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~Seek first to understand, then be understood~
~*~*~*~*
If you're looking for information on a particular topic, type that word in the search box below. If I have written about that subject, a list of posts will appear. If no posts come up, I haven't written about it...yet. Emails, and questions in the comments section for possible posts, are welcome.
~*~*~*~*
I have a "friend" who shows up once a month. She turns my world upside down, over and over again.
I am a good person, caring and sweet, but when she comes to visit, I could rip off your head.
She takes no prisoners, foul words she does spout, I try to keep the words in, she lets them come out.
People don't understand me, or what this is about, to have this creature inside my head.
I despise who I am, half of the time, I feel sorry for my daughter, family and friends.
There's no way to describe it, for those who don't know, it's a living nightmare, she really needs to go.
~Neysia Manor, Rest in Peace

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Dealing With PMDD - Advice for Men

I’ve spent quite a bit of time searching the internet for Resources and Advice for men dealing with a woman who suffers from PMDD. Unfortunately, most articles lump PMS and PMDD together, which does a great disservice to women with PMDD. In the comment sections of these articles both men and women express anger and resentment toward the women who experience true PMDD: the men claiming the articles give women a license to behave badly two weeks out of the month, and the women claiming the women with extreme mood swings give all women a bad name.

So, to clear a few things up…

20% of women suffer no pre-menstrual symptoms at all
80% of women suffer from some combination of pre-menstrual symptoms
20-40% experience moderate discomfort pre-menstrually
Up to 10% of women suffer from PMDD

This post is written for the men who have partners in the last category.

But before we get started, a quick primer on the differences between PMS and PMDD.

PMS deals primarily with physical symptoms. Bloating, aching, cramping, tenderness, fatigue, headaches, food cravings, and mild mood swings are the most well-known of the more than 150 symptoms possible. A little irritability, tension, sadness, weepiness, or any combination thereof is par for the course.

The major component of PMDD is mood swings in the extreme. PMDD actually affects your brain’s capability to regulate itself, and therefore affects just about every other hormone in your body. That’s not to say a woman can’t have the bloating, aching, cramping, fatigue, cravings, and other physical symptoms. If she does, it may well be that she suffers from both PMDD and PMS, and once she gets her PMDD under control, all she’ll be left with is some PMS.

Frankly, I think most women with PMDD would be happy to simply suffer some form of PMS. Because PMS is to PMDD what a headache is to a migraine. There is a distinct difference, and that difference is biological—not mental. The biology of PMS and PMDD share many similarities, but at some point they split into completely different paths. An explanation of that is beyond the scope of this post, but I’ll be happy to write about it some other time.

For now, it’s enough to know that PMS and PMDD are two completely different things.

That’s not to say your relationship won’t benefit from the advice in this post if your partner simply has PMS. But we’re not talking about PMS here today, we’re talking full-blown PMDD.

1. Both you and your partner should mark the time on a calendar when you expect her to be pre-menstrual. This can be hard if her cycle is not regular, but do the best you can to identify patterns. An explanation of my pattern is here, and can give you an idea of what symptoms to look for.

If your partner is in denial, and claims there’s nothing wrong with her—mark your own calendar separately. In many cases, the man can tell before the woman that she’s entering into her pre-menstrual phase, because he’s watching from the outside, while she’s busy trying to cope—either consciously or sub-consciously--with the unwanted changes going on in her brain and body.

Please note: There are women who are in complete denial that anything different is happening to them, and then there are women who know what’s happening, but “really don’t want to deal with this right now” because they are too busy to, and so they pretend nothing is happening, and they really aren’t feeling any differently, until it’s too late to do anything about it, and the episode erupts full force.

Determine which type of woman you are living with, and keep track accordingly. Apparently there are several applications available on the iPhone and Android phones to help you track her cycle, but an old-fashioned calendar will do just as well.

2. If she’s indicated that this is what she would prefer, try to stay clear of her until the episode passes. This has nothing to do with you, or her love for you. It’s simply due to her heightened sensitivity to any combination of the five senses. She literally can’t handle any more sensory input—be it bright lights, loud noises, touch of any kind, strong smells, or even certain foods. If a PMDD woman has allergies of any kind, they can be exacerbated pre-menstrually. If she has any another condition, such as arthritis, diabetes, or fibromyalgia, they can be exacerbated as well.

Even if she’s otherwise healthy, during an episode of PMDD a woman is literally is a walking bundle of nerves. Unfortunately for both of you, this heightened sensitivity and discomfort can be so distracting that it causes her an inability to focus on things like questions, requests, conversations, or simple instructions. (Now you know why she forgot to pick up your suit at the cleaners.)

Take the first one, for example: You have a question that requires more than minimal thought and consideration.
Examples would be:
Major purchases—car, appliances, maybe that boat/motorcycle/sportscar you’ve always wanted (not a good time to bring it up)
Health decisions
Financial decisions
Employment decisions
Decisions involving having or raising children
Vacation plans
Any change of routine or structure in your life

Why? Because during a PMDD episode a woman’s brain is not functioning properly. This has nothing to do with how smart or intelligent she is. This is her brain chemistry being disrupted due to the hormonal shifts taking place in her body. During a PMDD episode it can take all of her concentration simply to focus on the basics of getting through each day. If you come at her with anything resembling a major decision, it could overload her brain and cause a meltdown.

So if she asks for space during that time, please give it to her.

3. Be patient. Dealing with anybody on a short fuse can be challenging. If she snaps at you, or does something that irritates you, don't lose your temper and fight back. It won't do any good, and in most cases will only make things worse. Just (discreetly) take a deep breath, maybe say a prayer, and ignore whatever she just did that bothered you. Remember that she's not normally like this and she’ll be herself again soon.

4. Do not enable immature behavior. I’ve said all along, PMDD is an explanation, not an excuse. Being emotional does not excuse inappropriate behavior, any more than being drunk excuses offensive behavior. If she’s being immature, yelling, shouting, stomping, snapping, cursing, slamming or throwing things, don’t respond with your own immature behavior. She at least has an explanation for it—a biological explanation. What’s your excuse?

Stay calm and leave the room if you have to, until she settles down. Let her know you love her and you’ll be nearby, but you can’t have a conversation with her when she’s being irrational. Believe me, she knows she’s being irrational. But without conscious effort at awareness, she can’t stop herself any more than she could stop an allergic reaction. If you calmly point out that she’s being immature or irrational and say you’ll be happy to continue this conversation another time, things will settle down a lot more quickly than if you respond with your own emotional outburst.

5. Listen to her, even if she’s not making any sense. Try to figure out what the REAL problem is. If she’s complaining about something that’s never bothered her before, or doesn’t usually bother her, most likely what she’s saying is “I feel miserable, and there’s nothing I can do about it, so I’m looking for something else to change and hoping that will make me feel better.” This is a time of true desperation for her. She’s looking for anything, rational or irrational, that will make her feel better. This is a good time to suggest she take some time out for herself, maybe a hot bath, or a cup of tea and a good book, or whatever soothes her soul. Let her know you support her need to have a little time to pamper herself in whatever way makes her the happiest.

But beware of sending her out on a shopping spree. Retail therapy will only make things worse when the mood has passed and the bills come in.

6. Don't take it personally. During an episode of PMDD, you can count on her emotions getting the best of her, and she'll probably question your relationship. She might question you. Might question her whole life and everything she believes or stands for. This is normal and natural for a woman during an episode of PMDD. As mentioned in Number 5 above, she's feeling helpless, and sometimes when people feel helpless they look for other things they can control, and that might mean bringing up topics or suggesting changes that trigger your emotions. Your best defense against this is to stay level-headed and calmly say, "Ok, I understand." What you really understand is that you're still the same person she loved before her PMDD episode kicked in, and her change in perception of you and her life overall is the PMDD talking, not her. For more information on this, see my post It’s Not Personal – It’s Just My PMDD.

7. Be compassionate. Think about a time when stress or physical changes made you hard to get along with. Have you ever been sleep-deprived? Maybe you had an accident or were the hospital, and the chronic pain made you want to lash out at everybody. Put yourself in her shoes. Not only is she experiencing uncomfortable physical symptoms, but her hormones also ebbing and flowing, making it almost impossible for her to know how she feels or what she wants. Think of the effect testosterone has had on you, like when you get sexually aroused, or on any occasion when you felt aggression or rage. You remember how you felt caught up in the emotion, how it made you want to say and do things you ordinarily wouldn’t say or do. That’s what’s happening to her.

8. Be forgiving and reassuring. Her insecurities will definitely come up during an episode of PMDD, and with her heightened sensitivity, every negative thought she has will be magnified ten times over. If she doesn’t consciously stop the negative thoughts, they will flow through her mind in an endless loop. If you can get her to talk about them, fine. Some women won’t want to, because they know the thoughts are irrational, even while they are having them, they just don’t know how to stop them. Nobody wants to share irrational thoughts, and then remember they did so when the episode is over—even if the only one remembering them is her.

If she feels unloved and insecure, she’ll probably act out, which will make you not want to be around her, which will "confirm" her negative thoughts. Most women feel insecure about their bodies to start with, maybe even their lovemaking, child-rearing, housekeeping, or professional skills, and if they’re in any way insecure about your feelings for them, this is when that insecurity will come out. So try to give her a few extra compliments (and don’t be offended if she doesn’t believe you, or snaps at you for it), and—if she’ll let you (remember those heightened sensory sensitivities)--be more affectionate. If she won’t let you near her, don’t make her feel badly by taking it personally. Guilt is the last thing she needs when she’s feeling unlovable. Tell her you understand and you’ll be around if she changes her mind. That could well be all it takes to melt her defenses.

More on this next week, as that’s enough for now. For more information, I invite you to scroll through my most popular posts, as indicated in the sidebar.

Take care, and good luck!

215 comments:

  1. Awesome advice. And right on the money. Thank you for sharing this!

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    1. I think it's great there are posts dedicated to helping the men in our lives understand. It takes a lot for women to be diagnosed, accepting, then able to live with this condition. We cannot forget the men that are there to support us.

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    2. This is nuts! My wife seriously believes I am the one with the problem. She thinks it's rude for me to be quiet and just walk away sometimes. There is no rationality. I work at home and she'll walk into my office and start slamming drawers and being loud and when I give her the wtf look she'll cry and say I'm mean and that's why my kids don't like me. My kids love me by the way and working from home I spend hours everyday with them. I'm losing it with her and I so want her to just be aware and not say such evil things to me. I lost it tonight like never before and screamed at her after she said to stop being mean because I wanted my son in bed instead of playing video games. (not in front of the kids) I screamed she needs to stop saying such things and she needs to see a doctor. She's so off her rocker that I'm scouring the internet for answers... I don't know, I just don't know. How long to I have to keep getting shredded by her? She's pegged me as the problem but she's the one saying the most hurtful things.

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    3. Unfortunately I can not answer all of your questions in one blog post. This post is basically an on-the-spot crisis tip sheet for when you are in the middle of an acute episode. My hope is that it will get you through that episode, and then you can continue your PMDD research more in-depth later. My book, PMDD: A Handbook for Partners, addresses the hows of getting her some help, and the whys of what she says and does when she is in the throes of an episode. It also addresses why she seriously believes that you are the one with the problem. This is quite common in women with PMDD. The book is the blue one with the rollercoaster on the front. Just click on the book cover for more information. At the very least, you will know you are not alone in this. As to how long you have to keep getting shredded, that will depend on how long it will take you to find the help she needs, and for that you will need her full cooperation. You can read one man's account of his struggle in my post http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2016/01/the-voices-of-pmdd-our-seven-year_28.html. You are right, this is indeed nuts. But the struggle is real and affects millions of women of childbearing age. What is nuts is that the medical community can not even determine the cause of PMDD, much less come up with a reliable treatment plan. Each woman has to figure it out on her own. My blog and books were written to help her, and by, association, her partner with that. I feel your pain, and hers, and I hope you find the answers you need soon.

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    4. I have this and my mother had it (although she obviously didn't know and never got treatment). So, I know how it feels to live with a family member who has it and how it feels to live with it. I hated so many things about my mom growing up but now I finally can feel empathy for the woman because I know what she was feeling. I also feel extreme empathy for my husband and dad because I remember how my mom treated my dad. Those aren't good memories. i love my husband all the more for putting up with me even when I can't see how irrational I am. My sister openly told me how taking meds for her PMDD has changed her life and so I finally decided to get help. Pregnancy and nursing make me feel like I have PMDD 24/7, so if she is nursing or pregnant she probaly needs full time meds. If she has a close family member or friend who can speak to her when she isn't having an episode and is rationa that might also help. Good luck. What she needs most is to know she is loved, especially when she is acting her worst. When you talk to her again about treatment, make sure it's a few days after her period has started. Good luck.

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    5. to annonymous feb 26 - i came across this sight browsing for advice regarding this horrible raging side effect of a womans hormone cycle due to the fear of what effect am i having on my CHILDREN!!! partners are at least old enough to have some choice in the matter to know they can stay or go (even if they know they dont want to) but children are totally defenceless, and the many times i have watched my childrens faces of puzzled, baffled and fear and distress of powerlessness in having mummy upset and not being able to stop it, but like as if im watching from a clone version of me while the presented bodied version of me is in complete monsterous explosive uncontrolled emotional screaming about who even remembers the reason!
      and then hours later the complete calm opposite! even if its just a couple of days a month is still one minute too many for this to be happening. it distresses me so much afterwards and am then as baffled as the children as to how and why and where did that storm even come from? after reading the mens accounts on here its an eye opener but im also glad that i AM aware that its ME with the hormonal disruption moreso (along with ptsd from past abusive marriage that doesnt help by adding in mix) and found this site because my awareness instigated the need to go in search of help. my children deserve the best i can attempt to provide, i certainly want as normal version of a relationship thats possible with my new man and i in myself want to simply live without such distressing bursts of horribleness end of story

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    6. Oh my word. This is exactly what I become like. I feel so ashamed of myself after these outbursts. Tonight I decided to google reasons for these outburst during pms, when pmmd came up. It is like a rage that cannot stop during an episode. I hate myself afterwards. I think my husband hates me during these times as well because there is always a huge fight during this time, every single month. All the best for all the woman out there with pmdd.

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  2. I have read so many things on pmdd and nothing has ever been more correct than this.. i will be showing this to my botfriend.. thank you..
    Alicia Ennen.

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  3. Thanks for writing all of this. I will try to put into practice as best I can. Take care

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  4. What this means is that you must look to many aspect of your lifestyle to really be rid of PMDD. You must focus on your physical health, your mental and emotional health, your spiritual well being if you will, and your social health as well! This sounds like quite a lot, but in reality you can make a lot of small changes to your life bit by bit, and start seeing dramatic improvement of your PMDD due to this.

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  5. The advice here is good, but not always easy to keep a level head about. I *think* this is what we're dealing with, but it always becomes the worst about a week AFTER the PMS part... which means it sneaks up on her quite frequently, and I don't always have the energy or patience to deal with it.

    It's MUCH easier when there is a coherent label for the problem, and specifics to address it. I'm just worn down with being the target every month.

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    1. Boy I know this feeling. I concur with you. My wife wears me down every month, and the article is helpful in dealing with PMDD, we just are the focal points of all that is Mrs. Hyde.

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    2. I hear you too. I know it's coming and try to prepare but every month she leaves me exhausted. She is relentless, merciless, like a machine gun going off in my face. Whatever I do she seethes with anger. Plans are cancelled, holidays ruined. All hell breaks loose. I read, learn, take all the advice I can but nothing helps. She will just make up imaginary stuff and rage at me for it. Arguments twist and shift and make no sense. I am accused, raged at, confused, turned inside out and insulted for days. I'm run ragged. Every month it reaches the point where I have no empathy or patience left.

      Biggest problem is she completely denies anything is wrong with her. It would make such a difference to me if she acknowledged the problem and tried to help herself.

      During the good weeks she is the most amazing woman I have ever known. I love her. She is the best and worst of women.



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    3. I’m a former soldier and a veteran (Desert Storm/Shield, 1991) and reading your post (Anonymous 3/6/16@11:54 AM) bring tears to my eyes. I have the same issue with my wife….DENY, DENY, DENY!

      It doesn’t matter when I bring it up. I know better than to being up the obvious during her episodes. But even after it passes and she apologizes, claims I’m the best, strongest yet kindest, loving, most patient man she’s ever met, and confesses her love for me; and then I let 2 more days pass… I still can’t bring the issue up…”Don’t ruin the moment ‘Will’. We are in a good spot; so don’t ruin it by bring up such negativity and nonsense,“…is her statement.

      Several times I’ve sacrificed the 7-10 days of bliss per month we have to explain to her that I think she has PMDD; and we, yes WE should seek help. It NEVER ends well. It only ends with more denials and arguments where she states I’m using her as an escape goat for everything.

      Now the bliss is gone, and we’re back to PMDD time again….I don’t wish this on my enemies.

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    4. I don't know about her, but it took my fiance a year and a half to get me to realize that this happens every month and that I'm not crazy like I feel. And I already knew I had PMDD. How are you dealing with this? He trys very hard to be understanding and patient, but he doesn't always have the ability. Of course because I will not allow it, which I've only recently realized. I want to, until I have an episode. Then all the irrationality kicks in like clockwork. I wish you the best. I can imagine how hard it is. But remember no one wants to admit they have a problem. He was an Airborne Ranger with bad PTSD, and he is very persistent. But also always very assuring. I'm really not sure how he deals with me, but I have to deal with him too.. Good luck!

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    5. OMG!!! That is my life every month this is so helpful. Been married 22 years and it started about 8 years ago,I'm ready to loose my mind.

