TMI Tuesday: Why I fear birth control pills…

Birth control scares me, y’all. And by birth control, I mean birth control pills. I know, I know. I’m 27. I should be used to some form of birth control, right? The truth is – I’ve only just begun taking birth control pills for the first time ever this month. I think I am the only woman my age that I know who has never been on birth control before.

I started visited the crotch doc (thanks Kate!) as a teenager in attempts to alleviate my “die every month” menstrual cramps. At 15-years old, my doc suggested that I take birth control and I couldn’t slap him hard enough.

Okay – I’m kidding. I didn’t slap my doctor. But I wanted to. Even as a teen who wasn’t having sex, I still didn’t want to entertain the idea of birth control. For what? I wanted children. Not in the next decade, but the thought of preventing a birth (even if it meant easing my cramps) didn’t sit well with me. I had a hard time explaining this revelation to anyone because for them, birth control was great. My cramps worsened in college; an inconvenient time for me considering I was a full-time student living on campus and working several jobs. Girlfriends couldn’t empathatize with me because they were all on some form of birth control.

Every gynecologist I have ever been to has wanted to prescribe birth control for me. No one ever recommended natural or holistic options for my painful periods. I got smart and started doing my own research. For a year I tried every natural remedy in the book. My cramps continued to get worse and while I knew birth control was an option, I had made it up in my mind that I wouldn’t be popping any pills, tossing IUD’s in the nether regions, getting shots or wearing any patches.

Then this “thing” happened. I got married.

Esposo and I want nothing more than to be geeky parents to Clumps kids. But we’re newlyweds who plan to spend a life together and kids can wait. After visiting my gynecologist in November and telling him that my period had become irregular, he suggested birth control. Of course. I broke down inside. I’ve been turning down birth control for more than 10 years of my life. But here I am. A newlywed with an irregular cycle. Maybe, just maybe birth control can help.

So I’m giving it a chance. But can I be honest? I hate it. I really hate it. I hate how it makes me feel. I hate how it may make me gain weight. I hate how I never remember to take it. I hate that these little pills are tampering with something that happens so naturally. That these little pills could possibly damage some things and make it so that I am unable to conceive. There are tons of side effects of yaz and other birth control pills – so many that there are serious law suits surrounding them. Sites like provide information on this if you need it.

There, I said it. That’s why I hate birth control pills. I have this inherent fear that they will make me infertile. I know plenty of women have healthy pregnancies and babies being on birth control for years. I really shouldn’t have anything to fear. Yet every time I pop one of those pills, I feel like crying.

I know. I probably sound loco and overly emotional. I do believe in birth control. I would just rather it not be by way of synthetic drugs with a string of symptoms attached. Esposo has been super supportive and comforting. I’m trying to get him on board with the fertility awareness method (FAM) because that is perhaps the only form of birth control that sits well with me. Well – condoms too but how effective can those be with longterm use?

I’ll be seeing my gynecologist again soon and will talk to him about how I feel. The fact remains – I can’t do birth control pills. Or shots. Or patches or IUD’s. They aren’t for me. And if the gyno can’t be supportive and help discuss other options with me, I will find a doctor who can. I don’t want to be the black version of the Duggar’s but I don’t want to harm my body either.

Chime in, gals!

Any others out there who fear birth control?
Or maybe you’ve been taking it for years with no problems?
Either way, let me know!


ETA: As of 2/4/12, I have gleefully stopped taking the pills. The constant spotting and morning dizziness became far too overwhelming. Oh…and the decreased libido is so not cool. You know…with being a newlywed and all. I have a very pessimistic attitude when it comes to birth control and don’t have any interest in shopping for other brands or synthetic methods. Since my irregular cycles have only been irregular for the past few months, I am hoping diet, exercise and keeping my stress level down can help get it back on track. As far as baby preventing; hellooooo condoms and FAM. I’d rather deal with monthly cramps (as painful as they are) than deal with my paranoia over these birth control pills. Good riddance, I say!

  • Actually, I don’t blame you for not liking them. I had a really bad experience years ago with the Depo Prevera shot, and now don’t like anything that messes with my hormones. I did gain weight with the Depo and the pill (switched to the pill when Depo became a problem), and I hated it. It did keep my skin clear though.

    Now that we are done with kids my husband got the old *snip* *snip* and I don’t have to think about birth control anymore. Good riddance I say!

  • Ok, this is right up my alley. I took birth control like 15 years ago for a span of 2 months then stopped. It messed up my metabolism, gave me all kinds of weird symptoms, made me gain weight and lowered my libido. I tried again (like you) once I got married. That lasted another 2 months, then I stopped. This time I started having numbness in my arms and legs, weird tremmors, no period whatsoever (which really freaks me out … where is my uterus lining going?!) and lowered libido.

    My thing is this … some people seem to be able to handle BC, I can not. My periods became irregular about 2-3 years ago … I went to a natural health doctor and she fixed it (with a change in diet and supplements). Hubby and I did other natural stuff to keep from having kids for 5 years in our marriage. We started trying last year and I’m now 18 weeks pregnant (got pregnant instantly).

    All the best (and no, you are not the only “fear of the pill” person, I will never take those things again).

    • Brittany

      Oh. I totally left out the “lowers my libido” thing. That’s the worst!!!!!!!!!!

      OMG, you’re preggo?!!!! Congratulations!

  • Brittany, I feel the exact same way as you. I was on birth control when I was in college and a few years after wards, but I quit it a few years ago when I started wising up to what I was putting in my body. I’m engaged right now and my fiance & I rely on condoms. The only other birth control option I’d consider is a copper IUD and I don’t want to do that yet because we’re getting married in July and want to have kids shortly afterwards. Maybe I’ll get an IUD when we’re done having babies though.

    • Brittany

      THe copper IUD freaks me out too. I know, I know…different strokes for different folx and birth control methods affect everyone differently. It sucks for us women. It’s like playing a game of choose your fate. Ugh.

  • Tiffany Goss

    Oh sweetiedahlin, dahlinsweetie! Would that I could give you a great big hug right now. You poor dear. You shouldn’t be feeling hate every day for so many reasons.I haven’t researched it yet, & so am speaking from ignorance, but really now, there has to be another way to get you back in step. Wait-honestly, how bad is it for someone to be out of step? Is it harmful? What are the negatives? I’m sure what you’re going through now far outweighs steppin’ to the beat of your own drummer, per se…I took BC pills from age 15-23. Had my son at age 25. I am now 39 & regular, right as rain, steppin’ to the beat of a 23day drummer. I, too, did not care for the weight gain, nor the cost, “having” to remember to take a pill every day or else, throwing in extra things my body didn’t need. I enjoyed the relative freedom, clear skin, less cramps. Oh my, cramps today at this age, often buckle my knees & can make me vomit (this IS tmi tues, right? LoL). i’m not afraid of infertility, I just don’t like being married to a drug. There must be another way. I just count my days & roll the dice. Haven’t had a scare in two years. If that soul is meant to be here & parented by you guys, then it’s gonna happen. If not today, then tomorrow, or the next day. Dearheart, you don’t have to go through this, feel like this, it’s bad for you, honey. Physically, mentally, emotionally, & spiritually, these negatives that you’re not used to harboring will act like poison to you, making you sick, sad, & not right. We’ve only passed a couple notes back & forth, but I can see & tell you that negative demeanor is soo not you. Talk to your Dr. asap. Now, today, & be free of what you loathe. We’re, your faithful public eagerly await your smile & sigh. Anything you require, love, just say the word, drop me a note. ~Be Well ~Be Happy ~Be Free

  • I’m not NUTS about taking birth control because I really don’t like the idea of pumping my body full of synthetic hormones, but I AM nuts about a) having much lighter, less painful, less PMS-y periods and b) having an extremely effective method of pregnancy prevention. I would really like a copper IUD to escape this whole hormone thing, but they make your periods extremely heavy and painful and I’ve been told by multiple doctors that they won’t give me one because I’m unmarried.

