Are women hornier before their period?

Sounds like a stupid question right?
Anyway, I guess I sometimes I call my period my moon (I know, how 70′s of me), but I have never called the week before my period “venus week.” But according to this new book, the way our hormones are before the week of our period actually has an impact on our behavior. This is a pretty duh statement for most women out there, but I do think it is interesting. Some points in the book.

Women look and feel best when they are most likely to conceive (that’s the Venus Week), but it’s possible to optimize Venus and other portions of their hormonal cycle.
When estrogen levels are high (during Venus Week) women are more confident, socially agile and at ease; skin and hair looks and feels better too.
Testosterone also peaks during this week, hence the stronger desire for intimacy and heightened libido during these five to seven days.

What I don’t think is interesting is when social scientists use research like this to make definitive conclusions in women’s behavior. So take it for what it is. Sometimes we like to have more sex before our periods, among other things and you can pretty much assume that is not true for everyone and certainly not all the time.
Other problems with this type of research that I am overlooking?
Via.

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52 Comments

  1. Logrus
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    “But according to this new book, the way our hormones are before the week of our period actually has an impact on our behavior. This is a pretty duh statement for most women out there,”
    “What I don’t think is interesting is when social scientists use research like this to make definitive conclusions in women’s behavior.”
    Beg pardon, but isn’t that what you just did? I’ve never heard a person make a statement with a conclusion, then reject scientific validation of their own conclusion before.

  2. metakatie
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    I agree with you Samhita – journalists (or politicians or political commenters, etc) often take these research findings to conclusions that are not supported by the research.
    One thing I think is really interesting is how hormones are often used to “explain” or justify certain behaviors/assumptions. Historically, women have often been considered slaves to their bodies, experiencing “hysteria” that makes them inferior to men. In a modern context, this translates to “PMS.”
    With the discovery and study of hormones, more attention is paid to the effect of hormones on our behavior. For example, I’ve often heard arguments that go something like, “Men have more testosterone, making them more aggressive, therefore it’s not really their fault when they behave violently,” or “Men have more testosterone, making them hornier, therefore it’s not really their fault when they cheat on someone / rape someone,” as well as, “Women have more estrogen, making them more emotional, therefore they are less able to serve as leaders.” What’s interesting about all of these “arguments” is that they serve the interests of patriarchy, yet all assume we’re robot-slaves to our hormones.
    Incidentally, this study mentioned reflects how I often feel around my period – it confirms something I already knew about myself. However, I’d say the effects are fairly mild. I feel more confident and sexier before my period, but I’m not humping people’s legs or distracted at work or unable to control myself. Given that I’m a being with a high level of consciousness – something we all are – I recognize these feelings and consider them more like a tinted window that colors my day but doesn’t control it.

  3. Rachel_Setzer
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    Well, I don’t know too much about this research, but I have to say that I don’t want more sex right before my period… I kinda just want it all the time. Then again, I’m on the pill.

  4. Mama Mia
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

    Is there a specific part of the research that you find not to be credible? There certainly could be, but dismissing a study because you don’t like the outcome, or it doesn’t apply to you, or it doesn’t always apply to you, or worse, you don’t like how the media will misuse it, isn’t really fair.
    No research can ever make a blanket statement about everyone, and it usually doesn’t when you look at the details. Otherwise, the research is probably valid, and isn’t necessarily anti-feminist. The bad part is when the research gets misused. That, I agree, is really lame.

  5. wax_ghost
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    Sometimes I’m hornier right before my period but I often find myself hornier right around the time of month when I know I’m supposed to be ovulating (about 14-16 days after my period ends). I’ve also noticed that I prefer certain positions at certain times of the month. But it’s just like metakatie said, it’s something I’ve noticed but it doesn’t control me in any way.

  6. Indigirka
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Actually, I’ve noticed that I’m typically hornier (and typically have better sex) during and right after my period. I’m not claiming that these findings can’t be valid in anyone’s case, just as I don’t claim that my experience applies to all women. However, when it pertains to me at least, I trust my own observations over this gimmicky goddess stuff.

  7. z.h.
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    I’m the exact opposite of the findings :D During and right after, that’s me. The week before, I’m more likely to be stuffing myself with chocolate and hating everything.

  8. sarah
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

    I don’t notice a huge difference. I might be slightly hornier, but I’m pretty much horny all times of the month.

  9. Steven
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    My wife professes to be mad horny just before her period. She acts it too.

