The Effects of Stopping Birth Control

Discussion in 'Archived Discussions' started by Raunchy-Row, Apr 11, 2011.

  1. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    *guys, I tried my best to put posts that seem related "next" to eachother but none of the recovered posts had dates and most of them didn't have names so I apologize if some of this doesn't flow as coherently as it did in the original thread.

    I think this was the very first post so I will start here:

    Hello all,

    I am new to this, but I am soooo happy I found this forum!!

    I was hoping someone could help me, because medical doctors just do not seem to understand what we go through!

    A lot of the posts I read are from women who had been on birth control for a long time, I on the other hand, only took birth control for 2 1/2 months and then stopped because of depression and lack of a sex drive. But right after I got my period, I have also been dealing with the same symptoms that many have: panic attacks, depression, anxiety, etc.

    Due to this, I have lost my appetite, and so have lost almost 10 lbs, I have dropped 3 of my courses in university because I couldnt mentally handle it, and have been having problems with my boyfriend (even though he is so supportive) because I lash out on him when I do have anxiety, and I just never want to have sex because of the way I feel, and because my self-confidence has dropped due to my loss of weight. By the way, does anyone get worse anxiety after stopping the birth control during their periods? Cause mine seems to be worse around that time of the month!

    I even tried an anti-depressant once because of all the anxiety, and had a bad reaction to the pill! I had a bad anxiety attack from the pill, and so my doctor told me to not take it anymore!!

    Has anyone else been on birth control for a few months and had the same anxiety symptoms? Does it matter how long you are on it? Could it have been that my body is just more sensitive to hormones? Will it get better with time?

    Please help!!!!! I need some hope at this point!!)
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 24, 2013

  2. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    Hi Anna,

    I've noticed that some other users have posted about their symptoms being worse again during periods--most likely, I think, because of the hormones. You might want to look into some things (5HTP and evening primrose oil come to mind but I'm not an expert in either) that help to mitigate the severity of those hormonal side effects. Unfortunately it seems that some women are really sensitive to hormones and the pill doesn't really seem to help--and can make things worse, so it makes sense that you went off, and good for you for noticing!

    re: anxiety/panic I had the same thing ON the pill, it was the worst summer of my life! I did take 5HTP to help with the side effects and it really helped (it converts to serotonin and helps support your brain during depression and anxiety), I eventually tapered off and have been fine for the past 3 years. It DID take me almost a year after I went off the pill to feel like myself completely but a huge improvement was within the first one to two months, so please give yourself time, and keep on doing what you're doing! You have lots of support here and a wealth of information!

  3. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    My period thinks it wants to start, but won't.

    This would be my first period since stopping the pill a little over a month ago, and it's practically the same cycle length it was before I went on the Pill.

    However, the past couple days, I've had no flow...just discharge with a little blood mixed in and some menstrual cramps. It's aggravating me because I just wish it would stop stalling and start already. )

  4. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    This is happening to me. I was on the pill for 17 years, and stopped taking it 3 months ago. While my sex drive seems to be increasing (thank god), my emotional state has steadily declined. I am way too emotional, feeling insecure, irrationally jealous, crying at the drop of a hat, etc. I don't like these feelings one bit and my husband doesn't deserve them. It's hard to hold them in. My appetite is off, I'm not sleeping well. I'm feeling worse now after 3 months off than I did up to this time. I'm hoping that my hormones start to level out soon...Not sure what else to think.)

  5. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    I stopped the pill just about 3mths ago and I too had days where I felt really horrible, and stayed home crying the entire day - NOT AT ALL in my character. I'm also bloated to the max in the abs and feels like I am carrying a chainmail suit on my entire body, I also went up 10lbs in 3wks, in spite of having no appetite, and working out running up to 20miles a week for that 3wks!! It doesn't appear to be fat since my bust nor hips didn't increase, my skin just got heavy, dimply and saggy, feels like gravity is literally pulling me down. Has this happened to anyone? I also haven't had a period since I stopped in early March, could this be related? I was on Ortho Tricyclen for 5yrs)

  6. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    I thought that Ortho Tricyclen was a good form of birth control, that's one reason why I was considering it, I'm currently on the shot, been on it for 6 years, the doctors are making me get off it because of the osteoporosis issue. Plus I have gained alot of weight, after hearing the side effects from you guys, i'm thinking of changing my mind. What should I do?)