    • Ellen

      um, I’m 19, unmarried, and I got my IUD (Paragard- the copper one) about a month ago. my doctor’s even a bit of a cranky old man- he delivered me lol. any good doc should give you one, barring other complications.

      my periods (well, period) has been a bit heavier and I’ve been more crampy but it’s not that much worse. the insertion was less than pleasant but it’s over quickly.

  • I take this pills since i was 16 because I have bad cycles. I took breaks over yrs but right now, the new pills DOSNT make you fat and it also help prevent breast cancer. It has bad things also, but is not something to worry about. At least for me works fine, else I would have to be in the hospital with anemia. (happened before)

  • I’ve been on pills for 20+ years and no issues at all. I’ve always been great at remembering them every day, but can see how that might be annoying or something people would forget.

    There are some health benefits to them (so they say). They do lower some the risk of some cancers (ovarian and endometrial) but can increase the risk of some other cancers. My periods are only 2-3 days max and very light so that’s another benefit. I would like to think that my weight gain is attributed to them, but I know it’s because I am lazy lately, haha! Overall they are something I definitely need in my life because I don’t want kids!

    • kia

      kelly, can i ask what kind you are taking??

  • I did take birth control pills for years, and had no problems whatsoever. It took me trying about 5 different kinds before I found one that gave me no side effects though. So you COULD try lower hormone ones to see if they sit with you better. I loved how they regulated my period, and made me feel fully protected against unplanned pregnancy. Also, did you know birth control pills cut some cancer risks significantly? They really aren’t evil (just my opinion though). If they make you THAT uncomfortable – definitely look into other options. Condoms can be used long term, why not? They aren’t IDEAL, but better than wanting to cry every morning at pill time! Sponge with spermicide? What about a diaphragm?? You should be able to insert one of those with ease, since you mastered the Diva Cup. Maybe FAM blended with diaphragm? ANYWAY, I am babbling. There are other options sweet lady – do not fret!!!

  • I take Levora currently, which is a lower dose of I think progesterone only. It supposed to have less side effects. In the first few months, I gained 5 pounds, had intense mood swings at the end of the cycle, and it lowered my libido as well. I kept taking it, and a few months after that it seemed to normalize. I didn’t have mood swings anymore, I lost the weight (not trying too, just went away I guess), but my libido is still down. I noticed I also lost more hair than usual as well.

    So, I’m with you, I don’t like birth control either. I gave it a try, but I won’t continue taking it either. I plan on stopping it soon.

    I don’t see any research on long term negative effects on women with the new forms of birth control, but I think the less drugs you put in your body, the better, no matter what they are.

  • Elms

    I am also 27. I have been with my hubby for 9 years and married for almost 4 years. Like you, we are soooo not ready for kids. Except for the furry variety, we have 2 kitties. For us, we thought that we’re married and shouldn’t have to use condoms. I’ve been on the pill for 11 years and haven’t regretted it. I was put on it for horrible cramps in 10th grade. I was missing school and throwing up they were so bad. Now my period is light, predictable (last month my period was 5 hours late and I panicked) and practically pain free. I also haven’t had a pimple in 2 years. I know it seems like there are way more negatives than positives, but for me, the positives totally beat the negs. At first I did gain weight, but after awhile, everything just seemed to balance out. I found that name brand prescriptions gave me an upset tummy and made me just feel off. I now only take generics (yay for my wallet) and have no issues. I had considered the IUD, but my doctor won’t do them until I’ve had a baby… So I’m sticking with the pill. As for remembering to take it, I use a pill organizer and fill it with my vitamins, allergy medicine and pill so I take it first thing in the morning, every morning. For me, having to take 6 pills every morning makes me remember.

    I thought I should throw something positive on here! Good luck with your decision! I applaud you for bringing not so talked about subjects to your blog. :)

  • Nikki

    I used bcp during college and a few years afterwards…I hated them. Now I’m married. I stopped bcp several years ago (once I got with my dh). We haven’t used any sort of contraception in 6 years and we have a 2yr old kid. I’m never going on bcp or any other contraceptive device again. I track my cycle and will continue to use that as a form of birth control. Our baby wasn’t planned per se, but I KNEW I was going to likely end up preggo because of where I was in my cycle.

  • I started taking birth control when I got married, and after trying 3 different pills that were all awful, I stopped taking them. I tracked my cycles and we use condoms on the days of my highest fertility chances. It worked for about 1.5 years, but then I got pregnant, so obviously it wasn’t a perfect plan.

  • I’ve been taking birth control for about 8 years now (since I was 15 or 16) and I don’t know what I would do without it. I’ve been taking Loestrin 24 FE and it works perfectly for my body, but I know that I am lucky and many people don’t find an option that is hormonal that works for them straight off the bat. Sometimes it takes a couple tries, or being able to hang in there for the first couple months until your body normalizes again. It prevents pregnant for one, but it has also curbed my PMS (emotional and physical) and regulated my cycle. It’s a miracle pill. I understand those fears, I hope you are able to find a doctor who can help talk you through them so you can find something that works for you and your needs!

    • Evelyn

      I’m on Loestrin as well (even as a plus size b/c these pills aren’t necessarily effective in larger women), coming off irregular periods with very bad cramps, not so fun PMS and heavy bleeding. It’s really been a godsend with my cramps dropping to one day (rather than several painful, wanting to rip my ovaries out kind of days), a lighter short period and much less PMS. Went to 2 docs who felt it was an appropriate treatment for me as they want to make sure my uterine lining regulated. Unfortunately you can’t predict how you’ll react to birth control until you take it.

    • Emily

      Gotta say, I’m also a Loestrin user, I’ve been on it for about 5 years. I sincerely couldn’t function without it – I used to get such bad cramping and exhaustion during my period that I couldn’t function at work or school. I didn’t miss days consistently, but enough that something needed to change. My PMS is a little more severe now while on BC, but I’m working with a counselor and my gynecologist to figure that out. One unexpected benefit is the reduction in my ovarian cancer risk – both my mother and maternal grandmother have had it, so I’m at a large risk already. I’ve had a positive experience with Loestrin, and I guess I can understand the reluctance to use hormone therapy, but I’m personally okay with it when it interferes that much with my lifestyle.

