Women are wonderful creatures. Some say a woman is God’s crowning creation. A woman is beautiful, complicated, fascinating, strong, and loving.

But for some men, a woman presents a case of, “Can’t live with her: can’t live without her!”

Much of a woman’s fascinating, complicated nature comes down to her and her hormones. The very thing that makes a woman who she is can also create frustration, misery, and major conflict in intimate relationships. The seasons of a woman’s life are, in large measure, dictated by her hormones. Her monthly cycle, PMS, pregnancy, infertility, and menopause – they are all marked by significant hormonal changes, and the sometimes difficult emotional and physical results.

A woman’s nature is a finely-crafted integration of body, mind, and soul. Anything that impacts one aspect of her life has significant impact on every other area. Men are integrated beings too, but they are more compartmentalized than women. You cannot change one thing in a woman’s life without changing everything. Physical changes, often triggered by hormonal fluctuations, affect her emotions. The quality of her important relationships affects her physical well-being. And her spiritual life is affected as well.

As a gynecologist, I see women at some of the most intimate and challenging times of their lives. And I’m honored to help.

I’ve also seen some women use their hormones as an excuse for bad behavior. There are some who treat spouse, children, or coworkers badly, and neglect important responsibilities, and then expect a free pass because they are “hormonal.” That’s just wrong!

There’s no excuse for bad behavior just because you’re “hormonal.” Here are a few suggestions I make to women struggling with their hormones, and the men who love them:

  1. Pay attention to your health in EVERY area, not just hormones. For example, are you eating right, and getting appropriate exercise? Are you investing in your marriage, and getting girl-friend time when you need it? Are you consciously choosing positive thoughts, and investing in your spiritual relationship with God? Every one of those things will impact how you feel in every way.
  2. Get some help. You are still responsible for your own health, but getting input from a physician, nutritionist, psychologist, or pastor may give you important help where you need it. If you’re struggling, you don’t have to go it alone. Remember that how you behave impacts many other people: if you can’t get help for yourself, do it for them. Medication (hormonal or non-hormonal) may or may not be the answer, but don’t ignore the help that is available.
  3. And for men, remember that we women need you! We need your loving support, your encouragement to get help, and your feedback on how we are coming across. It’s OK to hold us accountable for our behavior. Your support means a lot.

Every stage of a woman’s life can be beautiful. Don’t allow difficulties with hormones to take that away!

Your Turn: As a woman, what do you want your husband to do for you when you feel “hormonal”? As a man, how do you deal with your wife when she experiences some of these problems? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

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