Let me start by saying that the pill was an awesome contraception method for me for the last 10+ years.
Sure there were times when I hated it (like the time I had my period for 3 weeks!) but mostly it was an effective method for me and it made my relationship with the Scotsman much easier once we knew we were “exclusive”.
Also, You are about to read about my period and my vagina. So If you’d rather, feel free to skip this post! But I do think it’s important for women to be informed and able to relate to one another. So hopefully someone out there will find this interesting…
But about a year ago I started to feel like it was not for me anymore. I was having some symptoms with the hormones, like very sore breasts and come crazy mood swings. I would start crying for now reason. So when 2 doctors suggested I stopped the pill, once because there was no lower dosage to try, the other because of my vertigo, I knew it was time.
We still are not ready for a little French / Scottish / Canadian baby though. So we are using the rhythm method and a little gadget to help along. I am not ready to review it since I have been using only for 2 months.
But I am ready to share why I am so happy I stopped the pill.
- I lost 2 kgs! Over the last year, I constantly felt like I was ballooning and heavy. I knew I was retaining more fluids than I normally should. I finally feel back to “normal” and the weight just disappeared in a couple of days. I still gain those 2 kgs back when I’m on my period, but then they just disappear again. Given my history of an eating disorder, I try not to weight myself too much. But I have a range in which I feel good and I am glad to be back in it.
- Less migraines / headaches. The pill is a huge factor in getting migraines for some women, and for me it was definitively a trigger.
- More energy, I feel less lethargic and have more energy. And despite my back injury, feel great.
- No breakouts! I’m lucky that I have always had a pretty good skin, even as a teenager. But I was still worried that I might breakout after reading about the experience of others. Luckily I did not. The only thing I noticed is that I have a patch of darker skin on my upper back / neck area. It’s always been there but it is a bit more pronounced now. One of the perks of having brown skin….
- Increased libido. I knew the pill had affected me, but I hadn’t realized how much! And even though it’s taking us time to get used to it with the whole “nothing when ovulating”, neither of us is complaining
- I feel so much lighter an happier! And for me that’s the best thing. I find myself smiling and laughing a lot more. It’s like a cloud of seriousness lifted and revealed this whole new happy person under. The Scotsman has been commenting on how much more giggly and I am and how much more I smile now. I’ve always been pretty serious and still am, but I just feel different. My friends have noticed too. I know hormones influence your mood but I never realized how much of a damper it had been. If anything my life is just as stressful as it was 3 months ago. And I still have moments of stress / anger / sadness. But as a rule, I just feel happier. #bestpart
So overall, I could not be happier even though there are a couple of downside:
- I can’t “plan” or “skip” my period anymore. The great thing about the pill is that I could chose not have my period for my holidays or during a busy week at work. Now they just come whenever my body deems it’s time
- Heavier period. It’s not as bad as it was when I was a teen (thankfully) but I have always had a heavy flow. Hence the decision to avoid getting an IUD.
- PMS. I used to get moodiness during my period now I get it before. And let’s not even talk about the increased appetite. I used to crave chocolate and cheese during my period. The last couple of months I went as far as devouring a second lunch at 3pm a couple of days before! But as long as I am listening to my body’s cues, I guess I am doing what’s right for my body? Plus my appetite diminishes afterwards so it all evens out.
Speaking of periods, I have to write about something that changed the game for me. I was talking to a friend about it and we joked that I sounded like one of those awful period commercial where the woman is super gleeful and happy, when in reality for most women it’s not exactly rainbows and butterflies.
Have you heard of the diva cup? I had but never thought much of it until I saw it for sale at my local pharmacy.
And I love it. Not enough to look forward to next month, but enough not to dread it…
It’s a silicon cup that catches the flow. You then have to empty it, clean it and insert it again. Please check their website for more info.
For me it’s been great. No leaks, no smell, no bulky pads or tampons overflowing my handbag. And you only need to empty it in the morning and in the evening. No need for 15 trips to the bathroom a day.
I wore it swimming, walking, stretching and it’s been great. Seriously, it’s awesome. And it’s green, saves a lot of waste in our landfills or down the toilet.
It’s durable as well, $30 for protection for a year or two is much cheaper than what I would normally spend.
Go get one , now