Research on women's experiences with the BC pill

Discussion in 'Contraception' started by tacuba, Nov 18, 2011.

  1. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Yes, I think Vickstar addressed an important point there! It is alarming how often the BC pill and the anti-depressants go together!

     
  2. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Anyone else who wants to help me? [​IMG]

     
  3. Lacey Evelyn

    Lacey Evelyn New Member

    1. What were the main reasons to start using the pill?

    Started using it when I was just about 18 to avoid pregnancy because I'd begun my first serious sexual relationship.
    Have been taking it on and off since then (5 years now)

    2. What were the main reasons to stop using the pill?

    I stopped taking it the first time because I found it too difficult to take it regularly/was very forgetful and worried that I'd get pregnant, so my doctor and I agreed that I should switch to the Patch. Unfortunately after a few months on that I realized I was super crazy depressed--I'm pretty sure I used the word bi-polar when I spoke to the doctor about it.

    I switched back to the pill, Tricyclen-lo at the time, but after my experiences with the Patch I was a lot more attuned to my mental well-being and I realized that I was still struggling with depression and mood swings and looking back over the years realized that it had all started shortly after I had begun taking the pill.

    So I switched to Yasmin, again on the advice of a doctor, and it was better, so I've been on that off and on for a couple years, but after having recently started taking it again I've noticed stomach problems, breast soreness, and most importantly my mood has been totally off: I'm seeing signs of depression in myself; I've been spending most of my free time in bed and can't focus at all--that's not me. In the time I was off birth control, I was super social, easy going and happy-go-lucky--people I met over the course of that time period have referred to me as "one of the happiest people [they] knew." After only a few weeks of Yasmin, that's changed and it only seems to keep getting worse. I stopped taking it today. I know they say to give it three months for your system to adjust but if I do this for three months I doubt I'll pass this semester, as it is my midterm grades are doomed.

    3. How would you describe your relationship with your doctors (the ones that prescribed you the pill)?

    Varied--I've always gone to drop-in clinics. Notably I've been to see doctors at two clinics geared at younger women and reproductive health and had only very good experiences. At more general walk-in clinics it's been good, bad and ugly, including one older male doctor that was incredibly rude to me, treated me as though I was wasting his time coming in for a birth control pill prescription and quickly and angrily just prescribed what I'd been on before and left the room.

    4. Would you ever come back to the pill? Why?

    I don't know, I mean strongly dislike condoms as an alternative so if a doctor recommended a pill that was supposed to be somehow not mess with my head I might...but I don't think that's likely. Right now, having just experienced a complete mood shift for the worse, it's hard to see myself trusting another pill.

    5. Did you find hard/easy to convince your partners to start using another method of birth control when you decided to quit the pill?

    I've never been met with excitement at the prospect of me coming off the pill; past partners have been just as unenthusiastic about using condoms as I am, but they've never needed convincing. Oh, except when I tried to get an IUD put in, I recall that my long term boyfriend at the time just didn't accept that it was about as effective as the pill.

    6. What other BC method have you ever tried?

    Copper IUD (was very excited about it, it seemed perfect, but they couldn't really get it in--eventually had to go to a specialist and undergo a general anaesthetic just to have it inserted and it just ended up coming out again anyway! What a nightmare!), withdrawal, condoms, the Patch

    7. Any other comment or feeling bout the BC pill that you want to share!

    I wish doctors would warn women commencing an oral contraceptive regimen about what to look out for. It didn't even occur to me that I might suffer mood changes/depression issues, so I didn't even recognize their association with the pill until I'd been on it for years, and even then I had to come off it just to realize exactly how damaging it had been.

     
  4. mel 30

    mel 30 New Member

    1- started using microgynon 30 after my first daughter to prevent further pregnancies.

    2- stopped using microgynon 30 in oct 2011 because in the last 3 years on the pill i started developing anxiety around certain days of my cycle ie when i would ovulate and couple of days leading up to period. When these changes started happening they were mild but as times gone on they have gotten worse which made me think i have a hormone imbalancement. I stopped the pill to see if it was my body doing this to me or the hormones in the pill.

    3- my doctors have been rubbish they just keep trying to put me on anti-depressants which i know i am not depressed as the anxiety only happens certain days of my cycle not every day, i do think i have either low progesterone or estrogen but my doctors will not test my hormones as they say they cant!!.

    4- i wouldnt go back on any birth control untill i have my hormone levels checked which isnt going to happen anytime soon!.

    5- im married and done having children we use condoms ALL the time and make sure we dont have sex around ovulation just to be sure i blog my cycle and use ovulation sticks to make sure ive past ovulation.

