The PMS Issue – Part 2

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From a precious wife and sister in Christ who has been down this road.  THANK YOU so much to her for sharing!

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After re-reading the comments about PMS … I thought of a few things I would love to share.
Several women in their comments mentioned that during PMS they found it much much more difficult to trust or to see their husbands in a positive light even if  they normally viewed their husbands positively the rest of the month.

That was my experience as well.

I love adore and trust my husband so much, but when I still had my period and raging PMS , during that week to 10 days of most months
I couldn’t seem to view him in a positive way.  I also felt that he was the ‘enemy’ sometimes. Now this is a very Godly lovely man, who was sucker punched every month when his sweet wife, suddenly became Attila the Hun overnight.

One of the things I see in retrospect is the spiritual aspect of this…

I could not , for the life of me, calm the turmoil that happened inside me at that time (during PMS).  Even though after I got my period , and the dust settled, I could see that I had behaved badly (sinfully without grace) and much of my behaviour was totally irrational!

During my crazies, I thought that I was being ‘super rational’ and speaking the ‘truth.’

I now think, looking back, that PMS is part of the ‘curse’ or the punishment of Genesis, that God said was consequence of Eve’s rebellion in the Garden. That also means it (PMS) is an incredible opportunity for a ‘saved’ Christian woman to view (and do) PMS in a very different way!  If we know then that PMS was NOT part of God’s original plan but it is part of our ‘fallen’ nature, then surely God can help us to overcome it as well. He would have a plan for it!

I believe if a woman sits with her husband, and develops a very specific strategy for handling PMS, BEFORE it comes, and talks about it , during the other part of the month, and prays with her husband each morning and night of PMS (FROM Peacefulwife – only if your husband is ok with praying out loud together, if he is not, just say, “Please pray for me today, it would mean so much to me! Thanks!”), much of the horror , (and I use that term very consciously because it was like the Enemy ran my heart during PMS)… then things could be turned around.

I did not trust my husbands judgement, or assessment of our relationship during PMS.  I trusted my friends, and my children the same, but my husband… nope.

That should in itself have been a clue to me, that something was amiss and perhaps the enemy ( the real enemy – the devil)  had stepped up his game plan. I behaved in very unChristlike ways. I would not forgive, blamed, dredged up the past out of fear , etc etc.  Afterwards, the shame of my behaviour was also , not Christlike. I would not forgive myself.

One of the things, that I believe might have helped would have been to have ONE godly person , an older woman perhaps, a mentor, to share with  during PMS , to confess my feelings, share my fears, and that I trusted to say .. “Linda , this is PMS talking. It will pass. Don’t make any decisions about anything right now if you can help it. ” and then to pray with me. and pray FOR me. That’s asking a big commitment, of someone else, but may be necessary for some with severe PMS. What I am saying is a strategy in place would help a lot! (From Peacefulwife – AWESOME IDEA!!!! Amen! Amen!)

I  like the way God said the Jewish people were to have visual reminders of Him in their homes…. on the lintel of the door frame, on their clothes, in their temples etc. I believe at PMS  the ‘ball cap’ strategy I mentioned , or calendars with permission for one’s husband to note on it, and see it as well and to know PMS is on it’s way.. are big helps.
I was/am a woman of strong faith, and deep love for God, but it would have been difficult for anyone watching my behaviour during some months when the PMS was particularly bad to have believed that !  It was truly as if the hormonal rages overtook me, and weirdly every month, I always was surprised! That was shocking to my rational husband, who would always say….”OH!!!! This is PMS .. in the midst of my crazy rant about something or other.’ Poor guy, that was like waving a red cape in front of a bull!