  10. Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    Count me with those who get miserable before and horny right after. My hormones certainly impact my behavior but not in the way that study predicts.

  11. Indigirka
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    It’s good to know I’m not the only one who’s apparently hormonally weird in that particular way. :D
    Speaking of stuffing one’s self with chocolate and hating everything, I’m wondering if this author attempts to square these findings with the actual unpleasant symptoms many women experience during “venus week” (not to mention the age-old stereotypes about what happens at this point in a woman’s “moon cycle”). Both point toward the opposite of looking great and feeling at ease. Bloating, cramps, “bitchiness” (example of a negative stereotype) etc. don’t sound like a recipe for getting in the mood.

  12. erinelizabeth
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    Yup, it’s after for me, too.

  13. SueDoc
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

    When I’m not on the pill, it’s the week after. I’m a *fiend* the week after. I wonder if it has something to do with variable ovulation times… in different women. After all, one week after is also two weeks before…
    As for research, and conclusions… as long as all the appropriate IRB forms are filled out and the study is statistically sound, I don’t really have a problem with any actual scientific research. The mass marketing of the research, and god help us, the media reporting of it, though…. don’t get me started.

  14. ElleStar
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    As for research, and conclusions… as long as all the appropriate IRB forms are filled out and the study is statistically sound, I don’t really have a problem with any actual scientific research. The mass marketing of the research, and god help us, the media reporting of it, though…. don’t get me started.
    Exactly, SueDoc. I remember studies like this when I took social psychology. It was slightly different in that they approximated women’s ovulation based on temperature and hormones, and I think they found that women were more likely to feel more comfortable in their bodies and likely to show more skin when ovulating. But whatever.
    I can’t agree enough that it isn’t the research that’s often to blame when reports like these come out. If they’ve been peer-reviewed and published in academic journals, they do have some validity. However, when reporters who don’t understand the nuances of research and the very careful way that scientists report findings, they’re liable to take any results completely out of the scientific context included by the researchers.

  15. Cedar
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

    Logrus–
    I think the difference between the two statements is that saying, “Hormones effect our behavior and emotions” (which is what Samhita did) is pretty straightforward. But once you start making definitive claims like, “Women are hornier right before their period,” or, “Women are flaky and forgetful right before their period,” you start getting into a different territory–a territory that I think a lot of people are uncomfortable with. Now am I am expected to be horny before my period? What if I’m not? Should I obsess about something being wrong with me? Should my boyfriend pout and get upset at me?

  16. Logrus
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    Cedar: Ok, I can see what you mean. Yeah that’s a big difference from how I was reading it. thanks.

  17. Lina
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

    I’m currently in my “Venus week” and I am definitely in hate with EVERYTHING. Hormones take over my brain and make me feel nuts, but then I take a step back and realize what my body is doing and I’m fine…Happens every time.
    As for wanting sex…I pretty much want that all the time, so who knows.

  18. Salad
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think social scientists can make “definitive conclusions” about anything in their field. In the hierarchy of science starting from the foundations (Physics) and moving up through chemistry, biology and into the psychological and social scientists one stops being able to come up with “laws” at biology. You don’t have something like laws of thermodynamics or conservation of mass when dealing with biology (biology adheres to these laws of course, but the discipline of strictly biology comes up with no original laws), just general trends and proposed mechanisms. Does that make it less scientific? No.
    Research that discovers a tendency in the cycles of women shouldn’t be taken as an undisputed fact, but as just that: a tendency. Attaching ideas about normality or self esteem to the results or claiming that its biased against women who are exceptions to this tendency is not the fault of researchers conducting this study. These sort of objections are spawned by a misunderstanding of how science works or how it should be used.
    I’m not trying to attack the feminist community that critiques these studies– the biggest misunderstandings come from the media and the spin that’s put on these studies. Honestly, the media interpretation is what this blog is commenting on. This isn’t an article in a peer reviewed journal. I’ve never actually seen this blog site the source article of a scientific study. I’d say that’s the biggest thing that’s being overlooked in the critiques of this research.
    I know

  19. caralyn
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

    Except that women can’t get pregnant just before their periods. Women typically ovulate 14 days before their periods. Assuming the woman has the “normal” 28 day period and her luteal phase is also “normal” (that’s the time between ovulation and menstration btw), that’s right in the middle of her cycle, not the week before her period starts. Also, women have to have sex before they ovulate or the day they ovulate and should be hornier then (about two weeks before their period OR two weeks after their previous period), not after ovulation when having sex would not lead to pregnancy. Again, this is assuming all women have the “normal” 28 day cycle, which most don’t. My cycle is 40 days for example. This is also assuming that all women ovulate regularly, have 14 day luteal phases, and are slaves to their hormones.
    These researchers fail and knowing anything about a woman’s ovulation/menstral cycle.

