Some dude on FetLife wrote a note about how it’s important for men to memorize their lady partners’ menstrual cycles. He made some valid points about being prepared for hygiene needs and being able to know more about his partner’s body by knowing where in her cycle she was, and how having sex during menstruation can be great pain relief, but he also said (essentially):
When she’s ovulating, she’s horny; when she’s about to menstruate, she’s PMSing and bratty or emotional; when she’s menstruating, she’s in pain, which affects her mood; when she’s not doing anything, she’s at her baseline personality.
I’m paraphrasing, this guy wasn’t actually an *entire* dick, but it still rubbed me the wrong way. Yes, hormonal shifts affect your mood; no, they aren’t responsible for your personality and behavior. If I’m PMSing and something makes me cry, my partners are still going to 100% validate what I’m feeling. If I say “ugh, ignore me, I’m just PMSing,” they always say “no! your feelings are valid, even if your current set of hormones is what’s making it feel more present to you.”
Dudes, if your partner is a person who menstruates, you should always let your partner tell *you* if they feel like their actions or feelings are being affected by their hormones. Or if they say (as I have often said) “oh god what’s happening to me why can’t I stop crying?????” you could ask “do you think your hormones are in a place where they might be affecting your mood?” I know none of you are dicks enough to say “ugh, what a jerk. I bet she’s on her period, or something.” But it’s also worth making sure you’re not going to discount someone’s emotions because you happen to know where in their menstrual cycle they are, or that you’ll assign credit to PMS for what is a valid concern or emotional state.
This has been a PSA.