    6-i just want my doctor to realise this is a hormone problem and not in my head i have never suffered from anxiety in my life and i feel when my hormones drop this is when anxiety happens. also when my anxiety is bad i have symptoms of low blood sugar, and im very sensitive to alcohol @ this time too and this makes my anxiety worse do you think these could be linked??? thanks x

     
  5. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Hi Mel 30, your case sounds pretty much like mine! I personally did suffer from low sugar but never made the connection with the alcohol!

     
  6. graciaincito

    graciaincito New Member

    My experience with the pill is different than most people. I was actually on the birth control injection (Depo Provera) for three years, but when my husband and I got married last February, we decided that we would switch to the pill (since we it takes quite a while to be able to get pregnant after getting off of the depo shots). I wanted to get my body back on a regular period, and so I went to go talk to my doctor. After being on the pill for three weeks, I noticed a red swollen vein protruding on my thigh, that hurt to the touch. This was accompanied by an excruciating pain in the calf of the same leg. I presented myself to the emergency room, where I was diagnosed with thrombophlebitis ( a blood clot in a vein). I was given a shot of blood thinner and sent on my way. Three days later I presented with chest and back pain and severe shortness or breath. I couldnt walk three steps without stopping to catch my breath. As a fairly active 25 year old woman, this definitely alarmed me. I again presented myself to emergency, where, after some pushing from me and my husband... I eventually got the doctors to pay some damn attention. A chest X Ray and VQ scan confirmed that my clot in my leg, was no longer just in my leg. I had a large Pulmonary Embolism. Extensive research from my doctors and thrombosis specialists determined that it was in fact the switch to the birth control pill that caused the clots for me. I was told to immediately stop all hormonal birth controls and am now on a rather strict blood thinner plan. Having been on the depo provera for so long, seriously messed with my body. I hadn't had a period in the whole three years that I was on it, and when I was pulled off of the birth control pills, my body immediately jumped into one of the worst and weirdest periods ever. I bled for 2 weeks.

    Honestly after my experience with both depo and now the birth control pill, I would never go back on either one. I was told there were risks going onto the Depo, if you were a smoker, but there were never any risks discussed about the pill, besides possible weight gain.

    When my husband and I do decide to jump into the family life, we've now got one hell of a challenge ahead of us. I'm now considered high risk when I get pregnant.

    sorry to have abandoned the question numbers... guess I'm not really feeling all that organized right now about it.

     
  7. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Graciaincito,

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I can't begin to imagine the nightmare that must have been for you and your husband! I hope you're doing better by now...

     
  8. JennJenn88

    JennJenn88 New Member

    Wow, some horror stories here! My experience has been pretty good, so I'll offer another perspective.

    1. What were the main reasons to start using the pill? Contraception, to regulate my cycle, and allow for more spontenaity.

    2. What were the main reasons to stop using the pill? Still on it after 2 years.

    3. How would you describe your relationship with your doctors (the ones that prescribed you the pill)? My first Ob/gyn had a terrible manner and he gave horrible pelvics. I was first prescribed the pill at my school clinic, where the (female) doctor was a lot easier to warm up to and I was more comfortable discussing the situation with her. But I'm now out of school and my current gyn, while not as good as the clinic doc, is better than my first gyn. It helps that when I started seeing him I was already on the pill and so didn't have to discuss anything except refills.

    4. Would you ever come back to the pill? Why? Well, since I'm still on it I don't know if this one applies to me. But I can definitely see myself coming back to it in between pregnancies, depending on spacing.

    5. Did you find hard/easy to convince your partners to start using another method of birth control when you decided to quit the pill? I'll let you know. :) But my fiance has become quite a fan of the pill since we started using it (switched from condoms).

    6. What other BC method have you ever tried? Condoms, and condoms w/spermicide. My first pill was something I don't remember (maybe Yaz?), but I got breakthrough bleeding the gyn switched me to Tricyclen Lo after a few cycles. Made me a little queasy for a week or two but that's long behind me now.

    7. Any other comment or feeling bout the BC pill that you want to share! The pill has generally worked well for me except for the initial bleeding and nausea. it took some time for both of us to get used to the idea that our birth control was "invisible," unlike condoms (we both occasionally had "OMG are we gonna get pregnant???" moments for the first few months, but after two years it's no longer as scary since it seems to be doing its job. Anyway, we're engaged now so an accidental pregnancy wouldn't be as big of a deal. So, on the whole, thumbs up. We plan to keep using it at least until summer 2013 (i.e., a year into the marriage) and maybe another year after that.

    HTH!

     
  9. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Thank you JennJenn88 for sharing your experience!!

     
  10. GemIOM

    GemIOM New Member

    Are you still researching? That's the sort of thing I've wanted to do after some of the experiences I've had with it, and I also agree there's not enough warning about the side-effects before you're given them.

    1. What were the main reasons to start using the pill? Contraception, possibility it may reduce symptoms of PMS, but in hindsight, they weren't that bad!