  • I’ve tried several methods of birth control. When I turned 16, I was put on the Depo Shot. Horrible experience, my cycle stayed on for a full year.
    Next I tried the Pill. I hated having to remember to take it everyday. Especially since I was in college and my schedule was so crazy.
    After that I switched to the Nuva Ring. I liked how simple it was to use but it was expensive and made my hormones go out of whack. I had no energy and frequent headaches. I got off all forms of birth control around 2 years ago and my body has since gone back to normal. My cycles are now heavy but I feel much better physically and mentally.

    When I enter into a serious relationship, I plan to get back on birth control but it HAS to be something with a low dosage of hormones. My body cant handle anything stronger.

  • Heather

    I started monthly birth control pills when I was fourteen due to irregularity. They definitely helped me a lot in high school, since they took care of my acne and cramps. Years later I switched to quarterly pill packets and they have literally saved my life. I have PMDD, which is a form of depression that comes the week before your period (and a little of the week of as well). My depression was so severe that I would get suicidal once a month. Once I looked into depression that comes with your period I reailzed that I could have PMDD and I talked with my doctor about it. She perscribed my quarterly pills and I will never look back. It has been just over a year since my last total breakdown and I feel fantastic.

    Birth control isn’t for everyone, by all means, but without it I would not be able to do simple things like hold a job or a relationship. I hope you figure your situation out, because nothing should make you feel wrong in any way.

  • I can totally empathize with you. I too had knock me on my ass cramps from the moment I got my period. I eventually got diagnosed with Dysmenorrhea. They prescribed me pills, and I was all for it. However, being 16 I needed my fathers consent, and he wouldnt allow it. I lived with the pain and missed school (including graduation practice, which nearly disqualified me from walking ), until I turned 18 and went to planned parenthood. They helped. I didnt notice any weight gain (tho I worked 2 jobs..), and my period got regular..for a while. Once I turned 23 things went wonky. They became irregular again, and i couldnt take the pain anymore. I went off the pill, and boom, two weeks later, got pregnant with my daughter (I confess I knew fully what we were doing).
    Shes now 3, and I’m on the depo shot, and its made me gain so much weight, its insane. My doc told me “I cant just sit around and eat whatever I want”. I knew then it was time to find a new doc…

    Find a doctor that will explain ALL the options to you, and not just shove the easiest option. Thats what my doc did. I know for myself that I cant remember to take pills, however you shouldnt be afraid its going to mess up your lady parts. As I explained, two weeks after going off the pill, I became pregnant. All of my daughters friends (all of them are pregnant now), were on the pill just before conceiving. DO NOT TAKE THE DEPO SHOT IF YOU WANT KIDS SOON. My hubby and I know we dont want kids soon (if any more..since my daughter is perfect). The shot is not an option since the longer you’re on the the harder it is to get prego. Im ok with that (as long as its nothing permament..and they’ve sworn its not).

    Pills come in lots of different hormone combos. Find the right one for you, or push your doc for a more natural way (estrogen pills?).

  • suzanne

    Everyone feels different about everything so go with your gut I say!
    For me I’ve been on a few different pills mostly just because I hate anything having to do with that monthly visit. The pill I take now makes it so I don’t have a period ever.. which is totally weird, I know.
    But I have never been happier. I figure we take (well I take) all sorts of meds to do all different stuff, so what’s the difference. If God made you have high blood pressure and that’s your “natural” state, would you not take pills?
    Plus I now work for big Pharma and I get most of my meds for free when my company makes them, so that’s a big bonus for me.

  • Carm

    I tried BC pills when I was about 25 years old (I’m now 31). I was on them for a month and I was SOOOOO TIRED!! I couldn’t stop yawning and could barely stay awake at work, even though I constantly went to bed early! My mom said pills had the same effect on her back in the day. Plus, there is a protein deficiency in my family which makes it easier to develope blood clots. I know I should get tested… but I also don’t need the extra boost of clotty-ness that might come from BC pills. Dude has to wrap it up! Which, luckily, he doesn’t mind at all.

  • I know how you feel! I didn’t use any sort of BC until I got married and when I did it was AWFUL!!! I mean awful!!!

    Tried the pill. Made me so sick. Gave up after 3 weeks.
    I put on weight with Implanon (implant in your arm) and it totally depressed my sex drive. Gave them all up and went natural which you guys call FAM. We used it for 2 years and then one night we kinda thought, “why not?” and 4 weeks later I saw two blue lines on a stick! Its a bit tough if you aren’t regular but I say if you can try it then go for it.

  • I stopped. If it happens it happens…what can I do! I took em religiously and some made me sad, my moods were whack but I lost weight. Each of us have different reactions to it. I stopped tho. Im 26, if it happens it happens…Im an adult who is aware of my consequences.

  • So I totally feel you! I wasn’t on Birth Control until I got married about 2 years ago! I wasn’t thrilled about going on them, due to certain religious conflicts that I have.. But I went on them for about a year or so.. I hated them! They made me gain weight.. and I was horribly moody, and my poor husband had to deal with me. I went off of them about a year ago, and while I still haven’t been able to lose the weight I gained, I feel ten times better.. and I don’t have the guilt that came with popping those pills! Though, truth be told.. they might have messed up some things inside.. Cause though we are a sort of FAM method.. (I actually have a period app) We messed up a few times, and I should have gotten pregnant.. but I didn’t. We shall see how things go in the future though!
    I hope things get better for you!

  • This is my first time commenting but I’ve been a reader for a while now. I decided to give my 2 cents as I’ve recently stopped taking birth control after 13 years. It was by accident/laziness that I stopped taking them in the first place. The Hubby and I moved to a different State and I ran out of refills before I had a chance to see the crotch doc (love that term and will now use in conversation :)).

    To give a bit of back story, I’ve had bouts of depression and general moodiness the past 10 years with the symptoms made worse 3 years ago with added work stress. I always thought that I was generally down and so did the Hubby.
    Fast forward to 2 months ago when I ran out of refills. The Hubby made a comment one night that had me thinking. We were watching tv when he said, “why are you so happy?” to which I replied, “I don’t know”. We started eliminating possibilities when it dawned on us that I had stopped taking the pills 3 weeks prior. After some research, I found articles that stated doctors knew, even in the very beginning, that birth control pills can cause mood changes and even depression in women who take it, especially with long-term use.

    I’ve also noticed a change in my skin which feels a lot softer now. I haven’t changed anything skincare-wise, so I think it’s safe to credit going off the pill.
    I’m really glad you brought this subject to light as I am now convinced that some drugs are not always helpful. I could go into drug company conspiracies, but there’s no point. I will look into FAM a form of BC. I don’t think I will ever use the pill again as I like the person I am now and I’m looking at myself and the world with a new set of happier eyes.