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    6. My wife completely denies that she has any kind of problem. And for the best part of 2 weeks every month the situation is horrific. I'm trying to take the advice of this blog. I do my best everyday to say to myself ... it's the pmdd talking. But the thing that really kills me with it and that I find so hard to deal with, is the majority of the time it's purely me that's targeted. Our guests or friends will come to the house and shes completely fine with them. It leaves me confused as to ... if it really is the pmdd, how can she be so foul to me and then just turn off the switch when our guests arrive home. 3 weeks of every month are great. Then like clockwork. Pmdd. Another factor is ... yes I'm trying to understand it and be strong for her (basically a punch bag) but at the same time it's damaging beyond repair to our relationship. I feel that with each one of these episodes. She respects me less and less after the fact. She knows what boundaries she's pushed and already gotten away with. I'm walking on egg shells. How can you expect certain levels of respect in a relationship when for at least 10 days of the month, you have to throw all your boundaries out of the window and just except whatever she throws at you. I grind through it out of love. But I know that this effecting my stepdaughter and I don't want her to grow up thinking that this is normal behaviour.

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    7. Dear Anonymous, I am sorry to hear about your situation, and I thank you for writing in to express your frustration. What follows is a response to a similar comment on another post, but my answer is the same...If you'll continue reading my blog, (or even my PMDD: A Handbook for Partners book) you will find that I am consistent in my belief that PMDD is an explanation, not an excuse (to behave badly) and that abuse should never be tolerated in any relationship, including one where the woman has PMDD. Through my writing, I attempt to help readers understand what a woman with PMDD may be thinking and feeling during an episode, but never do I condone abusive behavior or promote anything less than full accountability--on both sides of the relationship. PMDD happens to all sorts of women, including those who are naturally selfish and uncaring. This blog promotes empathy, caring, and awareness. I empathize with your frustration, but if your wife is able to turn off the switch so easily, then you need more support than this blog can provide. This blog, and all of my books on PMDD, assume you either suspect or are already aware of your or your partner's PMDD and are trying to reach wellness. To that end I provide tips that may help. I can not help (or explain) those who do not wish to be helped. A woman's desire to face her PMDD, accept it and learn to work with it (instead of deny it or fight it) has to come from within. If that desire is not there, you will indeed continue to suffer needlessly month after month after month. If you can not approach her regarding her behavior during an episode of PMDD when she is NOT having an episode, then there is more going on in the relationship than PMDD alone.

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    8. Is this truly PMDD or BPD? What complicates it even further, is that someone with BPD can also have PMDD. BPD can have push-pull cycles which could mimic menses cycle. I believed my wife had PMDD, in fact I was convinced, but a couple outbursts and manipulation happened out-of-cycle, resulting in a foregone conclusion having to be re-examined.

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    9. An excellent question and this post might help you in your research, but you will need to search further, as this is all I have on bipolar and PMDD at the moment. http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2016/09/differences-between-pmdd-and-bipolar.html
      There is also this post on premenstrual exacerbation of existing disorders, of which bipolar is only one of many
      http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2012/11/is-it-pmdd-or-pre-menstrual-exacerbation.html

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  6. pmdd is destroying marriage! i need to know how to approach her with this pmdd because she is in deep denial. please help thanks.

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    1. My wife and I have been together for 10 years.

      Dude it SUX ASS! The worst part of it all is the uncertainty of the digsnosis. I know that at some point my wife is going to change and project a thousand negative emotions right into my head.
      then be as calm and as normal and loving as the girl I fell in love with.
      But with no acknowledgment of the turmoil that just ripped straight through the heart of our relationship.
      "but she thinks she's the normal one"
      FCK it's Confusing.
      I work professionally negotiating with aggressive, overly emotional and irrational people on a daily basis but nothing compares to the frustration and hatred that can flare up when
      I find myself draw into one of my wife's episodes
      loosing track of her cycle is dumbest thing I can do, I have a calander with everything she Devil related written in code...... Just incase.

      I won't sugar coat it with possitive think. It's a hard path to choose and after a few years of focused learning.
      Tracking her cycle. Watching for triggers. Evaluating what works and what doesn't.
      You then have to learn how to control your self as well as your wife's environment every half cycle.
      The first step is making the choice to figure it out for both of you. Then figuring her out then you have to figure yourself out and stop yourself from reacting.
      Once you've managed all that then you'll need to try and talk to her. Help her help herself.

      This is hard because as far as she'll care it's you that has the problem.

      Start by introducing her in a possitive way to evening primrose oil
      Then
      Prozac or some other form of SSRI
      This needs to be done For the 2 weeks before her menstration; before the shit hit the fan.

      Then it's a long ass road that will make you a stronger more patient man.
      ... It's what we do for love.


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  7. My last two posts were on that very subject -- denial. We all have it to some extent. The best suggestion I can offer is to print out some of these blog posts for her to read and ask her if she ever feels like this. Let her know it's okay and you're there to support her if she does. I'd recommend A Perfect Storm of PMDD, It's Not Personal, it's Your PMDD, The Queen of Denial, and They Only See Our Failures for starters. All the best, Liana

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    1. Sorry to ask a stupid question... how do you find recommend posts such as The Queen of Denial?

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    2. Not a stupid question at all...since the search box on this site (and many others in blogger) is not working, you can't just type it in and have the post come up. You have to ask me, so here it is: http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2011/11/queen-of-denial.html Two posts on denial were written in November of 2011 and they go together. The second post is: http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2011/11/pmdd-and-denial.html

      Thank you for asking!

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  8. Goodness Thank you so much for writing this and taking the time to create this website/blog - I am only 24 and think I have PMDD to the extreme level. I have suffered ever since i started my period and it has caused me to destroy so much of my life (the bits i love most)!!! now after being in a relationship for 8 years and only just realising this is what I have it is very comforting to think i can help my partner!!! being in the very grip of my pmdd at the minute i will stop now!!! could go on all night! thank you again and keep it up : )

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  9. Thank you for all of the learned insight. We have only this past week come to understand what it is that has been happening to the love of my life. Thanks to all I have read here I am very confident that I can finally begin helping her when she needs it most.
    God Bless You!!

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  10. thank you for trying to make sense of such a difficult topic!

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  11. Thank you for writing this article. I do have a question. My question is as follows: What is the explanation for PMDD symptoms present at home with a loving partner, but controlled in the work place with co-workers and clients?

    It seems to me that there is an important aspect of PMDD that is being left out. You mentioned not accepting immature behavior and that a woman knows when she is being inappropriate. My experience is that most of the behavior demonstrated as a result of PMDD is inappropriate.

    Thanks again for the article. I am looking forward to further readings.

    Marco

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    1. Marco, I have the same issue. My wife acts so different outside the house, but when she is talking to me or the kids, she has nothing holding her back. I hope this gets addressed as well. I'm still trying to figure out how to talk with my wife about this. I'm tired and beaten up.

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    2. Though I will undoubtedly seem the most insensitive guy here......I think I may have the answer that no one wants to hear, Marco:

      It's called being SELECTIVE ! And thank you Marco, for making such a REAL, TRUE-TO-LIFE, and UNDENIABLE point....How convenient, isn't it?!....Now, before anyone judges me as an insensitive monster, first don't be hypocrites ladies - remember - you are EXACTLY THAT for almost two weeks each month -- biological or not, those who STICK BY YOU need to DEAL and LIVE with you without having the luxury of being Jesus Christ. Second, the reason I am so fired up is NOT for selfish reasons. I have THREE BEAUTIFUL and INNOCENT CHILDREN who deserve the "mysterious, magical, unexplainable, and sudden control of the PMDD" waaaaaaay more than random coworkers, clients or other strangers! Funny how when "saving face" is involved, we are "magically in control".

      Sincerely,

      Someone who holds their children's welling ABOVE ALL ELSE and is fed up and disgusted by the..."discrepancies". PAH-LEASE!

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    3. Hello, Unknown, and thank you for writing. You do make a good point. But if you'll re-read my response to Marco, you will see that I wrote "my guess is if the income and/or benefits are significant, a woman will do all she can to hold on to that job." You have indicated that you do not feel your wife's work provides significant benefits and/or income, so my guess does not apply to your situation. I also asked Marco, "How do you know she functions at a high level at work?" Meaning, how do you know her PMDD does not rear its ugly head with co-workers and clients? Most women with PMDD, especially those in denial (which it sounds like your wife might be) or those who do not know they have PMDD, do not even realize when they are acting out of the ordinary BECAUSE they are trying so damn hard to hold onto their self-control that they can't see past themselves to what it is doing/how it looks to the people around them. This is hard enough to do when you are aware of your PMDD and trying to control it. Imagine not having a clue as to why you think and say and do the things you do. Imagine having a brain that is literally trying to destroy you and everything you hold dear and love. I discuss the PMDD brain in-depth in my book PMDD and Relationships; in particular what is going in inside the PMDD brain while you are experiencing the destruction of it from the outside looking in. But you are absolutely correct in that both you and especially your innocent children deserve much better treatment than you are receiving (never, in any of my posts, do I ever say that abuse is acceptable) and so therefore it sounds like your wife is either in denial about her PMDD, or, if she is not, there is more than PMDD contributing to the chaos and destruction in your family. If she is indeed being "selective" then she is being selective for reasons other than her PMDD...however, the PMDD may be when she lets her frustrations out, either because she feels that is the only time it is acceptable for her to do so, or she really and truly can not control her words and actions in those moments, due to a lack of awareness about PMDD. Since you are here reading about it, perhaps you can find a way to help bring her into awareness about this devastating-for-all-parties brain disorder (but you must do it when she is not under the influence of her PMDD brain). If she is not interested in learning more about her PMDD, then that goes beyond the scope of this blog.

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    4. I suffer from PMDD and I cannot, for the life if me, hold it together at work hence why I no longer am working. It's this monster ripping and tearing at my every ditch effort to function like a damn human being. I often beg my boyfriend to just stay away... or when I was working, I often couldn't hold it together AT ALL... Omg!! I couldn't remember simple things... I lost complete control at times and just sat and cried. I would get and still do get really short and stawnt to "anyone". So no, I wouldn't ever everrrrrr say that we PMDD sufferers "hold our shit together" in fr not of others and instead purposely target you at home... No no no.
      I feel like I can let lose hoping and praying that my boyfriend would catch me as I'm having a moment... imagine when your wife was giving birth and those contractions were happening and there's noooo way she can stop that pain... So she lashes out at you, calls you every name in the book, bites, pulls, pinches you just to get relief because omg she wants this hurt, unmanageable pain TO JUST STOPPPPP!!!! And she's not coping with it at all... she's looking to you to please help her. Now, think about how you "reacted" to her while giving birth to your child. If you were supportive, loving, and telling her, baby just breath it'll be ok". Then you seriously made her difficult time 100x better. You know why?! Because you showed that you have compassion and you understand. Omg what I'd give to just have a kind word during my intense pmdd moments.

      I'm at the end of my 2 weeks of hell right now. My boyfriend wants to leave me... in fact I'm not even sure if we're together anymore... I know this is tremendously hard on you spouses and family. But love her, comfort her and please know that she's not at all understanding this either.

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  12. Thank you for writing this article. Can you please explain why it is possible for woman with PMDD to function at a high level in a work related environment with co-workers, clients and their bosses, but unable to control the symptoms described in your article at home with loved ones.

    Thanks again and I look forward to further reading.
    Marco

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    1. I suffer from PMDD and I cannot, for the life if me, hold it together at work hence why I no longer am working. It's this monster ripping and tearing at my every ditch effort to function like a damn human being. I often beg my boyfriend to just stay away... or when I was working, I often couldn't hold it together AT ALL... Omg!! I couldn't remember simple things... I lost complete control at times and just sat and cried. I would get and still do get really short and stawnt to "anyone". So no, I wouldn't ever everrrrrr say that we PMDD sufferers "hold our shit together" in fr not of others and instead purposely target you at home... No no no.
      I feel like I can let lose hoping and praying that my boyfriend would catch me as I'm having a moment... imagine when your wife was giving birth and those contractions were happening and there's noooo way she can stop that pain... So she lashes out at you, calls you every name in the book, bites, pulls, pinches you just to get relief because omg she wants this hurt, unmanageable pain TO JUST STOPPPPP!!!! And she's not coping with it at all... she's looking to you to please help her. Now, think about how you "reacted" to her while giving birth to your child. If you were supportive, loving, and telling her, baby just breath it'll be ok". Then you seriously made her difficult time 100x better. You know why?! Because you showed that you have compassion and you understand. Omg what I'd give to just have a kind word during my intense pmdd moments.

      I'm at the end of my 2 weeks of hell right now. My boyfriend wants to leave me... in fact I'm not even sure if we're together anymore... I know this is tremendously hard on you spouses and family. But love her, comfort her and please know that she's not at all understanding this either. I pray everyday that I find relief, mainly so I can stop putting my family, friends and co-workers through utter emotional hell.

      Julia H

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  13. Hello, Marco, Thank you for your very good question. You are right in that most of the behavior demonstrated as a result of PMDD is inappropriate. I think your question sort of answers itself. It depends on the job, but my guess is if the income and/or benefits are significant, a woman will do all she can to hold on to that job--basically, she can't afford to lose her cool at work. So she holds it all in, and then, because it has to come out somewhere, she relaxes her guard, and it comes out at home, or in her personal relationships. There are all kinds of people keeping all kinds of conditions and disorders under wraps at work--this is not exclusive to PMDD. And the reason is the same--they need to keep that job.

    Secondly, and I'm playing devil's advocate here, how do you KNOW she functions at a high level at work? My guess is it comes out here and there. But, unfortunately, you get the bulk of it when she has no other outlet. I'm sorry for that, and for anyone in an explosive PMDD relationship.

    A good post to read is They Only See Our Failures. Because only your partner can truly know how successful she is at keeping her cool. All anyone on the outside sees is when we fail.

    Good luck and I hope you find more information here to help you sort things out. Another good post to read is It's Not Personal, it's Just Your PMDD, and A Perfect Storm of PMDD.

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    1. Yes i agree it takes everything i have to supress it at work and it does come out.... Ive lost two jobs in my life due to pmdd :( ive ruined more relationships with bfs and friends though.... And yes i notice i come home and unleash and i feel like a piece of crap after... I will show this article to my bf he doesnt believe me on any of it and just says im crazy and need help..... That makes me very angry and when he responds to my outbursts negatively it makes it hard.... I hope this helps him.... I hope he loves me enough to help and b understanding and not fight with me when im pre menstral

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    2. Oh I see, she can't afford to lose her job, but she can afford to traumatize her innocent children....PRIORITIES??? And also, in the case of my wife, the job is NOT significant nor does it provide any needed benefits.

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    3. Guys. I’m a wife. I’m a mom. I have PMDD. I get how you would think that if your wife/girlfriend can keep it together at work that you would think you are not her top priority. But, consider this. What if she is a mess around you because you and your kids are everything to her? Think about it. Work is important, but it’s just a job. Friends are important, but they are just friends. Wanting to be a good wife and mom is everything to most women I know. Personally, I find it challenging, if not impossible, to be a good wife and a good mom at the same time. Both roles require completely different demands. This is stressful. So then, take into account that when your wife is premenstrual, she has lost her ability to cope. She’s so stressed out and so overwhelmed she cannot deal with anything. It’s upsetting when the toast is taking too long to pop up let alone the child who is screaming because she said he can’t play with the electrical cords. So, it’s hard. We care so much about being a good wife and mom, that when we can’t be, we feel incredible guilt. We are incapable of being loving, fun and efficient all time and feel so bad about it that we think you and the kids would be better off without us. These feelings can effect us physically to the point that we can’t fulfill any of our roles. If we didn’t care about being a good wife and mom, it wouldn’t stress us out. When we’re premenstrual, we can’t handle the stress.
      If that’s not the case with your wife, there’s another explanation. If she’s at work all day and comes home to you and the kids at night, that means she has spent the whole day trying so hard to not be a monster. This is exhausting. There is so much she wants to do and say, but she can’t. She holds it in. Coming home to the demands of being a wife and mom put her over the top, she has nothing left. She just can’t deal with it anymore. It’s not that you aren’t her top priority, it’s that when she has time with you, she literally has nothing left to offer.
      Another reason would be that work is validating for her. She's probably good at what she does, and she gets a paycheck for it. There's a reward and purpose and it feels good to be a good employee. There is not much that makes you feel good about being a wife and mom. If the house is messy, you don't know what to make for dinner, dinner sucks, laundry isn't done, etc., it's easy to feel like a sub par wife. If your 3 year old isn't potty trained, your 15 year old doesn't know how to load a dishwasher, your kids watch too much t.v., your kids eat nothing but junk, your kids fight, your kids don't obey, you forgot your tooth fairy duties, etc., it's easy to feel like a failure as a mom. It's not hard to feel inadequate at home. Maybe the "needed benefit" for her going to work is that she feels good about herself the 8 hours she's there, and that 8 hours is what gets her through the other 16 every day.
      There you have three explanations. I hope this gives you insight on what you’re wife might be thinking. We’re all different, but it was sad for me to hear you think you’re not a priority or of less importance to your wife because for me, it’s the opposite. It’s the anger and frustration and questioning of our love for you that gets us stuck in depression. Try responding to her with love. If she comes home from work a crazy angry person, or if you come home from work and she’s clearly irritable, that would be a good time for you to say, “Kids, Mom doesn’t feel well. Come to me for everything you need. Let’s clean up your toys, I’ll help with homework, I’ll feed you dinner, I’ll give you baths, I’ll put you to bed.” Just try it. See how much sooner she feels better. She needs to know you love her even though she’s having a bad day. I know it’s a lot of work to do everything at home after you’ve worked so hard all day, but contemplate this: If you get divorced or she kills herself, which is something women with PMDD think of often, you’re going to be doing everything every day anyway for the rest of time.

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  14. My wife and I have been together for 17 years and I've only just discovered your blog yesterday. For 17 years I've wondered exactly what has been wrong, and now I finally know, just at the moment when I really honestly don't know if I can continue to take the roller-coaster that PMDD puts you on. It's totally devastating to a stable marriage to have one spouse demonstrate how much she loves you and her life part of every month, and then demonstrate how much she loathes you (and perhaps even the children) the other part. It's like living with Jekyll & Hyde.