So for the husbands.. I would say this…

1. Develop a strategy with your wife, if she is willing.
2. Pray pray pray for her and about this.
3. When she has PMS .. be tender. Don’t believe the negative she says about you. I know how difficult this will be, but one of the things that God can use for good in this is that if you are praying for her, and trusting God, he will use the persecution that you feel to develop strong character in you, to develop compassion for your wife. He will make you able to stand against the enemy of our souls with courage in God, and faith for a Godly outcome. He will make you a warrior!   I know because he developed perseverance, deep character and great faith in my husband, partly due to how difficult it was for him during the PMS times and how he turned to God in Faith. (From Peacefulwife – I think husbands also get a taste of how people treat God, and it is a very tangible reminder about how we grieve God when we disrespect Him, don’t trust Him and depend on our own wisdom instead of leaning on His wisdom.  What an incredible opportunity to show the love, grace and mercy of Christ in spite of our unlovability at the time.)
4. My husband has PTSD, which is treated, but can still rear its head on occasion. It gave him great understanding in some ways for my ‘out of control feelings ‘during PMS.  I could no more stop the roller coaster of feelings of PMS .. than he can stop the fleeings and triggers of PTSD. They are both chemical cascades that happen in the body in such extreme that  only strategies and faith can overcome.  (From Peacefulwife – this is a really great comparison!!!  Very helpful!)
5. Dear husbands, if you stand with your wife at these time of PMS and don’t blame , shame , or criticize her, but love her regardless of her behaviour… she will see your deep love and commitment. Trust me in this, she will.

I was sexually abused as a very young girl by a close family member and have worked very hard for healing. I have had many years of counselling and attended many courses.  I have prayed much alone and with a few good friends about it. It is many years now since I have had a period and so PMS as well.. but during that time, PMS… all my fears, and the things that normally I had put to rest, .. well those things could come back to haunt me. I know it has been the same for others. Our rational behaviour and thinking seems to leave – and the sin and fear, becomes heightened. I was so sure my husband wasn’t safe, and would leave me, and his continued peace and patience would astound me!

I would rail accusations at time of PMS at him, if I became afraid, and he would say calmly ” Linda, I love you and I’m not going anywhere. God gave me to you, and you to me, and I am committed to your for my life. I love you. “

Outwardly , I wouldn’t necessarily let him see how much that affected me, but inwardly , those words, in spite of how hateful I was being.. those words led to my healing.  God’s grace , under fire, was so evident in my husband.  I know, men out there reading this are probably saying ‘Give that guy a medal!’  I agree! In fact, when we get to Heaven and God is giving out rewards, and it’s my husband’s turn to receive His reward from Jesus, I’ll be the first one on my feet with tears streaming down my face in gratitude for the love, and patience and acceptance he gave me, especially during PMS.

The other thing he did, was lovingly walk away if I became irrational.  He would say ” I love you, but I’m taking a time out. This is too painful for me. ” I will be back, in 20 minute, or a half hour or three hours, whatever.. but he loved and protected himself. He did not stand and take verbal abuse, but he didn’t abandon me either.  (From Peacefulwife – I think this is a great idea for husbands, too – if it is done in a loving, gracious way.)

April , thank you for the opportunity to share my story. It is difficult to recall those times, but it also makes me so grateful for what I have now.  I hope that my honesty and sharing helps someone else. ladies if you are reading this and you don’t have terrible PMS, you are possibly wondering what on earth I’m talking about, but if you do have PMS you know…

Trust God that He will make this part of your victory in Christ story one day… I know He has mine.

 

FROM PEACEFULWIFE:

MORE HUGGING AND LESS TALKING IS A VERY, VERY GOOD IDEA! I know that if my husband hugs me, I can’t be mad at him!

RELATED POSTS:

The PMS Issue

My Demon

The Voice in His Head

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12 Comments on “The PMS Issue – Part 2”

  1. nina
    June 21, 2013 at 8:38 am #

    Thank u soooooo much for posting. I deal with the same exact thing. It has been very painful dealing with this issue. I have tried my hardest to not behave in the ways you have mentioned and it is very hard. I feel as if I am someone else every month. I too have same background as u and I too have had so Much counseling but during that time of the month I am horrible. I too feel tons of guilt due to this issue. Sigh……

    • peacefulwife
      June 21, 2013 at 9:17 am #

      Nina,

      I am very glad this is helpful for you! :) Praying for God to give you victory over hormones!

  2. mysterytopursue
    September 2, 2013 at 3:27 pm #

    Thanks for posting this! They say there are 3 types of PMSing, the irritable-screamy-angry one, the crying-pessimistic-oversentimental one, or the combination of both. I think they should be dealt with differently (by husbands and the wives themselves) but with the same core view of “this too shall pass”.

    • peacefulwife
      September 2, 2013 at 7:31 pm #

      Mysterytpursue,

      Thank you for sharing! Yes, if we can see that these feelings will pass – that is a huge help! :)

  3. Abi
    October 30, 2013 at 11:50 am #

    Thank you for the tips. I’ve been struggling with this A LOT. We have the added trouble of male-factor infertility. I feel like I do well and grow as a better helpmeet to him during the month, but my period comes around and I take 5 steps backward for the 3 steps forward I made earlier. I blame him for what I’m going through because, yet again, I’m not pregnant.

