Women were finally liberated to take control of when and whether they wanted to conceive or not in the 1960s and now doctors are handing birth control out like candy to teenage girls without any concern for the long term side effects.
Fun fact before we delve deep into the "it's complicated" portion of this story (Oh, did you think Part 1 was the complicated part?)
A male contraceptive pill was created, but of course most men did not want to sign up for the study. Finally, a small group did. And guess what? They experienced some of the SAME side effects we experience on birth control...AND THEY ALL DROPPED OUT. None of them feel that taking contraception was worth affecting how they FELT on a regular basis.
Here's a brief history of me and birth control:
Tried it out in college, took Yaz. My breasts tripled in size: which would have been pretty sweet except my whole body followed suit and I put on almost 20 extra lbs that only came off when I stopped taking the pill.
The Nuva Ring: tried it twice. Both times, the first 3 months were awesome: bigger boobs, regular cycle, super easy. After that third month I put on 15lbs. It didn't go away until I took it out...and left it out.
I gave up.
Now THIS, THIS is when it get's SUPER fun:
When I decided to return back to the wonderful world of birth control (about 8 years later), the IUD had become all the rage! While I didn't quite fancy the thought of stopping my body from getting my period (it's natural so I cannot imagine it's healthy to PREVENT it purposely), as you read in Part I: I really could have done without the massive amount of blood loss and debilitating pain of my uterus basically trying to kill me from the inside, every single month.
So, I gave it a go...well, I TRIED to give it a go:
First appointment: I almost JUMPED off the table from the pain only to be informed by the doctor that my cervix wouldn't dilate, so they gave me medication to take to dilate it and I had to go back the next day.
Didn't hurt as badly, but apparently my body did NOT wanna let that little Mirena in, and so they told me if I would like I could make an appt at a surgical center and be "forcefully dilated."
Let me type that out again but bigger and with a GIF:
My body rejected the insertion of the IUD TWICE, and then I was given the option to FORCEFULLY DILATE my cervix in a surgical center.
My only other option was the nexaplanon! What's that? It's basically the Mirena, but in the form of a small white rod they inject into your arm. It was quick and painless and off I was! Soon ready for this awesome new chapter.
OR WAS I?!
(cue suspenseful music)
Now, just in case you're keeping track of the titles of the last two parts of my saga: THIS part COULD technically be in Part I, but because it is birth control related, I've placed it in Part II. I'm glad we cleared the air, because now I need you to do me a favor:
Imagine a calendar. See how there are 4 rows of blocks for each week in a month? I want you to imagine 7 rows. Those 7 rows are going to represent 7 weeks...because that's what that represents on a calendar. Then I want you to color all 7 weeks CRIMSON BLOOD RED. Then I want you to pick 2 squares here, 1 square there, 3 squares there, totaling in 15 squares (aka days) in the 7 weeks of RED that are NOT red.
Is this upsetting you?
Yeah it fucking upset me too: I BLED NON STOP FOR 7 WEEKS MINUS 15 NON CONSECUTIVE DAYS.
In addition to that, I got moody, sensitive, emotional, insecure AND started gaining weight.
So what did I do? I had that fucker cut out of my arm and swore off hormonal birth control FOREVER.
As you can see: My body has NEVER liked hormonal birth control. And so, then I was left with only one other option: Paraguard. The Copper IUD.
I bet you're saying to yourself: "But Wait! Didn't I just read about how her body wouldn't accept the IUD?!"
Yes, yes you did. But I've never been a quitter, and at this point I KNEW I was gonna marry my then boyfriend (HOLLA NOW FIANCE) and I was CONVINCED I just HAD to be on birth control.
So, into the room I went and not 5 minutes later I had my copper IUD in, and it didn't even hurt much!
I literally teared up in the room because I was SO grateful to the doctor! I was so relieved to not have any extra hormones being put in my system, and since I already had a gnar gnar cycle decided that first year of "heavier bleeding and cramps" would be worth it.
Remember in Part I how I mentioned I was going to acupuncture and started tracking my cycle? CONGRATULATIONS! You've completed the first two Parts of the saga, now onto PART III: In A Relationship With My Cycle!