    The comment you've just made above, Lianna is so accurate. Thank you for making it. My wife is expert at hiding her PMDD from literally everyone else. Only our children and I understand what happens to her. She holds it in around everyone else (or hides from others), but then at home we simply bear the brunt of her pent up frustrations, which is just the PMDD talking. But it hurts all of us badly nonetheless.

    She needs treatment for her PMDD, and actually admits that she does need it, but then will never take the step to actually seek treatment. Is this normal behavior for someone with PMDD? Most (all?) psychologists would say that a person must personally reach out to seek treatment, so they can be the owners of the process, rather than having someone else do it for them. But she never does seek treatment, and I think if I wait anymore that our family will fall apart. I simply can't deal with it alone anymore.

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    1. Exactly the same for me, but for even longer. My wife refuses to even recognise that there's a problem. In some ways, that is the most destructive part. I can't begin to say how devastating it has been.I am simply exhausted. Jekyl and Hyde doesn't come close. You give so much love and get slaughtered in return.

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    2. I can relate to your expression of frustration. It's like having to be a personal psych for your wife without the training, experience or the gratitude for your efforts. Thanks for the variety and honesty of views.

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    3. reading these relplies is like reading something I would write. I want to be supportive and strong, but I'm human too.

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    4. I agree whole heartedly. The refusal to accept the problem is probably the most destructive thing. Because me and my daughter ( luckily not to the same degree) have just been the target of unrelenting venom, from something completely fabricated in my wife's mind. It could be as small as a look that I apparently gave her when she told me she wanted to buy new clothes (which I'd like to add did not happen and also she does not need my permission to buy clothes) ... which will trigger an episode lasting for on average 10 days. Where everything I say or do enrages her even more and she goes out of her way to be nice to anyone else around but to provoke a reaction from me. Door slamming, vile comments, threats of leaving, constant jibes, tears if I touch her. Then when she finally snaps out of it ... she's back to normal (and usually the extreme opposite and thinks that sex will wipe it all under the carpet) and if I bring up what I've just lived through... "well you shouldn't do that. If you didn't do that we wouldn't have argued" I'm sure that she actually believes what comes out of her mouth. But Yes. This to me is the most damaging aspect of it. The refusal to acknowledge the 10 days of hell she's put us (and no one else) through and worse still ... still finding some way to put the blame on me. I try to stick to the advice on this forum and I try to convince myself at every step that it's the pmdd talking. But 10 days of nothing short of insanity then a complete refusal to adress it with a level head, out of the mist of the pmdd ... that's damaging to anyone ... sorry for the rant ... I only meant to agree. But I'm living through it now. And I'm so sick of being the monster when all Im actually doing is my best to provide for us.

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  15. About seeking treatment, or refusing to,that's part of the PMDD. When things are going well, we feel normal, and see no need to seek treatment, because everything is fine, thank God, and when we are having a PMDD episode, we're trying so hard to ignore it and simply function, that we're either deep in denial, or simply too depressed to do anything about it. Also, many women have tried to seek help and been met with disbelief because their doctors either don't understand PMDD or don't have the time or inclination to learn more about it. It's easier just to prescribe anti-depressants and move on to the next patient. It's hard to be your own best advocate when you're going through these bewildering cycles of anger, depression, and feeling somewhat normal. You never know who you're going to be from day to day. Also, when you make an appointment, you're usually at the point where you can't stand it anymore and desperately want help, but then the appointment is three weeks away and by that time, all your symptoms are gone...until the next time. If you're in the middle of an episode and you get an appointment, it's hard to clearly explain what is happening, because your brain simply isn't working right. You can't get the words out, and instead you end up losing it, and go home feeling like more of a failure than when you left for the appointment. Been there, done that. The first step is awareness, and cultivating the ability to separate yourself from your PMDD. Take notes, chart your symptoms, go to the doctor with the information in hand to help you keep your focus.

    And your wife doesn't loathe you and the children. That's the PMDD talking, not her.

    I am sorry for your hurt and pain, but know she suffers just as much, if not more.

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    1. It's easy to say " it's not her fault " or " she can't help it ". But being emotionally, verbally and physically abused by a woman with PMDD.
      Is STILL abuse! Do NOT tolerate it!
      Yes make a decent effort to suggest help.
      I would suggest video recording all PMDD episodes. Do so for a few months.
      Then show her how BAD her behavior is.
      Do it in a counseling session preferably.
      DO NOT TOLERATE ABUSE!

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    2. As a person who has captured their PMDD gf on film and showed her the results. I HIGHLY discourage that. An explanation of the behavior while she is calm and rational with no pmdd episode works the best. A video will just ignite depression and anger.

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    3. Oh I see, she is even unwilling to face facts when she's "rational"........well, well, well, isn't that SO CARING AND ADULT-LIKE while in her supposed "rational state"!!!.......I'm sorry, I am not in denial that this condition exists. But I am ALSO NOT IN DENIAL that, just like anything else, this condition afflicts not only naturally innocent and angelic women, but ALSO NATURALLY SELFISH and UNCARING, um, "human beings". A clear sign of this, again, might be that they are acting undeniably selfish and uncaring while in a "rational" state of mind. No, huh uh, so sorry - ACCOUNTABILITY EXISTS FOR ALL PEOPLE.....ESPECIALLY WHEN "RATIONAL".

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    4. I couldn't agree with you more, that accountability exists for all people. If you'll continue reading my blog, you will find that I am consistent in my belief that PMDD is an explanation, not an excuse (to behave badly) and that abuse should never be tolerated in any relationship, including one where the woman has PMDD. When I give long, detailed answers, I am attempting to help readers understand what a woman with PMDD may be thinking and feeling during an episode, but never do I condone abusive behavior or promote anything less than full accountability--on both sides of the relationship. You are also correct in that PMDD happens to all sorts of women, including those who are naturally selfish and uncaring. This blog promotes empathy, caring, and awareness. I empathize with your frustration, but if your wife is naturally selfish and uncaring, then she needs more information than this blog can provide. This blog, and all of my books on PMDD, assume you either suspect or are already aware of your or your partner's PMDD and are trying to reach wellness. To that end I provide tips that may help. I can not help (or explain) those who do not wish to be helped. A woman's desire to face her PMDD, accept it and learn to work with it (instead of deny it or fight it) has to come from within.

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    5. I'm sorry. But to say that she probably suffers more is a little condescending to all on the receiving end of this. And I'll probably be the ignorant man here. But as someone who lives through this experience monthly. In my case at least. .. that statement is untrue. She is perfectly capable of carrying on in a normal fashion laughing and joking with friends. Whilst at the same time scorning her children and husband. Her children are not irrational. They are just going through their day to day lives and then can't make sense of why their mum can't stand to be near them yet can still laugh with her friends. They live that. .. in a normal state of mind, month in month out. They also remember once her episode has passed. And she's in denial that it even happened. It's not a contest... I realise that. But long after she has snapped out of it and refused to acknowledge the problem. It is still fresh in their minds and as much as I try to keep them away from it. I know it effects them. So on one side I don't want the kids to be upset, yet on the other I don't want to blow up at my wife as I'm trying to tell myself ... suck it up. It'll be gone in a few days. Besides ... me blowing up is only more damaging for them.

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    6. You do have a point. I did not consider the children when I wrote that. I also wrote that under the assumption that the woman inherently cares about her relationship with you and her children and is as horrified as you are by what is happening. But, I am learning, in some cases that is just not true, and the woman does not care how her actions affect others, period. Not to excuse her actions in any way, but for someone to have reached that point, they have to be experiencing a lot of internal pain, be it PMDD-related or not. Either way, a woman like that needs professional help. Not a free pass to behave as badly as she can. If anyone is consistently behaving in ways that are damaging to your closest relationship(s) and children, there is no getting around it. You need professional help, in particular some kind of counseling or therapy. If either of you refuse to go, for any reason, the relationship will not change.

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  16. I am so overwhelmed. I have been married for almost 2 years and have only recently been informed that the reason for the now apparent monthly crisis we have endured was due to PMDD. We are a day or two into what appears this cycle again and already I am being verbally assassinated and demeaned in it seams every possible way. She will cut me down badly and demand an apology if my reaction isn't loving. Her focus will remain on demanding an apology (even if one is not due) while continuing to be degrading for days.

    I am trying to understand how she must be feeling. It's difficult when she claims she gets along fine with everyone from work and her family and that it is just me. She has made some progress as she is the one who shared this cause with me. I asked her if this was the week but she denied it. In the beginning she was physically attacking and caused noticeable dental damage. She attempted suicide almost two years ago as well.

    People that know us either say I am stupid for continuing to go back to her or believe I am not committed enough to work on our problems (when they don't know what is happening).

    I am frustrated that I am not doing good at handling her incredible mean statements as I have some hope that if this diagnosis is accurate that she may not mean all these terrible things even though they seem convincing.

    What do I do?

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    1. You are not alone. Many of us reading your note will understand and empathise. I have had this and far worse for much longer. When PMDD takes over she will try to destroy you with words and deeds. It seems to be evil personified. But when I have looked into my wife's eyes the terrifying - yet somehow reassuring thing - was that this clearly was not the love of my life raging before me but a completley different person. The real woman was - is - the wonderful person that graces my life inbetween these nightmarish descents into sheer and utter hell.
      The first 2 years of marriage were the worst. It's hard to advise as everyone's position is individual. When she won't acknowledge that there's a problem it is the hardest thing. At that time I thought that there was no way we could bring children into this nightmare. I insisted that she at least tried to help herself; in your case,the suicide attempt adds even more pressure on you, and that has to be very hard for you. The changes my wife made were minimal and not long-lasting, but at least at that point she knew she needed to do something, and that was very important. But it has been an ongoing and bruising battle all through the years. The children are a real blessing. They have had a rough time but know that their mother is a wonderful one when she is not transformed into something frightening by PMDD. No easy answers and no easy roads, but there are people out here who understand how difficult it must be for you.

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    2. same boat brother

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    3. me too in the same boat.

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    4. Here here! So tired of being the rational one when it adds up to nothing.

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  17. PMDD is an explanation, not an excuse. It will take the both of you to come to terms with it. Unless your partner is willing to hold up her end of the relationship, there is not much you can do. You can not help someone who will not help herself. Abuse of the kind you describe is not acceptable in any situation. My best guess is there is more going on here than PMDD alone, and some kind of marriage counseling would be wise.

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  18. Thank you for responding. We have been through four counselors in the last two years. Two of which were through Church. The biggest focus of those was that I was to love no matter what even though they admitted she was very abusive. Unfortunately, it seems to put most of the focus on my ability to handle this and more on my reactions and little or no attention to her abusive actions. I am torn with how to go forward.

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    1. The comment above was deleted because I didn't realize I had already answered the question in the comment that follows. Brain fog, you know :)

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  19. I am so sorry to hear that. But abuse is not acceptable in any situation. I, too, still snap out at my partner, but as soon as I realize what I have done, I apologize and let him know I'm having a PMDD episode (usually, because of the internal denial factor, he knows long before I do). But even if you KNOW what is happening, you still can't control your tongue all the time. You would be amazed at the horrible, hurtful thoughts that zip through my mind when I am having an episode. They appall me. But I've managed to separate myself from them enough so that 95% of them don't come out. Still, the few that do can be deadly to any relationship.

    So I apologize as soon as I am able, and he always says something along the lines of "It's all right, no apology necessary," and I say "No, it's not right. You don't deserve to be treated like that."

    I don't beat myself up about it, because I know I can't control it 100% of the time, and he knows enough about PMDD to know that's the PMDD talking and not me. But still, if we want the relationship to last, the apology needs to be offered.

    Because nobody deserves to be treated like that. Ever.

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  20. Wow, I'm not alone! I've been going through this for 3 years now. The only way I can describe it is Ground Hog day from hell. The way she looks at me, the stabbing words. I've only recently learned of this disorder, I didn't know what was going on every month. I'm happy to have this info, because at least I can see I'm not alone and as hard as it is to believe during an episode, it's not her fault. It's so hard not to take it personal when she is so cold and vicious. I just don't know if I have the strength to go through this hell every month for the rest of my life. But, when the episode ends and she is back I fall in love with her all over again. I'm so lost at what to do.

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  21. In putting in all of this energy to assure she is okay, when do the man's feelings come into it? I noticed through reading this page that it doesn't say a lot about how a man is feeling or could feel in this. I'm not sure if I am the only one who gets Sexually Frustrated out there but when your partner never wants to be intimate due to PMDD & never wants to be intimate when not having an episode either because it makes her feel bad about herself all the time. I'm left feeling un-loved,alone, depressed, sad & more. Is this normal? What do I do to help myself in this situation?

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    1. I defiantly have the same problem as yourself and would like to get some kind of advice.

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    2. I am in the same boat. You are not alone on this and I think more men feel this way

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    3. I'm reading through all the comments. If it's all month long she said it is other factors as well, not just simply Pmdd. Pmdd is in the week before the actual period starts and stops almost immediately when bleeding starts. If it's all the time there are other things happening that you all need to find help for.

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  22. I'm afraid I can't address how a man is feeling or could feel in this situation since I am not one and I try not to talk about things I don't know about. My goal here is to help women with PMDD to understand what is happening to them in a way they can hopefully share with their partner. My best guess is that your situation goes beyond PMDD and therefore I am unable to address it. Because my information shows that a PMDD woman craves more affection during an episode, but is also super-sensitive to rejection at that time, so if she is not in a positive, healthy, and supportive relationship with someone who understands what is going on, all kinds of things can go wrong. Each partner has to do their part when it comes to PMDD. If she is not doing hers, then no matter what you do, how understanding and supportive you are, you can't make the relationship work.

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  23. A good forum for questions like these can be found at http://www.mdjunction.com/forums/pre-menstrual-syndrome-discussions/general-support/2195312-pmdd-rage

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  24. My wife and i have been married for 12 years, and this started 18months ago out of nowhere. 6 months after our son was born. All these stories are whats happening to us. PMDD has stolen my wife, and our lives. she is deep in denial, but after showing her these and other stories i hope she gets it. we have been in an episode for 15 days now, this is the longest lasting one. Probably because her period is over a week late. is there a fix for this? i have read that anti-depressants and birth control help, is this true? All i know is that it feels like i am fighting for my life, and the pure hatred towards me is harsh. when she gets her period this all goes away and we have a week of normal till it starts again.

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    1. Be careful. Birth Control messed up my hormones WAY worse. I ended up having PMDD symptoms the entire month while on it. I even attempted suicide. I'd never take the pill again. It helps some and hurts others. If you try it, be sure to watch how she's feeling.

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    2. The same thing happened to me. The pill made me have sever depression and become suicidal. Yes... I tried many kinds of birth control. They all did it. I'm terrified of birth control now.

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  25. I, too, am in one of my longest episodes ever and can't figure out why, although it is low grade and the main element is a compulsion to sleep. My feeling is that birth control and/or anti-depressants can help in the short run, but in the long run they make things worse. You're applying a one size fits all solution to a highly individualized situation. Plus you have the side effects of those drugs to cope with. I've had great success with nutritional solutions, and I think I just answered my own question...I recently switched to a diet that eliminates bread, where before that, bread - 1 slice or roll per meal - gave me the 50 - 60 carbs from grains per meal I needed to stay stable. For some reason, carbs from fruits and vegetables just don't work on my PMDD. I've also had good luck with Vitamin B-6, which needs to be from a quality vitamin supplier, not off the shelf, and must be taken along with a vitamin B complex to act properly. I've also found 500 mg of calcium citrate daily (again, from a quality supplier) to be helpful. When that and all the nutritional guidance in this blog fails, then there's nothing left but to try fluoxetine, but during an acute episode only, as it doesn't work for at least 40% who try it, but if it does work, it can bring quick relief on the "bad" days. Taking it every day, however, generally does not have the same effect. Good luck and I understand what you are going through. It is indeed a nightmare.

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  26. Ive been married for 18 years and i recall hints of PMDD peeking out every so often for the first 15 years but the past five years were a powder Keg of anger violent profanity laced one-sided argument. I and my oldest daughter wondered where is this coming from. I took the blame for the outbursts thinking is was something I said or did, but my daughter said dad youre not doing anything to cause this. And he more I tried to make sense of the monthly train wreak that is my wife the more nuts and angry I got. I thought infidelity, mental illness, some type of repressed resentment etc but no avail then I noticed there was a monthly pattern or a cycle to these episodes. She became indifferent angry irrational emotional destructive physically abusive. She denies there is a problem and if I persist she snaps so I ease off and tell the kids to steer clear of mom when she seems angry. Divorce has crossed my mind but the saving grace are our beautiful kids they deserve a mom a dad and a home.

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    1. I FEEL AND LIVE YOUR EXACT PAIN MY FRIEND.

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  27. I'm sorry to say it gets worse if left untreated, as you have already seen. It can get particularly bad during menopause. The combination of the two sends many women over the edge. Unfortunately, the denial is part of the PMDD. Try to find a non-PMDD day to approach her gently about the situation. Be loving and supportive. If that's the only problem in the marriage, she may listen. If not, it's beyond the scope of my ability to help. Good luck and congratulations on your astuteness and willingness to support your wife in this.

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  28. Hi Liana,

    Thank you so much for these great posts and your blog. I have been in and out of a relationship with the same wonderful woman for three years. She has broken up with me anywhere from 7-9 times. It is absolutely predictable. The break ups are inexplicable and all right before her period. During or after her period she loves me again and wants to get back together with me...anywhere from two to five days after we break up we are back together.

    We did have a three month break earlier this year. But in June she contacted me again and we got back together. Everything was fantastic! We were talking about living together and how we might plan our wedding. In the past week, she became distant again and now has told me she doesn't see our worlds coming together successfully. But that's all she wanted and what we have been moving towards especially recently.