    2. What were the main reasons to stop using the pill? I stopped one brand because I became irritable and depressed and I put it down to restarting after a break of 6 months.

    3. How would you describe your relationship with your doctors (the ones that prescribed you the pill)? I've only ever been issued the pill by my local family planning clinic, although most of the nurses there are open to discussing the emotional problems that may arise from the pill, the doctors (female ones) are quite dismissive of such reactions.

    4. Would you ever come back to the pill? Why? I am currently still taking a different brand on combined pill, and for the first few months this was fine too. I am now heading into the 6th month back on it and am struggling with mood swings, depressive symptoms etc. I would try other types of pill before dismissing the method completely though, jus because it appears to be the easiest form of contraception available.

    5. Did you find hard/easy to convince your partners to start using another method of birth control when you decided to quit the pill? My first boyfriend said he would use 2 condoms rather than me being on the pill because he found my depressing times so awful! He refers to hormones as 'horrormones' and I've referred to them as that ever since. They are awful. However my first boyfriend was always so happy I'm not sure he ever really knew what feeling depressed was like. My current boyfriend is unsure on the issue. He thinks being able to do the obvious is great, but he does worry about me a lot.

    6. What other BC method have you ever tried? Just condoms and withdrawal really, and other brands of pill.

    7. Any other comment or feeling bout the BC pill that you want to share! The pill has caused me emotional problems on and off throughout the times I've been on it, but I'm only really realising it now. I'm just concerned for the generations of younger women that are put on it without being explained all the possibly side effects. The side effect of thinking you're mental can be quite disconcerting!

     
  11. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Yes, still researching!! Thank you Gem!

     
  12. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Anyone else wanting to share experiences? [​IMG]

     
  13. latentwishes

    latentwishes New Member

    1.What were the main reasons to start using the pill?
    I started the pill for contraception and to reduce cramping

    2.What were the main reasons to stop using the pill?
    I had emotional and physical side effects including depression, anxiety, irrational anger, nausea, dizziness, high blood pressure, breakthrough bleeding, dryness, low sex drive

    3.How would you describe your relationship with your doctors (the ones that prescribed you the pill)?
    The relationship with doctors is tense and unsupportive. They refused to believe that the side effects I was having were related to the pill. They suggested blood pressure medication when they noticed it was higher than normal. My blood pressure returned to normal when I stopped the pill. They also suggested depression medication when I experienced mood related side effects related to the pill and hormonal IUD.

    4. Would you ever come back to the pill? Why?
    I would never use the pill again because of the negative side effects

    5. Did you find it hard/easy to convince your partners to start using another method of birth control when you decided to quit the pill?
    It was hard to convince my partner to start using another method of birth control. He doesn't like condoms and thinks other methods like FAM and the diaphragm is too unreliable.

    6. What other BC method have you ever tried?
    I have tried the depo shot, nuvaring, hormonal IUD, copper IUD, FAM with diaphragm, and centchroman

    7. Any other comment or feeling about the BC pill that you want to share!
    I think too many doctors dismiss the fact that many women have side effects from hormonal birth control. They tend to cover up the side effects with other medications instead of determining if the pill is contributing to the symptoms.

     
  14. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Thank you Latentwishes!
    Still researching, so feel free to share with us your experiences with the Pill [​IMG]

     
  15. Athena12

    Athena12 New Member

    1.What were the main reasons to start using the pill?
    Contraception and to reduce cramps

    2.What were the main reasons to stop using the pill?
    I had started incorporating healthier habits in my life (started eating right, became a vegetarian, started exercising, etc) and it made sense to finally let go of the hormones after 6 years...Funny thing is, I thought it was part of my personality to be so anxious, depressive, paranoid...turns out that after I stopped using the pill, I stopped having those horrible feelings completely, I became a different person and started feeling happy a couple of weeks after stopping it! So now I know that the pill was the cause for all that! [​IMG]
    The first brands of BCP I tried at the time (yasmin included) also gave me unbearable nausea and migraines.


    3.How would you describe your relationship with your doctors (the ones that prescribed you the pill)?
    It was ok I guess, I asked for contraceptives at the time and they prescribed them. The ob/gyn I'm going to now is awesome, she was totally supportive of me going to natural methods, she just thought the Lady Comp was too pricey! lol

    4. Would you ever come back to the pill? Why?
    Absolutely not. that thing just messed me up [​IMG]

    5. Did you find it hard/easy to convince your partners to start using another method of birth control when you decided to quit the pill?
    It wasn't hard. My husband knew I was looking for an alternative for hormones, and he was very supportive.

    6. What other BC method have you ever tried?
    Condoms

    7. Any other comment or feeling about the BC pill that you want to share!
    The pill has become something so trivial in women's lives that many times they "force" themselves to get used to it just because they think it is the only effective way of contraception, and with the doctors supporting that line of thought, it alienates them from knowing their bodies and "taking charge of their fertility"! (pun intended) [​IMG]

     
  16. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Thank you Athena12!!

