Hormones are Funny Things
PMS is influenced by hormone levels thoughout the month, and sometimes we have months when we don’t suffer from PMS and get away without feeling angry, irritated or upset. Which is a result.
However, those fluctuating hormones – usually from the middle of your menstrual cycle- can still make you feel more sensitive and sentimental than you do the rest of the month. Even if you’re on a reasonably even keel – eating well, exercising, and not too stressed – hormones can turn you into a sobbing, soppy blanket.
The Last Time Hormones Got Me In Public
I had a good example myself recently. I’m lucky to live in the beautiful World Heritage City of Bath, and had a friend visiting from London for the weekend. Although neither of us is remotely religious, I decided to show him Bath Abbey and thought that taking him to the afternoon choral service would be a great way to enjoy the building.
I was particularly pleased to see it was the Girls’ Choir singing that day (Cathedral-type choirs having been traditionally male for a long time). And in the stillness and solemnity of the Abbey, their beautiful voices quickly brought a lump in my throat. I closed my eyes and allowed myself to be carried away by the music.
To my surprise, silent tears began to roll down my cheeks.
I wiped away the smears of mascara and held it together pretty well for the rest of the service. But at the very end, a few of the choiristers who were leaving were very nicely thanked for their contributions to the choir, and wished the best of luck in their new lives at work, college or university.
I just happened to catch the eye of one of the girls who was welling up with emotion herself, and that was it – I started to weep big fat, snuffly tears.
My friend smiled at me and patted my arm. But I think he thought I was experiencing some sort of religious epiphany!
The thing is, I wasn’t at all unhappy or depressed at the time, and the choral service had in fact been very relaxing and uplifting. I didn’t think I was suffering from PMS. And I’m not normally given to crying in public!
But it felt ok to have had a little sob to myself. As I stepped back out into the bright sunshine we traipsed off in search of afternoon tea, I accepted that it had just been a beautiful and moving occasion, and that I was more susceptible than usual because of where I was in my menstrual cycle and my hormone levels changing.
Get It Off Your Chest – Tweeting About Hormones
Seems I’m not alone. I’ve recently joined Twitter which is great for sharing news and views and expressing yourself. (You can follow me as @PMS_Warrior). I’ve noticed that firing out a tweet (a 140 character headline about what you’re doing or thinking or feeling) is being used by lots of women to vent about their PMS experiences.
As you’ll see, hormonal crying comes up a LOT.
The Hormones Hashtag on Twitter (Small Sample Only!)
- Good morning. Just cried watching family members while eating my breakfast. Talk about hormones.
- Tears not 30 seconds into the song…
- Why have I felt like crying the last few days? I’m not even sad! Every movie / show puts me on the edge. Is it hormones?
- Just blubbed like a baby at Toy Story 3, which is odd since I’ve seen it before and was fine.
- I just saw the Harry Potter trailer on TV and started tearing up.
- Why am I crying watching America’s Got Talent?
- Did I just cry during EastEnders?
- OMG! Just cried at the Google Chrome advert.
And even people being nice to you can make you tearful:
- ·I’m pretty moved by the kindness of people sometimes.
- Just got the nicest email and almost burst out crying at my desk.
Hormones and The Sting in the Tail
As we know, PMS is a spectrum of symptoms, and their severity can vary from woman to woman, and even, month to month. On a good day, feeling hormonal can mean just having a little sob in private. At other times, feeling emotional and on the brink of tears can come at the most inappropriate times and be mixed up with lots of other confusing feelings too.
The tweets speak for themselves:
- I think I’m gonna finally watch 500 Days of Summer for the first time and sob while simultaneously hating the world and my life.
- In the process of yelling at the nursing home and social worker for their negligence, I started crying.
- If I could stop crying while watching the news (tears of sadness and joy), I would really appreciate it.
- I just balled my eyes out on the phone with my boyfriend about how my nails look stupid and foundation doesn’t match my skin now.
- I don’t understand how my emotions can be feeling as high as the sky then they just hit rock bottom all of a sudden.
- It’s the time of the month. Got happy, excited, sad, stress, nervous, mixed feelings, all in one day. Hormones, ughhh.
When Hormones Get The Better of You
My experience is that if we’re at a point in the month when we’re susceptible to crying, the best scenario is not to start weeping on the bus, at work, or in the middle of an argument. That can really ruin your composure. But even then, it’s not the end of the world. Relax. It’ll be pass. You’ll be back to normal soon.
Crying spontaneously or uncontrollably is a symptom of PMS, and isn’t uncommon. Don’t beat yourself up if hormones get the better of you. Better management and prevention of PMS throughout the month will help manage your hormones helping to make you feel less fragile. But if you do find yourself welling up, go with the flow if you can, and enjoy connecting with that sad film or emotional piece of music. Even tweet about it!