  • Nina

    Hi, this time had to comment, That deeply fear of yours that you will get in-fertile with birthcontroll pills… Well I forgot 1 week and got pregnant -LOL don’t regret it at all still after 16 years 😉 And I had switched before that pills couple times to another brand, some of those got even my toes swollen and no sexdrive and I behaved very badly… my emotions did go like in rollercoaster. Last ones before my other 2 were fine ones. After those 2 girls doctor ordered me other ones got bad blood clots… end of bc pills… And none of other BC methods worked, really bad 5 years went in my marriage 😉 and doctor asked would I want to try intrauterine device (with hormons) Would I? LOL SURE… They contain so little hormone that I feel natural and I know that they are keen on given them before having birth but my point was that they have rings with hormone (not sure what they are called in english) that gives almost same effect and don’t need to remember when to eat pill… And with condoms… Well have forgot to buy them and left out sex couple times… That did not feel any nice…

  • I used to have really horrible cramps, but went on a super low dose pill and love it! I’ve been on it for years now. It makes me feel better, I haven’t gained that much weight, and my risks of cancers that run in my family have decreased. Granted there are other risks, but they are worth it to me to not have a 7 day long hell period where my hormones went totally wacky and I became a raving crazy lady.

    If you find that you and the pills you are taking aren’t working for you, there are lots of other options. Implanton works for alot of people and so does Nuva ring. Those are great options for women who don’t remember to take the pill everyday. Also, there are dozens of different pills so don’t be afraid to discuss your problems with your healthcare provider. Despite some health risks, they also carry astounding health benefits.

  • Alexandra

    Oh man Brittany, I can understand you. I’m 25 now, almost married for 4 years. I started taking BC pills when I got married at 21. I didn’t want to start a family without finishing school first so after 2 years and receiving my BS degree I stopped taking BC. This June will be 2 years since I stopped taking them, and I’m still not pregnant! We have been actively trying for a year. I have taken multiple ovulation tests and we try those days that I have an LH surge but to no avail! The worst is when my period is a day late and I get all excited then my dang period shows up. I’m giving it one more month then I will be seeing a Dr., but gessh I’m so upset. I’m young, don’t smoke or drink, exercise, all the things one would think to do (also taking folic acid and pre-natals!) Sorry for the rant, but I never thought BC was a big deal, but now I am questioning it.

  • I was on the pill when I was married, and while it made me regular and kept me from getting pregnant, it also gave me a bizarre allergy to fish and seafood that stopped practically the moment I went off the pill.

    I distrust chemically forcing the body to do things. Gotta be a better way.

  • I’m 22 and I’ve been on it for around 3-4 years now. I had the most unbearable cramps for as long as I could remember… so bad that my mom had to pick me up from school. The idea of the pills affecting me negatively DID scare me a bit, but honestly, going on them was the best decision I ever made. I’m never in pain, I always know when my period comes, I feel healthy, and I get checked out every once in a while to make sure everything is ok. I’ve tried a few brands… Yasmin (LOL), Junel FE 1/20, and Ortho-Cyclin. The only one that worked for me was Junel 1/20… the other ones sucked. Just do whatever you think is right for you… I have the same attitude towards the IUD and shot!

  • Res

    You are not alone. I’m 34 years old and I’ve never been on the pill – not one day. Playing with hormones has always seemed unsafe to me. I’m afraid the pill increases the risk of certain diseases (certain cancers and cardiovascular disease) and that’s a risk I’d rather not take.

  • You are awesome for chatting about this topic. Besides the normal contraceptive that the males wear (goodness I have a 5 yr old and can’t type out …c o n d o m…lol) I tried birth control right after my son (Depo shot… WORST IDEA EVER! It took forever to drop the last few pounds after having him and I felt “different”) then a few years later I tried again this time the “patch” and for 6 months I really enjoyed it. That was until I began to feel like i’d be that 1 out of 1 million who would die from a blood clot…I then considered the IUD but that scares me (so something just hangs in there for 5 years uhhhhh is that even sanitary!?) Now I too rely on mapping out the fertile/ovulation periods (it worked to get pregnant when I wanted to have my son!) and condoms and the world (eh, my uterus) feels like a safer place LOL!

  • Carly

    I feel like I wrote this lol. I feel the same. I have had bad acne for years now and everyone says “get on birth control, it will clear it right up.” But its a no no for me…I really believe it will make me infertile or I’ll have a hard time conceiving because my body will be used to them. I just can’t and I totally understand your sentiment.

  • Lori

    I’m very fortunate in that I’ve been taking the pill on and off for 11+ years and have never had any noticeable issues.

    However, I won’t lie… I am with you on the fear! I can’t tell you that you’re wrong or shouldn’t worry. Despite only having experienced the positive benefits of being on the pill, it took me a while to notice that I’ve NEVER had a pregnancy scare. This should not be a bad thing, except here’s the deal- I’ve never been all that good about taking the pill the way I should. I don’t take it the same time every day, and sometimes I miss one, two, three days. And yet I’ve never even had a late period.

    So yes, I feel you. I am very concerned that I will one day have trouble conceiving, or worse, I’m just infertile. We shall see…

  • I personally have a love hate relationship with birth control. I love them because I do not want to have baby #3 yet (possibly never) and its allowing me to stick to that plan. I absolutely hate it because it always feel like a foreign substance taking over what my body is meant to do. And because I’ve been having constant headaches, I have a strong feeling it has to do with the mini pills I am taking.

    I started taking birth control pills since my freshman year of college and I went from pills, to the patch, and back to the pills. I have had very harsh reactions to a few of them but nonetheless its serving its purpose. When you and hubby decide when the time is right to have babies, just know that you are on birth control presently in order to prepare for parenthood.

  • I also fear that birth control will make me infertile.

  • I was on the pill for a while, a few different times. I’m one of those gals that have naturally completely f’ed up hormones and have never been regular. I didn’t have really bad cramping UNTIL I started the pill the first time ’round. I stopped taking them sometime after a year. Then I went back to my irregular “am I ever going to start my period?” period. After a 3 month span of continuous bleeding/heavy spotting, I went back to the doc and got on the pill again. Once again, really bad cramping, more irritability, etc. Stopped again. This time I went three years without a period, just some barely there spotting. This time I actually talked to my doc for a bit, and addressed my concerns w/pregnancy and hormones. If I could get my tubes tied I would, but being 27 and having no children they don’t really like to do that. Anyway, I got back on the pills again to regulate things and get me ready for an IUD. Lemme tell ya, getting that put in hurt!!! But now I don’t have to worry about missing any pills, I’m getting the hormones I need from it (or at least SOME of them), and I don’t have to worry about getting pregnant. Being a woman who has drop seizures triggered by growth spurts and other irregularities in my body chemistry/temp (learned the hard way I had to be a good girl growing up, lol. no rebellion stage for me!) and being allergic to all the meds, I’ve been terrified that I’d get pregnant and it’d kill the baby and myself.

    Anyway, good luck at the docs, it is definitely important to find one that’ll listen to you and your concerns. Take care B!

  • Leita

    The thought of birth control freaks me out too! Always has. As a kid, I dreaded growing up, as I thought taking the pill was “mandatory” for all grown women. To this day, I don’t like entertaining the idea, even though getting pregnant right now is the last thing I want.

    My husband and I are very young, just college kids that are in no financial or emotional position to take care of a child. And the bitchy side of me derives some twisted pleasure from being one of the few married kids in our age group that didn’t get married because they were expecting. I’d like to keep that as a badge of honor of sorts. :/

    Despite this, most of our sex is unprotected. The withdrawal method is reported to be the least effective of all, but it’s worked for us for the past four years – TMI, my husband has excellent control, makes sure to clear out any lingering fluid and puts on a condom before we have intercourse again. But I still freak out. There’s no logic in it, but I’d still take a chance with withdrawal and FAM than go on the pill. ARGH!