    When I brought up the idea that she may have PMDD, she said she took a screener earlier this year but was fine for the three months we were broken. She did date someone briefly in that time. Is it possible that her PMDD could be less severe and more like PMS symptoms for that three months because she was kind of in escape mode...not dating anyone seriously? When we did get back together in June, she told me he was nothing...just a distraction.

    I truly believe she has PMDD. She has every symptom and our relationship issues are completely in alignment with PMDD.

    What are your thoughts?

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    1. It's possible she was fine for the three months she was away. Put it this way: If she was seeing someone else he was new and a mystery and at that point things are usually pretty rosy and you are looking at things you have in common, things to bring you closer (whether it be with a love interest or even just a friend to hang out with), vs things to move you apart. All this finding common ground increases the level of your bonding hormones (those unpredictable hormones again) and in my experience, oxytocin trumps PMDD every time. Nothing like a good surge of oxytocin (in my case cuddling with a loving partner) to make the PMDD blues go away. This is not to say she was cuddling with anyone...simply the fantasy of cuddling with someone (even a movie star) can generate the same biological results in your brain. Simply talking to a friend and feeling heard or understood can generate the same biological feelings. As can cuddling with a baby or playing with a puppy or kitten. Oxytocin makes no distinction between whether it's a pet or a person, or even just being good to yourself. That's why I encourage PMDD women to take time out and be good to themselves during an episode of PMDD. Rest, relax, do whatever makes you feel ready to face the world again.

      If she was in escape mode and determined to believe that all was well in her world, then it is quite possible that her brain chemistry reflected that feeling and the PMDD was held at bay during those months. Most couples who are genuinely interested in each other have their first major argument within three months...(if one party is not genuinely interested in having a relationship it can and usually does come much sooner), but at that point a healthy couple decides if they want to split or keep trying..and continues to do so with every major disagreement.

      If she truly doesn't see your worlds coming together successfully, then there is nothing you can do about it, but quite often that is the PMDD talking. You can't see the positive in anything when you're having an episode of PMDD, and the negative is magnified at least tenfold.

      She would have to cooperate with you to learn to manage her PMDD--and you'd both have to refrain from making major decisions of any sort during PMDD episodes--or your life on this emotional roller coaster will only get worse.
      So while I applaud your (and any partner's) decision to stand by your PMDD woman, just remember you can't fix something YOU didn't break. Since it affects both of you, it takes both of you to get a handle on her PMDD.

      Delete
  29. Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my question. Things are starting to make sense. I have felt so helpless not knowing why the same things are happening over and over again. I have some hope now that we can come through this together if we are supposed to.

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    1. Hello all. I've been reading various PMDD websites for the last 3 years and have heard lots of stories that have helped me. From a man's perspective, this is seriously tough. After about 4 months together (seeing each other twice a week) I started to notice things I didnt understand. I'd get accused of things that I hadnt done, like fancying other women and I would spend hours defending myself to her. She would regularly say inappropriate things. She'd storm off and regularly misinterpret things I said. I would always beg her to come back and I would apologise to keep the peace. We got engaged after she left me on one occasion and we were set to get married. The accusations continued and basically there was no consistency in the relationship. It was like an emotional rollercoaster as other people describe. It did not make sense. Anyway, we didnt get married as it became so stressful and she would walk out and I obviously became concerned. She was literally all over the place, coming and going, moving in and out, it was absolute chaos. I couldn't believe what was happening every month. My work suffered as I couldnt sleep and I lost my job, got another one, and then lost that as well due to not being able to focus on it. I love this girl so much and she is incredible. Beautiful, funny, intelligent. Everything. Unfortunately she has left me for good now it seems because we weren't making any progress and she is now allegedly with someone else. I'm heartbroken but need to focus on getting my life back together. I've contemplated finishing my life over this as I couldnt bare being without her. I've been to counselling myself because I couldn't understand why it wasn't working and it has created some issues with me. The thought of her being with another man is crushing me. She wants a baby badly and I can only assume she is trying with another man now.

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    2. Hello, fixthis,

      First of all, I am sorry for your heartache. All I can say is the pain will lessen with time and distance. Regarding your ex's behavior, there are a lot of issues going on here. But her PMDD is a huge part of it. Unless she gets treatment for her PMDD, her life will only become more and more chaotic. And without treatment, another hormonal event, such as having a child, will only make her PMDD worse. You can't fix what you didn't break. Unless she's willing to get help for her PMDD, it's best that you focus on getting your life back together. You have everything to live for. You are caring, compassionate, intelligent, and perceptive. The right woman will appreciate those qualities.

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    3. Brother Fixthis
      As I have been dealing with the same nightmare for many years, I envy the young man not so deeply engulfed in the NEVER ENDING NIGHTMARE.
      I will not leave my wife,however I am
      doomed to hell on earth ,Remember the abuse, Mine will not seek help,she is killing us both.
      Find another, or go alone. Those of us on the target end of this horror surprise epic have limits on what our mind can withstand.
      Go for a real life,And never look back!
      REGARDS, Iwouldratherbe.........

      Delete
    4. So true! And though I wouldn't leave my wife for anything, I couldn't agree more. If you are with some one and have noted they exhibit this behavior, my only advice is to run before you are completely engulfed. Seriously, you are looking at relatively good odds of being miserable for half of the rest of your days.

      For me and apparently many other men, it's much too late to turn back now.

      Delete
    5. I do want to point out that PMDD does end with menopause (when a woman stops having her period), but if left untreated, her PMDD will get a LOT worse before it gets better, especially during the years leading up to menopause, and will leave her prone to major depressive disorder in her post menopausal -- or so called "golden" years. Not much to look forward to, which is why I heartily recommend doing everything possible to get a handle on her PMDD before peri-menopause sets in.

      Delete
    6. We all feel that are hands are tied. It's such a debilitating situation. We can't leave and we can't solve the problem that we didn't create.

      Delete
  30. I have been seeking treatment for years! My issue is, there is none. Antidepressants might help a tiny bit but they also rob you of your "normal time". That is, making you very blah when you could actually be feeling like a normal Dane person. My Pmdd is so obvious and physical, I can feel it arrive and I can feel it leave. It is sudden and stays for 10 days! It is horrible. Just reading this blog made me feel so much better because I feel very alone. People like to think I am making it up or exaggerating. Ha! That just makes the problem worse. I thought of begging my dr for a hysterectomy but I have heard that that can actually make it worse and permanent. Does anyone out there have any suggestions? I tried the pill and gave up after two days because it made me so sick. Clearly I am someone who is super sensitive to hormones! Thanks again for taking the time to cover this topic.

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    1. Dear anonymous,

      I am 42 years old and have been suffering with PMDD since my late teens, early twenties. I have been in and out of counseling, on and off anti-depressants, into and out of natural supplement that are supposed to level out mood but to no avail.
      Like you, people thought I was making it up or just looking for an excuse to be nasty or whatever. And you're right. That makes it about a thousand times worse.

      I went to doctor after doctor but no one understood. It was VERY frustrating! Until I finally found a doctor who DID understand. He recommended a low dose of prozac 10 days before my cycle was due to start and viola! It actually helped! I then coupled that with visits to a good psychologist so I could manage my stress (stress decreases the effectiveness of the medicine for me and exacerbates the PMDD). A couple of years after starting the prozac I underwent the NovaSure procedure (a procedure that basically destroys the lining of the uterus) because my doctor wouldn't do a hysterectomy and I had problems with the pill. I don't know exactly what effect the Novasure procedure had on my PMDD, but 2 years post-procedure I feel better than I ever have in my whole life. I still have PMDD episodes, but they are MUCH less severe than in the past.
      I hope this helps you and anyone else in your shoes. I wish you all the best!

      My summary: Prozac 10 days before cycle + pschotherapy for stress + NovaSure procedure = Finally feeling human again! Hooray!

      Delete
    2. Yikes, you sound exactly like me. Verbatim ... ditto on everything you just said. And I am at my wits end, 50 years old and still suffering

      Delete
  31. My wife is in total denial that she has any problem. I have been away from home for almost two months now. She said she was out of denial two months ago, but then slipped away again. Now she says she doesn't want me back because I made up this illness. We talk on the phone and she says she loves me, and wants to talk to me and everything is good for a few days. Then she starts getting distant, and starts to ignore me. I know her period is due any day now so I'm hoping that she pops out of it this time. She missed her period in July and finally got it aug 13th, but we had a huge blowout at that time. Maybe that was the reason for her not asking me to come home that time. When we talk on the phone she cries almost the whole time, she says she wants to be with me, but she is confused. I am just rambling on now...can PMDD denial stop you from getting your normal feelings back? Or maybe because of the messed up periods? I love my wife and just need some advice.

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    1. I am sorry, but your situation is beyond my ability to help. If I come across something that answers your questions I will return with a reply, but for now I have no answers for you.

      Delete
  32. Hi, I am glad I found this article. I think I have PMDD. I just realized that every month for a couple of days I feel very irritable, I even rage and normally I am a very calm person. I feel like quitting my job and I question every single aspect of my life. Last week I put my relationship at risk beacuse I behaved very badly with my boyfriend. I embarrased him in front of his friends and on our way home I screamed, I hit him and I told him he could walk away from me and I love this man profoundly. I want to marry him!!!! He is very disapointed (I can tell). I even had suicidal thoughts. I am going to look for help but i have to do it by myself because he'll believe that I trying to give excuse. I take care of my relationship and my job like a precious diamond and one day I wake up and I want to destroy everything.... and the worst is the guilty and shame after.

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    1. Thank you for stopping by! It does indeed sound like you have PMDD. Everything you described can happen to a woman during an episode of PMDD. Don't be embarrassed. There are things you can do to lessen the symptoms and a lot of them are described on this blog. Take charge of your PMDD. Don't let it take charge of you!

      Delete
  33. Two thoughts:
    1) Men suffer from PMDD too. I am considering seeking treatment for my developing distress/depression. I am not certain, but I think that my body has learned to sense my wife's coming PMDD episode. I get depressed/irritable a day or two before PMDD sets in.

    2) God bless those of you who are willing to stay and love your wife with PMDD. The grace of a marital vow is key to this. I do not mean to be callous, but those of you who are saying "my girlfriend" might consider that since you have not yet made a promise "for better or for worse," you should seriously consider that this woman might be better off living a single life and being able to have the quiet, peaceful environment that she needs to avoid exacerbating her PMDD each month. As noted in the blog, PMDD can spiral downward if not treated. Medical treatment is iffy and getting the peace-and-queit treatment is almost impossible with children. You as a father will one day concieve children. Strongly consider if you want your child to grow up with a mother who drives them through hell for a week or two EVERY month. Breaking up with your girlfriend and suffering that loss now might be the loving thing to do for the sake of the children you will conceive with a different woman, a wife that does not have such a grave, debilitating, and destructive (to others) disorder. Again, this is not to be callous to the dear woman who suffers PMDD. Read the blog again and ask yourself if you would want to expose her to the stress of raising children in the midst of PMDD and if you would want to expose those children that you will someday conceive to the torments and torrents of even just one (let alone monthly) episodes like those descibed in the blog.

    I am sorry for the frankness of this thought. I look back at the warning signs during our courtship and know that I could have saved her, my children, and myself much suffering. I thank God, however, for the grace of the Sacrament of Marriage that carries us all through the suffering as we share in the Cross of Christ. I know that, by using that grace, each of us will be able to stay faithful to Love.

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    1. Dear Anonymous
      I had just posted on my outlook for a life with this horrOR SHOW.
      You post is what I should have read,rather than make mine.
      My post to Fixthis was my true feelings,
      Your writting gives both hope and comfort ,not to mention the advice is truly good and might save someone from this suffering.

      Delete
    2. My girlfriend and I have been dating for 3 years she is 42 yrs old) and I believe she has SEVERE PMDD. She takes Zoloft and double dose a week before(when she doesnt forget) and cant get BC due to past reactions. Last weekend I went over to her place (1 week before her period starts) and stayed the weekend.....she worked Sunday but I made dinner and cleaned her house (which was a mess) before she got home. We watched a movie and I would say had a fair evening.......She is usually distant and cold during her episodes....Shes very affectionate when she is not. The next two days she was off from work so on her last day off via text I said I was going to come down and she said" well what if I have plans?" I said do you? She said "no" Mind you this is never an issue....I recognized right away I was being baited for a fight..... I said I can come visit on a different day(in the most caring and understanding way possible)but she hung up the phone on me.

      The next day she sends me a text "I don't want to do anything this weekend, go have fun without me." I mean at this point it is the middle of the week...and she saying this already?? All I could text is "I love you" to which she never responded.

      Now I know her cycles 28th day is this Saturday so maybe she's consciously or unconsciously not wanting to do anything because she wont be feeling well...cramps and such OR maybe she doesn't want to do anything WITH ME??? Who knows......I know the day of her period SHE IS A DIFFERENT PERSON...sweet, kind etc. I love her very much and I know this is HELL for her too.

      I am at a loss as to what to do.... I set a therapy appt for a week from now....I dont dare mention it until her period starts!

      I am even stressing how to tell her about the appt,.......I have to word it in a way so she knows id like her to come but she doesnt think I am demanding it. In my head if she doesn't show then I am just working on dealing with a break up with the therapist until I am healed. I have been reading a blogs for men who deal with this and it helps a lot....we all are dealing with EXACTLY the same women. Everyone seems as stressed as I am...some of the stories are even a little funny....because I identify with the anger and sheer resentment she treats me with during these times. The worst part for me is being ignored, sent to voicemail sending a text getting no response etc. She has a high pressure job that she excels at and I cant help but resent her clients that sees and speaks to her more than I do during her episodes.

      Anyway....I dont know if I should call her this weekend... Text her ....avoid her to give her space.....its all so nerve racking and I am over it. My ego also feels bruised and I realize thats my issue to work thru in therapy.... it just like Im constantly chasing her. I plan to take her advice this weekend and go have fun with my friends....the hard part is this situation still lingers the back of my head so it makes it hard to focus on having fun. Thank you to Liana and the men in the posted for your words and honesty.

      Delete
  34. Hello Liana, thank you for this wonderful page. Today I realized I must have pmdd. The past week has been like a trip to hell and back. I am not totally out yet, but seeing the light. My husband-to-be is sleeping, and I am filled with emotional pain and fear....but I believe that's the pmdd. The extreme negativity was so powerful this month. I am so grateful that I am more than willing to face this, because I KNOW I act mean to him, and to my sweet mom (who I see regularly). The two people I love the most, and my inner self-loathing decides to call some shots. I am aghast at this. I am a little overwhelmed and like I said, hurting pretty badly, and your page is helping me through this stretch of darkness tonight. My significant other really needs his rest, and without this page to focus on I might have woken him crying and begging for his attention. This is a really scary thing. But I know I will find ways to help it and to cope. Thank you for being here, and thank you for listening. Good luck to all the fellows out there who try to understand and offer love during a confusing, painful time.

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  35. First off i want to thank you for this site,its a great thing you are doing here.Until you,all i ever seemed to find on pms or pmdd was a simple warnings of mood swings and irrational behaivior,but no particulars to compare to.What to expect,whats not acceptable.
    Im a stubborn man but not without compation.Im 46 and my now ex girl friend is 45.We managed to make it for just over a year.At the beginning it was magical,she would be my last and forever love.
    She did warn me that she would get severe pms and that that full moon would also affect her.The episodes would come with no warning,we would have a wonderful evening together and the next morning she would ph me a totally different person,then the texts would start.At first i would reply but eventually i would put my ph down and walk away.
    She would attack me on all fronts,my ability as a boy friend,my ability as a father,where i live, how i live,she would demean the things i'd do for her,and tell me that most everthing i bought for her was worthless and ugly, all the way down to my performce in the bedroom.The episodes always started with accusing me of cheating on her,that i was a manwhore.
    Sometimes she would tell me that she had already started see someone else and go into great detail about her and her new man.
    Later,1-2weeks later she would retract her statments and sometimes apologize.
    I quickly learned that when these moods would take hold of her there was nothing i could do to defuse her,trying would only make it worse,leaving didnt help much either other than at least i didnt have to see her in that state,but of course there was still the text messages.
    She takes birth control pills and has tried different meds but the side effects made them not an option.She had great results with St John Wart that is until it damaged her stomach.
    I tried plotting her behavior, looking for some kind of pattern but it was chaotic at best,only if i removed some 30% of the episodes did it make any sense.
    I'm no expert but it seems to me that pmdd is not her issue but rather pmdd make her issues much worse
    I know she follows your blog and my hope is that your words and insite might help her.I love this woman more than she will ever know.I wish i could be stronger for her but her words and actions are destoying what self esteem and confidence i have left.
    thank you for your ear

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    Replies
    1. Hi,
      I'm new to this PMDD thing... but I have read at TON on it.
      I think you are right... There just may be something else going on here than just her PMDD. Her direct, deep cutting insults and criticisms go above and beyond in my opinion.

      My suggestion is to get out and get your sanity back. Take care of yourself. Hang out with friends of similar mind set. Do some work on YOU! And READ everything you can about PMDD and then read this: http://shrink4men.wordpress.com/2009/01/21/relationships-with-borderline-narcissistic-personality-women/

      Delete
  36. my other 1/2 of 2 + years has pmdd all that is stated on this is true to fact. i have learnd to over look her mood swings and the things she say's to me... i know its not her ture real feelings at all.. wiht her i can tell how with her tone of voice how she text's an how she types with messages. i gues you can say i read her well i know its not good to point out her mood's but some times it is better to point it out be honest it about with her.
    i know thur out this time of the mo life can an will be hell. but at the end of the day she is the love of my life an she know i will walk the fires of hell for her even if there in our home...
    thanks for your time
    an this web site
    dirk's

    ReplyDelete
  37. As a man, I am experiencing some extreme frustration dealing with and understanding the unbelievable mood swings presented me monthly by my girlfriend. I have no other explanation but for PMDD. She is in absolute denial about anything being wrong at all. She wants me to apologize for things I do not do or for things that are routine and normal but for the PMDD time of the month. She is so intelligent and it is hard for me to understand why she does not realize that something is going on? HELP!