  20. whatsername
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 5:22 pm | Permalink

    Interesting!
    I used to notice that a lot actually, when I was younger. Depressed the week after my period, horny the week before.
    As I got older and my hormones continued to shift and adjust it went away though. I’m pretty much the same all the time now.

  21. Posted July 29, 2008 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

    I wonder how this changes for women whose hormonal birth control stops their periods? For example, I haven’t had my period since I got my Mirena IUD half a year ago, but I do notice variations in my skin condition and horniness. I haven’t paid close enough attention to notice whether it coincides with when my periods used to be, though.

  22. GeekGirlsRule
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

    Skin and hair feels better the week before?
    Only if you totally dig oil slicks and pimples. That is the most reliable predictor of my period.
    Could you lube a car with my face and hair? Check.
    Is my chest covered in zits? Check.
    Oh, my period should be here in about two days!

  23. Posted July 29, 2008 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Physiologically, it would seem to make sense that a woman would be hornier as she ovulates, which is before her period, right? Sorry, I never did like biology.
    I guess the only thing I would ask of this research is that it gets commercialized in the form of a female horniness meter bundled with a GPS device…never mind.

  24. ElleStar
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    CNBC, a woman ovulates approximately two weeks after the start of her period (according to my last biology class taken in college). So, for me, I have the week with my period, the week after, then ovulation during the next week, then the third week, and back to my week with a period.
    Women are all different in terms of their hormonal cycles, but from what I learned, women don’t ovulate, then BOOM, get their period.

  25. Megan
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

    As part of a cruel joke, I seem to get horniest while ON my period, whether on the pill or not. You can imagine my frustration…
    But I wanted to mention some ani difranco lyrics that this instantly reminded me of. Study or no, I think women have been on to some sort of link between hormones and sexuality for a while…
    “it took me a few years to catch on/that those days i catch everyone’s eye/correspond with those nights of the month/when the moon gleams like an egg in the sky/and men are using a sense they don’t even know they have/just to watch me walk by/and me, i’m supposed to be sensible/leave my animal outside to cry
    but when all of nature conspires/to make me her glorious whore/it’s cuz in my body i hold the secret recipe/of precisely what life is for”
    (reprieve is an incredible song that everyone here would appreciate…sooo, go check it out)

  26. Mark K
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    I have read that during PMS and mood swings Women cannot be at their best performance at work – less efficient. Is it one of the reasons why they are paid less?

  27. sixthlight
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    Like Megan, I’m most affected while having my period, rather than in the week leading up to it. What I found interesting, though, is that I’m pretty sure this only started happening after I got on the pill – I don’t remember it happening before. Anecdotal evidence from talking to friends suggests the effect is variable. Which is really the problem; it’s fine to do a study on how women generally react to hormone changes, but asserting that this is true of all women all the time is not helpful at all.

  28. allegra
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, what’s the deal with thinking a woman’s most likely to conceive just a few days before her period? I always thought the egg is only fertile for like a few days in the middle of the cycle, not the week before the period.
    But I still do get horny that week before my period. I’m on horny week now. Lovin’ it.
    And, Megan, I feel you on the horny period. Sometimes I’m horniest the entire week of my period. It can be pretty awkward.

  29. Posted July 29, 2008 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

    biodeterminism.
    there is an unresolved debate between ones agency and the determinism/historicity of life, of the world, between sexes. Do we will ourselves? or are we willed into doing? Is everything pre-determined? Or can I choose?
    Nobody has an answer to this. The sciences are trying their best to resolve all human experience into biodeterministic jargon. That way, we can control ourselves, abdicate responsibility, and take pharmaceuticals to numb features of ourselves that are not useful. Just look at what they’ve gone and done to mental health; “chemical imbalances” is still a scientifically contested theory, but it already has so much cultural currency, what’s the point in remembering that its still up for debate?
    Likewise with studies on differences between the sexes. The fact of inquiry into biodeterministic differences already produces the results; you lead people to think, through the mighty pen of the scientific method, that much of their being is already determined through genes, hormones, and chemicals.
    Just be post-structural about it all and wonder who contrived you into this debate in the first place, and why anybody should have to live in an either/or universe about themselves. What is true or real is but the result of a false methodology.
    In the politics of experience, you are the authority of yourself. Sciences seek to uproot that. Family seeks to uproot that. Disciplinary power seeks to uproot that. Universal ideals about women and men are bound to fail.