  7. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    I have been feeling this too, and wondering why everyone was feelin while on the pill and not off it. I was taking low estrogen for about 5 months. I felt fine on it, just a little moodiness here and there, until about the 5th month, i started with little episodes of depression. Now it's gotten increasingly worse. I have anxiety a lot and i'm constantly thinking about the next time i've going to feel down. I don't want to be alone..which is totally out of my character, and I've found myself uninterested in things that i usually enjoy. Not sure if its my body still trying to level itself out after having those extra hormones in it.
    Any suggestions or advice)

  8. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member


  9. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    Oh my goodness. I have been off of the pill (ortho-tricyclen) after taking it for only four months. I'm so glad that now I know that I am not crazy. For the past week I have been dizzy, gained five pounds, I am anxious all of the time, I have headaches and I have been depressed. I think that it has to be the pill even though I was fine on it. I'm glad that I am not the only person experiencing this problem. Now are there any solutions?)

  10. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    I've finally started feeling better since stopping the pill. Like i mentioned above, I was experiencing a lot of depression. Moments where i didn't want to be alone. But only after i stopped it. But yesterday was the first time i felt better. Back to my chipper self. Want to hang around people more and be active like usual. So give it some time. I truly believe your body needs to readjust after having those additional hormones in it. I'll keep you updated on my moods. Please do so as well.)

  11. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    I have been battling my emotions for years. I am 24 yrs old and I have always been one to cry. My friends make fun of me sometimes. I have tried a few types of BC and now I am on the Depo shot. That has made me much worse. I am not going to continue using it. I am at my witts end and so is my boyfriend. I cry almost everyday about stuff. I am always trying to explain to him how I FEEL but he doesnt understand. I feel like I could cry right now, for no reason at all. He and I are arguing more because of me. I get upset at little things now, I feel so sad all the time. He is getting fed up and says that it is so hard to be with someone that crys all the time, he jokes that I would cry if the sun was out. I just want help. I want to know if anyone knows of any treatments that woudl help me overcome this. I often hear from people that they have never met someone so emotional and I hate it. I don't like feeling this lump in my throat all the time, I hate crying all the time. Even when I dont take any form of BC I am still sad. I feel like I am harmonally imbalanced. I dont want anti depressents... they actually give me anxiety and made me lose my sex drive. I dont want to feel NUMB either... I just dont know what to do. Geez, what will happen if I get pregnant someday. I am scared I will flood my home with tears! LOL)

  12. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    while i was taking Apri, i noticed that the first week of the pills were making me irritable and angry. i thought after a few months maybe that would subside. i lost my prescription so i couldn't refill it and didn't feel like go to my doctor, paying a copay and getting a new one. so i thought, no biggie, i'll start after my next period. this week would have been my first week of pills. on tuesday i had a killer headache. i've been going to bed early and napping. feeling incapable of doing anything. even mopping and laundry felt like there were too many steps for me to accomplish. i thought, "WOW, i'm still cranky and cratchety too". but yesterday, i started crying. and felt like i was sinking. my mother made me upset and i thought of killing myself and leaving a note that says, " i hate my mother". that's when i went,"whoa there!!!!" that is completely out of character, i am not a suicidal person by any means. so i sat down and looked up the symptoms of depression. and there they were. i called my husband, softly crying and said, "i think i'm depressed". what an awful feeling, what an awful word. i dreaded the idea of antidepressants.

    today after my gyn appointment i mentioned the sadness and anger during the first week of pills. she said it was only supposed to happen the first few months and that if it kept happening to let her know because then we'd be dealing with something else.
    i connected it. the pill and my depression. but i stopped, so why did i still feel this way?
    and here i am.
    thank you all for your stories. i am relieved to see that it's not just me. and that this will subside. and i lost 3 lbs. since stopping. that cheered me up a bit.)