    If you guys need help tracking your menstrual cycles and fertile days, I use It’s free – just keep in mind you have to record several periods before it gets a general idea of your cycle, and it’s not a foolproof way of preventing pregnancy. I find that it helped a lot with getting to know my body – like how when THAT happens, it means THIS (ovulation) is happening too.

  • Susan

    I think a woman is wise not to use the pill. I wouldn’t do it. I did for several years and had so many problems. So I stopped taking them but never really fully recovered. Have you ever tried taking omega 3’s? I found that taking Udo’s oil helped me with a cyst on my ovary. A friend told me about it. But fish oils are good too. The pill messed me up. If you don’t feel good taking it,don’t. I wouldn’t worry about being like the Duggars. But you have to do what you feel is right. There are other doctors out there that aren’t mainstream. I happen to like them better but they’re more expensive, But they look at the whole picture not just apart of the body. integrative medicine is much better in my opinion. When regular doctors told me nothing was wrong and it was all in my head, the integrative doctor told me that’s the answer a doctor will give you when they don’t have a clue what’s really wrong. They usually get to the root of problem. Good luck

  • I’ve been on birth control since I was 15, mostly because I had a pregnancy scare using condoms and my bf and I decided to go see the doctor about contraception. I started on Implanon [for some reason, thats what most doctors will prescribe for teens at my clinic] which made me gain weight for a month or so. I was basically period free, cramp free and loving it for about a year and a half then I started getting irregular bleeding where I was bleeding lightly for a month then stopping then starting again. So I switched to the Pill. Same thing again, I gained weight. however, now I have my period every month and painful cramps. However, I can handle it, thankful that I won’t get pregnant. However, like you, I do always worry that birth control might cause me to become infertile but it was a decision my partner and I made and the doctor assured me it doesn’t affect my fertility at all.
    I’m glad you wrote about birth control and how you feel about it. Its a great topic that I’m sure many of us can relate to. I can relate in your fears, however, I’ll still rely on the Pill because it’s a lifestyle decision I made that suits my way of living and makes me feel safer.

  • Melissa

    You are definitely not alone. I am 37, tried them twice and am NOT comfortable with them at all. There are alternatives. But, if something doesn’t feel right, don’t do it.

  • Gaelle

    I’ve been taking pill for 15 years without any problem (except the libido part which is pretty annyoing).
    As you know, my baby boy was born in october & I’ very lucky because, aged 34, I’ve got pregnant in only 3 months (I’ve had a miscarriage & some health issues for 2 months & got pregnant again 3 months later)…
    Now I’m taking pill (breastfeeding is not 100% efficient) but I find it disturbing. It’s weird…

  • victoria

    Note: You said your periods had become irregular. In the link you provided about FAM, it says FAM is most reliable for women with regular menstrual cycles.

    I was always scared of cancer risk associated with birth control pills. When I went to Planned Parenthood years ago the gynecologist fitted me with a diaphragm and I love it! It prevents pregnancy with no side effects, an I’ve never used any other method of birth control.

    • Brittany

      I’m hoping my cycle will become regular again as it’s only been irregular for the past few months. Maybe it’s due to stress or diet. Either way, I’m crossing my fingers that it will be back on track again so I can think about doing the FAM.

  • kia

    we’ve talked about this before and talking about this now just made me panic a bit. i haven’t had the best luck on bc, so i would take it for a few months, then stop for a few months, on and off. besides alleviating ridiculous cramps and dealing with dreadful mood swings and weight gain, i have to use something for my endometriosis. i told the doctor i was taking a break and he reminded me to get back on the pill so my endo doesn’t get worse. i decided to beef up on supplements for mood swings as my way out. but the weight gain ws a problem without the bc. i need a plan!

  • I started taking BC in college because I have always had an irregular cycle and during those college years I didn’t have any problems or complaints. I remembered to take it without problem. Post college I stopped taking it for a while but my gynecologist suggested i get back on it because my cycle remained irregular. Well I got back on it and my body reacted completely different. I was nauseous all the time and I felt really sick. I also was having trouble remembering to take it. Now that I am no longer on it my cycle has become even more irregular than before.

  • megan

    Brittany, you mentioned struggling with acne in your post today — I gotta say, the birth control pill is my #1 skin care product. Seriously! I’m 27 and have been steadily taking the (same) pill for three years. My skin has never been better. I never had really acne-prone skin, but I would get a pimple or two almost every time I got my period. Now, I get like, two zits a YEAR.

    I’m really surprised to hear so many women have problems with the pill. I love it. My periods come like clock work now; before, I was so irregular. And they’re much lighter. Sometimes I don’t get any cramps the whole cycle. LOVE!

    Sometimes women just need to try a few different brands before they find a good fit. It bothers me reading women saying, “I took it for a month, NEVER AGAIN.” Just give it some time. It’s better than getting knocked up accidentally. Trust me.

  • I’m not a fan of BC. I get the purpose, but I believe that it’s why so many women have fertility issues later when they’re ready to get pregnant. Because so many of us have been taking it since we were 14/15 to almost 30, so that’s 15 years, that has to affect your body in some way. And lo and behold, as I’m reading your article, what do I hear in the background “Pfizer announced yesterday that it is recalling 1 million packages of its Lo/Ovral-28 tablets and generic Norgestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol tablets, because some of the birth control tablets may be out of sequence, or there may be more of the active pills in some packages and more inactive pills in other packages.” So ladies, check your BC’s!!

  • I hope your hubby climbs onboard with natural family planning. I felt the same way after realizing what I had done getting the Depo shot. I fahreeked out and stopped going to my appointments. A few months later, Jay made his debut in my belly. But it was ultimately what both Greg and I wanted. So it was kinda accidentally on purpose, lol. I was prescribed Ortho Tri Cyclen Lo when I was 17, it made me dizzy in the mornings so I took it later in the day. I too couldn’t remember to take it all of the time so I got on the shot. Bad idea. Spotting and no libido foreveeer. Death to hormonal BC! *swings panties in the air*

  • I recently just got off of my birth control. I was on them for about 2 years. I actually had a brand that worked well for me, Loestrin24. It’s low in all that hormone stuff. I stopped taking them because this year we wanted to start possibly trying to concieve. I’ve tried others in the past and the side effects alone will drive you insane but I hear that its different for everyone. The BC pills helped with cramping to say the least, but I did however gain a lil weight, now that I am off of them… I don’t eat like a pig so my weight has remained constant. Birth control pills can affect your mood and some will even cause you to be down in the dumps and even irritable. One of the biggest things for me calling a quits on them was my decreased sex drive. As a wife, I can NOT afford to have to crappy sex drive. So I made up in my mind to stop the pills and if we have children then it will be totally based on God’s will.