    I hate it. I hate myself like this.

    And it feels like every Christian wife blog focuses on having a million kids.

    • peacefulwife
      October 30, 2013 at 7:00 pm #

      Abi,

      My sweet girl!!!!!!! How I wish I could hug your neck!

      Yes. Being hormonal is so similar to being demon possessed sometimes. It’s awful! It can be SO HARD to allow Christ to empower us instead of trusting our hormones and feelings. But He is able to do it! It will take some practice, but He can give us His Spirit even on those days.

      The following may not have anything to do with your experience at all – please ignore it if it does not…

      ———
      You know, I was thinking this week about a dear friend of mine who was planning to write a post for me about her idol late last year – having a baby.

      She and her husband struggled with infertility. For many years. And spent lots of money. They didn’t get pregnant. She hasn’t written the post for me yet. interestingly – a few months after she laid her idol down – she found out she was pregnant. She wasn’t taking any treatments at all. Her baby is due in the next few weeks.

      I have wanted to write a post on that topic so many times. Having a baby was an idol for me too – I think it can easily become an idol for many women. It is such a biological drive in us to want to have children. MANY things have been idols for me. :( It is so easy to take something that is a good gift from God and turn it into an expectation or into something that becomes more important to me than intimacy with Christ. That is something I have to watch for in my heart every day about many different good things.

      If there is something I feel like I MUST HAVE in order to be happy – and it is not Jesus – I am probably dealing with an idol. The human heart is an idol factory – and we can make almost anything – even wonderful things – into idols.

      The only way to properly address that is to rip it out by the roots and lay it at the feet of Jesus. It hurts. But it is what we must be willing to do with EVERYTHING – just like Abraham was willing to do with Isaac – to show God He did not love Isaac more than God. And then look what God did for us – He gave up His son because of His love for US. WOW.

      This is part of dying to self. We lay all the things we have and all the things we want at His feet until we can say SINCERELY, “Not my will, but Yours be done.”

      When we get to that place of surrender – where we can accept yes, no or wait… His peace and joy can flood our souls.

      ————-

      God is sovereign. Even over your situation with infertility.

      Many of the greatest prophets and men of God were given to barren mothers later in life. God has a special place in His heart for wives who long for children. :)

      I pray for His will and His greatest glory for You and for you to be able to rest peacefully in His great love for you, trusting Him even when you can’t understand right now. Then, one day, we will stand in heaven, and I believe we will have a chance to see all that He was doing behind the scenes and understand the reasons why things happened as they did – and I believe we will KICK ourselves for not trusting Him more in these moments that test our faith.

      I’m ALWAYS glad to hear from you!

      God has GOOD purposes for your life. Being a mom is not the only thing of value in God’s eyes. Being YOU is very valuable in His eyes. Being a godly wife is very valuable in His eyes. All He wants is ALL your faith, ALL your heart, ALL your trust, ALL your obedience – and then He will take you on the greatest adventure of your life. :)

      I can’t wait to see what He has in store for you!
      Please keep me up to date!

      And, it is my prayer that you might ENJOY your husband. SAVOR the time you have with him. THANK him for all he does for you and with you. He is such a gift from God. Many women would give almost anything to have the life you have – to be able to cuddle in a husband’s loving arms every night, to have someone to share life with, not to be single anymore.

      Sending you a HUGE hug!

      Much love,
      April

      • Abi
        October 31, 2013 at 10:25 am #

        April,
        Thank you. I know it’s an idol. It’s been a rough year. We’re coming up on the one year anniversary of finding our way to church. Baptized back in January. I remember thinking, “Great! We’re on track. Maybe He’ll give us a baby now.” Instead a urinary blockage took our 4 year old cat and an immune disorder took our 4 year old puppy within a month of each other. And I know how trivial that sounds, but it really shook my faith.
        Friends who got pregnant when we first started trying are now on their second pregnancies since then. And it has really affected my walk with Him.
        My husband is starting a new job on Monday, 6 hours away. (Having been an Army wife, I feel for those single girls.) I won’t be able to join him full-time until we sell our home in May. It’s my goal to take this time to reset and renew my relationship with Him.

