The purpose of this study was to differentiate women with three permenstrual symptom severity patterns: premenstrual syndrome (PMS), premenstrual magnification (PMM), and low symptom (LS). Factors entered into the discriminant functions included social demands, personal resources, socialization, parity, age, personal health practices, and psychological distress. A community-based sample of 142 women taking no oral contraceptives was classified into one of the three symptom severity patterns. Three two-way discriminant analyses were performed. Women with PMS had more psychological distress, more education, and a mother with more premenstrual symptoms, than those with an LS pattern. Women with PMM had more psychological distress and a mother with more premenstrual symptoms, but they also had more stress and were younger than those with an LS pattern. Finally, the women with PMS, when compared to the PMM subgroup, were older, had more education, engaged in more positive health practices, and had more nontraditional attitudes toward women. In addition, the women with PMM had more stress in their lives than women with PMS.