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Do you cut yourself slack when on your period?

(62 Posts)
oweus Mon 08-Apr-19 10:39:36

If you are able to

I was just recently diagnosed with endometriosis and really struggle getting through periods. I constantly dread the first day of my period as I know I will be in agony.

Last Friday I had to take the day off when my period came (javelin arse in an open plan office is no joke) and coincidentally had a family friend staying with me (who is closer to my mum's age). She made comments to the effect that I'm not doing myself any favours by wallowing in self-pity etc.

"What do you think women did during the war?"

Over the weekend:
I grazed on chocolate and Nik and Naks
Ordered a couple of takeaways
Stayed in comfy clothes
Did a couple of face masks
Had several naps
Watched more episodes of 4 in a bed than I care to admit
Was a miserable cow
Self-medicated with Peroni

Obviously, I don't do this every weekend. Got a text from my mum this morning basically telling me off! Apparently, I'm young so should be out enjoying my life angry


What do you do to make yourself feel better (still feeling horrendous)?

BadPennyNoBiscuit Mon 08-Apr-19 11:25:34

To all the women who think that all you need to do to overcome any problem is just try harder.

Here, this is just for you biscuit

BillywigSting Mon 08-Apr-19 11:25:37

I have strongly suspected endometriosis and used to get horrendous periods that have in the past had me puking and fainting two or three days a month and unable to stand up straight with pain for another three or four, even the after taking prescription painkillers.

If I got periods I would absolutely need to cut myself some slack. I've had periods that hurt more and lasted longer than labour.

When it got to the stage where I missed out on an important exam paper because about ten minutes in I vomited everywhere then promptly passed out (and gave myself concussion hitting my head off desk) I decided to do something about it and have been on hormonal contraception (first the mini pill then depo) almost solidly to stop them ever since.
I still get the odd breakthrough one that I suspect would have been one of the ones that would have floored me before taking hc, and there was a brief spell after dc was born where they were manageable with lots of painkillers and an iron supplement but they gradually got back to their same old horrible selves.

A couple of quid on a pregnancy test and a jab in the arm every three months is a small price to pay for freedom from debilitating pain and exhaustion, and for getting a significant amount of time back.

Fwiw, my mum is exactly the same and has been sent home from her job as an A&E nurse on busy weekend nightshift before now, and working for the NHS you are not sick until you are dead, so to answer your question op, no are most definitely not being a wimp and if you need to slow down because it hurts like a motherfucker, you need to slow down.

GregoryPeckingDuck Mon 08-Apr-19 11:26:36

Women do the sex a disservice when they say they don’t slack off so other women shouldn’t-clearly they just don’t get bad periods. I have to lighten my load the week before my period because my brain stops working. I’m not exaggerating when I say I can’t think. It’s radio silence in there for minutes at a time. Better than making things worse for everyone by trying to force myself to do things I can when I can just do hem before hand.

Meangirls36 Mon 08-Apr-19 11:28:20

Your an adult you can do what you want. Think your mum is just jealous.

ShabbyAbby Mon 08-Apr-19 11:28:45

Day before I take a sick day if I can, and spend the day watching movies, reading crappy magazines, crying, taking very strong painkillers (some actually prescribed to me), eat crisps chocolate and microwave brownies smothered in peanut butter (but nothing healthy) then get steadily more anxious until I fall asleep as the result of a sleeping tablet or an overly large glass of wine. If I don't plan to take a sick day I inevitably come home at lunchtime in floods of tears after ringing my Mum and telling her I'm having a nervous breakdown and am done with it all!
The following morning there is hell fire burning down below and a river of red but it's almost a relief to know that I am "just" menstruating and not actually crazy/neurotic/failing at everything. I take some strong painkillers and carry on with my day. In the evening I go to bed early with crippling cramps but by day 2 things are normalising a bit. Day 3 my period tapers off a bit, giving me the illusion of a light period (although if I use Sanpro for light flow I do so at my peril). Day 4 is a repeat of the day before my period starts, and Day 5 a repeat of day 1. Then I bleed a measly amount for 2-5 days longer. Whole thing takes 7-11days. Repeats every 3-6 weeks. There is no rhyme or reason really beyond having 2 nervous breakdowns and 2 days of crippling pain at least once a month or so (sometimes more frequently).

Oh and mid cycle I have a mini version of this without bleeding when I ovulate...