    ReplyDelete
  38. Believe me, I understand your frustration, and am sorry both of you have to go through this. I have written some posts on denial that might help you to understand where she is coming from...just type Denial in the search box on this blog. Also there are links in my Helpful Links section in the sidebar to sites where you can communicate with other men regarding your experiences...on Facebook and at The Experience Project in particular.

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  39. Ok, I am a wife of a wonderful and loving man who has put up with what I now know is PMDD for 10 years. he fills like he has to goad me all the way to a emotional blowup that includes horrible words and accusations and talk of divorce on both our parts, until I "snap back" and realize I have lost it, which I usually do.Afterwards I feel guilty, depressed, and full of shame that I said those horrible things and threw things and have actually slapped him!!!! I don't even know where my hand came from, all of a sudden it was slapping him!?!I "normally" and kind, happy, loving gal. I fear now that the only resort is to separate and spare us both anymore agony. To you husbands and boyfriends...how do we redeem ourselves?? We can't go back and change what we did or said, the guilt stays and the anxiety of knowing that no matter how hard you try, you are going to blow it again... that in it's self adds to the stress which in turn worsens our PMDD. How do we reconcile a relationship that we destroy every month??? I'm seriously asking, is separation the only answer?? or do we all just suffer on???

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  40. Liana,

    Thank you so much for posting all this information on how men and women can help each other keep PMDD at bay. I love my wife and never entertain the thought of leaving her but she does threaten to leave me frequently. PMDD is kicking our asses and I never wanted her to take any drugs for it. I saw a post about you having a very specific diet to help you deal. How can I figure out what nutrients would help my wife?

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    1. Trial and error. Every woman's hormonal situation is different. I'd recommend starting with a pharmaceutical grade quality pro-biotic and daily supplement -- not something off the shelf at your local discount store. Everyone can benefit from that. Next, according to how much money you have to spend and how many pills you want to be taking, I'd recommend Vitamin D3 and Magnesium, again using quality products - clinically researched, laboratory tested. For essential fatty acids, I get Blue Ice cod liver oil capsules from Green Pasture products. Or, the alternative, and I have been recommending this a lot lately, is to try the Women to Women program, or the PMS Comfort program, which may or may not work for her, but are a good place to start. I would have used them myself but I prefer to tinker on my own using body awareness. That said, what works for me may or may not work for your wife. Which is why I have limited my answer to generalities. For those who want to know what I take specifically, write to me off line, as it changes too frequently for me to post it here. Which is another problem you may face, no matter what your health regimen...what works for a while may stop working after a while. It's very frustrating, but good quality supplements do indeed help by giving your body the tools it needs to help repair the damage done by our individual lifestyles, environment, and food and drink choices.

      Delete
  41. I really appreciate this blog and all the comments. I am almost positive I suffer from PMDD but have become much more aware of the symptoms in the last few months, I think having the coil fitted could be contributing to this.

    I am in a new relationship (9 months) and the last thing I want is for this to be effected by my symptoms. I definitely suffer from the insecurity and paranoia as well as all the rest and I don't know how to raise it with my boyfriend as I don't want him to think I'm mad or that this is a massive problem that is not worth dealing with. Outwith PMDD I am a very rational and secure person.

    My boyfriend definitely doesn't deserve any insecure or paranoid behavior towards him and I try so very hard every month not to let this get the better of me but unfortunately I don't always manage to completely suppress these emotions and a little insecurity will show. Logically I know that it is unfounded and I am exhausted with the effort of trying to hide these feelings / behavior.

    It also effects my job and social skills and the quality of absolutely anything that I try and do definitely deteriorates at this point in my cycle.

    Is there anything that anyone can recommend?

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    Replies
    1. Is there any way you can discuss it with him when you are NOT feeling the paranoia and insecurity? You will have to take the risk of telling him sometime, as PMDD is not something you can keep under wraps. By "anything that anyone can recommend", do you mean relationship advice or alternative methods of treatment besides birth control or antidepressants? I'm going to go with the first and say maybe you could set up a code word or phrase with your boyfriend to let him know when you are having an episode, to let him know the problem is not with him or your relationship, but temporarily in your perceptions of life. Then again, if you are having any kind of problem with him or your relationship, you need to be open about that, as well. Problems and conflict present opportunities to find solutions -- they don't always signal the end of a relationship. The honesty required in a situation like this can bring you closer. For myself, I surround myself with friends and family who are supportive of my situation. I don't have the energy to deal with those who are not. That's energy taken away from my ability to heal and be well. I do, however, work from home, and realize that not every woman with PMDD can do that. But it is because I discovered that I could not cope in a daily 9 - 5 situation that I found a way to work from home. So, in short, you do what you have to. But above all, be honest with those closest to you. You will sort out who truly cares about you and who doesn't rather quickly, and be on your way to healing that much more quickly.

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    2. Hi Liana

      Thank you for replying so quickly and thank you for all the work you do with this site. I think I meant alternative methods as well as relationship advice although relationship advice was at the forefront of my mind.

      The code word sounds like a good idea and I will pluck up the courage to tell him once I am fully out of this months cycle, but after reading the comments above it just seems such a burden to inflict on someone you love, and particularly someone that is a really good person and just doesn't deserve any of this.

      You're very wise about any relationship problems and I am lucky that anything that has come up so far has been when I am feeling 'normal'. I know that won't always be the case though and I am desperate to find a way to manage this condition before I do any damage to my relationship. It feels like a ticking time bomb and one that I have had to fight tooth and nail to control so far.

      This is such a debilitating, isolating and exhausting condition that I don't even know where to start but something small and simple to set my on the right path would be greatly appreciated because too much information at the moment would be massively overwhelming.

      Thank you again

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    3. Hi, again. Just type in the search box on the blog what you are looking for information about. For instance, start with Nutrition. Read what is there about Nutrition, then wait a few days and pick another topic. Repeat the process. Move at your own pace. If you have a question about something that is not on the blog, write me an email (address in the sidebar at the bottom of the ABOUT ME section) and the answer might end up in a blog post. I will answer you either way. Just take baby steps, one day at a time, and fine tune your own personal program/situation every step of the way. Good luck and be blessed!

      Delete
  42. I have been reading up on this disorder for some time, and I see post after post saying you must seek treatment, but I have yet to see one post that describes a proven or potentially positive treatment.

    Does one exist, or is therapy as elusive as the diagnosis?

    Please forgive the "straight to the point" tone, but I have lost all patients with this disorder.

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    1. Absolutely, the therapy is as elusive as the diagnosis. With at least 150 possible symptoms to treat, and every woman's symptoms being different, the treatment is as individual as the woman. The only thing that is universal is that without treatment, it will only get worse. But you have to sort out the treatment for you based on your individual symptoms. Here and other places we talk about what works best for us and our symptoms, but your individual hormone make up might be so different from mine that what works for me will not work for you. If there was a single thing or set of things you could do to make it go away, everyone would be talking about it. Until then, we have to muddle along the best that we can. Even all of my efforts don't "cure" my PMDD. That's not possible. The best you can do is make your symptoms easier to bear/manage. My advice would be to isolate your symptoms through charting, then try what's been said to work on those particular symptoms. Said by women with PMDD, I mean, not by someone with a product to sell you.

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  43. Thank you so much - I'm writing this when I'm well and happy but the days are ticking down to the full moon (oh yes, in one of life's ironies I not only get PMDD but it hits on the bullseye every full moon). I've lost relationships and many friendships to it. I have become so desperate I'm going to my Ob/Gyn on Mon Aug 19th to discuss removal of my remaining ovary (my other ovary was removed due to endometriosis). However I have discovered taking away my right ovary could cause many other serious health issues (turns out the hormones don't just send us loopy, they also perform many other tasks around the body, ie: keeping the heart and brain healthy) so it just may not be viable. So I'm back to thinking about regular exercise, changing my diet drastically for the better etc etc. PMDD is like living with an unstable volcano inside ..you never quite know when it's gonna blow :( Thanks again for your amazing post however - you put it all so accurately and eloquently...

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  44. i have cried my eyes out,.,,,,,she will not look into the matter, it only became worse.
    now i am "single" again after 20 years :(.........i miss her .......

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    1. Brother, if it has gone that long with her in denial, refusing to seek therapy or help, and disregarding what she has done to you, then you are better off this way. I know it may not seem that way at the moment, but stay strong and determined and focus on always moving forward and relearning how to take care of yourself. I'm in the same boat as you, my wonderful (sometimes, and deep down always) wife of 8 years will become my ex-wife on Monday. As much as I long to show her these sites, with the hopes of happily-ever-after, the one thing I keep coming back to is that I can and will sit down and talk about her PPMD and textbook BPD, but not until the divorce papers are signed and final. If something miraculous happens subsequent to that, so be it. Otherwise, with absolute certainty, I will be better off and lead a much happier, fulfilling life whether alone or with somebody else. It hurts now and that will continue for a while, nothing you can do about it other than refuse to let it stop you from living your life. It, and you, will get better with time and distance, and the hurt will diminish and come less often. The more you do for yourself emotionally, socially and spiritually, will hasten the arrival of happiness, and better yet peace and contentment.

      Keeping you, her, and everyone like us in my prayers. - j

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  45. Hi. Do any of the men out there have any advice on what you have seen work for your relationship during this time? Is there anything in particular that your wife or girlfriend has done or said to help you deal with the effects of her PMDD? Thanks in advance.

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    1. I have posted on several different websites about my experiences with dating a girl with pmdd. I spent 3 1/2 years of my life trying to calm my then gf down and to try to get her to seek help. She has a history of problems in her life and also mental illness in her family. I believe that ALL of these problems come from PMDD. Her mother had severe problems and her father couldn't cope with the constant roller coaster ride. He had mental breakdowns and developed an alcohol problem to cope with it. The kids, 1 boy and 1 girl (my ex) have had a very unstable life and my ex has inherited the wild PMDD mood swings for 2 weeks of EVERY month from her mother. I loved her to bits but my life will be better without her in the long run. The only thing you can do is to leave to put up with living on a emotional roller coaster or to walk away from a PMDD woman. Sorry, but I tried harder than I have tried at anything in my life and it still didn't work. She was a lunatic and you would not believe the things she'd say to me/problems she caused. If I had married her it would have ended in divorce as she was so out of control and unstable. Maybe yours isn't as bad but I wish you luck. You may need it...

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    2. The best advice I can give is to acknowledge how she feels and put her worries to rest when she isn't voicing them. My girlfriend is so thankful to see that I understand her and I feel like we really make progress. Women with pmdd already feel crazy when they are overwhelmed with these symptoms, so it helps them relax when they know you understand.

      I am currently having a tough time with these issues, as my girlfriend honestly believes that I provoke her into fights and force her to make amends before the fight will end. I want to accuse her of playing mind games with me because I am often the one to put out fires after she has a panic attack. It is the hardest thing to be a gentleman and show compassion towards that special woman in your life when she labels you as a horrible person.

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    3. I just leave the house now. If we are together during her rage week we end up saying things we regret.

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  46. The best treatment that I have found is a non generic Fluoxetine, Premular Flordis (Agnus castus), Evening Primrose Oil, B6, D3, Calcium, Zinc, Magnesium, Vitamin C, a healthy diet, very little alcohol, adequate rest, moderate exercise and do not go hungry or starve yourself.

    This is what my partner takes and it has returned her back to her normal self. If she misses one part of the above treatment, I know that she will turn into a monster at some point and make my life a living hell.

    I hope this information helps someone out there.Female partner's in same sex relationships also need advice. I was one of them and I researched the condition and found my girlfriend a really good Doctor. Another thing is to be careful when using hormones or the pill to treat PMDD as it can often make it worse.

    Wife of a PMDD sufferer.

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    1. I can vouch for all of these: B6, D3, Calcium, Zinc, Magnesium, Vitamin C, a healthy diet, very little alcohol, adequate rest, moderate exercise and do not go hungry or starve yourself. I don't take the fluoxetine, have never tried Agnus castus, and I took years ago but haven't lately. But all the rest I take DAILY, not just in the second two weeks of my cycle. Just be sure to take the B6 along with a B50 complex, as the B6 works best in concert with the other B vitamins. Thank you for sharing your "formula" for success!

      You are also absolutely right in that in using synthetic hormones or the pill to treat PMDD it can often make your symptoms worse. Each brand of The Pill has a different level of synthetic progesterone in it, and several studies have shown the progesterone component of the formula to be the reason moods worsen while on it.

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    2. I mean I took evening primrose oil years ago (and it helped) but I take EFA's now. Essential fatty acids. Daily.

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    3. My partner takes all of this daily. this week she missed a meal and hasn't been taking some of her vitamins. She has been pure hell this week. I want this to end but I love her. It is just so much work and I cant stand the verbal abuse. I wish she would be responsible and just take the medication and supplements and buy more or tell me when they run out! I am so depressed and anxious when she gets like this that I have been considering suicide.

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    4. I am so sorry to hear that. You can't help a PMDD woman who won't help herself. And you can't fix a relationship all by yourself. It takes two. Please call 1-800-273-TALK if you feel you can't cope any longer.

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    5. 8 months later and now it is over. I could no longer stand the abuse. She has destroyed me! I'll never forget the horrible things she has said and done to me.

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  47. What are your recommendations for getting someone who suffers this horrible PMDD and inflicts terrible pain and stress on everyone around her to add even the basic vitamins and minerals you describe, much less the home remedies? And even then, are we talking about help for some, most, or all? And is it like even 50 percent better? My wife tried the fluoxetine for a while and refuses to go back. She doesn't deny that she has a problem -- in fact it seems to be a handy sword for whacking down any opposition to discussion or argument (as in "and, yes, I probably am seven days from having my period" which translated means "and, yes, you are an asshole for disagreeing with me on any serious subject and blaming my hormonal condition"). I don't know, maybe that's a form of denial, too? Like many others who have posted here, I appreciate the post and the forum. Knowing that I'm not alone is small consolation, but I wish I could fix this, and knowing that I can't do anything beyond listening, being compassionate, and not taking it personal sucks.

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    1. You can't make someone (anyone, not just a PMDD woman) try to be healthy if they don't want to be healthy, and yes, I would say that hiding behind her PMDD, as in refusing to take or do anything to feel better is a form of denial.
      PMDD is an explanation, not an excuse. For a PMDD woman to use her PMDD as an excuse for bad behavior is not only unacceptable, it is abuse. At the very least, it shows a lack of respect for you, your relationship, and herself.
      You won't know how many symptoms the basic vitamins and minerals we suggest here until she tries them. Every woman is different, and as everybody here knows, even the same woman can be different from day to day. I have to monitor my intake of supplements from day to day, based on what I feel I need. Body awareness is the key. I take what I take based on how I feel that day. I am sorry to hear that your partner refuses to help herself. Until she does, there is nothing you can do to make it better. You can't fix something you didn't break.

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    2. I would film her when she is acting like this, so you can show her how her behaviour affects your relationship. My partner doesn't realise how much her personality changes and how abusive she can be, so I am at this point of filming her to show her how much I suffer and how cruel she can be.

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  48. By the bye, the advice to steer clear is all well and good, but I have to say that the only time the PMDD sufferer in my life ever wants to "discuss" (read: yell or argue about) the big things and major financial issues is in the throes of the latest PMDD bout. Is there a requirement that all of the bad news and all of the problems rear their heads seven to ten days before the start of menses. What the hell?

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    1. Is she easy to get along with most of the time? If so, maybe those things really don't matter to her overall. I know that there are a thousand things I will overlook the rest of the month, but then when that time comes around, I find them intolerable. Something simple, like not putting shoes and coats away, in my mind at PMDD time turns into, You don't appreciate all the things I do around here, all the things I do for YOU, all the sacrifices I make so that I can be here for you....it shows a total lack of respect for me and what I do and who I am when you don't blah blah blah....

      That kind of thing. But the rest of the month it doesn't bother me. In the overall scheme of things it's not a problem.

      But if a little thing like hanging up coats can set a PMDD woman off, the last thing she should be doing is discussing major issues and making decisions while having an episode. But if she doesn't want to discuss the big things or financial issues during her good times, then there is something more than PMDD going on in the relationship, while PMDD is getting all the blame.

      I have to stick by my advice to steer clear. Since a PMDD woman's brain literally does not process information correctly during an episode, you're never going to get anything resolved in a positive way by trying to sort it out while she is in rant mode--whether she brings it up or not. If she does, don't let that confuse you into thinking she really wants to solve the problem. No...she just wants something to fight about.

      For more examples of PMDD behavior, see my December 2012 posts, The Other Side of PMDD, and especially The Other Side of PMDD, continued.

      http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-other-side-of-pmdd-continued.html

      http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-other-side-of-pmdd.html

      Thank you and God Bless you and yours.

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  49. I am now giving up. I can't take her abuse anymore. Our relationship was so great to begin with. Now I am frightened and treading on eggshells in our home. She is a monster. Why won't she just take responsibility for her health and even her life? I am ending our 5 year relationship with a sad but relieved heart.

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  50. Just another guy dealing with the pain of PMDD. Glad to have found this site. Glad to know I'm not alone.

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  51. Thank you for this site......I diagnosed myself with pmdd a long time ago. I don't want my spouse to feel like some of you- actually I know how it feels because I too, had a parent with it. It is absolutely miserable to loose your shit every month, to go from confident & fun to irrational & insecure- no way to live. Thank you for this site, I've got to fix it.