  • OSHH

    I’m late to this weeks TMI post but Brit I have never liked the idea of birth control pills(shots, patches etc) either, tried the pills once many moons ago and stopped after like two or three weeks and gaining about 4 or 5 lbs in the short period of time.
    I am not married tho or sexually active at this time but I feel you 1000%. I just don’t trust the long term effects of bc pills, shots etc. It just seems so
    unnatural to not have a period for months on end as some of these pills give you that option, it just doesn’t seem right, as in natural. IDK

  • Susan

    I thought I would send you an update I found last night on the recall of birth control pills. I don’t know if any of you are on these but they said placebos were found in these “We have announced a voluntary recall of Lo/Ovral®-28 (norgestrel and ethinyl estradiol) and Norgestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol Tablets (generic). I found it on Yahoo. Just put in birth control recall and you’ll find all the info. HOpe you all don’t have any surprises in nine months.

    • Brittany

      Yes! I saw this and posted on Twitter. Thanks so much for sharing, Susan!

    • This is crazy. A pill that I was on was recalled last year b/c they accidentally put the pills in the pack upside down causing them to be taken incorrectly. I wasn’t affected but a lot of ppl had unplanned pregnancies. Too many slip ups with these companies lately smh

  • Great post. I’ve been taking bc for years (since I had my son) in some form of another, as I didn’t want any more children for a while… long while. I currently use the pill with no major problems except the first one or two pills of a new pack make me sick, comparable to morning sickness. Depending on which brand I am on, they sometimes make me gain weight.

    I’ve been taking them so long that it’s like clockwork, I usually take it right after I brush my teeth in the morn so that I remember. I don’t like taking them but hey I don’t want any unplanned babies right now :/

  • I hate birth control as well. Western doctors will do anything to keep patients drugged up. It’s a shame, really. That being said, whenever I went to the doctor as a teenager and complained about awful cramps (I’m talking about so bad that you’d think I was in labor kinda cramps) and acne, the first thing they wanted to do was put me on bc. I always declined.

    Finally, I accepted the offer to try the patch, which was relatively new when I was in college. It SUCKED! I was nauseated every day and my period lasted a month. Um, no thanks. So I quit. The doc then suggested seasonale, the pill that makes you get 4 periods a year. After a bout a month on it, I dealt with extreme headaches but the last straw was when I woke up in the middle of the night because my hands were numb. I’m talking, I couldn’t feel them at all. So, it was a wrap.

    I thought I’d sworn off bc until years later, in my mid 20s, when a doc suggested the nuvaring because it has a lower dose of hormones and it actually worked. I tried it for about two years, had better skin and much better periods. Overall, I liked it because there were no negative side effects as far as I could tell but then I decided to take a break, just because I don’t trust bc. It just ain’t natural.

    However, I got married in Jan and because hubby and I don’t want kids right now, I got back on it. So far it’s still ok so basically that was my long winded way of saying maybe you should try it.

    Fast forward

  • P.S. I dabbled with raw foodism and veganism once during a phase that lasted about a year, and had the best periods of my life! Do some research ladies, I promise your diet is directly tied to how your periods feel. See below for the book I always suggest to people as a starting point:

    “The Raw Food Detox” by Natalia Rose

    It’s good because she presents a realistic approach to incorporating more live foods in your regimen, which is good for women who still want their meat.

    • L

      So true!

      I went to see a naturopath about my crazy erratic cycle and she put me on the “A” blood type diet.

      It’s hard to stick to, but I’ve learnt my body and how much of each thing I can have before It affects my lifestyle too much (eg: can’t go to work or school).

      This, a chiropractic adjustment once a month (the position of the pelvis can affect ovulation), and plenty of exercise (yoga 3 times a week, lots of walking)has made things a lot easier to manage period-wise. Also, I just feel way better in general.

      I’m freaked out by BC (esp pills), though. Boyfriend wraps it up!

      • L

        PS to this one – have you noticed that the first thing the doctor asks you is what the regularity of your cycle is like?
        It’s clearly an important barometer for your general health – I don’t like treating symptoms, I like to treat causes. If I treated dodgy and irregular periods (aka the symptom) with the Pill, I wouldn’t know to look for a cause of ill health (the thing causing the irregularity, such as stress, lack of exercise, poor reproductive health, etc), because things would appear to be running normally.

        It’s also wierd to me that by taking the pill you’re preventing yourself from pregnancy by filling yourself with pregnancy hormones. There’s something really, really bizarre about that IMHO…

  • Veronica

    I’ve been on birth control pills and hated the way my raging hormones seemed to control my life (mood, libido, etc.) I’ve been off them since 2003 and never will get back on. However, I’m not currently in need of them. But I’ve heard about this thing called Lady Comp that is a natural form of birth control–it’s pricey. Although I haven’t personally used it, it’s gotten great reviews. You can check it out at if you’re curious.

  • Annette

    I had a horrible experience with them. I never really liked the idea of them, but I started taking them right before I got married in 2007 because I thought it would be the easiest thing to do. About 6 months after taking them I got a blood clot in my left leg caused by the hormones. My leg swelled up 3 times its normal size. I was in the hospital for a week and I couldn’t walk for over a month.

    I realize my experience with birth control was extreme and a lot of women use them for years and are perfectly fine. But while I was in the hospital they told me that they see otherwise perfectly healthy young women on birth control pills come in with blood clots at least every few months and I have since met several woman who had similar experiences to me. So, it is not as rare as you would think. It bothers me because I don’t think a lot of women know about this side effect. I’m perfectly healthy, I have no history of blood disorders, and I don’t smoke. The doctor I was seeing at the time made it seem like there was no risk at all. I didn’t even know birth control pills could cause a reaction like that.

    I do know a lot of women who are on the pill and love it. If they work for you that’s great, but for me, even if I hadn’t gotten the blood clot I honestly don’t think it worth it. I tell everyone I know to avoid the pill. Even before it happened I had talked to my husband and I was planning on stopping because I hated the way the pills made me feel. They made me feel really moody, I often felt tired and nauseous, and I gained like 15 pounds after I started taking them. I just think there are safer, more natural alternatives to preventing pregnancy and you can avoid all the nasty side effects.

  • Pingback: We Heart This - The Lipstick League – week of 1.30.12()

  • Pingback: The Lipstick League: Weekly Links, Volume 34 : Clumps of Mascara()

  • Pingback: The Lipstick League Week of 1/30/12()

  • this is a GREAT post! perfect TMI Talk :]
    I’ve been afraid of BC for years. I watched my friends go on it and get sick, have to change brands, IUDs fall out, and the list goes on. There’s just something scary about changing the NATURAL CYCLE your body goes through. Even if it’s just to be comfortable for a few more days. I was also afraid that I might become infertile after going on/getting off, lol.
    bottom line – I don’t think it’s for me. my periods were irregular for a while, but I think that was mostly due to stress and other health related things. hopefully you can find something that works for you :]

  • Ryou

    I have borderline disorder and regular birth control makes the comorbid depression a lot worse than it already was. I can take the mini-pill okay, though.

    However, I’m one of those women who don’t want any children, strictly. I had a really horrible childhood and I’m just not confident in my ability to be a parent. I wouldn’t think twice to get my tubes tied but my husband prefers we do something reversible, so IUD is the next option. (We can’t really do condoms because of the side-effects with his anti-depressants)

    The problem is, I do get rather brutal periods every month that literally cripples me for a day or two, and birth control never actually help. IUD is known to make your cramps worse, so that doesn’t help, either. It’s really sad that many women who would be good mothers can’t conceive; while some, like me, are mentally incapable of being mothers even though we have all the necessary parts.

