I’ve been on birth control since I was roughly 14-15 years old. Initially, it was to try help out my periods because they were so painful and irregular. Alongside that, there were other personal issues that I don’t particularly feel 100% comfortable with sharing just yet! So after nearly 10 years, I’ve decided (for the second time) to come off the contraceptive pill.
Before I go any further, I just want to say that this post is in no way intended to say that people shouldn’t be on the pill or any form of birth control at all. If you are – great, woo, go you! If you’re not – great, woo, go you! It just didn’t work for me and I hope I can sorta explain why in this post!
Let’s just get straight to it shall we?
So, as I said as the start, I’ve been on the pill since I was roughly about 14-15 years old. This was to tackle my super, super heavy, painful and irregular periods. They were just such a nightmare and they made me so ill. I remember once, I was curled up in a ball in absolute agony, on the school field, in November and the ground was sopping wet. This was because the pain was absolutely unbearable. Not very ideal is it? With my GCSE’s coming up in a years time, I really couldn’t afford to potentially have a period during them and be completely wiped out. So, I made the decision to go on the pill to try regulate them and take away a bit of the pain so I could actually function. My parents were incredibly supportive of my decision to do this. I know that not everyone has supportive parents when it comes to stuff like this. My mum was my own personal little guide all the way through.
Going on the pill, theoretically speaking, should’ve been the best decision I made. I loved that the pill regulated my periods. They were no longer stupidly heavy or painful. There was minimal or no pain at all. I could actually go about a ‘normal’ lifestyle. So, on the surface, everything in theory should’ve been swimming along just nicely. But the reality was the total opposite end of the scale. I just covered it really well.
I’ve been on about 7 different pills.
That I can think of, I’ve probably had more to be honest but these are the most significant ones to me. I’m not going to name the pills because I really don’t want to scare anyone, incase they’re on that pill themselves. However, if you really want to know, then I can tell you privately. I hope that’s ok! Here’s a lil timeline for you:
The first one….
made me very hairy, like ridiculously hairy all over my body. Of course, I cared what people would say or think because I was young and very insecure about myself. Like I said, I was only 14-15 at the time. I was on that for less than a year.
The next pill was ok but it made me really paranoid, irrationally angry and depressed. I was a bit of a nightmare to be honest. This was probably one of the most difficult years I went through with my parents – my mum especially because we would constantly argue. I’m ashamed of how I behaved towards her, it just wasn’t acceptable. I soon came off this one.
The third one…
I gained weight in a really short space of time. At this point, you may be reading this like ‘Ugh, poor Katie, crying about her weight. Embrace it’ I couldn’t embrace it. It just wasn’t possible for me, I was not in the right mind set at all. Fresh out of school and starting college, I still gave a crap about what people thought of me. I might not seem like the sort of person who would get upset about their weight, bearing in mind how big my personality is. But yeah, I hate my weight at times – As you may have read in my most recent life lately post. So this pill really f*cked my self esteem and image up.
The next – I loved, I couldn’t fault it at all really apart from the fact that it gave me some water retention on my ankles (weird thing to get from the pill, I know). However, I could deal with that. This was the longest pill I was on but after a while, my migraines intensified and became unbearable. So for my own health, I chose to change. If I had to go back onto the pill, it would be this one. The doctor, however, wouldn’t let me go back onto this pill, just in case.
I had no week break and I would have periods for sometimes a whole month. Which actually physically drained me.
In addition to this, my migraines were becoming more and more frequent so I came off the pill to see if there was any relation. Annoyingly, it didn’t make a difference. After this, I went to my doctors and asked to try one more pill. This next one was probably the worst I’ve ever been on.
It did stuff to me that I don’t even want to think about.