     
  17. ShadowBramby

    ShadowBramby New Member

    1. What were the main reasons to start using the pill?

    First started using the pill when I was 13/14 as I was having very very bad periods. I would faint and vomit and I was very irregular also. Stopped when I was 16 as I felt I didnt need it anymore. Went back on when I was 17 as I had begun a sexual relationship with my current boyfriend.

    2. What were the main reasons to stop using the pill?

    I stopped using the pill just before Christmas 2011 as I was diagnosed with multiple pulmonary embolism(blood clots on my lungs). The doctors concluded that the pill was the only cause.

    3. How would you describe your relationship with your doctors (the ones that prescribed you the pill)?

    I have quite a good and understanding relationship with my doctors. I feel I can tell them anything.

    4. Would you ever come back to the pill? Why?

    No, due to the blood clots I am unable to go back on any hormonal contraceptives which contain estrogen.

    5. Did you find hard/easy to convince your partners to start using another method of birth control when you decided to quit the pill?

    No, it was a 'no brainer' for my partner.

    6. What other BC method have you ever tried?

    Condoms and the pull-out method.

    7. Any other comment or feeling bout the BC pill that you want to share!

    I just want to warn people that while it was quite rare for a woman as young as myself(I am currently 19 but was diagnosed with the blood clots when I was 18) to develop multiple clots on the lungs, it is still a risk factor when you decide to start taking the pill. I think women need to be made more aware of the symptoms of blood clots so they know to go straight to the ER before it's too late.

    If you have any more questions for me, feel free to ask [​IMG]
    Good Luck with your research and I hope I helped in some way!

     
  18. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Thank you Shadow!!

     
  19. katiemk1230

    katiemk1230 New Member

    Hi! I'm not sure if you're still doing research, but if you are, here's one more experience for you to use. (and by the way - THANK YOU for researching this! Western Medicine just doesn't seem to want to believe women when they explain how negatively the pill affects them. Silly us, we don't know anything about our own bodies! [​IMG]

    1. What were the main reasons to start using the pill?
    Contraception

    2. What were the main reasons to stop using the pill?
    Oh god, where do I begin lol. It gave me Severe depression, anxiety, insane mood swings, and killed my sex drive completely. My emotional changes threatened to hurt/end my relationship at times too (from my end, not his - he was very understanding). Not to mention the physical effects: weight gain(big time), bloating, dizziness, nausea, dryness down there, spotting...

    3. How would you describe your relationship with your doctors (the ones that prescribed you the pill)?
    Now it's great, when I first started noticing side effects, it wasn't so much. When I first described my side effects, she flat out told me "Oh, the pill wouldn't cause that to happen", and would keep pressuring me to take it. After *many* failed pill attempts, she finally agrees I must just be sensitive to hormones, and is cool about me using other methods.

    4. Would you ever come back to the pill? Why?
    Unfortunately yes, I just started it again this week, as I'm about to start grad school and we can't afford to pregnant (literally - we're broke). We were using the diaphragm but it starting causing me pain and irritation, and he hates condoms - so here we are again. However, one of the times I was on the pill I got so incredibly depressed that I dropped out of school, so if I feel like I'm on that road again, I'm stopping it - the whole point of bc is to stay in school, after all!

    5. Did you find hard/easy to convince your partners to start using another method of birth control when you decided to quit the pill?
    Yes and no - his main concern was that he wanted to be able to you know, finish inside me...so he wasn't thrilled about condoms or withdrawal, but he was totally fine with the diaphragm. He was *slightly* concerned about the higher risk of pregnancy at first, but not enough that he couldn't get over it. We did have some heated arguments though about his concern over his sexual pleasure vs. my mental health/stability and pleasure...

    6. What other BC method have you ever tried?
    Condoms, withdrawal, the diaphragm, and about 6 bazillion different types of BC pills.

    7. Any other comment or feeling bout the BC pill that you want to share!
    To be fair, I've dealt with mild (manageable) anxiety/depression and a lower than average libido even without the pill, but it makes these things 20 times worse. I also am *shocked* at how much doctors push this bc and ignore women's complaints. I was actually put on antidepressants at one point while on the pill, before realizing I only needed them *because* of the pill, because I was assured the pill wouldn't make me this miserable. And one last complaint (sorry for ranting haha): the double standard that exists around libido - if men can't get it up, it's a medical issue. If women on the pill have lowered libido, it's all in their head and oh well, deal with it, it's just a side effect you have to live with. Grr! Ok I'm done now [​IMG]

     
  20. tacuba

    tacuba New Member

    Yes, still researching!! Thank you Katiemk for taking the time to answer my questions! [​IMG]

     

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