Why PMT is my new BFF!

trickle[1]For a long time I thought that my emotional pre-menstrual week was my enemy.

PMT was the thing that caused me to bite peoples head’s off, cry uncontrollably and take my husband  to task over the  minor details in life! I couldn’t understand how it served any purpose; it put my emotions in the driving seat and I went careening off at top speed through red lights stop signs!

But, just recently I’ve come to welcome PMT as my new BFF.

Why?

I have always battled with the dominance of my head over my heart. I am primarily a thinking person, and much of my emotional activity is analysed, rationalised and sanitised before it is unleashed on the world. However, during PMT there is a dominance switch; and I become a bitch speak my mind!

Bring out the Bitch!

PMT  creates an emotional circuit from my heart to my mouth, and that cuts out the crap!

I am guilty of diluting what I really think to ensure that I don’t hurt anyone’s feelings, or make anyone angry. I strive for harmony and reconciliation and as a result carefully phrase everything I say to avoid confrontation. So for my family, friends and work colleagues my PMT week is quite a shock!

For example in my family everyone asks me everything, and I don’t just mean my children! My husband is one of the worst offenders!

Where are the sultanas?  What’s for lunch? Where are my pants? Do we have any more milk?

No-one looks before they ask the question, and my husband’s questions are like a running commentary of his thoughts, an internal monologue with volume! The trouble is (and I know I’m my own worst enemy for this) I can’t help but answer! So when he habitually asks ‘where’s the salt?’ the normal response would be ‘middle shelf in front of the oil’. But during PMT week he gets my internal monologue on full-bore:

Why are you asking me stuff you already know! Open your f***ing eyes and find it yourself!

Needless to say harmony and reconciliation can go and take a run-an’-jump!

The things that flare me up during PMT week are the little things that I usually ignore but do grate on my nerves a lot of the time. PMT week gives them an airing, gets them right out there in people’s faces, and gives rise to a healthy release – either a good-old-fashioned slanging match or simply a few choice expletives!

Everyone knows where they stand at the end of PMT week and I’m reset ready for another month of harmony!

How is PMT my BFF…?

Now, an essential quality of any BFF is to provide you with a shoulder to cry on. But my new BFF can do even more than that…

At the moment I am  hurting inside most of the time, but I just don’t feel it yet. That’s because I am watching while cancer destroys the life of someone dear to me. Again.

But I don’t cry. I get down and dirty with the action of assisting in any way I can. Like a moth drawn to the flame, I can’t keep away. And the closer I get the more it burns, and the more my tears dry up.

My BFF knows this, and knows that it’s not good for me to carry unshed tears. She re-opens the connection to my heart so I can find the time to cry. Like the most nurturing friend PMT heightens my emotional response to everything around me, and generates the very tears that soothe the soul.

So I wouldn’t be without her, she keeps me sane (while driving my husband insane)!

PMT is the best friend a girl could have!

 

 

 

Ten Tips to Kick Worry-Brain into Touch!

Blog wordle feel the fearSo I’ve admitted it, I have been a Helicopter Mum and I’m sure that I will be again! But it could be a whole lot worse if I didn’t kick Worry-Brain into touch!

Here’s my top ten tips for calming the mind when embracing your teenagers new-found independence: 

  1. Get some perspective – use Rational-Brain to counter argue with Worry-Brain. Look at the statistics – and remind yourself how important it is for children to get outdoors on their own to learn resilience and problem solving skills.
  2. Create a dialogue – talk to your children about your feelings and explain that you want to work with them to enable them to enjoy their new independence.
  3. Set reasonable limits – work together in consultation to agree an achievable goal that you can both stick to. For example, I set a time that Berry has to contact me to touch base and this reassures me he’s ok and give him the flexibility to change plans.
  4. Welcome friends – encourage your children’s friends into your home, stock the freeze with goodies to encourage them to stay for lunch, facilitate entertainment like using the pool, x-box or games room. This has a triple benefit – you to get to know the friends they’re hanging around with, gain a reputation as a ‘Fun-Mum’ and you get to supervise them at your place so Worry-Brain really can take a break!
  5. Network – link into the parenting community in which your child is circulating. Get one another’s mobile numbers, this helps everyone to feel supported. Send a communal text as the children leave or arrive at your house, then everyone is a linked into their activities whilst refraining from obviously keeping tabs on them!
  6. Plan for risks  – help your child to think through some risk scenarios and discuss how they would handle these situations. Remember to allow them to do most of the thinking – you’re there to prompt, encourage and question!
  7. Build confidence – theirs and yours! Stay positive, focus on the good things that happened  during their time away from you. If you are a nervous wreck every time they leave the house an unhealthy cycle of guilt and dependence is created. The message you are unconsciously sending says ‘I don’t believe you are capable of this’ and plants the seed for future self-doubt.
  8. Lead by example – be a positive role model, believe in yourself and them. Talk about times when you take risks in your life, how you assess the potential dangers and take action. The bestselling classic ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ by Susan Jeffers is a good start to reflecting on what makes you feel fear and how to break through the paralysis this can create.
  9. Celebrate – in the new-found freedom that your children are achieving, congratulate yourself on having taken a step towards parenting an independent teen and enjoy the new ‘me-time’ that you will have while they’re out having fun! Do something positive for yourself and enjoy your own new-found independence!
  10. Re-connect – Spending time engaged in independent activities adds a new dimension to your relationship with your children. Enjoy hearing about their adventures and re-connect with them as developing people in their own right.