Some women know exactly when they’re going to get their period. They can circle the day on their calendar and know, with absolute, self-assured certainty that that is the day their cycle will start.
Other women can’t do that. Not even a little bit. And it’s the worst. Here are some struggles you definitely understand if you have a very irregular period:
You’ve given up buying cute underwear.
Or light-colored underwear.
Pretty much all of the underwear you own at this point is plain black and cotton.
Ditto your bed sheets.
At least once in your life, you’ve accidentally tie-dyed the back of a pair of pants bright red because you obliviously left the house thinking, “My vagina definitely won’t start bleeding today.” But you were wrong.
People tell you to just start taking birth control, like that will solve everything.
But you’ve done that, maybe for years, and you know that’s not true for everyone.
When your doctor asks you for the date of your last period, you’re usually just like ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ because it’s so erratic you’ve honestly lost track.
You keep a couple of home pregnancy tests on hand just to give yourself peace of mind for those times when your period decides to take a longer break than usual before making its surprise comeback.
And it’s not just the timing that’s irregular. It’s everything—the length, the flow, the whole deal.
As a result, you have to have pads and tampons on hand, everywhere—because you have to be prepared for anything at any time.
Any sex you have could end up being period sex.
Planning anything involving swimming is almost not even worth it.
You’re an expert on which bathrooms near your home/office/favorite coffee shop have tampon machines (and which ones actually keep them stocked).
By necessity, you’ve become a menstruation MacGyver, able to create makeshift pads out of wads of toilet paper, first aid gauze, or anything else sanitary and absorbent you can find in a pinch.
People told you for years that your cycle would get more regular when you got older.
But you’re still waiting for that to happen.