Researching….

Starting to get fed up with my birth control. I’ve written about this before and have read a lot of great blog posts about women going off their BC. We are NOT trying to have kids just yet, we are in NO position to have them, but from what I’ve read (I still have a lot of research to do before I go off it for sure) it is entirely possible to not get knocked up while off birth control.

My birth control pills have just made me lethargic, moody and have literally killed my sex drive. To the point where I just have no desire. And I? Do not like any of that one bit. I recently changed my pills (again) and there’s no change. Really. So I think it’s time to start making the motions to go off BC once and for all. So… I invested in this book and Amazon will have it at my door in two days (thank you Amazon prime!) and I read a couple of great blogs that were informative and incredibly helpful (especially after reading all the lovely comments).

So I’m going to read this book, and keep doing research. I just…hate the way BC has made me feel. Combined with every other stress in my life, I’m just…over it. Provided I/we can be responsible, which I know we can if we put our minds to it, I think this will be a good decision. Clearly, I’m not going off BC tomorrow, but soon. Hopefully by the early fall is my goal, to feel comfortable enough with my body that i can go off the pill and not get knocked up the first month because mini-me’s are definitely not in the plan for the at least the next 12 months. Definitely not in my “defeat my quarter life crisis plan.”

{image via Amazon}

Any gals read this book at all? Experiences going off birth control? Suggestions?

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  • I haven’t read that book, but I have been using similar methods to avoid pregnancy for the last three years.

    I LOVE that it’s free. I LOVE that I’m not putting any hormones into my body. I LOVE that it’s nearly free of waste. I LOVE that I’m not potentially screwing up my body.

    I actually got a free fertility monitor from Marquette to participate in a study for people who want to avoid pregnancy for a year. (Though, you have to have been off birth control for three months before starting. Here’s the link: http://nfpstudy.marquette.edu/index.php)

    If you want to talk, I’d love to! I have nothing but positive things to say about this. 🙂

  • This thing would make me nervous. My friend does it but when I brought it up to my husband he was very doubtful (he prob thinks I’m trying to trick him into getting pregnant! jk). But I DO wonder about the sex drive part, because I notice I do seem to have lower sex drive. Is that really an effect of BC?

    ps- saw you on 20sb!

  • I own this book too. I went off BC this month to give my cycle a few months to regulate and myself a few months to learn how to chart before we start trying to get pregnant. I printed the charts from this book’s website for free. So far I’m really enjoying charting and learning about myself. HOWEVER we are also using condoms, because we are also not ready to get pregnant right now. I have another friend who started using charting as her only method of BC and she got pregnant two months later. It can absolutely be used as BC on its own if you are good about obeying the rules of when is and is not safe. However I would use a backup BC method for the first few months that you’re charting so that you can get the hang of it and also get to know your own cycle and what’s normal for you.

  • KT

    My friend had an IUD put in and loved it.

  • I have noticed the sex drive thing, too. For me, I think there are lots of reasons, but I wonder if the BC is playing a part. But, the charting would freak me out. Granted I’m not married, so perhaps that would change things. I know you and hubby aren’t ready for kids, but I think it’s a different perspective once you’re married.

    Good luck with whatever you decide! Keep us posted.

  • Blair

    I’ve heard that’s a great book. However… you could not PAY me to go off my b.c. I simply do not trust that method as a SOLE use. Heck, we use two methods of birth control, and honestly even that doesn’t seem like enough. No way do I want kids right now.

  • I quit on January 1st and when my period appeared on January 19th in full force and heaveier than it’s been in years… I went right back on.

    I agree about the lethargy and loss of desire though – I have both of those, big time!

  • I’m reading that book right now, but we are going to try for babies in a few months, so I’m reading it to find out the best times to have sex instead of when to avoid it lol! I would definitely still use condoms or something while charting in case you make a mistake or something since you’re not ready for a baby yet. We won’t just be relying on my charts the first few months either because we don’t want a winter baby (due to teaching and me not wanting to go back once I have a kid) and getting pregnant before June would give us one.

    I HATE being on BC! It’s nice to have a lighter period, but I have all the same problems you described in your post and I can’t stand it. My last pill is Feb 28th and I cannot wait!

  • This post really hit a nerve with me… I always heard that it may take a *few* months to regulate after going off the pill and my husband and I planned accordingly. One of the problems with BC is that gives you a “fake period” every month and it masks what is really going on with your body. I was on BC for a long time– almost 10 years. Pre-BC, I always had a normal period. I went off BC in June 2008 and I have not ovulated naturally or had a natural period since. Now, I know that this is not a “normal” reaction and I do not blame BC, but I truly believe that if I had never been on BC or had gone off earlier (i.e., before we were “ready”), I would have figured out that there was a problem and could have dealt with it sooner. Instead, I am dealing with infertility in my early 30s (once you hit 35, you are considered “high risk”).