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  52. I am so glad I found your site! Apparently, I've been getting pretty bad in the last year. I've only come to realize something wasn't quite right within the last 4-6 months. But with everyday life, I just accepted the moods and then voila, I was myself again. Fast forward to this week ! A real life nightmare. To sum it up, ALL the symptoms of PMDD were staring me in the face. I googled severe moodiness and I felt some sense of relief that I have an answer. Do I like feeling out of control, no. I immediately called and have a dr appt today. Although I'm very nervous to "explain" all the awful feelings because I don't want to be judged. Like many of you men, my husband had no clue as to how awful I felt and it was all in my head and I'm making stuff up and I better deal with it and stop the damn mood swings. Your blog has been a god send. I showed him this last night and he hugged me. Said he didn't realize and if he had, he wouldn't have reacted the way he did. I told him that I had an appt scheduled and he said I just want you back. I said, me too! Here's hoping for a positive outcome because I really can't deal with another episode of this magnitude. Thank you again for the site. It gave me the knowledge that this is real and it doesn't need to define you.

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  53. This article is absurd. "She has a biological explanation, what's your excuse?". If this were an article about a woman living with a man with bipolar disorder, and he wouldn't seek treatment, and where his disorder caused him to be mentally and verbally abusive to his wife you would tell her to leave him and get away from him. However, we as husbands are supossed to be "patient" and take the abuse because it's not "personal". We are supposed to walk on eggshells and alter our behavior to allow our tormenter to be more comfortable? Ridiculous. No one has a right to curse at you, degrade you, hit you, or belittle you infront of your children no matter what their affliction. If she is in denial and refuses to seek treatment that's all the more reason she should not be coddled, or deserve "patience". She should be required to get a diagnosis and treatment, or like the abusive man with bipolar disorder she should be divorced and left alone to torment herself.

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    1. I think you misunderstood the "what's your excuse?" line. She was writing that there is no excuse for a woman to behave immaturely towards you, and advises not to also react immaturely. The 'what's your excuse' is about immaturity ie "what's your excuse for being immature" not about overall abuse. Read it again and you will see. She is giving advice on how to be a supportive partner but nowhere does she write that you have to put up with this indefinitely and in many of her responses says there is nothing you can do if the woman does not ultimately want to help herself. Also in many responses she re-iterates that abusive behaviour is not acceptable and no one deserves it. Hopefully you can re-read the article now in a non-double-standard light, because there isn't some 'feminazi' conspiracy going on here, just a very well intentioned attempt at trying to help people deal with very difficult situations because of this issue.

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  54. Thank you so much for posting this; I am going to bookmark it and keep it so the next time I get a boyfriend, I can show this to him before he knows what he's getting himself into lol. I'm 19 and I've been dealing with this ever since I was 15 years old. I did self-diagnose myself and it makes sense that I have it, considering that my mom has it too and PMDD is thought to be genetically inherited. Sometimes I feel like this ruins my relationships-- I always got into fights with my now-ex-boyfriend because I was in PMDD mode half of every month we were together and my emotional sensitivity either irritated him (when I was angry) or made him feel exasperated or helpless (when I was sad-- he hated to see me cry or he took it personally). I literally cry almost every day for two weeks and my anger gets to the point where every little annoying thing makes me want to slap someone. I want my next boyfriend to be able to understand what I go through, that it's not just me "being a woman," that this is actually a serious condition. And I want him to be understanding and compassionate about what I'm going through--and I think this is a great article to start that out with. Thanks again for the post! :)

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  55. I think Ive resonantly come into contact with pmdd, A friend of mine who i recently started dating one day wanted to marry me, to the next day making nasty comments about me at her family get together.I pull her on this we had a tiny argument. The next day shes cold, hardly talks to me. Over the space of 3 days we went from a near perfect relationship, to her losing her feelings for me, and also saying she wasn't happy. I know this to be false. At the moment i cant reason with her, In her mind i changed and showed my true colors, Im confused as none of this fits the facts of how we where. She told me she had a hormone imbalance, so thee doctor but her on the Implant, Which has not agreed with her give her irregular periods on and off for 11months. She suffers with migraines insomnia, and depression which im thinking is more linked to her cycle, rather than metal health. I know she was crying when alone and has a stressful life. I only simply want to help the women i love. Im giving her time, Ive reminded her i love...i just have to hang out until her levels hopefully return. Then i will try reason with her. Its odd to feel your so loved one minute to lose your future the next.

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  56. I can't handle living with my girlfriend who is mentally abusive and has bipolar 2, Aspersers and PMDD. I'd rather die alone than be subjected to this. Love isn't enough.

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  57. Its hopeless. My wife has driven away all my friends, and has built a wall between me and my children. She has publicly embarrassed me by having melt downs in public to which people family friends and my children view me as being the abusive one. A women crying and yelling and bitching automatically makes people think the guy is responsible. Its abusive.

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  58. Hello Liana, i stumbled across your blog by chance and i think u are doing a great job with it. I congratulate u for helping women who need to understand their condition. I honestly didn't know what was happening to me until i googled "depression before menses". This was yesterday so i have not been officially diagnosed with PMDD but it's clear i'm suffering from it and it's hard, really hard so hard that the only solution i think i have is to kill myself. I don't know what to do about it, the feeling of hopelessness, of being not loved, anger, depressed... it has ruined my life, and that of my husband. I hurt myself so much and i feel it got worth since i got married 5 months back. I always bug my husband that our house is not complete despite the fact that he promised me it will be. I can't live with my in-laws and i'm ashamed to say it but i become abusive. To top it my husband too is unable to cope with me when i'm like this and the fights almost always end with him shouting or hitting me, two things that i really hate. Last night, i became so uncontrollable that i tried to hurt him and in return he slapped me so hard that i saw stars and he hurt my lips. I'm so helpless because nobody seems to understand what i am going through and not even my old mother. She even told my husband to treat me harshly and correct my behavior. I just broke down. So much that the feeling of killing myself is becoming more and more strong with each passing day and not to say appealing 'cause i want to end this suffering of mine and others.. please help me...

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    1. Anusha, you need to call the suicide hotline number at the top of the page. They have the training to help you in a moment of crisis like this, not I. All I can do is provide information that may help you to understand and lessen your PMDD symptoms in the future. Right now you need their help, not mine. Please give them a call if you are still feeling suicidal. Please let me know you are all right. Until then, I will be praying for you and your family.

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  59. Liana, thank you for this article and doing this blog! You have helped me make sense of what I am experiencing with my wife monthly. It has also been very therapeutic in reading the comments other men have posted here because it reminds me that I am not alone. I hope my comments can also be helpful for others. I noticed my wife would become very irritable to the point I felt like I was walking in a mine field not wanting to set her off but nothing I could do or say could prevent an explosion. Then would come these senseless one-sided arguments that would carry over until 3 in the morning. I found myself not being able to reason with her or work towards peace and in the end it seemed like I was the one at fault and we would never address her behaviors. Two very bad things began to happen to me. 1) I started to believe that I was a bad person causing all of this tension in our relationship. This lowered my self-esteem and started to withdraw from family and friends. My once very fun and appropriate sense of humor was going away. 2) I became very angry for a long time. This caused me to engage in immature and inappropriate behaviors that I now see just made things worse. My anger was a result of feeling a loss of control. I learned to accept that there is nothing I can say or do during a PMDD episode to reason with or satisfy my wife and create peace then hence creating happiness for myself. I started to open up to people close to me to help me though this confusing stuff I was going through. These people help me realized that it was not me. So I started to tell myself that I am a good person and stopped getting angry started keeping myself in check during these angry senseless arguments. By doing so, I started to notice a monthly pattern to this contention and Hell I was going through. Then three days after her period began she was like a new person as if nothing was wrong (but I was still left traumatized from the whole thing). At first I thought PMS but I noticed these behaviors were present a good two weeks before her period. After paying close attention, I noticed a consistent and accurate patter of extreme irritability then two weeks later her period would begin. After further research, I learned of PMDD and everything made sense and came together. This article has been by far the most helpful and informative information I have seen. This explains my wife’s heightened sensitivity to sound, touch, light, smells, foods, and joint pain during this period. It explains why my wife becomes so irritated and cannot concentrate or make any basic decisions let alone big decisions. This explains extreme irritability then crying and depression that follows. I now know why most of the burden of taking care of the kids, cooking, and cleaning falls on me and why she almost rips my head off when I politely ask if she could help me and she tells me how overwhelmed she is. I am a better person because of the advice in this article and research I have done on PMDD. I just wished I knew what was going on many years ago. I have tried all of the advice and counsel I have been given in trying to get my wife to look into PMDD. I am just told that I am abusive deflecting my responsibility on her. I fear she is developing long-term problems and some of these issues are carrying over to her non-PMDD cycle without the irritation and other symptoms. When I walk away from explosive PMDD episodes, she attacks me for abandoning her. When I validate and listen to her, she says she is not looking for validation. When I tell her what she wants to hear, she says I am saying the right words but do not mean them. Despite my improvements, things are very bad. I often do not feel like I get to deal with my emotions or have a bad day. Nothing is more difficult than feeling verbally attacked and trying to keep it all together so that I can cook, clean, and take care of the kids. Liana, you mentioned that often a person with PMDD has to hit rock bottom before they realize there is a problem. I am almost afraid to ask but what does rock bottom look like?

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    1. Hello there, and you have asked an excellent question. So much so that I posted my answer on today's blog and asked others to share their rock bottom moments as well. May their answers bring you some insight and hope. Blessings, Liana (Here is the link: http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2015/03/pmdd-tales-from-front-hitting-rock.html)

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  60. Thank you so much for this. I am a woman in my 20s and for years I have been struggling with my periods, getting progessively worse since i came off the pill. I thought feeling suicidal, constantly tense and severe anxiety was normal on your period . I've been living with my partner for over three years now and thankfully he is very understanding. He first realised that my feelings were extreme on my period. I also have a medical condition which causes chronic pain so just before my period is an extremely dark time for me. My partner suggested I looked up my feelings in connection to my periods (fearing I would commit suicide) and I learnt about pmdd. I feel like I've had an epiphany. While my partner was extremely understanding and kind already, he now understand why I act the way I do. Everything makes sense and now I know it's not just m . It's not just in my head. I can do something about it. Im not just crazy. Thank you so much. I don't feel like I have to dread every period any mor . I have hop .

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  61. Thank you very much for this great article. earlier today i was writing my suicide note after a 12 year horrible marriage. that's when i came to know about this blog.everything that others have said about PMDD where exactly like my situation. things could have been much different , if i would have known about PMDD earlier, our lives could have been much better. but so many bad things happened in this 12 year made me think about ending my life. i am defiantly going to try out few things that i learned from this blog. but i am not sure how to deal with the things that already happened in the past. i am very sad to hear that so many people going through the similar kind of situations like me. this article/comments helped me to better understand my wife. i wish she also take time to understand her situation. Thank you.

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  62. I have been married for almost 11 years. my wife is 36 years and is the love of my life. We have had really bad arguments in the past all the time from right after marriage, where I thought she was unreasonable and illogical, but I always thought that maybe there indeed some fault with me.. as the early part of any marriage there are always adjustments required. When we were not fighting, we would be intensely in love. At the time, I have no clue whether these periods coincided with the monthly cycle or not.
    Managed to get through with this over time. Sometimes things were better sometimes worse. But one thing was clear: On our good days, we could not stand to be apart, and loved each other. That is what really keeps me going on (and I am sure her as well). I thought that there has to be an explanation for this.. so I researched the internet.. and I came upon this site. I am fairly convinced that she has PMDD or some hormone related disorder. I am fairly certain as I now try my best not to get upset during one of the "illogical" arguments, and let everything bounce off my skin, but it still typically ends the same way: in tears, abuse and threatening to leave. These arguments still carry on till 3AM, even if I try and remove myself from the room and go to the guest room.
    The problem I face is that she is in complete denial, and genuinely, actually believes that I am to blame in each of the arguments. Anti depressants or seeing a doctor are off the table for that reason; wondering what I can do to help her through this period ? Diet and exercise I know. Any one have any good stories with Natural Progesterone Cream? I really wish for a miracle now! It is getting quite tiring.
    Earlier, when the arguments came out of the blue... I was living my life happily in love.. and would take each fight as it came. Now that I have read about this.. I think it has become a bit more difficult, as I know that our love, good mood and bright life have only a few more days to go before the next major fight. Possibly it has become more frustrating for her as well, as I dont fight back.. just hug her (when she allows). She thinks I am treating her as insane, and not taking her arguments seriously.


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    1. If you haven't read my posts on denial yet, please type the word denial into the search box above and a list of posts will appear. Yes, she genuinely believes you are responsible because that is what her PMDD brain is telling her. The PMDD brain does not process information correctly. It sees everything as a challenge, a threat to its very existence. Her PMDD brain is fighting for survival, its survival, and doesn't care what it has to destroy in the process. It's like a bully, whispering lies into her ear, all day long, causing her to see you as the enemy. Her thinking you are treating her as insane and thinking you are not taking her arguments seriously is also the PMDD brain talking inside her head. Somehow, some way, you need to get her on your side and fight the PMDD bully together. Even the concept sounds ridiculous. But it is not. PMDD is real, and the PMDD brain is real. A woman's brain during an episode of PMDD has the same configuration as that of a combat veteran with PTSD. Everyone is the enemy to the PMDD brain. I know it only helps to a small extent to tell you you are not alone in this. But if you can somehow get her to discuss the possibility of PMDD during her good times, you can make progress that way. I am hearing many good things about bioidentical progesterone lately, and am having much success with it myself (I take capsules) but have yet to write a blog post about it, as I have not yet found the scientific proof to back up my claims. But for me, it is working at the moment, as the PMDD brain is also very clever, slippery like an eel you might say, and when one treatment works for a while, it may well find a way to get around that. But for now, I am happy with what an estrogen patch and progesterone capsules are doing for me. Progesterone creams can also help, but be careful of which ones you buy and then there are dosage concerns. With the capsules, I know what I am getting. But I also keep the cream on hand for really bad days. If you need more information, please write to me directly. info (at) livingwithpmdd (dot) com

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    2. Thanks for your earlier reply Liana, it really helped. Its back like clockwork (going by the date of my earlier post). She woke me up at 3AM yesterday to 'discuss' something; I just told her that this is not the time for it and that I have an early morning meeting. Next thing I know she is leaving the house and I had to physically prevent her from wandering off, though thankfully no blowout argument pursued.
      She is still in denial. She refuses to read this blog or anything to do with PMDD. Even in her better days, she jokes to her friends that I have a problem with her bad PMS. She gets wild even if I suggest she try the cream, and has threatened to leave if I mention PMDD again. She thinks I am making a mockery of her thoughts and feelings.

      Heart goes out to my young children who often see these things. I have just told them that sometimes in a month mom feels unwell, and says these things that she does not mean. How do I explain this to children? I do not want them thinking badly of their mom. At the same time, if no explanation is given, I am sure they will blame me for the arguments.

      Since I have come to the conclusion that it is PMDD, as I have mentioned earlier, things are worse. One of the problems, I think is that the cycle of arguments is broken. Earlier, she would get upset over something relatively travail (It may be something that should be dealt with irritation or at best mild annoyance; not a blow out argument). A nasty argument would follow suit, with me being an equal participant. At times she would physically manhandle me or even threaten suicide or running away. At times, I would also physically manhandle her in return (I am sure it was reactive, but I am sure she would disagree; but at the end, I should not try and seek an excuse for it). And then the next few days I would be apologizing for the argument and my reaction, specially if it had got physical. Now, she is not getting closure on these issues as I am not fighting back. Past 3 months, she has slapped me twice, and scratched me badly once, and I have not reacted (physically.. though I have got upset) plus I have a smashed phone (i tried to video an episode so that I could show her later how silly the argument was (note to others.. dont try this)). Though this helps me point out a pattern to her; it is not helping her denial.
      Now, many times she raises an issue during the peak, I would respond factually; but if I think its getting out of hand, I withdraw (go to another room.. hang out with the kids.. do anything else), and tell her that she is being unreasonable, and that I can discuss this same thing after a week or ten days. This is really upsetting her.
      From the current situation, I almost feel that she would feel better if I have a nice blowout argument (and have me follow up with an apology and agree with all her points. I want to avoid that, otherwise I will never be able to prove to her that she is being illogical, plus I would have agreed to a whole host of unreasonable demands (regarding family, relations etc) which if I did not completely follow through with, she would have a reason to easily get upset the coming month. Now that I believe that this is not her true and rational self, I don't agree to these unreasonable demands; which drives her wild.
      Bright side is that in the good times, she is a loving and doting wife, great with the kids. But now, in my mind, the clock is always ticking down.. waiting for the bad arguments to start.
      My wife is open to going to a marriage counselor. I think thats not a bad option; Either they can help resolve issues.. or if it is PMDD, then maybe they can help diagnose it, and help her get out of denial? I wonder if anybody has been diagnosed with PMDD during marriage counseling sessions.. or are they just not equipped for it? Last thing I would want is for them to make a hash of it. Its too important.

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    3. I put the question out to my readers on Facebook and on my blog and only one person responded yes, that they had been diagnosed with PMDD during marriage counseling sessions. My questions like that generally reach around 6,000 people. So I don't think it happens very often.

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  63. I have it bad and no one can describe how this feels. Why is this happening. It's distroying my life. I try everything t
    It sometimes goes better but all is gone after an episode....why?????

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    1. Hi,, Melanie, Thank you for writing! The PMDD brain is very adaptable. It's mission is to destroy, not only you but everything that matters to you. If you find one way around it, one way to make it better, it will find another way to make you miserable. During an episode of PMDD we are dealing with a brain that doesn't process information correctly, but is determined to survive, no matter what the cost to you and yours. That's why we need to keep finding new ways to not let our PMDD brain run (ruin) our lives. The following is from my blog, PMDD and the Confrontational Relationship: Just like in addiction, when your brain is telling you you'll die if you don't get another hit, fix, drink, or smoke, a woman with PMDD's brain is telling her she is under attack and needs to win this one or she will die. Either that, or it's telling her to flee, which is when your PMDD-ing partner withdraws from the relationship, either physically or mentally/emotionally, and leaves you wondering What the hell just happened?