I am looking forward to being Post menopause 🤷🏻‍♀️ and yes I am under the Gynae!

nutellalove Mon 08-Apr-19 11:31:45

@Angelicinnocent no problems with the mini pill at all. In fact has changed my life. No periods = no pain. Before I was ill at least 2-3 weeks of every month. I didn't get on with the combined pill at all, tried 4 different brands.

My gynaecologist has said that it wouldn't necessarily get rid of the condition but will halt growth. I suppose it depends on each individual and the stage they are at- would definitely ask for a second opinion because I was fobbed off a lot and given a lot of conflicting information about different pills and I've finally found a doctor I can trust (when I eventually went privately, the NHS didn't seem to care about diagnosing me or that my life was quite literally being ruined by the pain)

BillywigSting Mon 08-Apr-19 11:32:57

@Angelicinnocent it doesn't reduce it but I was told it can stop or slow the spread of it, because it stops your periods basically, so the lining doesn't get the signal to thicken and grow, or something along those lines.

It certainly worked well to control my symptoms though

BiscuitDrama Mon 08-Apr-19 11:35:03

Have you been to the dr? I was on mefanamic acid for a while and it really did help with the pain. smile

anitagreen Mon 08-Apr-19 11:38:41

Mine is more emotion wise that sets me back from around 7 days before my period and the duration of the whole period I am low in mood, stressed full of anxiety obsessive thoughts I would rather be in physical pain than mental pain some months, I don't think your wallowing in self pity periods suck I try and take 5Htp and vitamin b6 complex all throughout the month it used to work but I don't think it does anymore, if anyone reading this has tips on how to cope throughout the month I'd love to hear them.

Angelicinnocent Mon 08-Apr-19 11:53:14

@nutella & @Billy thank you. I shall take her back to the GP then and keep pushing.

flirtygirl Mon 08-Apr-19 12:03:04

I do and have done so for probably 28 years. At school it was get out of pe, that's if I went to school as my periods bought with them crippling migraines where I would spend a day or two in bed, having gone blind and banging my head against the wall to ease the pain. I had beta blockers and the strongest migraine medication for years.

That's on top of anaemia and very heavy periods, lots of flooding and changing clothes and sheets etc from age 20 ie my first child.

The migraines came with my period and before my periods and with stress, dehydration etc but the period ones were the worse.

They started easing about 4 years ago. But each period bought headaches, stomach cramps, flooding, extreme tiredness, mood swings and pmt etc.

To all the women who can carry on then great but I'm sure a lot of women can't. We have a mix of both in my family. My poor niece has suffered since she was 11.

If cutting yourself some slack helps then so be it. We are all different. My periods are still heavy and I still flood and they still last a week and I get them every 21days so a very quick turnaround but the migraines are easing and the nausea etc, I think the pmt peaked a few years ago and it's not as bad too.

I know though not to do trips or have anything planned for those days as I'm literally more tired and weaker than normal and that's saying somethings as I'm constantly exhausted.

I missed loads of days due to migraines and periods when I worked, it made me feel bad for my colleagues but can't be helped as I could literally not see to drive. The weakness and the pain could be worked through but the migraines could not.

Yabbers Mon 08-Apr-19 12:11:01

I can empathise. I usually manage to get through it but some days would struggle if I weren’t able to work from home.

Anyone who says “wallowing” or “I just don’t have time” really doesn’t understand how bad it can be.

FudgeBrownie2019 Mon 08-Apr-19 12:21:55

I have endometriosis and anyone who feels they could power through it needs a kick up their arse because it is debilitating.

I also teach, and because of my endo my HT and TA both have to know the moment I start a period because they need to know there'll be emergency toilet visits far more frequently than I'd otherwise make. I don't take time off simply because I can't, but I'd never judge anyone who needed to take it easy while they were on their period.

On days when I'm on my period being at work and parenting the DC takes every ounce of my energy so I'll let things go a little and leave the gym out, leave cookery out and go to bed early. If anyone feels the need to judge that, I'm alright with it. You walk a mile in my pants and see how endo affects your life.

corythatwas Mon 08-Apr-19 12:27:49

"What do you think women did during the war?"

errr...not join up for service

or if they did, not get accepted

there were men too who were not in the army due to health problems

lots of them

People have really weird ideas of what the war was actually like.

originalbba Mon 08-Apr-19 13:03:18

Not rtft but endometriosis is a health condition not a bad period? Surely if you're suffering from pain made worse by endo you are taking days off work due to an illness, not just a menstrual period?

Terrible to minimise this. Just because a health condition is linked to a period doesn't make it any less serious.

