Though the question may seem like an attempt to classify the always-cranky, frustrated men into the same category as women when they’re on their period but is it really just that. I have had a lot of male friends growing up, and I’ll let you know that they have all gone through this phase where they were moody at times. And all their behaviour reminded me of was a moody version of me, only I thought I had an excuse- PMS. Imagine my surprise when I found myself on Google looking for some answers and ended up finding out that men too can blame their behaviour on something- Irritable Male Syndrome (IMS).

IMS probably does not sound like anything that the women go through when they are menstruating (what with our uterus going on a war every month or so) but science offers an explanation for this. Since men experience hormonal changes too, their testosterone levels rise and fall throughout the day.

Who to thank for figuring out why men are grouchy at times?

Well, Jed Diamond, therapist and author of Male Menopause and The Irritable Male Syndrome, explains why men go through mood swings just like women do, and why they vent their frustration on women (we do the same to them when we’re on our period).

How can you tell if the men around you are PMS-ing?

I bet you’ve all heard of the tell-tale signs – depression, anger, anxiety, and low libido – all associated with biochemical changes and hormonal fluctuations. I’ll let you in on the real-life scenarios that may occur when they’re going through IMS so you can run for your life (or take care of them, your call).

Case 1.

You come home from work and you find your husband munching on the ice-cream you had been saving for your time of month. And that’s not all, on the table is a half-empty carton of juice and only a slice of pizza left for you to eat. It’s safe to say that it is their time of month (or week) for now.

Case 2.

It is movie night with your boyfriend and you’re watching The Notebook for the umpteenth time. You hear a whimpering sound coming from beside you, and for a second you think it’s only in your head but as soon as the tears come out, you know it’s time. And you thought only women could cry during movies.

Case 3.

You’re going out for a quiet dinner, just the two of you, and you decide to put on your little black dress. The moment you step out, your husband just loses it and asks you to wear something else. While you’re changing, you wonder why he would do that since he was the one that brought it. By the time, you’re out of the door, he’s back to normal, and asks why you changed out of the dress because you looked great in it. Before you feel like strangling him, girl you better know, it’s one of those days.

So the next time, the men around you- your father, brother, friend (boyfriend) or husband suddenly go through bouts of anger, irritability, and fatigue one minute and burst into tears the other, you can secretly sneak a bucket of ice-cream towards them.

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