark load of laundry, is really her saying that she is upset at herself that she didn’t get the laundry done, and you had to help with it. I know, you might have you read that last sentence again, but according to my lovely wife, that is how they feel. A normal man’s response to this would be to either blow up back at her, or go “whatever” and try to stay away from her as much as possible. Here’s where we mess up though! Instead – what she needs is for you to go up to her and put your arms around her and say something like “it’s ok hon, I love you”. Remember, her acting out is her insecurity about the issue, so what she needs from you is to re-assure her, and tell her that it’s going to be ok. Now I can hear you saying “are you crazy?! You want me to go up to my wife who is currently yelling at me about the smallest issue, and give her a hug?” Yes I am! I KNOW it’s crazy hard to do, but this is marriage, remember? This isn’t a walk in the park. She knows she’s being irrational and making no sense at all, but right now it’s how she is crying out for you to reassure her. If you run the other way, it’s just going to make it worse.

Realize she’s not herself right now – This is a big one for us guys. As guys we tend to take every thing literally, regardless of what time of the month it is. So when your wife says something like “I never have any money to spend for myself, you always buy whatever you want” during her period, don’t go out and put a “For Sale” sign on the boat. Ask her about it in an hour, and she will probably have totally changed her mind, or brush it off like it was no big deal – leaving you totally confused because what she was just making a huge issue of, is now “no big deal”. Say hello to hormones. During her period, my wife says that there are times she feels “normal”, and other times she feels like she’s not herself at all. We have to keep reminding ourselves that this is the case, and if she makes a comment about a large issue that your “I’m going to fix it” personality wants to jump in and fix right away, wait until after she’s done with her period to bring it up again and see if it really needs addressed.

Do the simple stuff – Show her that you care about her not feeling well at the moment. Sure, it’s easier to just grit our teeth and close our eyes until it’s over, but is that being a servant? Remember the whole “sickness and health” part? Warm up a heating pad for her back, help with the housework, do the dishes, cook dinner. These are all simple little things, but they mean a lot to our wives.

There! We made it through! I told you it wouldn’t be as bad as you thought. Or maybe it was. Regardless, at least you’re a little better prepared to deal with it. Oh, and don’t be afraid to ask your wife what would be a help to HER when those days come around every month. Each woman is different, but the principle remains; just because it’s a hard topic, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be willing to help. We need to stop hiding out, and start helping out. It might not be easy, but you’ll be glad you did. 

    • Kim
    • March 13th, 2014

    Great post! Thanks for covering this subject so well!
    I’ve never commented before, but I had to comment about this.
    It is a very difficult time of the month for me (generally the week before) and I have noticed that I always seem to need one good yelling day before I start, which I hate! But it is pretty much an inevitability that every little thing which annoyed me somewhat during the month becomes a HUGE deal that week. And I know that, rationally, but can’t seem to respond to it rationally during that awful week. I am taken over by hormones and just try to ride it out.
    It’s almost like being in labor (the week before) and then giving birth (when the period starts).
    I’ve done a lot to educate my husband so he will understand that it’s not him that’s to blame, it’s me. I think that is the biggest thing we women need to get across to our men. That goes for any other issues I’m having that are not his fault, too. Sometimes I just don’t feel good, and if I don’t explain what’s going on he takes it personally. So I always try to remove the mystery. It does a world of good.
    I thought this graphic on Pinterest was a good representation of what it feels like for us women when our periods are coming up.
    http://www.pinterest.com/pin/343751384028069913/

  1. I especially appreciate the analogy of running toward a house fire instead of away from, don’t run the other way. If my husband just wraps his arms around me silently, it has a calming effect. We may act abrasive when Aunt Flo appears, but really we are a tender mess on the inside. Loving gestures and lots of grace go a long way.

  2. First, let me say that I thoroughly enjoy your blog! I found you via a friend’s FB post and subscribed immediately. I am not married, but what I appreciate and enjoy is the window you give us into the male mind. It is invaluable, whether people are married or not!
    Second, I want to address the fact that not all women get highly emotional during their period. Yes, many do. I have girlfriends who get downright scary emotional. Some of us, however, get sick. Migraines, cramping, nausea, clumsiness and fatigue are some of the symptoms I experience. And while these symptoms obviously will put anyone into a less than cheerful mindset, I am not one of those females who turn irrational, weepy, contradictory and borderline mental during that time of the month. I wanted to offer this different perspective, because I think it’s a disservice to paint all women with the same figurative brush as being that one dimensional manifestation of an overly emotional, irrational mess during their period. Some of us just are not like that.
    All of that being said, your advice applies to all of us. Who wouldn’t be charmed, feel secure and cherished when their loved one chooses to engage in a loving, understanding and nurturing manner with them during a pretty yucky part of the month? Kudos to you for tackling an obviously touchy subject and doing it well.
    – Dawn
    http://healingmorning.blogspot.com

    • Rob
    • March 13th, 2014

    “Realize she’s not herself right now – This is a big one for us guys. As guys we tend to take every thing literally, regardless of what time of the month it is. So when your wife says something like “I never have any money to spend for myself, you always buy whatever you want” during her period, don’t go out and put a “For Sale” sign on the boat. Ask her about it in an hour, and she will probably have totally changed her mind, or brush it off like it was no big deal – leaving you totally confused because what she was just making a huge issue of, is now “no big deal”.”
    You would never catch her going off at someone other than family. How come it is OK to tear into family and not others? If you say it you better well mean it. If not, than don’t say it at all. I hold myself to that standard too, not just her.

  3. Never was a problem for me unless my wife had and problem with sex at that time. I’m also not Jewish though.

    • byholmes
    • March 25th, 2014

    Oh. My. Goodness. This deserves applause! I feel like the worst wife in the universe during that time of the month. My poor, wonderful husband has to endure everything from my whining to my erratic rage that has no central focus, then my tear filled depression from knowing that my mouth ran away with my hormones and probably hurt him. Husbands, believe me, IT ISN’T YOU! Don’t mishear me though, it wouldn’t be wise to tell your wife that it’s just her hormones talking…while that may true for the method in which she communicates, that might not be the driving force behind WHAT she is communicating. Sometimes, our hormones give us the bravery we need to finally split open and pour out the things we’ve been bottling inside for awhile. Don’t belittle her true feelings with the mask of menstruation. Imagine repeatedly stubbing your toe for 5-7 days straight…imagine your frustration, your pain, and your understandable lack of control over your emotions…people in pain often speak truth, even if it isn’t leveled out correctly. Chances are, somewhere in that span of 5-7 days, after having stubbed your toe for 120+ hours, other mental anguishes are going to surface. Physical disruption often assists in emerging our feelings…
    Overall, this was a fabulous post though. Great job navigating uncharted waters!

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