      In the case of withdrawal, she is sinking into a deep depression where nothing matters, nothing at all. Not you, not your relationship, and sometimes not even her own life.

      Whatever the circumstances, be it addiction or PMDD, what your brain is telling you is untrue — but hey, it's your brain sending you these messages, and it's very hard to stand up to your brain. (Try saying "It's hard to stand up to my brain" sometime and see what kind of looks you get.) But it is very hard to mentally override the organ that completely runs your body, especially when your emotions are involved.
      To read the full post, go to http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2012/09/pmdd-and-confrontational-relationship.html
      There are also other posts on this blog that answer your questions. Just type into the search box what you are interested in reading about, and if I have written about the subject, a list of posts will appear. I hope this answer has helped somewhat.

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  64. Hello. I can relate to much of the above. I adore my wife Nd love her very much. But I'm exhausted. Yesterday she threw her wedding rings and told me she dreams of me dying. Problem is the damage cannot be repaired in the few good weeks, things are sliding. It's like living with a rabid animal. I've never known a nasty tongue like it. But she has no insight. If she just once said sorry in some fashion it would help so much, because I'm know actually beginning to think that I'm the primary problem. I say that because I'm aware that I'm no saint, I cause secondary problems by reaching. I'm at the end of my tether. She training me to hate her and that stresses me as I love her to the end of the world. I feel that I'm wasting my life, feel abuses and helpless. If I try talk about it, all I ever get is the phrase whatever and then silence, how anybody feels that, that is conducive to a marriage is beyond me. Anyway. Laters all. Perhaps I will be fortunate enough to meet and marry my wife again in the next life, but please god if you do exist, without the hormones.

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    1. Hello, I am sorry you have to live through this. You mentioned the word insight. My book, PMDD and Relationships, discusses insights into a woman with PMDD's mind in several of the later chapters. It can help in particular with understanding where "whatever" and then silence comes from. The book is written with chapters for both women with PMDD and for their partners. My hope is that it helps each side to understand what is happening to the woman when she's having an episode of PMDD, and lets them come to the table and perhaps find a way to find each other again. Just reading it yourself however can help you to understand what part of the problem is something you can work on, and what part of the problem is not yours to fix. Because you can't. She has to do her part herself. But there are many coping tips in the book for partners until the day comes when she wants to help herself. Especially for those partners who wish to stay in the relationship. You can find the book at Amazon by clicking on the picture of the book in the top right sidebar of this blog. And any purchase made in this way offers a 5% donation to the National Association for PMDD. It's also available for Nook and at Smashwords.

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  65. Hello, can someone please explain how a beautiful loving woman can go from a person who is really nice who sends heart text messages to someone who militarily goes out of her away to deny any love for you, throws wedding rings at you, tells you that they dream and wish you dead? I understand that for some women hormones are hello for them, but this does not justify outright horrible abuse. !

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    1. As much as she hurts you, I promise she is hurting so much more. My husband and I have been VERY happily married for 17 years. We are still like newlyweds but there are three days a month that I think he is cheating, doesn't love me, and is better off without me. When she says F you, say I love you. You will see a big difference.

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  66. Thank you so much for writing this. I have tried to explain to my husband that I go between the equivalent of when his mom died and the thing that makes him the angriest. It is so incredibly painful. I hope this helps him to understand.

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  67. thank you for the post. I think our family is encountering mild to sever PMDD. We have been married for 10 years now and it has been almost 50/50 happiness/anguish. (it seems now) although when we are happy, we'd think we are happy in general... I read many replies and im thankful that people are open and with sincere love to their partners. I love my wife too; but as a man; taking all this abuse is often hard to swallow. Seems if you want to be wise/compassionate about it you would do everything possible to contain her PMDD. A post that suggests:
    My summary: Prozac 10 days before cycle + pschotherapy for stress + NovaSure procedure = Finally feeling human again! Hooray!
    seems a good start point to research (in general); everyone is different, my wife is not suicidal and even though she can be mean & disrespectful she does not cusses much... (words can still hurt obviously) but she is an extrovert and im an introvert; and in 'episodes' she needs to belch out all feelings that bother her... last time she did it while I was driving and we had our 11 month baby in the middle of it, I tried to contain me but I am not of gentle character always because of my own psychological issues but we are attempting to see each other counselors and attempt to find middle ground. She is in some denial as she doesn't want to make her behavior an 'illness' other than just the way 'she is'... but it has affected us for many months/years that is hard to avoid or simply 'ignore'; we have been close to separating but our baby makes it so much harder now and we love each other; this biological/mental issue adds more stress to our daily life which is already challenging in general (work/bills/existing)... I hope everyone can work on their own weaknesses and try to love and love themselves and procure a healthy environment. God Bless.

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  68. 32 years of marriage and probably all of it with me pmdd (early years self medicated with drugs). Sure some of my girlfriends had pmdd. We would talk and decided that there are issues in our marriages that needed addressed (true for all marriages). Just during pmdd those issues became so huge, insurmountable, and triggered all kinds of things we didn't even know were problems. For me it so often became overwhelming, not only to me but also my husband. One of the most helpful things (at least sometimes) is when my husband would put his arm around me and say it is going to be alright (and this had to be hard at times because sometimes this response could be met negatively). Now in peri menopause and believe me, it does get worse. What is helping me immensely is kefir made from kefir grains (google it) and magnesium. Just discovered that there are medical studies being done on probiotics showing it is calming and helps with moods along with lots else. Kefir (not store bought but made at home from kefir grains) is one of the richest sources of probiotics there is. My husband and I am so grateful to have discovered the help (accidently when a doctor put me on probiotics for different issue).

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  69. My wife has pmdd. I can not count her abusive episodes. I now keep a book in code. We have a small son. She won't stop drinking. She has threatened to spit his throat twice if I would not stay up past 3 am to listen to her rant. I just wanted to go to sleep for work in am. She has stabbed at me, I've women up in the middle of the night with a pillow over my head and she was trying to smother me in my sleep. She was saying ' die b*tech, die!'. I've stayed up at night to hide all the knives for fear. She has attempted suicide. She has tried to chock me many occasions. And all this, over a decade. I fear for my son's mental state. She says it is all me although she says she has pmdd. She has terrible anxiety. I could go on. How can a man be understanding and forgiving of this behaviour?

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    1. Dear Sir, Thank you for writing. Nowhere in my blog or books do I say that abuse is acceptable. Nowhere. I ask that partners are understanding and forgiving of a woman who is trying to understand and manage her PMDD, in addition to being supportive and encouraging of her efforts to be well, as it truly is a trial and error process. But if a woman with PMDD is not trying to understand her disorder or not doing anything to help herself achieve wellness, then that is a different situation altogether and beyond the scope of PMDD. It appears to me that may be the case in this situation, and that your wife's PMDD may contribute to her abusiveness, but is not the sole cause of it. (For instance, you also mention drinking.) If she admits she has PMDD, she may be blaming her abuse on her PMDD. But PMDD is an explanation for bad behavior, not an excuse for it, and abuse is never acceptable in any relationship, even one which involves PMDD. Again, under no circumstances should you be understanding and forgiving of abusive behavior. Nor should anyone ever fight abuse with abuse. You also need to be aware that alcohol consumption only worsens the symptoms of PMDD, despite the fact that many women use it to self-medicate. Alcohol raises the level of estrogen in the body, which then raises the emotional instability factor of a woman during an episode of PMDD. Without knowing more about your situation, there is really nothing more I can say, other than to repeat that abuse by a woman with PMDD is never acceptable. I write for and about women who are working toward managing their PMDD, not using their PMDD as an excuse to terrorize their families. I hope and pray you find the answers you need for your extenuating circumstances soon. Never think this is not affecting your son yet. Children know far more than we think. His safety needs to be your priority.

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  70. Why does it seem that when a woman loves you the most that she targets you the hardest. I have seen in so many sites now that what is consistant on both sides of the story that the women loved these men/women like no one else. And the people enduring the attacks love them like none other. Someone stated that it is better not to love these women. They will be happier single forever so they never attach and can function. Is there something to that? My gf just broke up with me again saying I deserve better, she is confused and messed up, needs time to work on herself...but this of course came less than 24 hours earlier saying she can't stand being away from me and I am the best love she has ever felt..can't wait to spend rest of our life together. Then the cold, no i love you returned, busy, ttyl texts, I hate you right now... The best is when she finds someone else to talk to and they feed her pmdd head with craziness not realizing this is an episode virtually feeding the beast! So no I am single again this month, getting hung up on, tested, pushed, called mean things just because I love her. So if I really do love her and my love causes so much anquish, would it reason to leave her alone forever so she doesn't have episodes?

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  71. Hello, Tabitha, Thank you for your question. She will have episodes whether you are in her life or not. You are not the cause of them, but rather the target of them, so to speak, precisely because you are perhaps the closest person to her. I explain all of this in my book, PMDD and Relationships, which I wrote because I receive so many emails with questions just like yours. If you would like to read further about this, click on the book cover at the top of the page and it will take you to Amazon. But know this: a supportive and loving partner is never the cause of a woman with PMDD's episodes.

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    1. Thank you Liana. She reached out to me today via text, with I really did it this time? I just don't know how to respond anymore. I kept it very short and almost cold because what am I to say. Sorry you got your period and now the fog is clear and I am a nice person again? I should have prefaced the original note by saying her last relationship was with an emotionally abusive narcissist and that is it's own battle. I think that the trauma of leaving that fuels the pmdd but I don't know if a book is worth the read if the effort is only one sided. I appreciate your blog because you state that clearly, both have to care enough. At this point she just wants to pretend she was never in love, get over it and be single. If I should encounter another pmdd woman, I will certainly look into that book. Thanks!

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    2. Yes, that is its own battle, for any woman, actually, dealing with the emotional residue of any previous relationships, and unless she deals with the trauma of that (those), it (they) will creep into any future relationships, and at the most unexpected times. You're right...the book is only helpful if you intend to stay in the relationship. Wishing you all the best...

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  72. I guess I'm just looking for hope. I'm head over heels in love with my girl (she's 36). She came off her IUD birth control a few months ago and ever since she's been different. Everything's so great and wonderful and she tells me how much she loves me etc etc then BOOM! It's "I need time/space". She always comes back but each time I feel like I'm losing her. She still hangs out with her friends and parents but doesn't want me around. Is this PMDD? I don't know how to handle the swings. Right now is the 4th day in a row she doesn't want me around. I've definitely noticed a pattern. She's soooo happy right before she gets like this. I guess I just have to wait til she comes back to me???

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    1. It sounds like it could be PMDD, and if it is, the answer to your question about waiting until she comes back to you is (unfortunately), yes. There's really not much you can do during an episode to change her mind. Perhaps talking about how her sudden absences make you feel (talking during her NON PMDD time) will make her more aware of what her actions are doing to you. It could well be that she has no idea she is hurting you this much. It's always best to talk about PMDD with a woman when she is not having an episode.

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  73. So her "needing time" isn't a knock on me? When she's not having her pmdd week she talks about marrying me and children. Then during this time it's "I don't know if I ever want to get married again or have more children" and it crushes me. It's stopping me from proposing because I don't know which one to believe! Thank you for your help

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    1. It's not a knock on you. For more insight into the PMDD brain, I recommend reading my book, PMDD and Relationships, which was written for both women with PMDD and their partners in an effort to help people understand what it is like to have PMDD and where the negative PMDD thoughts come from. Click on the book cover at the top of the page on the right hand side to take you to the buy link. If you do read it, I am sure you will be much relieved on that score. In the meantime my blog post, The Other Side of PMDD might be of some help. http://livingonaprayerwithpmdd.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-other-side-of-pmdd-revisited.html

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  74. Thank you for all of this. Like I said. I just need hope that I haven't lost her

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  75. Hope, yes, guarantees, no. Should all go as you wish and you marry her, remember, the PMDD will be there in the marriage with you. This is not a temporary thing. You will need to learn to deal with her PMDD as a couple, together, the two of you against the PMDD, for the relationship to succeed. So please continue to read as much as you can about PMDD in order to help her manage her possible PMDD, and to determine if that is indeed what she has. Blessings, Liana

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    1. First of all, I will say that this forum must have save and will save the relationship of many. I have been reading it over and over as I am going through this end of the year enduring one of the worst episodes of what now I believe to be my Fiancee's PMDD. I woke up this morning and she is still at it.
      Back in february, she had a similar episode and I only glanced at the posibility of it being really PMDD.

      I spent this weekend going through many different PMDD resources. I blame myself for many times not having the extra-control to deal with it.

      I have my own personality and character flaws. I have having to make it happen for a family of six and I not to tell anyone that it is no easy task.

      God has blessed up with many great things and we pray that he helps up control the effect of PMDD on our family.

      It need to start with having my Fiancee leaving her state of denial and going the journey with me looking for ways to track and control the onsets and the severity of the episodes.

      How do we get our partners who are still in denial, think the problem is the other side and refuses to acknowledge the problem and work to find ways to solve it?

      I love her and we have, against all odds, built a beautiful family of four.
      I have to fight and find a way to better myself and get her out of denial so we can find the solutions to this.

      God Bless you all!

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  76. Normal for EXTREME happiness and affection the couple days (even day before) pmdd starts? My SO seems to love me so much (beyond normal) and is extremely affectionate the couple days right before she becomes distant and wants nothing to do with me. Is this common?

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  77. Here’s some advice for anybody who lives with a woman experiencing PMDD from somebody who has it herself: If you suddenly find that the woman you live with is irritable, seems distant, or has actually left to be by herself, leave her alone! She’s not mad at you, you didn’t do anything wrong. If you follow her around, touch her, stare at her, and ask her questions when all she needs is to be by herself for a bit, you’re going to piss her off. Look at the calendar. Is she premenstrual? Yes? Then that is your explanation for her behavior. She doesn’t need to explain it to you every month. She doesn’t want to talk about it. This is super predictable, guys. I know you may see her not feeling well and worry about her and your natural reaction is to touch and comfort and find out what’s wrong. For the love of all that is holy, just leave her alone. She can’t control how she feels and she doesn’t like it either. Don’t make it worse. She most likely already feels terrible you have to deal with her. :(

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  78. Good morning all,
    I am involved with a worderful woman who I believed to be uni-polar for quite some time, only to realise is most definately pmdd.
    She experiences every symptom for the most part, almost seeming as if they were using her as the subject. The key factor for me in understanding the difference between bi-polar and pmdd, was what I called, the menstrual release. Within days after the onset of her period, I could see a major difference, it was huge in respect for becoming her old self.
    I'll fast forward to my issues, allbeit the article here is dead nuts on, I find myself having less and less sympathy for the situation. Its the same old routine every month. She's in her mid forties, and menstruates for 2 weeks give or take a few days, which in turn leaves me about two weeks a month of normal thought patterns. She is fine after a few days after the onset of her period, and about a week after, and then the roller coaster ride begins again.
    The roller coaster starts with the irrational thoughts, always blaming others for truly nothing that is "real" if you will. Then come anger and irritability, and then the violence. She usually will peak and ultimately throw me out of the house, leaving me to sleep in my car for 3 or 4 days, only to ask me to come home, with my tail between my legs, and requiring that all issues were my fault, and that I made her do it, when in reality I did absolutely nothing. At one point I thought she was sociopathic.
    Lastly, she refuses medical intervention, she claims nothing is wrong, and if I dont love her for the way she is then I shouldnt be in a relationship with her.
    My question is, is it time to leave? I do love the good times, but they are being overshadowed by my reality that the car seat is getting old.
    Lastly, she could never make it on her own, as the article states, its a debilitating disorder, her work suffers, as well as her paycheck, and there lies my guilt.
    Thanks for reading, all comments are welcomed.
    Thanks, Sean

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    1. Wow, Sean, what a nightmare. I have pmdd and I feel for both you and her. I don’t think it’s impossible to help somebody who doesn’t want help. You’ve probably tried everything by now, but my suggestion would be to write her a note. Give it to her or email her when she feels well. Tell her how much you love her and how much it hurts you to see her so angry. Tell her you’ve done research and that you think she might have pmdd and tell her the symptoms. Give her the link to this amazing blog and napmdd.org. Tell her you are there for her and want to be with her but that for your own safety, you can’t keep living like you are. You need to sleep inside even when she is angry. Tell her there is help available and that you will make her an appointment to talk to her doctor, or take her there. It doesn’t matter what doctor, even a family doctor can help. Anything she needs. She’s not going to get better if nothing changes, it will just get worse. If she won’t help herself, even with your help, you might have to leave. She might hit rock bottom when you leave and realize how much she needs you and medical help. If she does finally accept help, be patient and help her realize it might take a while to find what helps her feel better. Some antidepressants actually make things worse, but there are many to try and many that are life-changing awesome.

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  79. This must be so painful for you. You obviously care for her, but you also recognize that something isn't right. The worst part is, you can't help someone who isn't willing to help herself. I respect her choice if she doesn't want to be medicated, yet regardless, she needs to take responsibility for her behavior and do something. If she's not willing, then your life with her will be a never-ending roller coaster. The question is, is that the life you want for yourself? Is she worth it and everything such a life would cost you. I wish you clarity and strength.