  13. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    I really think that the side effects that happen once you stop taking the pill are determined by how long you were on the pill prior. I had women who have been on it for a year and go back to normal right away and then for those of us who have been on it for years and years it is a little more difficult. I have been on the pill since I was 16 due to cysts on my ovaries. I am now 24 and jsut stopped. I was taking Yasmin for about 4 months after trying 14 different brands, all with severe side effects ranging from depression, nausea, mood swings, everything in the book. Yasmin by far was the worst one ever due to the diuretic is my guess I was dehydrated and I passed out at work due to stroke like symptoms, but the docs said everything was normal, my husband and i discussed it and I stopped taking the pill 3 weeks ago. I did not have a probelm getting that initial period but I dont know about the next one. Here is my input for those of you who have just stopped or are thinking about it. I would recommend it, if you have been on the pill for years realize that you wont feel 100% right away it takes time, so i am learning, now the nausea has completely ended thank god, and i have lost 6 pounds even though I am now eating more than i ever have. The one thing that is lingering is the anxiety that came with the Yasmin, I'm no longer having panic attacks but i do get anxious a lot easier then I used to before i started the pill. But I think panic attacks are my own doing because I get anxious and then I freak out about having another panick attack and then sure enough I have one. But I promise that things are so much better now that I am off the pill than when I was. I feel so much more normal. I have a sex drive, and I'm not nausous all the time. Good luck to all of you, if you have any questions feel free to email me at

  14. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member


    I stopped taking the pill months ago because I was an emotional mess! I would get so angry I couldn't even see straight! I'd get frustrated at even the little of things and it would be like it would mount up in 10 seconds flat. I'd go from milk spilling to the end of the world is coming in a matter of seconds. It was terrible. Doing some "Googling" led me to this site. I stopped taking the pill the next cycle. Well, it's been a rocky road. In general, my outcome is positive. Immediatley after stopping I felt great, but as the weeks and weeks have wore on little glimpses of my old "cranky" self come back. I have bad, bad days.. but I have more "good days" than I used to. It's like I still have the anger sometimes, but I can actually step back from it and see it... where before I was like in this whirlwind of it and not be able to really control it. I can't help but believe I will continually get better.. if I just "give it some time." Because I just know this isn't 100% me yet. I say, hang in there. Your body has been chemically controlled and hormonally altered for months or years... it's going to take time to get back to normal.

    Hugs to you all! This is painful, I know. It affects your relationships, your job, your self-worth. Best wishes!


  15. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    Fantastic! After reading lots of posts from other girls I don't feel like such a lunatic. I really need some advice on where to go from here though...

    A couple of months ago I went to the docs very concerned that I had something seriously wrong with me. My body was aching constantly, my joints hurt my muscles hurt the worst thing was what happened to my hands and arms, it would start like pins and needles then progress to numbness and weakness. I was 28 years old feeling like I was 88. I suffered from bouts of shaking and tremors, irregular heartbeat, cold sweats and fearsome mood swings. I was also constantly tired with no energy and no motivation to do anything.I work from home and would often end up sleeping all day!

    I decided to get a check up when I started considering that my quality of life was so ruined by feeling ill everyday that I would be better off dead. Which was so very unlike me.

    I had blood tests and a full check up and talked it over with my doctor. When I went back for the results I was quite shocked when he diagnosed me with having depression and anxiety disorder.

    He explained that all my symptons were the result of this and that at my wost moments I had been suffering panic attacks.

    He couldn't offer any explanation as to why this had happened and prescibed me citalopram antidepressants to reduce my anxiety and help with depression.

    Although they helped I began to notice that towards the end of my monthly cycle I felt worse again and I asked if it could be connected with taking the pill. I was taking microgynon 30. My doctor dismissed that completeley and said it was not linked.

    I kept wondering about it and then after thinking back to when my problems had initially started it tied in within a few weeks of beginning to take microgynon. I had changed from taking marvelon as I was getting really bad spots so I switched.

    I made the decision to stop taking the pill after looking on the net and finding many many accounts of the pill being linked to anxiety and depression.

    I opted for an IUD, to avoid any hormone containing birth control and talked to a women doctor who agreed that the pill could cause problems.