    • L

      That’s exactly why there needs to be less red tape for people looking to adopt, IMO.

  • Anonymous

    If you don’t like birth control, then don’t take it. Try Natural Family Planning instead.

  • Xero

    I’ve been on birth control for almost 2 years now. My story’s a bit different because I actually used the copper IUD before I tried the pill. When my parents found out I was active (I was 18), they freaked out and they’d only let me get an IUD since it’s the only thing that’s worked for my mom (she had really bad reactions to pills, got pregnant on FAM, and again when a condom broke). I had to fight for it though, since most doctors don’t like giving them to young women who haven’t had children. In the end, the gyno did a bad job inserting the IUD and I expelled it almost immediately.

    Roughly within time frame my periods had gotten a lot more painful, and the IUD wasn’t helping. It got so bad that I threw up every cycle. Then I went to the family planning clinic at my university and got on Ortho Lo/Tri Cyclen (depending on what they had available). The first month I felt dizzy and tired, but everything was fine after that. I’ve had no other unpleasant side effects since then, despite my parents’ fears. My periods are still a week long, but a lot lighter and almost no pain. I have had a slight drop in libido, but I find that’s been for the better…since my bf can actually keep up now, lol. When I’m older, I’d like to have an IUD again since I believe those to be the best form of birth control, but for now the pills work just fine.

    If you keep forgetting to take yours, I suggest putting an alarm on your phone to help you remember. I always carry around my phone and my pills, and set the alarm to 8pm, when I know I will consistently be awake and not in class. I know that what you’re scared of is of not being able to conceive afterwards, and of the chemicals, but if you do decide to stick with it, not having to worry about “remembering” might make it a little easier. And honestly, I wonder if a lot of the stories of women having trouble conceiving after the pill aren’t just because they have trouble conceiving in the first place. They just attribute it to the pill instead.

    There are also other forms of birth control–maybe you could try combining a diaphragm with condoms? Condoms with withdrawal? Combining methods is much more effective than using one by itself. And if you use FAM, you have to really stick to it; take your temperature every day and make sure you’re protected if you have sex during your fertile window. My mother forgot to take her temperature once, and as it turned out her cycle was different than usual and she became pregnant with me.

    I apologize about having written a novel, but I feel very strongly about birth control; and you have a lot more options than you realize. There are plenty of birth control options that are non-hormonal. Maybe one of them (or a combination of them) is right for you.

    • Brittany

      This was very VERY helpful and I totally agree with doubling up on methods. Makes so much sense. Thanks!

      • Xero

        I’m glad that I was able to help!

        On a side note, using a male condom with a female condom increases the chance of breakage, and I just found out that condom+withdrawal has a chance of the condom slipping off (proportional to dryness, I’d guess).

        Things to think about…I’m sure a gynecologist would be more knowledgeable about which methods go best together.

  • Lu

    I used to wish I was on the pill but after hearing all the negative effects I’ve pretty much been turned off to the idea. But I don’t really have a choice either way because it comes out I’m allergic to it! (trouble breathing, etc) So condoms it is for me :)

    Tbh I don’t really trust using monthly cycles since I always feel like there’s that chance. My cycles are a bit irregular though…. plus one of my sisters is the result of when my parents tried it!

  • My mom was really reluctant to allow me to start birth control for the same reasons you didn’t want to rely on the pill. But my cramps got to the point where I couldn’t function, and would be curled up in bed all day, even after taking 2 Advil. Plus, my periods started coming almost every other week, and at that point I decided that enough was enough, and started taking the pill. I think I was on it for a little over than a year, and I’ve stopped taking it for about 5 months now. It’s helped a lot, so for me, I don’t regret taking it. I think at the time, I was so desperate for relief that I didn’t even stop to consider other solutions, but you raise good points. I hope you can find an alternative that you don’t feel forced to take, and that works for you :)

  • I’ve been happilly taking birth control pills for 8 years now! And I do mean happilly!! I’ve never hesitated when it came to that moment – my first long term relationship and my first sexual partner. Never had I feared that I’m doing the wrong thing…
    For me the pill was al that jazz: it got read of the pain, made my boobs grow bigger, gave me curves and made me pretty (helped me cure my acnee). Now my period only lasts for 3 days and even those 3 days I feel great!
    …but…I do understand where your emotions come from! I really do! And I strongly believe that if you just can’t bring yourself to take this step, then you simply shouldn’t! There must be another way! They put people on the Moon for goodness sake! :))

    But for the sake of a rational logical argument, I must inform you: you don’t gain weight from the pill! The pill just increses your appetite slightly and it’s totally up to you if you indulge yourself more or not. Like every aspect of your life, this too requires restraint of some manner. It’s that simple! The food makes you gain weight, NOT the birth control pill!

    BUT: the b.c.p. can (and does) – decrease your libido(it’s true); raises the chances of you getting migranes (I had that happen to me and I had to change the pill); increase the risk of you getting cellulitis (because of hydro-retention).

    Also, regarding pregnancy and fertility: one of my my best friends is 7 month pregnant after being on the pill. She regained fertility and became pregnant just 2 or 3 months after she quit the pill. So it really is safe in that manner. The effects of the hormones wear off quite rapidlly if you stop taking your daily dose.

    Of course, if neither of this facts don’t have the power to convince you that you should take it, I strongly believe that you should follow your instincts! It’s your body and your mind we’re talking about, and YOU know best what’s right for you!
    …but maybe you should give it a fair chance (and a fair chance means at least a couple of months for it’s effects to be relevant). You only disturb the balance of your body if you take it for a few days… and you will feel the effects of this unbalance severelly. I reccomend not stoping for at least a full month (one pack of pills), so you let the full cycle take it’s course. You shouldn’t interrupt in the middle of the month unless you experience a really bad side-effect. It will mess with your ovulation and the “internal callendar”.

    I hope you’ll make the right decission and be happy and healthy!
    I appologise for my bad english, I’m from Romania :)

    • L

      Your English is better than people I know in English-speaking countries. You’re doing great!

  • Rachel

    Been on some sort of pills for over 20 years now and I’m currently pre-menopausal. I’ve already made it over half the year without a period at all while on the pill. One full year period free and the doctor believes I’ll officially be “through”. I’m 41.

    If you’re still having painful or heavy periods, go in and tell your doctor. The pill has been a Godsend for me since I was anemic for years from having heavy periods and only weighing about 100 pounds. We took them away entirely at one point and when he put me on ones to have them at all, they went to being VERY light with almost no cramping.

  • Kristin

    I got on birth control for the same reason when I was nineteen. My periods were taking me under something fierce. I’m actually taking the same brand as you. I’ve been on ortho tricyclen low dose for almost ten years now and it has really helped regulate my cycles and made much more bearable. I also have never had any bad side effects besides making me vomit for a couple of days everytime a started a new pack. Even then it was only early morning that it happened. Like morning sickness I suppose. Other than that nothing bad has happened.

  • I’ve done FAM, DepoProvera, the Patch, and the ring, and all of them worked just fine.

