I have always had very heavy cramps. I was 18 and my mom was concerned because I was not well enough to get out of bed, in pain and throwing up all day! I just wanted to take ibuprofen and wait it out with a heating pad. My mom forced me to go to the gynecologist (for the first time)
I have told this story before. Sorry for the repeat.
I made her wait in the waiting room. I wasn't happy with her for making this exam! 😕
Christmas eve 2003 was a REALLY long time ago, so I don't remember all details. The doctor gave me a breast exam (over the gown because I begged him not to uncover them from the gown!)
I don't remember a speculum exam. I remember a gloved finger going in and him feeling my ovaries.
I just remembered feeling empowered because this doctor talked to me like a gown up.
To answer the main question: when your period sucks and your mom makes you see the doctor during your period.
For regular gynecologist exams, they ask that it is scheduled away from period week!
Also, having it right before is not fun too. Pre-cramping and being in a horrible mood from pms is hell. Especially when the doctor is mean, judgemental and not helpful!