    Since stopping the pill I have felt bad. I could not find any information on the effects of STOPPING the pill, lots about starting and carrying on but nothing about how the body handles withdawing from hormones.

    I have felt dull detached and disinterested. I don't want to talk, just sit quietly, my depression has worsened despite the antidepressants and I have developed an itchy rash all over my body.I have spots on my face worse than when I was a teenager, great big lumpy ones Yukk! I can't sleep properley and I know I am quite horrible to be around.

    I suspected that I might have some symptons on stopping but I thought it would be over in a week or so. I was taking microgynon for 6 months and marvelon for 6 months prior to that.

    Does anyone know how long it takes after 6 months of the pill to return to being a human again?

    I warned my boyfriend that I would probably be a pig until it was out of my system and told him to take any moodiness or stupid comments and behaviour with a pinch of salt. Luckily he is an absolute sweetheart who remembers why he fell for me and what I used to be like before all of this, but I feel so sorry for him and I hate him having to deal with living with me through this.

    I'm getting married in September and I want to enjoy our big day.

    Does anyone know of anything that can help? I'm considering stopping taking the antidepressants, has anyone else been in this situation. I don't trust the advice of doctors, they seem to be at odds with what is really going on judging by all the posts I have read on this site!

    I'm desperate to get back to how I used to be, I miss myself and I don't want to blow it all by carrying on like this.


  16. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    how long does it take to get your period again after stopping the pill? i went off of the pill about a month ago (after finishing the entire pack) and although it's been rocky i definately feel much better. i'm not too concerned yet but i haven't gotten my period again and i know i'm around the "normal" 28 day mark. what is considered normal after stopping the pill?)

  17. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    SO glad I found this board! I started on the pill at 21. I am almost 33 now. Was initially due to irregular periods. I've taken the Mini-pill, Ortho-TriCyclen, OTC-Lo, Yasmin, and the latest, Seasonale.

    This summer I decided to do some 'cleaning house'. I began seeing an herbalist. She told me that going off my meds was my own choice, and I gradually went off my antidepressants (Lexapro and Neurontin) and my ADD med, Concerta. I'd forget to take the Concerta half the time anyway, hee hee! I feel no better or no worse getting off those meds, but I feel better knowing they're out of my system, or going to be out.

    But, with the Pill, I worry. I've been on it SO long. It's only been 3 days... tonight I feel bloated and heavy. I am overweight as it is and now I feel even fatter. Don't feel depressed or anything.

    I can't see my gyno until November, so when I do I'll discuss diaphragm or other non-hormonal BC methods.)

  18. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    hi Nic,

    your situation sounds scarily like mine! had terrible reaction from all BCP pills (including, like you, marvelon and microgynon- most recently cilest). had my finals at university which tipped me over the edge (not helped by the pill- i think it caused the depression i felt during that time).

    after id been off it for a month, i felt terrible -went to the doctor in tears who prescribed me with citalopram. i didnt take it because i had similar fears to you.

    im now taking st johns wort (which is yet to work as it takes a few weeks to set in) and ive recently started 5-HTP (a suppplement that is naturally in your brain, creating serotonin). do a bit of research on this and see what you think.

    hope this helps- good luck!\\

    Philippa )

  19. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    I have been all over the internet and searching all over the place and just like a previous poster says, they're lots of info sources about getting on the pill, getting bcp but hardly NOTHING about when you get off other than the standard "it may take 3mths" to get back to normal, this is now month 4 off the pill, still no period, hormones all f**ked and just slowly heading downhill physically. I went to an endocrinologist who prescribed Dostinex to lower my raised prolactin levels and hopefully restore fertility. Where are these stories of bad withdrawal symtoms, I think we need to start calling these companies and have them take notice and take note of what is going on with women, even if in the minority.)

  20. Raunchy-Row

    Raunchy-Row Super Moderator Staff Member

    It takes way more than 3 months to get back to normal after taking certain bcps. I am almost in month 5 and still deal with anxiety which all started while I was taking Yasmin. It is about 80% better than a few months ago, but I still know it's there.)


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