Even if you’ve not personally experienced it, you will surely know someone in your life who menstruates. There’s so much negative talk surrounding PMS and it’s a real disservice to menstruators.
Related: Doctor Decodes Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)
If you’re spending time with your partner and their period decides to play a third wheel, here are a few things you can do to make them feel a little better.
(These tips may help in most instances. However, if someone chooses to be alone, undisturbed or are reluctant to physical contact during their period, please respect their boundaries!)
To start off, consider downloading their period tracking app on your phone so you can keep a tab on their period dates. This helps a lot of heterosexual couples to plan or prevent pregnancy or is a good step to just be mindful of the menstruating partner’s needs during this ‘period’!
Keep up inventory: On this front, menstrual cup users are sorted for a few years, at least. If your partner isn’t a menstrual cup user, make sure that their period product of choice is stocked up- pads or tampons! If they haven’t already purchased it online, offer to head to the grocery to buy them their feminine hygiene products.
Related: Busting Myths About Menstrual Cups
There’s ABSOLUTELY no shame or taboo associated with buying a pack of pads or tampons.
Which one do I buy, though? For the uninitiated and those whose partners aren’t picking up the call when you’re at the grocery, here’s a tip from a long-time menstruator. Just buy the Extra-Large Pads with Wings! It’s a safe bet for most people and works perfectly for catching menstrual fluid through the night!
Here are the top 5 ways to help a partner cope with period pain!
We hope these five tips help you keep your loved one comfortable through their period.
#1: Period Pain Relief
While not everyone has distinct period pains, those who do are always on the lookout for new ways to bring relief. My recommendations that offer considerable period pain relief to make your partner feel a little better during their period are:
For those who can’t avoid heading out while on their period, these patches are truly revolutionary.
Get your partner the Sirona Period Pain Relief patches here! The powerful herbal formulation of period patches available ensures that these nifty abdominal stickers remain effective for up to 8 hours.
Hot Water Bag
A trick that has been tested over time, the heat from a hot water bag held to the abdomen helps stimulate blood flow easing cramps. Here’s a tip- wrap the hot water bag in a towel to avoid mishaps.
Warm Water Bath
Working on a concept similar to the hot water bag, run your partner a warm water bath to soak up in during their period (and no, don’t worry, they won’t be floating in a pool of their menstrual blood by the end of it). A bath or a shower in warm water can help improve circulation, ease cramps and boost their mood.
#2: Massage to distract from Period Pain
If your partner’s love language is physical touch, this is the perfect way to distract them from the pain, make them feel good and put them at ease.
Foot or Back massage
Even if you both are just in bed and watching Netflix, ask your partner to prop their leg up on your lap and give them a long foot massage. Use cream or an oil as you press their legs. Alternatively, if they complain of lower back pain during their cycle, consider giving them a back massage. Major brownie points for doing both!
This may not be something everyone believes in, but there’s no harm trying. I don’t know if it’s the Placebo Effect, but I do feel extensive relief from the pain when massaging the acupressure points for period pains.
The one most effective, according to me, is one at the base of the thumb. While self-massaging this point works just as great, having someone else do it for you always feels better.
#3: Period Cravings? Fulfill them!
Cravings are another feature of periods which get considerably hyped-up. If your partner shares that they have a craving for something, do what you can to fulfil it. If they want to keep healthy and still indulge, consider whipping up a chia seed pudding or a dark chocolate avocado mousse!
#4: Be Mindful!
Being supportive during this time of month is paramount. If you do get into an argument with them, don’t be insensitive and blame it on their period. Be as you usually would and take their feelings into consideration.
#5: Period Sex
Related: Period Sex: What, Why and How!
If your partner is in the mood (you can thank the hormones), don’t be afraid to indulge in a little period sex. Of course, consider your comfort level with partaking in sexual activity. If you do, then lay a towel down to minimise the post-coital mess.
This list doesn’t include points like helping out with chores or cooking or lending a listening ear. This is only because I hope you do your due diligence, playing a role in these tasks every other day too.
Do you have any tips on how to help your partner during their period? If you’re a menstruator, what’s something you wish your partner did for you on your period?