Cramps, for me, tend to be in the lower abdomen; basically, I feel like there's someone constantly kicking me in the uterus. Usually they're manageable, just like a really bad stomachache that won't go away for a couple days...a steady, constant pain. Sometimes, though, it will get really bad out of nowhere, or I will wake up and they're really bad.
While a backrub would certainly be appreciated, really more for the gesture and the kindness of it than the actual physical sensation, the only thing that really helps when they're that bad is to apply a heating pad and just curl up on the bed in a fetal position. Or to take a LOT of pills. There was one time I had cramps so bad that I knew I wouldn't be functional the whole day, so I took about 5 or 6 Advil and was out cold within half an hour. I knew there was no way I'd be able to get to sleep any other way. Slept from 10 am to 6 pm. Thank God it was a Saturday. ;)
Bloating doesn't really refer to flatulence, haha, although some girls do experience that around this time. It just means that our pants fit tighter and we feel like we've gained a lot of weight very suddenly. But after our period's over it goes back to normal.