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  80. You need to talk to her in her good week. If she doesn't recognise she has an issue then maybe ask her to read some stuff on PMDD. Or ask her to join a PMDD group on facebook and read people comments. You also need to tell her you love her but you can't carry on like this. Then ask her if you can work on it together. PMDD gets worse as we get older and especially if we are pre menopausal. If you really love this woman then you can fight for her but you need to be firm. I had someone film me once when I went off on one. They left it with me to watch during my good week. I couldn't believe what I said and how aggressive and abusive I had been. I was really upset about it and although I was mad they had recorded me it showed me what my PMDD monster looked like. Only you can make the decision if you leave but you can't stay for guilt. Good luck

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  81. Have you tried to provide her with literature of what PMDD is? Obviously when it's not during that time? Maybe point out some things you notice and how after her period she's better. Share with her it's painful for you to see her go thru this as well as live with it. I think the biggest thing that helped me is someone acknowledging how I must feel during that time, etc, just to emphasize with me and know it's a real disorder and not an excuse to be an asshole.

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  82. Sean, Thanks fro asking for help and sticking by her. That is so important. I apologize, on behalf of PMDD, for the pain you endure. We know it too well. I would recommend charting her symptoms and then showing her a month or two of symptoms and charts during her good time. I would be armed with literature and be prepared that she may reject it. But wait, if she is armed with facts she will beging to ponder and wonder and hopefully will come around. Best of luck to you.

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  83. Guys. I’ve talked to a lot of women, and we all have similar complaints. PMDD or not, women get angry when men don’t do their part around the house. Why don’t you just take a moment to think about all you expect your wife to do? All the laundry, all the dishes, meal planning, meal preparation, bathing of children, homework, kids extracurricular activities, potty training, getting up in the night with children, getting kids to bed, planning birthday parties, Christmas shopping, paying bills, cleaning everything, cleaning up daily messes, keeping the house stocked with essentials, teaching children to work, resolving conflicts between children, buying food, clothes and shoes for the entire family without spending any money. The list and responsibilities go on and they don’t stop. Your wife most likely does all this while meeting the butt-wiping demands of children, holding a baby, and getting peed on. May I add you probably also expect your wife to do all these things cheerfully and while looking fit and presentable. Unless your wife is a housewife with no job and no children she is responsible for, her responsibilities are unending. What do you consider to be your responsibilities when you get home from work? To help out? To mow the lawn once a week and get the oil changed in the car once every few months? Guess what? Doing a load of dishes once a week is not enough. I know you’re super proud of yourself for “helping out” but if you want peace, you have to do more. A familiar complaint from men is that you are not mind readers. You are willing to help but you don’t know what to do. Look around. There are needs. Take care of them. By the time your wife asks you to do something, she’s most likely already upset you haven’t done it already. Then, for you to respond with anything other than “yes,” she’s only going to be more upset. You want her to ask nicely. She has a million things she needs to do. She’s exhausted. You are doing nothing. She’s mad she had to ask in the first place, now she’s madder you didn’t just say, “sure, I’ll fold this basket of my own laundry that you have already graciously washed for me.” Yet another complaint from women is that you are doing things to help out around the house, but you do so with the attitude that you are doing her job; that you shouldn’t have to be doing this. You make her feel bad she didn’t get it done already. First of all, that is BULL. You cannot expect your wife to take care of all the household and childrearing responsibilities. Add PMDD on top of all this and you have a wife who feels like crap. Even if she thinks she’s doing a good job at being a wife and mom, with your little comments and attitude that you’re doing her job, she’s going to feel bad. If you think she’s fat, lazy, mean, etc., she’s going to not only feel the same way about herself, but feel bad you have to deal with her. This is not motivating to do better and do more. It’s motivating to give up because she’ll never be enough. Be careful how you react to your wife. Resentment and anger when she asks you to do something is going to hurt your relationship.

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    1. Seriously? I do everything you listed, and still it is not enough. The ONLY thing she does is go into a manic clean mode, and redo everything when the house was vacuumed a day ago. I raise the kid, I talk with the school, I prepare lunches, I do most of a the laundry. Going/returning from every vacation, total nightmare. Hates the house, though she wanted it. Commute is too far, though I said this house was too far away. And she triggers over a dirty window, seriously. Rest of the house is cleaner than 99% of house out there. Give you head a shake lady!

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  84. This kind of seems like the 50's housewife/husband relationship.

    As the husband, I do all the meal preparation, (anything thing related to kitchen), pack the kids lunches, do 70-80% of the laundry (start-finish), clean all the bedding, bathe the kids every night, about 50% of the grocery, watch the kids when I walk in the door so she can do what she wants or needs, take care of the pets, take care of the outside of the house, take care of the cars, keep the cars gas filled up, potty train the kids (including waking up twice a night to take them), get up when there's an issue with a child at night, take the kids to their extra-curriculars, help with all the "esty-style" birthday decorations, move furniture and do nightly projects, etc.

    She does so much for our family, there's no way one person could do them selves. Believe me, I do my part.

    On top of this I work 6 days a week (director-level in a multi-billion $ company by early-30's) and sleep 5 hours a day if I'm lucky. Without a "thank you" or acknowledgement.

    My wife has CRAZY PMDD every month. I just wait for the "burn". I'm selfish, I'm lazy, I don't care, I'll never amount to anything, our marriage is a sham, only the state recognizes us as married, etc.

    Ugh.

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  85. My wife's solution to her PMDD was to cheat on me with another man. We knew she had bad PMS so the 2 weeks before period time involved time to herself, not being touched etc left alone. But then she wanted to be around me and still be left alone, which is pretty hard to do, you don't know how to talk to her, because she is extra sensitive, don't know if you should touch her, just want to love her. Tried to be understanding, did all she asked but still not enough. So for all you guys out there.. yea just be a part time lover..2 weeks out the month..if your happy with that.. I would have been, and tried hard.. but it wasn't good enough for her. Now it's all gone wrong with the the new man and she recognises that this is more than pms she has asked me back..but now I have insecurity issues, take her back and next time she feels this is she just going to find another man who isn't me? who she doesn't have to say oo I'm having that time again, best leave me alone..it's not a lot to ask.. and I know her cycle but it's done..So yea just be aware this is a possibility for other relationships. I hope it never happens to any of you.

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  86. Solution is easy: just dump her or divorce her. Life is to short to spend with such a woman. There are plenty of women who don't have this problem. And there are a good number who use this as an excuse to act like the bitch they are.

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  87. Honestly, my PMDD is a little weird. Thankfully, it's rare my episodes get really extreme/serious, but they are pretty bad on average. They also come and go. One minute I'm fine, for the next few I'm having an episode, then after that episode I'm almost back to normal. I also do get pissed at things 10x faster. I hate it. It doesn't stop until my period does. It's always at it's worst on the first day I bleed since I have the joy of EXCRUCIATING cramps, pain makes me irritable as well as nauseated, and being nauseous scares the hell out of me (which in turn becomes irritation), and a whole bunch of other stuff I'm not gonna get into right now. But I'm so glad I found your website. I recently got into a relationship, and am experiencing my first period since before the relationship started. My (female) partner doesn't have a menstrual cycle (never has and never will without a medical miracle), and therefore doesn't even know the struggle of mild PMS. I actually envy her on that lol. I don't want to ruin this relationship, and even warned her that it's not uncommon for me to say incredibly hurtful things during this time, but I just don't think I could properly explain PMDD to her. I have never had the ability to explain things (which frustrates me to no end and has even set off some of my episodes!), and this post and the follow up one do a perfect job of doing exactly what I can't. I'm going to send her the links to them and encourage her to read some of the other posts as well so she can understand what's going on if she ever has the misfortune of witnessing or being a victim of an episode. Thank you for this website, it's made me feel like there's hope for me getting better and that there's at least one doctor I can find that won't tell me "The only options that exist to treat you are antidepressants and birth control".

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    1. Thank you for taking the time to write. Actually, I thank everyone who has commented on this post. I wish I had the time to answer every post personally, but unfortunately it is hit or miss as time permits. In this case, as well as many others I have not been able to respond to personally, I am glad to hear you find my writings to be of help, and especially in the hope and inspiration department. We could all use a lot more of each :) It brings me great joy to know my words are helping people to explain PMDD and hopefully helping to make their closest relationships better, so thank you for taking the time to let me know how my blog has been of service to you. It lets me know I am on the right path.

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  88. You hit the nail on the head with this article. I've slowly built plans of defense and this article has given given me ammo in my arsenal. I love my wife but sometimes combat was a walk in the park compared to this. She calls it "the invasion of the body snatchers" and she is spot on. Anyway, a good man will stay with his woman and help her anyway he can. She would do the same for me.

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  89. I have been married to a woman with PMDD for 13 years now. My life is a carbon copy of the other men's lives here. She raged like clockwork for two weeks of every month, and only told me about her PMDD (I had no idea there was something beyond PMS) a couple times, once during our first year of marriage. We were in a dentist's office, waiting for our appointments. When it was her turn, she tossed a magazine article on my lap about PMDD. "Here," she said. "Read that. It's what I have." Well, that explained things. Since then, however, she has gone into denial, claiming it's all me. She did warn me and my boys recently, "I'm going into menopause, and it will get worse." It was an awkward moment, but I got the chills. Worse? Impossible. Now, in "peri-menopause," she won't snap out of it. I've been kicked out and living somewhere else (again), but this time it's gone on for two months, and she filed for divorce. I am seeing a lawyer about that today. So sad. So tragic. I don't know what to do. There's no reasoning with this. I've tried so hard to make her happy, but she only rages at me, and emasculates me. Such a horrible condition.

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  90. I just ended a relatively short (few months)relationship with a woman that has all the symptoms of this.
    My heart goes out to every guy that has gotten into this trap via marriage because there is no fix to it.
    A couple weeks of quiet and then a fiendish delight in torturing the other person with every effort they make just adding to the list of things to get even for.
    The more you try the worse it becomes and nothing is ever her fault.

    Sorry to be cold but if you can guys get out and get away,dealing with it will destroy your life.
    Ladies,no more excuses,get help...you are adults and not children.
    Truth is many of you probably enjoy the power to destroy a person and you just won`t admit it.

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  91. I came across this site today looking for help and advice anything that would help with my situation. I have recently just split up with my partner of 11 years, 3 kids of which 2 are mine and a stepchild. I really love her so much and would walk the ends of the earth for her because I trully do love her more than she will ever know. I'm 32 years old and she is 37 we have been through a hell of alot these past 11 years but have tried to stay together regardless. I recently was made redundant and I'm losing my grandfather too unfortunately so this year's been quite tough on me and my family. I haven't been in the best of spirits but tried hard to brave a smile for the children. My partner has had these symptoms for years and only more recently I have looked further and deeper into the situation for help and advice. Like most peoples comments have said there partners are great and a pleasure for 2 weeks or so then the storm comes back around again, we seem to argue around the same time every month to which i have calculated more frequently and symptoms include headaches,aches,bloatedness,breast pain,acne,irritability,crying The list goes on. I feel it coming and see her change from this amazing woman to a completely different person? It absolutely kills me inside and it usually ends up with an argument and me having to leave my house and children on her wishes not mine. My children are my life and soul to which I breath and I end up with parents with nothing. I've been for councilling seen doctors etc for help with my problems at her wishes over the years as she blames me solely for all our problems. Its been going on for so many years and each and every time we've split up it takes a profound effect on me mentally and physically as well as my children. I'm mentally broken down with it all and have tried so many times to show her politely but she acts like I'm trying to blame her for everything? This really is not the case and feel so strongly but can do nothing, no help accepted, I just don't known What to do anymore and it's destroying our family. No matter what happens even if we did go our separate ways she cannot go through life in denial and or not knowing this. My children have seen me leave so many times it's destroyed my soul and there's. I'm absolutely positive this pmdd is a contributing factor to our relationship and cannot take the sole blame on the relationship anymore as I know it's not all one way. I wish I would of come across this site earlier and maybe things would of turned out differently if we had sought out help but she's so stubborn. I'm not perfect no and a typical man but I'm a devoted father and husband and want nothing more than her happiness. Again I will love her so much and pray to god for help anything, something before it's too late. I really dont want to go through life knowing this was undiagnosed factor and part ending our relationship and by some miracle she gets or sees the help she needs.

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  92. I would just like to say. I know I have this and for years and years I knew it was pmdd. I've been married now for 12yrs and I still feel like I'm reminding him I need you to just leave me alone today please please. Stop trying to get in my pants when I'm about to bleed in less than 24hrs from now. He doesn't stop he tells me I shouldn't just sit or lie there looking like that. Seriously. You see hot. I see fuck off. And normally I'm not telling him that not ever. But this shows its ugly head and I want to spear him. Why won't he get this. I mean it's been 12yrs. Jeez.

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  93. I am a woman diagnosed with pmdd. This article and the comments attached are really interesting and very insightful.
    I would like to share that although pmdd can be a completely overwhelming disorder and can alter a woman's perception of the world for a period of time I believe that often it heightens feelings and thoughts that are already there (to a lesser extent).
    I believe that councilling/therapy is fundamental to helping pmdd women to understand and manage themselves, so they can feel in control. Mindfulness and meditation is also a way to step back from the emotions and helps control the irrationality. These things have helped me immensely. But, the NUMBER ONE help is having a partner who will understand, give space, communicate, and will be loving (realising we are sometimes not capable of cooking dinner tonight, and running us a bath and letting us snuggle up in bed).
    It's not easy for you guys, but we are not like this all the time!
    Just remember, a healthy mind is the best place to start, so any clutter or damage that is in there needs addressing.
    Power to you all. Gorgeous wild women and their fierce loving men. Xx

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  94. I found myself on this blog after my wife revealed to me yesterday that she has PMDD. The advice here is great, but feels a bit shallow. "Be compassionate." "Don't take it personally." My wife explained to me that dealing with it is "like drowning, you can't focus on anything rational, or anyone explaining to you how to swim to the shore" so to speak.
    I say that the advice in much of this post is shallow because no where does it mention the negative effects on a man's view of himself when taking blow after blow from the woman he loves who then chalks it up to PMDD. I understand that "PMDD is an explanation, not an excuse" but no where does this reconcile the damaging behavior of the woman to the man. Example, my wife has gone behind my back because she was convinced I was hiding something, or, she has taken what I thought were meaningful insights about my work life only to manipulate them later to prove to me how they make me a bad husband. These have been very damaging to me. Then my wife will say, I need you to be close to me immediately after such destructive behavior. I want so badly to do that, but she expects me to not be affected at all by her behavior. If I try to talk about how her behavior has made me feel, she tells me that it's not time to hear about my feelings. When her cycle has come and gone, I'm completely depleted and just dragging for the two weeks until PMDD shows up again.

    All this to say, men need affirmation and respect (and no, I'm not saying this with some misogynistic attitude, but rather with what I believe is inherent to most men). What does one do when her needs for love and compassion are consistently rising above a man's need for affirmation and respect?

    Secondly, how and when does it become okay for a husband to express how hurt he has been?

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    1. Dude, I'm on your side. My wife and I have 2 kids (4 & 6 y/o). Only recently (August) has she sought treatment (Meds) - we've been together for 12 years. Here's what I've learned about broaching the topic of your needs and feelings: It's a fine line and a delicate balance. I've found that my wife doesn't want to think about her PMDD when she comes out of a bad, dark place. She sees it as "hooray for me! I made it! I don't need to think about it for another couple of weeks!". For me to bring it up often results in her retreating because she doesn't want to hear it. But I've become a little more assertive, informing her of how her dark days affected our boys, their comments "mommy doesn't feel well a lot" and "i tried to give mommy a hug and she yelled at me" because they're not going to tell her how she made them feel - they don't get it.

      Now, if you don't have children, it's more challenging. With my wife, there are 'sweet spots' - times when she's not ovulating or her period's over. She has bouts before, during and after (about 13 of 30 days are 'dark') and it'll be a trial and, unfortunately, many errors. I always have her favourite chocolate on hand to know whether or not she's entering a state.

      It sucks constantly being immersed in negativity and surrounded by hurtful words and actions. I know. I feel your pain. The fact you're still with her, the fact you still give a damn, the fact you're doing your damndest to help her is testament to you as a man and husband. Remind her of that. Your love for her, the care you WANT to give her needs to be recognized. SHe should be reminded of that - when she's out of her state. It's hard. It's a constant battle, not knowing when it'll hit or for how long or how dark it'll get.

      It's not misogynistic to want to be recognized or appreciated or have your feelings understood. I found that by helping my wife understand that, by talking about what it was like, what I did that worked, what she wished she had, opened the discussion. It allowed me to say somethings (in a NICE way) that needed to be said.

      Good luck...May the Force be with You.

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    2. Greatly appreciate the words. Since my last post my wife and I have had some fairly productive discussion about what it looks like to deal with PMDD. I think figuring out the cycle is half the battle. She began taking some medication as well which will hopefully bring some relief to her and our home. Thanks for taking the time to respond brother, can't tell you how meaningful it is!

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  95. This is a personal reply to Jorge. Dear Jorge. what you describe in your comment (not published) goes way beyond PMDD and therefore I can not help you. Your wife may have had a diagnosis of PMDD several years ago, but what you have experienced goes way beyond PMDD. I am not sure why you would want to continue the relationship if she so clearly does not want to seek treatment, or have anything to do with you. I am deeply sorry for your pain and what amounts to a non-response on my part. A professional counselor would be in a much better position to advise you as to what to do next, and what to do to best protect your children from any further emotional damage.

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  96. Just commenting to say good luck to all the other guys out there who are facing this. I've been married over ten years and I think PMDD is the root of our issues. I've tried to make the most of it, and stay focused on being the best person I can be, but there are days when I feel like I'm living with PTSD from this emotional rollercoaster.

    When in the middle of the storm, it's draining, confusing, painful and scary... all at the same time.

    I need to keep focused on my relationship with my kids, and my self-improvement. I've always thought our relationship was something I could fix... but the cycle is never ending.

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  97. As a woman with pmdd I want to say THANK YOU you clearly understand the struggle, I feel heard and validated when I read your posts and I hope that my boyfriend can find empathy after reading another man's point of view. I applaud your strength. This is a heavy burden for all involved and you give US hope.

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