I was absolutely manic. I was so incredibly depressed and having horrible thoughts, I didn’t ever admit it to anyone. Not even to Kayne until we had a huge argument and I was screaming some god awful things to him. That argument in particular, was almost like something had woke up inside me and like reality just hit me in the face. He didn’t deserve that and it makes me cringe so bad when I think about it. He was an incredibly supportive boyfriend (fiancée incase he reads this and corrects me) I don’t deserve this support. Again, to see me on social media and in person – you wouldn’t have thought there was anything going on with me, purely because I didn’t show it or admit or speak to anyone about it.
To put things in perspective,
One minute, I’d be smiling and joking, the next I’d be having these awful, horrid thoughts that would literally consume me. The mood swings were absolutely unbearable. It was hard, I knew I was being an utter cow and I didn’t want to be like that but there was just this fire inside me that I couldn’t completely put out. It was so weird. There was a constant battle with myself.
In addition to this, the weight gain came on really fast because of this particular pill and then I would comfort eat because I was so down about my weight which didn’t help anything. Then, I’d sit there and cry because I had just done stuff I was so, incredibly ashamed of.
I wasn’t being me anymore. I was somebody completely different. After a long, long talk and cry to Kayne, I decided to come off the pill once and for all.
Why did I keep persisting with the pill?
Well, I hated the idea of the injection because I am terrified of needles. It’s one of my phobias. The coil, I just felt totally uncomfortable with the idea of and then the implant makes me SHUDDER with fear. Not only this, I was just terrified of having the irregular, extremely painful and heavy periods again. Mostly, the memory of my periods pre-contraceptive pill were the reason I tried so long with the pill.
Whilst the pill was a means of controlling my periods, it was also a form of contraception for me. But y’know, I’m in a long term relationship and if anything were to happen, it wouldn’t be a bad thing and again, if you’ve seen my most recent life lately, you’ll understand! I just don’t feel like I need to be on the pill anymore.
I’ve been off the pill now since June/July and honestly, I feel so much happier.
I look back now and I just feel like I was a zombie when I was on the pill. Almost as if I was living in a state of existence rather than being ‘alive’ so to speak. I feel like when I laugh, it’s actual laughter too. It feels really f*cking good to really laugh again. Not only this, but I feel like I have so much more energy too. Like I said, I felt like a zombie. A lethargic zombie.
My weight is improving.
Slowly but surely, I can feel myself losing the weight. Hopefully at some point, I’ll be in a place where I’m much happier about my weight and body where I feel comfortable enough to talk about it. My moods are sooooo much better. I can’t even remember the last time Kayne and I had a massive row. I feel so much happier about myself in general. The thoughts are practically gone too. I feel really good. It’s a long process, but I’m getting there. In just the space of 3-4 months, I feel like a completely different person to how I was at the start of the year. I feel like me again.
Sadly, the migraines are still here.
I’m just accepting that my usual 3-4 migraines a week are inevitable now. *Sighs*. But, on a mega plus side – my periods aren’t as bad as I expected them to be. They’re painful sure, but nowhere near the level they were when I was younger. I can actually do stuff and my life isn’t on hold for a week when it happens. If anything, I’m really emotional and more sleepy than usual. I cried because Kayne didn’t get me the right chocolate bar – oh the joys…
I think the main thing to take from all this, is just know what works for you.
If you don’t feel good about yourself, on the form of contraception you’re on. That’s if you are on any at all – then make the appointment with your doctor/nurse and get it changed. Please, don’t do what I did and persist in misery because none of it has been worth it. I can’t stress this enough, your self care and worth is more important.
However, I do think it’s great that we have access to these contraceptives and if they work for you then that’s great! Everybody’s body is different and we all respond differently to stuff so what works for me, won’t work for others and vice versa and that’s ok!
But will I go back onto that sort of contraception? Nope. I never want to go back on the pill again. Or any other forms of contraception that I have to take or have inside me *shudders*. Just condoms and the ol’ ‘traditional’ way for me from now on! I never want to put myself through that again.
I realise this has been a bit of a rambly post, I do apologise! But, I hope this sorta helps someone. My DMS are open on Twitter if anyone would rather share their thoughts privately rather than comment! I hope you enjoyed the post and if you made it until the end, then congratulations!