    Everyone has a different reaction to going off BC, but I personally would recommend going off BC as soon as possible and giving your body a chance to regulate. I also have the book and I think it is a great resource for understanding what is going on in your body. I don’t think that I would necessarily use the methods described in the book as birth control, but rather as a means to understand your body’s patterns so that once you are ready to conceive, you know how to time it right.

  • I’m curious to know what you decide to do. I’ve struggled with the same problems and hate that I’ve been on BC for an entire decade now. I don’t know if I’ll ever want kids, so I’d like to consider some other options like maybe an IUD.

  • My husband and I are both terrified of having kids right now. I don’t know if I trust my body enough to do things your way, so I’m impressed with your venture! Since you are lethargic, etc…have you considered getting some blood tests to see if you’re low in certain vitamins? I’ve been seriously tired for months and got fed up: it turned out I was low in Iron and B12, which was what the problem was. My doctor got me on a good regimen and now I’m feeling so much better. BC sap your body of iron, which might be where some of the lethargy problems are. Good luck, no matter what!

  • Danielle

    We are probably the only married people in America to do this, but m husband and I use good ‘ole fashioned condoms. I never liked the way BC made me feel, and was not (and are not yet) in the position to get pregnant. It’s worked for us for several years now. I don’t know-I know there are lots of methods out there that people use and work for them, but the idea of only being restricted by certain days of the month is not appealing. But i agree, BC messes with your body chemistry (it wouldn’t work if it didn’t).

  • I’ve been off BC for two years and it’s the best thing that I ever did. I’m a different person, much happier, and in tune with my body. I’m not trying to get pregnant, we use three different methods to insure that. I’ve never even had a single scare. I don’t think the pill is all it’s cracked up to be personally.

  • Lindsay

    I would love to hear what you think about that book! I just recently mentioned to my doctor about possibly changing my b.c. because of the lack of sex drive. She made it seem like that’s normal with b.c. pills but I’m not accepting that. I wonder if even just switching brands would help?

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  • I read that exact book and learned so much! We are not ready to get pregnant yet so we used condoms during the times we were not sure whether I was fertile or not. I have been using this method for about 6 months and I love it! BC made me really sick. I had about 12 migraines a month, was nauseous every day, had digestive issues and was really dizzy and tired all the time. After going off BC I finally have my life back. I only get 1 or 2 migraines a month (and they are still decreasing in frequency), I am never nauseous or dizzy anymore and I have my energy back!

    Plus, the birth control pill I was using now has many, many lawsuits against it for serious and life threatening conditions. My philosophy is to avoid medication as much as possible. I feel like it is impossible to really know how it is effecting your body.

    Good luck with the book and feel free to contact me if you have any questions!

  • Sarah

    I actually used that book to GET pregnant LOL! It came with a CD and was awesome for tracking your cycles on your computer.

    After my very scary pregnancy, we decided we were done. My doctor did NOT want me on hormones, so she put the paraguard IUD in – it’s a hormone/medication free IUD. It sucked going in and I had a few periods that were heavy, but my body’s used to it now and let me tell you, it’s heaven knowing that I’m using some sort of birth control.

    Cycles vary and to rely on the rhythm method or just charts and body fluids (you’ll have to check cervical mucus to make sure where you are in your cycle and that would get old) would scare me if I was REALLY trying to not get preggo.

  • I can completely relate. I’ve tried 5 different B.C. (3 versions of the pill, the patch, and the NuvaRing). When I first started the pill, I didn’t have a sex drive (wasn’t having sex) so I don’t know of its effect on me back then.

    But in the past few years, I’m struggling with the same things as you. It’s really annoying to not feel like yourself.

    I don’t know if I could ever go completely off of it. Hubby and I tried that for a few months and I was so stressed out about getting pregnant that the desire still wasn’t there.

    Let us know how it goes?

  • Aliza

    I switched to the NuvaRing a couple years ago b/c I was having to switch BC pills every year or two due to periods/cramps getting heavier or anxiety or stuff like that. And I could tell that the anxiety was not related to the depression b/c it would disappear as soon as I switched. (And since then I’ve had anxiety not linked to BC… it’s amazing how I can tell the difference!) Anyway, the NuvaRing is okay, but there’s some awkward stuff with it since I don’t have a significant other… there’s always the question of if/how I tell a new guy that there’s something up there. However, I have one friend who’s on an IUD and another friend who’s going on one, and I’m definitely interested in learning more about that. Slate actually had an interesting article about it, actually: http://www.slate.com/id/2223840/

    And I will mention that one of my sorority sisters got pregnant two months after she started charting… and they were NOT trying to get preggers (she’s just VERY Catholic and doesn’t believe in condoms/BC).

  • Reading this kind of makes me want to do some research, too, because BC makes me feel horrible, too. And it’s making it really hard for me to lose weight now. (What’s up with that?!)

    I’ll be interested what you find out!