September 11th, 2019

Time to feel effects of going off long term hormonal birth control?


I was put on the birth control pill (Ortho Cyclin) as a teenager for terrible cramps which kept me out of school, throwing up all pain meds, and literally rolling on the floor asking to die.

I stayed on them for 22 years, despite not needing them for actual birth control (my partner and I are both women) because I feared that I would have symptoms like I did before I went on the pill.

I decided after my July period to go off the pill as an experiment. I'm nearing 40 and there are health risks with the pill. I did this in the summer because I'm a teacher, so I figured I had a little time to risk getting sick.

My August period came and went, and it really wasn't different than my periods were on the pill. It was a bit heavier, but the cramps were about the same, manageable with Ibuprofin. I noticed earlier that month that I was wetter down there than usual, maybe ovulation? It has been weird to, in my late thirties, suddenly not know my own body. Anyways, it went great! It was definitely manageable.

Now I'm having my September period, and it seems to be the same. The cramps aren't bad. Every month when I get my period though, I fear that the cramps will be debilitating again. Could it be that I just have so much residual birth control in my system from so many years of taking the pill? I fear that I'm not really feeling what its like without the pill yet, even though I haven't taken one in months.

If you went off or hormonal birth control after taking it for years, how long was it until your body was back to 'normal'?

I'm wondering if I should celebrate that I no longer need the pill and my periods have become manageable or fear that each month will be the month that I'm crying in pain again. I can't afford to miss work, ya know?

In other news, this is the first time in over 20 years that I haven't known exactly when my period was coming! I have to really look at a calendar and think about when my last one was. I'm not used to this! I've been wearing black pants for over a week now, just in case.