RhymingRabbit Mon 08-Apr-19 13:19:46

I have endo. On top of usual endo symptoms and tsunami in my pants I also get severe shits on day 1. Literally can't be too far from a toilet. It's better for everyone if I stay near my own toilet in my PJs.

Laying off wheat helps a bit. I also don't drink anything gassy. I know you need comfort (I couldn't get through a period without a glass of wine) but I reckon lager is probably not helping the pain. Guinness might be better??

PinkBlueStripes Mon 08-Apr-19 13:29:04

Do what you need to do. If you have an understanding employer, more the better.

Mine are ok as got older. I do sometimes get impossibly uncomfy like my insides have been twisted up. Painkillers, heated wheatbags in the office. I also get really tired so early nights. The Cycle Diet is really good, Evening Primrose or Cod Liver oil. I get headaches if I have eaten crap the week before. Tolerance for eating crap is better in weeks one and two. Also get ridiculously tired during ovulation. Like hit by a bus tired. I just plough on with caffeine hmm

Hiddenaspie1973 Mon 08-Apr-19 13:32:46

If you can, why wouldn't you? I wouldn't begrudge you x
I've not suffered horrid periods (but a. They last 7 days and b. I'm peri so it could get ugly) but if you can take it easy, why wouldn't you?
Nothing worse than a martyr.

whitehalleve Mon 08-Apr-19 13:37:11

If you can and you have bad periods then you should.

I don't think I cut myself enough slack during painful periods until I gave birth and realised that giving birth was no more painful than my monthly period.

mirime Mon 08-Apr-19 14:25:17

Given that DH was home, I did wallow on Mother's Day as I felt horrendously rough. Crampy, bloated, IBS playing up, headachey, dropping everything I picked up.

If DH had been in work I'd have had to get on with it regardless but as he was around I curled up on the sofa with a hot water bottle and mostly buried myself in a book.

Worked from home on Monday as I didn't feel up to actually getting to the office, but felt fine to sit at my laptop and work. Actually got a lot done as well, and got to keep the chocolate biscuits just for me.

BarbedBloom Mon 08-Apr-19 14:35:03

I completely sympathise. I always had ok periods until one month I came on suddenly and blood literally soaked the whole leg of my jeans in the few minutes it took me to get into the building. I fainted on the bus home from the pain. They continued in this vein until I was diagnosed with PCOS. Not the same level as ending, but I had horrific pain and flooding for a few years, which in my case eased with meds and losing weight. It literally ruined everything for those few days each month.

Everyone experiences things differently and just because it is a period, doesn’t also mean it can’t be debilitating. I have RA and get some painful flares but nothing yet has come close to that terrible period that I referred to above

Likethebattle Mon 08-Apr-19 14:46:34

I sympathise my periods have always been horrendously painful and heavy. I got a nice wake up call today at 4:30, cramps and soaked with a cold sweat. I had to get up to take painkillers and hot water bottle but got barely anymore sleep and have dragged myself to work doped up as much as possible! I get sontearful and irrational beforehand. A while ago I fantasised about running out in front of a car as i’d get better pain relief relief. I’ve gone home twice with it!

JacquesHammer Mon 08-Apr-19 15:23:02

Yes and no, but only because I've pretty much organised stuff so if I am affected there's no issue.

I'm "lucky" in that mine are only very heavy and I don't get pain. So I pretty much ensure I'm never meeting with clients on Day 1/2 which means I'm then able to carry on as normal as I work from home. I would say mine are debilitating but only in terms of logistics so much easier to deal with!

I absolutely would be taking the time necessary to be able to deal with my periods if I was in that situation.

BillywigSting Mon 08-Apr-19 18:25:51

@Angelicinnocent taking her back to gp is not a bad call but I got taken far more seriously by a sexual health clinic, the nurse I had spoken was quite cross on my behalf and phoned my gp to basically professionally bollock my gp for fobbing me off.

That may have been because the nurse was a woman and my gp was a man in his 50s, but just as a heads up, if your gp does fob her off again I would try there. There are young people's ones too and they don't just deal with stds and contraception, they can do gynea referrals too (at least mine can)

Angelicinnocent Mon 08-Apr-19 19:09:02

@billy our male gp is pretty good (his wife is a sufferer) . Conversely our female gp is very much of the "everyone gets period pains, including me, but we have to live with it" type.

Unfortunately DD has some other issues with her health that have to be managed before gynae can do anything but hopefully the mini pill will help without causing more migraines.

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