I had never heard of this before a couple of days ago when I started trying to figure out what is wrong with me.
Long story short, I have always had some depression/anxiety. Until about age 27 or 28, I just lived with it. After that, I went through a really bad patch, got diagnosed, and took antidepressants for several years.
About July, I came off anti-depressants for the first time in about 5 years. I felt great, until I got my periods. Then I would experience severe emotional/hormonal symptoms, including illogical anxiety about my boyfriend, crying jags, and general fear of the future and whether I was making good decisions or not. Then, after my period hit, or a few days into my period, I'd be fine again.
However, I did not even register that the above was happening to the extreme that it was for a couple months. I knew I was having PMS that was worse than I used to have before, but I attributed a lot of it simply to not being on the antidepressants anymore, and my depression coming through in full force, and going through some big life changes.
Early Nov., I started taking a birth control pill. It was the first time I've been on BC in about 8 years. I knew that there was a possibility it would aggravate my depression, but had no idea it would make my PMS worse. It was like PMS on speed. It was only as I had 1-2 'crazy episodes' a month for the next three months that I really started to see a pattern and realize that the hormone BC I was taking was making a preexisting underlying imbalance of some kind worse.
About 4 different times I felt like I should break up with my boyfriend because I didn't feel like he loved me. But he would assure me he did, say sweet things, do anything I asked for him, and the poor guy couldn't understand what he was doing wrong... because he wasn't' doing anything wrong. But my hormones were telling me I was being rejected.
Then, a day or two later, I'd be fine again. And by fine, I mean, feeling completely at peace about my relationship with my BF. Happy, calm, excited to be around him and with him, and like the anxiety I had had before made absolutely no sense.
Needles to say, I stopped the birth control. I am going to try going through two full cycles without any pill to see how I do, and find out if I think this is PMDD or if I just have stupidly awful hormones when I'm on my period that are exaggerated when on hormonal BC. But, as I said above, even back in the summer, before the BC, something was going on because those periods were making me feel much more over-the-top weepy and anxious than I remember from PMS before the antidepressant.
Reading over the symptoms of PMDD, I I was shocked. I had never heard this thing existed. I'm starting to think maybe I'm not so crazy after all, and I simply have some imbalance going on.
Has anyone else experienced things like this?