Definition of the ‘Dark Zone’

In several of my posts I refer to the ‘Dark Zone’ …this is what my husband and I call luteal phase where I experience symptoms.  My mood changes very suddenly and can happen anytime, anywhere, anyplace.

During this time I often isolate myself from my family and friends.  It usually goes one of two ways…

I am either so gripped with anxiety that I will be rooted to the spot, losing the ability to function.  I won’t go to work, I won’t wash, eat, drink or talk, even to my children.  During this time I feel extremely fatigued, I just sit and cry, completely inconsolable, battling internally against the temptation to self-harm.
Or I do the complete opposite…I go from 0 to 60 in a matter of seconds and become completely hysterical and irritable.   When this happens I feel like I have to escape and I will try and drive away with no destination in mind,  so erratic that I’m not only putting myself at risk but other road users too.  As a result my husband now has to hide the car keys as a precaution, as well as any medication and sharp objects.  My personality dramatically changes and it is terrifying.

Each time I have had these episodes I feel back to my bubbly self within a day or two of my period starting, I then just have the aftermath to contend with, at home and at work.

For me the most distressing and frightening symptom I experience is the sudden change in my mood but I also experience many  physical symptoms, predominantly, bloating, nausea, migraine, extreme breast tenderness, diarrhoea and back pain.

Our life is now planned around my menstrual cycle.  My family and colleagues know that around the 14/15/16/17th of each month they will lose me for a few days, they know I will come back but it doesn’t make it any easier to manage.

I live in fear that one day the PMDD will win.

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