Most of us have a love-hate relationship with our periods.
So here are some possible reasons for a wonky period — whether it's missing, late, early, or just a little ~different~.
Note: This is not an exhaustive list and is not meant to be a substitute for medical advice. If your period is acting weird, call your doctor.
1. OK, are you sure you're not pregnant?
2. Maybe you're just really stressed.
3. Did you recently start, stop, or change birth control?
4. Or maybe you kinda fucked up your birth control this month.
5. Maybe you were sick recently.
6. Or you recently lost or gained a lot of weight.
7. It might be your thyroid.
8. Or it could be a side effect of literally any other chronic illness.
9. It's also maybe kinda possible that you're perimenopausal.
"Although the average age of menopause is 51, 1% of women are menopausal by age 40," says Minkin. So it's possible that some people could experience perimenopausal symptoms (when your body is starting to get ready for menopause) as early as their mid-thirties.
Some evidence suggests that you're likely to go through menopause around the same age your mother did, so it might be worth checking into that if you're in your late thirties and experiencing some period issues off birth control.