    I think, if you’ve got a nicely stable life, FAM works great, but you need to be able to rely on temping every morning and being able to check your body’s functions. If you’re jetting about all over the place, keep odd hours, etc… it’s a hard method to use.

    I’m utterly useless with taking a pill every day. So, pills are the only sort I haven’t tried.

    Depo was very convenient. The side effects weren’t terrible, though I did gain about 15 pounds. However, a shot every three months, not having to worry about anything inbetween, and my period stopping entirely, was just lovely. For all practical purposes I got to be a guy for about five years. It was nice.

    The patch killed my sex drive, five more pounds, and left a gray fuzzy line on my skin for like two days after taking it off. Hurt quite a bit more to take off than getting the shot did. Only used that for a year.

    The ring was more comfortable than the patch or the shot, but five more pounds and still no sex drive.

    So, out of the lot, I liked FAM best, but I’ve got the sort of life that can best be described as: Keryl does the same thing every day. So it works well with FAM. I’m also (speaking of way too TMI) just fine with skipping vaginal sex for other alternatives during the fertile time, rather than risk having a condom fail. Pretty much, if you really, really cannot have a kid right now, I’d leave FAM off for a while. If you’re at the point where you don’t necessarily want one right now, but getting pregnant wouldn’t be a disaster, give it a shot.

  • I had taken birth control for years until recentently. My current boyfriend told me he would rather use condoms than me take the pill. I think hes had bad expierences with pills tampering with emotions and turning exs into emotional rollercoasters and wants to avoid anything like that with me. I am really happy because I see long term with him and for the month that I was on them with him I did feel very guilty everytime I took a pill. He is the only person I have dated that I want to have babies with and I felt that the pill was sabatoging that even though I don’t plan on having kids for at least the next two years. I guess its a good thing I’m not taking anything to make me overly sensitive lol

  • Tori

    So, i am a 16 year old girl who has some of the worst menstrual cramps in the world. It has gotten so bad that I’ve had to have my dad pick me up off the floor in the nurse’s office & carry me out to his car (embarrassing right?). I’ve had my period since i was 10 (unfortunately) and from day one i’ve always had the “i’d rather bang my head against a wall a million times over”-kind of cramps. So, as of freshman year (i am now a junior), my doctor has been trying to get me to take these bad boys to help me keep up with my period, and therefore, keep up with me cramps. But I’ve talked about it with my mother and we both agree that it just can not be the only way out!

    I am TERRIFIED of taking birth control pills, especially at such a young age. I don’t want it to screw up my hormones, make me gain weight, or cause any other craziness in my body. I know quite a few girls (although none of them actually being one of my friends) who take BCPs at my age, but i just hate the thought of it. I have been dating my boyfriend for a year and a half and therefore, i AM sexually active but we are very safe, obviously using condoms, and whatnot, I still get bad cramps and I feel crazy to not just give in to taking them but I just hate the idea of some artificial substance messing around with something mother-nature has “blessed” (CURSED) me with…. so your post made me feel SO much better about my point-of-view (:

    • Brittany

      Follow your gut instinct, darling. Since I was your age, something told to stay away from birth control. I gave in for a month but I can honestly say that it’s not for me. Keep staying in tune with your body and researching natural alternatives that can help alleviate cramps. It took a few months to kick it but taking calcium magnesium supplements helped for a little bit.

  • lafemmetopaz

    I took BC pills from the age of 18 to 36 years old. I started out on Ortho Novum 777 switched to TriNorinyl,and ended with a low dos Triphasil.

    The Triphasic(21 day 3 levels of hormones) always worked for me. I did have hormonal issues with Ortho Novum and Triphasil but had no libido issues with TriNoriyls.

    I think BC pills have the longest research behind them of any BC method. 50 years of research knows what it does to the body. I think the pros of bc pills way outway the negatives. BC pills do not mess up your hormonal balance permanently.

    I think a person’s diet has a lot to do with whether they gain weight with bc pills.

    Here’s my story:

    I took my pill religiously at 11pm every night, whether I was in a club, at home or on vacation, in a car, at friend’s house. It didn’t make difference.

    I stopped taking pills when I married for a second time and wanted to become pregnant. Within 3 to 4 months of no pills, I became pregnant. After I had my daughter, 4 years ago, I decided to try something else due to my age, weight, and marital status(divorce). I’m now have an IUD and I love it. I have a copper IUD. I’ve had very few issues with spotting and I love it.

    I would continue to talk to you doctor and your husband.

  • Honey! First off kudos for you for deciding what is and isn’t for you and sticking to that. I feel like women these days are expected to think BC is the best thing since sliced bread and, well, it’s not. And I do know people who have had fertility problems after prolonged use. It’s true, most don’t but it’s not impossible.

    I, too, dislike BC and I only used it for a few years of my life… about 3 (I used NuvaRing which I really liked and only had to remember to deal with once a month so it was great for me). But otherwise it’s been condoms. I’m glad your hubby is on board with you because the thought of wearing condoms with your wife is often like “Huh?! Didn’t I get married so I DON’T have to do that?” but yes, if you want those baby Clumps to wait a lil while you have to do something. The FAM can work, but it takes A LOT of diligence on both your parts.

    All the best honey! I pray it gets better with the cramps, lawd KNOWS I know about that!

  • hi! me too! i have the same sort of fear.

  • Stephanie

    I had to comment… ParaGard is the way to go!! My periods were heavier and more painful for the first 4 months or so, then became completely normal. There are no hormones which is great because I could not handle the artificial hormones at all. They made me fat, gave me migraines, and severe anxiety! Also the hormonal bc did screw up my hormones! My body basically forgot how to manufacture its own and my doctors thought I was infertile and stricken w/ pcos! If ur not extremely regular and very discipled natural family planning is not a reliable method. If ur not regular u may ovulate and not know it… Also during ur most fertile periods u have the highest sex drive because nature wants u pregnant!

  • thedogismine

    i’ve been on bc since 2002, a few months before i got married. i use sprintec, a generic version of ortho cyclen. weight gain? no. i’ve lost weight while on the pill. i don’t use the pill for being an excuse for any weight gain. if i gain weight, it’s my fault. sex drive? i’ve never really had one to speak of so having a sex drive for my own sake is not something i miss. i love being on the pill. my periods are lighter. my skin is clearer. no kids since i don’t have any desire to have them! bc has been great to me.

  • Pingback: I've got some pretty awesome news.....! - Clumps of Mascara()

  • Don’t take them. You are right. Let your husband take equal responsibility using condoms in the middle of the month.

    “…Woman who regularly use the pill are 4.2 times more likely to get breast cancer. Husbands, boyfriends, men, do you understand that when you make sure your lover is on the Pill, you increase her risk of cancer? If you do – if you really, truly do – and you continue its use, I shudder for you. Women on the Pill, are you truly willing to do this to your bodies?

    Meanwhile, the world is stunned that cases of breast cancer have risen by over 80% since the 1970′s. Hm, what else really took off in the seventies?”

  • im turning 30 next month. i have never used birth control. im engaged and getting married in november. my fiance and i dont have any children and would like to have God willing. i am in contemplation and undecisive about starting any FAM.