  30. sowkmay
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    Research like this can never have definitive answers. Researchers just put forth a theory and it can be taken with a grain of salt(at least in my mind it should be thought of as more of an interesting piece of information, because the theory can be proved or disproved). Although, I gotta admit this is pretty interesting research. I actually get horny before my period.

  31. Emily
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    This is definitely true for me. I wonder if there is a way of manipulating my hormones to have the “Venus week” all the time? I would totally do that.

  32. rileystclair
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    no wayyyy pour moi.
    week before is breakouts/bloating/cramping/general suckiness and not in-the-mood-feeling.
    i sometimes notice getting hornier right after my period or right as it is ending.
    and i’m not sure i’m clear on this, but since other people are bringing it up, does anyone have an answer–i was under the general impression that most women ovulate about 2 weeks after their last period, which for anyone with around a 28-day cycle or longer, would most certainly NOT be the week before her next period. so, what the deal?

  33. Bethany
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

    I am with the other women – that’s not my experience, I’m usually moody and sensitive the week before my period. Not venusy.
    I also think the danger with this kind of research is people who take it to mean that women are slaves to their hormones and HAVE to behave the way they’re inclined to feel during a certain time in their cycle, which is obviously not true.

  34. kam
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, count me in the “two weeks before” crowd. The week before my period (or moon, I really like that phrase and its glorious 70s-ness!) I’m a pimply, bloaty, very angry wreck. The week before that I generally feel my best, although I wouldn’t say my skin and hair feel especially radiant XD

  35. ShifterCat
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    I get horny right after my period. Do they have an explanation for that?

  36. denelian.livejournal.com
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    ooooooooooh the assumptions that are used for this study…
    i have a freaking 25-day cycle.
    i do NOT get more horny due to ovulation (i actually know this for a fact, because i have reason to track my ovulation very closly.) actually, so far as i can tell, my cycle doesn’t affect my horny level at all – my mood is the biggest thing there, and i can be in the middle of a great mood, and thus horny, at any random moment.
    i actually don’t know ANYONE who actually has a 28-day cycle.

  37. deleuhrium
    Posted July 29, 2008 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

    I’m horny during. I’m lucky to have a guy that doesn’t mind the “red tide” so much.
    I’m irked by the whole biodeterminism of menstruation. It’s all old wives’ tales, and it’s different depending on which old wife you learned it from. Honestly where did “PMS” come from? I get that it’s pre-menstrual syndrome, but I get menstrual syndrome. I know girls with post-menstrual syndrome. How about pre AND post menstrual syndrome?

  38. Naama
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 12:03 am | Permalink

    The courant.com link itself seems to put a lot of focus on your “Venus Week” being a desirable thing, which you should emphasize, because it makes you sexy. Someone else brought this up earlier, but this message (along with the essentialist assumption that women are naturally like that) has the potential to make those of us who don’t have “Venus Weeks” feel like there’s something wrong with us.
    Ohmigawd, I don’t have a Magic Sexy Goddess Time. Men aren’t chatting me up before my period! I must not be sexy enough.
    No, wait, the right way to think about this is: I’m consistently sexy all month long. Ha!

  39. ellenrose
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 1:59 am | Permalink

    Just want to respond to a couple of regretful-sounding comments about being most horny on one’s period: nobody has said this, but if your period is when you feel horny, it can be a great time to have sex! Sex with my partner isn’t at all interrupted by my period. I’m sure lots of sisters and brothers here can attest to the ease of laying down a towel beforehand and cleaning up a little extra afterward, if you’re so inclined.
    Of course, I’m talking about a light period, and there’s nothing wrong with being a little squeamish or reluctant.
    But remember … we’re SUPPOSED to think our period is gross, or Tampax and Always would have to rewrite their whole marketing schemes. It can be a nice feeling to work on getting over that “eww” factor we’ve been taught. (And score one particularly for male partners who can get over it too!)

  40. Vagina Warrior
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 2:27 am | Permalink

    Samhita, I can’t believe you are buying into this reductionist biological determinist claptrap. Womyn’s behavior isn’t controlled by “hormones” or reductionist Western “biology”.
    Whatever pattern these scientists who wrote this dumb book found is probably because womyn are more attuned to the universe and respond to changes in the angle of the *actual* moon, and the tides and so on.
    Essentialist propaganda on Feministing is NOT OK.