        But thank you, again, April. I hope your friend follows through with the guest post. It would be very welcomed fellowship.

        • peacefulwife
          October 31, 2013 at 11:27 am #

          Abi,

          I am SO SO SO SO SORRY for the pain you have experienced this year. I understand how hard it is when pets die. I had to put our cat down when she was 9. We had her since 3 weeks into our marriage. I don’t miss her biting my feet when I got up during the night. :) But I do miss her still! That was 10 years ago that she had kidney cancer. I sat in the waiting room of the vet’s office – SOBBING MY EYES OUT – holding Molly in my lap as the first injection began to make her go to sleep. Greg was at work. Still makes me cry to think about it. Brandon was 22 months old and kept saying, “Mama sad? Mama sad?” The house did not feel right for months and months and months with her gone.

          And I cannot begin to imagine how much harder it would be with a puppy. My poor girl!

          I am sure you were grief stricken.

          It is SO HARD not to compare our lives to those around us. I can remember that even in middle/high school – wondering why my friends had boyfriend and I didn’t. Then in college – that feeling of pain when a friend would get engaged, and I was not engaged yet. Then going to weddings and trying to be happy for my friends but secretly feeling so jealous and thinking how hard it was to wait for marriage myself.

          The baby thing was a difficult thing for me, too – but in a different way. I wanted to wait until Greg got a job with benefits so I could go part time. I knew I didn’t want to work full time as a mom. But it took 6 years for Greg to get an engineering job after college. My FIL was our pastor at our small church (well – about 300 people attended most sundays.) EVERY SINGLE WEEK – someone would say, “Oh, are you pregnant?” I have IBS – and my belly would often bloat and I would LOOK pregnant. But I wasn’t. I would get SO UPSET!!!!!!!! I was tired of people asking me every week if we were pregnant. I was tired of waiting on my husband to get a “real job.” I hated being in the spotlight and having everyone dissect and criticize everything I wore, my shoes (I had back problems and couldn’t wear fancy, pretty shoes), and how close I was sitting to Greg or not.

          I wanted to leave the church after a few years. But Greg said no. That was one issue he wouldn’t cave to me about!

          One lady brought her new grand baby over to us and held him right in front of Greg and said, “THIS is what one looks like! I expect you to have a baby!”

          I wanted to cry my eyes out right there in Sunday School in front of 100 people.

          How did they know that I didn’t struggle with infertility? How did they know that we hadn’t had 10 miscarriages? We didn’t have those issues – we had financial issues instead. But I wanted to be a mom. My heart broke that I couldn’t be a mom. It was a long time to wait 7.5 years after our marriage before we had our first baby. I can identify with couples who are not able to have babies when they want to. I feel like I lived through part of the experience of that world – just a bit. The thoughtless comments of others. People constantly assuming I was pregnant. Having to explain over and over and over for 7 years that “no, we aren’t pregnant yet.” The frustration with God for not giving my husband the job I wanted him to have immediately. My husband’s depression because of his job situation – and my awful attitude, no doubt.

          When Greg finally did get a job – it was almost a year before he was willing to talk about trying to have a baby. I became SO CONTROLLING! We actually got pregnant quickly. But Greg responded with anger at me when I told him I was pregnant. Probably because I was SO DISRESPECTFUL AND CONTROLLING! And maybe, because it happened so fast and I took the test so early – he didn’t believe the results.

          He eventually came around. But it was not at all the response I had wanted.

          There are so many things I would do differently now if I had it all to do again.

          This can be a lonely road. I have MANY friends who have walked through infertility. It is such a struggle because it keeps coming up every single month. The issue never goes away – there is that cycle of “maybe this month????” and that build up of hope – then disappointment over and over and over.

          My heart aches for you my sweet friend!

          There are MANY women on my blog who are dealing with infertility. The wife with the post about the Peaceful Egg Retrieval Day – did not end up pregnant. She grieved. Of course. Then after a few weeks, she began to focus on good things again and regained her joy.

          If you have never watched David Platt’s sermon series on The Cross and Suffering – I would HIGHLY recommend it! You can find it on Youtube. I believe it may be life changing and SO HEALING. :)

          Goodness, I am sorry to hear that you and your husband will have to be apart for so long. I pray that this might be a time of INCREDIBLE spiritual growth for you – a time to depend on Christ and draw nearer to Him than ever before. Please let me know how I might pray for you!

          And please let me know how you are doing! :)

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