  41. gopher
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    On one hand I see it similarly as vagina warrior (luuuv the name!!!). I think these kinds of studies arent progressing the area of wome(y)ns biology to give us a bigger piece of the picture in relation to sexual response.I think they stay within the insulating world of gender stereotypes and theorys that pander to gender limits. For example, I’m more sexually pushed in the direction of women during my ovulatory cycle. Why would my body be telling me to have it off with women if two women cant conceive a child together. I think were kept from researching knowledge about womens sexual response because of the 50s Kinsey style conservative atmosphere we have. However, I think attributing arousal to the tides and moon is similarly flippant.

  42. sir no one
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Why shouldn’t a scientist rely on biology when discussing human biology? The argument that biology, or science in general, is reductionist is the same argument that “the faithful” use against evolution, the big bang theory, ect. That statement may be too harsh, but hearing the reductionist argument sends shivers down my spine.
    Granted, the extension of a study of human biology to the issue of sexuality is rife with controversy. But to say that a use of biology to explain sexuality, or elements of sexual life, is reductionist is missing the point. The use of biology to explain something so complex as sexuality is inherently limited, but not reductionist. Simply because scientists use the scientific model to describe the world around them does not mean the world is suddenly reduced to x + y = z. We need to recognize the limitations of such studies, and question where we should go next; not invalidate scientific study because it does not recognize the complexities beyond science.
    Just for clarity, I have not read “The Venus Week” and base my assumptions of its contents on Amazon’s description.

  43. Rachel_in_WY
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    To me, the really interesting/enlightening question is “why are they even doing this study to begin with?” Why did they choose this question to ask rather than some other? The questions you ask and the hypotheses you test reveal your preconceptions and the way in which you intend to use your conclusions. I’m suspicious of any research that attempts to draw essentialist conclusions about behavior. Remember all the research that was done on race and brain size, intelligence, etc back in the day? What’s the difference? All of this kind of research seems to be motivated by some hierarchical agenda to me.

  44. a.k.a. Ninapendamaishi
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    Well, in most of our closest ancestors (chimpanzees, gorillas, etc.) the females mainly want to have sex a certain time of the month when they’re ovulating (called estrus) so wouldn’t it make sense that female humans would be somewhat the same way?
    I think you could even put another spin on this: what if a lot of female humans /are/ mainly horny during a certain time of the month, and some of them aren’t even aware of it because we live in this culture that doesn’t encourage women to be self-aware about their own sexuality, and instead encourages them to be constantly sexually available for men?
    Anyway, I know I can certainly want sex at various times throughout the month, but it always seems strongest in one particular week…

  45. Future Girl
    Posted July 30, 2008 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    I have actually read The Venus Week and judging from the headline of the original entry, the initiator did not. The Venus Week is not the week before your period it is actually the week that follows – leading up to ovulation. Someone in this string had it right but I have to say there are a lot of opinions posted here without anyone appearing to have actually read the book. I found it incredibly helpful and have recommended it to a number of my friends.
    First – it is not written by a social scientist – and is not a “study”. It is written by a gynecologist who has practiced for more than 20 years and according to her acknowledgements was moved to share her insights after helping thousands of women look at their hormones from a positive point of view. She is debunking the negative halo we’ve been saddled with since the beginning of time – and turning our attention to what is ideal about our hormonal cycle. To support it she has a 19 page single spaced bibliography – for those who need “proof”. I didn’t because as I read this, every word rang true for me.
    There is so much misinformation out there – and so much lack of understanding. That is so clear just from reading the comments in this blog. We should educate ourselves – and it appears that is exactly what this doctor is trying to help us with. In her introductory paragraph she states: “On the one hand, women have an intuitive, instinctual, almost innate sense of how their bodies work. On the other hand, many women have little concrete information about why their bodies work, especially their hormonal cycle.” She goes on to explain the cycle including her metaphor for the ideal week – the Venus Week – which is a refreshing change from the usual dose of negative we hear about hormones. She includes information on how to maximize every part of the cycle – and helps identify things that could be muting or even eliminating this ideal week.
    I encourage each of you to read this book before you comment – or at minimum go to the website – thevenusweek.com – which is actually really well done. I applaud this doctor – who better than a female gynecologist – for helping us find the beauty in an otherwise negatively slanted topic. Good for her!

  46. IheartLisaSimpson
    Posted July 31, 2008 at 1:08 am | Permalink

    Bleh. I want nothing to do with sex right before my period…or during for that matter. I hate generalities like this one. I always seem to be the one it doesn’t apply to.

  47. skirty
    Posted July 31, 2008 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    I agree with Salad! Except that women can’t get pregnant just before their periods. Women typically ovulate 14 days before their periods.
    I would take these “scientific findings” with a big huge bag of salt.

  48. Rachel_in_WY
    Posted July 31, 2008 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

    I agree that at some point this kind of research or explanation might be helpful, but I’m not really sure why. In my experience, talk of hormones is almost always used as a way to decrease women’s autonomy and depict us as irrational. Nothing pisses me off more than to have a man suggest that what a woman is saying or doing is the result of her hormones. Especially when she has a legitimate point or complaint. Once a mechanic suggested that I was just PMSing when I confronted him about doing a ton of unnecessary work on my car without my consent. I was speaking calmly and reasonably, but wouldn’t back down and just hand over my credit card. And when I demanded that he show me the work he had done and the “defective” parts he had removed from the vehicle (state law requires it in CA), he immediately backed off and only charged me for the work he had actually done. But if I had been less assertive he would have been able to shame me into paying an additional $800 by calling me “hormonal” in front of a full waiting room of people. I’ve also seen this kind of shit happen (all jokingly on the surface) in the workplace many times, and to me it’s just a way for men to refuse to take women seriously. I’ve never experienced PMS or any real mood swings related to hormones, even when I was pregnant. And there are a lot of women who don’t. So there’s the additional factor of making these generalized statements about all women, that can’t possibly be true.
    On a side note, I’m horny all the time, so I have no idea what that means!
    And FutureGirl is right – it’s 10-14 days after you start your period when you’re the most fertile. For me that fell right on St Patty’s Day last year, when we just happened to get rather drunk, and now we’ve got a beautiful 9-month-old. Oops! =)

  49. Tink23
    Posted August 6, 2008 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    FutureGirl is right – read the book!
    I was intrigued by the concept after hearing Dr. Booth (the author who is a practicing gynecologist) on an NPR radio interview, so I read the book. I’m so glad I did.
    Dr. Booth has a great literary style – very easy to understand, and enjoyable at the same time. I’ve read several other books, which I found to be helpful but difficult to read. This one presents the information but doesn’t feel like a textbook.
    This book doesn’t suggest that women are held hostage to their hormones – if anything, it allows the reader a greater understanding of the purposeful role(s) our hormones play in our lives as women. That understanding actually allowed me to hang on through the days of my cycle that aren’t so enjoyable.
    I have tried Dr. Booth’s supplement and dietary suggestions with positive results. What I appreciate the most is that they are doable – not some crazy list that I can’t manage in my daily life.
    Check out The Venus Week website – http://www.venusweek.com. It’s full of helpful information – and addresses both Venus inhibitors and enhancers. I found the venus week supplement shopping list (available for download) to be especially helpful.

  50. mpore
    Posted April 23, 2009 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    Oh my goodness. This post just disappoints me so much, and emphasizes how little women know about their bodies.
    First of all, most folks in this post were sorely mislead by the original poster– the “Venus Week” is the week AFTER your period and BEFORE ovulation.
    If you don’t know when these events occur (hint: ovulation and your period are not the same thing and do not occur at the same time of month), please read the book “Taking Charge of Your Fertility”. It’s a very easy and interesting read, and you’ll be shocked at how much you learn.
    A couple more points:
    – any of you who are on the pill don’t have a “Venus Week” because the pill’s hormones suppress this; the author of the book states that you can still kinda sorta have a Venus week when on the pill, but this statement was slightly over exaggerated to avoid the backlash that would occur if she were to put out a book saying you can’t have a “Venus Week” when on the pill
    – the “Venus Week”, despite the silly name is not hype and is not “social science”, it’s a proven medical fact based on decades and decades of careful research; the only thing “new” about it is the name; the week has always existed and always had the same hormonal-based effects on women’s bodies and behavior; it’s like calling the period “The Red Week”– just because it has a silly new name doesn’t mean that it’s a newly-discovered phenomenon
    I would argue that if any of you fancy yourself a true “feminist” and supporter of women’s issues, you really should be more educated about a basic characteristic of the female body– our cycles!
    The asexual perspective that some posters have taken is simply burying your head in the sand.
    ~PhD student, avid scientist, carefully and objectively educated on women’s health and bodies

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