Girls, We Need to Talk About Contraception!

cerazette

So I recently had a bit of a rubbish experience with contraception and I don’t think we talk about this enough. We seem to be totally fine with putting all sorts of shit in our bodies and not taking notice of what it does to us, which is the reason for this post. If you’re having trouble with either Microgynon or Cerazette, I’m with ya sista!

Microgynon
I started taking Microgynon back in 2010 to stop my horrendous periods. I’d be bleeding for weeks at a time and they were awfully heavy. I would bleed through my school skirts and I couldn’t stop it. This then resulted in an iron deficiency. Microgynon stopped the bleeding and put my periods into a regular cycle but they were still incredibly painful.

After about two years of taking Micrgynon I was told that I absolutely should not be on this pill because I experience migraines with aura – when I have a migraine, I develop stroke-like symptoms – and the oestrogen in the combined pill increases the risk of a stroke in patients who experience this. I had no idea that the pill was causing my awful migraines and that actually I shouldn’t even be on it because of this, but luckily a different doctor flagged it up and changed me straight away. I was to have a different form on contraception without oestrogen, which only really left me with a progestogen only pill. Why it took two years to come to this realisation I don’t know.


Cerazette
After coming to the conclusion that I should stay away from oestrogen, I was given Cerezatte – a progestogen-only pill (also known as POP or mini pill). This pill is taken every day with no break, whereas Microgynon is taken every day for three weeks, with a one week break. That one week break would then be when you have your period. Cerazette has to be taken at the same time every day – if you take it more than twelve hours late, you’re not protected. Anyway, I was on Cerazette for four years and only came off it recently. At the time, I thought it was the perfect pill. I had no problems whatsoever, and to be fair, that’s probably the case for the first three years of taking it. I had no periods at all which for somebody who has periods like I do, this is welcome news! Of course, it all changed.

The last year of taking it was not fun at all. I’ve been with my boyfriend for four years and I’d say we’re in a happy relationship. Well, we are now.

During my last year on Cerazette I didn’t want my boyfriend near me at all. Lots of people talk about lack of sex drive or loss of libido when on different types of contraception but this wasn’t even just that. It wasn’t about sex. Yes we weren’t having sex (and I’m talking months) but it was more about a total lack of intimacy and affection on my part and, to be honest, me being downright horrible to him. Pushing him away from me, not wanting him near me, being snappy, grumpy, lethargic – how he’s still with me now, I don’t know.

With that, I decided that enough was enough and that actually this was becoming damaging to my relationship, so I decided to stop taking it. I’ve been off it now for just over a month and I’m like a different person. To the point where my boyfriend told me that he’d ‘rather never have sex again than [me] go back on that pill’. We are back to normal now and everything’s good again – I’m simply not being horrible anymore!! I want him near me and I want to spend time with him. All in all we’re both much happier and I think my skin seems clearer, too.

Coming off Cerazette wasn’t all fun and games though. In the last month I’ve literally experienced every pregnancy symptom you’ve ever heard of. Cue dreaded pregnancy test. I’m not pregnant so it’s cool but this is what I’ve been experiencing:

-Needing a wee all the time (especially at night). I can get up and go to the loo before bed and literally before I’ve got back into bed and laid down I need to go again.

-Sore breasts, and I don’t just mean tender and a little bit sore, I mean can’t actually wear a bra right now because it hurts so much

-Spotting

-Fatigue

-No period


Sorry this is such a lengthy post but I really do think that us girls don’t get enough support on this subject and we need to support each other and share our experiences! It was only from researching online that I realised that everything I’ve experienced is totally normal and it made me think that there are probably so many other girls looking for more information, just like me.

So now I’m back to square one with not much option for a different form of contraception. Anyone else in the same boat?

Hannah x

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20 Comments

  1. June 26, 2016 / 12:01 pm

    WOW. What an amazingly honest post Hannah. When I was on the pill (back in the day when I needed to be-ha!) I was on Microgyn 30 and luckily for me it worked fine and I experienced no problems whatsoever! I’m sorry to hear you’ve been through the ringer with contraception! =( it can seriously f**k us up can’t it!? Yay for being female and having all these bloody hormones…!!!! GGGRRR!!
    Fantastic Post, more of us need to start talking about shit like this!!
    Happy Sunday
    Sarah xoxo

  2. June 26, 2016 / 12:17 pm

    Totally agree with you. This needs to be discussed more. Clinical trials just don’t capture fully (or downplay) the side-effects women experience. I struggled with the pill for 10 years because I was afraid of what other birth control would do to my long-term fertility. Then I had my daughter and was able to go to an implant-style form of birth control (since I have no intention of having another child). Yay, no side-effects (although some women do experience them with implants)! Yay, normal periods! Yay, normal sex-drive!

  3. June 26, 2016 / 12:41 pm

    This is the most honest post I have ever read and I love it. It’s such a rarity to see girls being honest about their contraception experiences. I am currently on the injection and it is working so well for me!

    http://www.57-days.blogspot.co.uk

  4. June 26, 2016 / 1:59 pm

    I was given Cerazette instead of my normal Yasmin and I had all the symptoms you listed too! Even with my boyfriend where I had a non-existent sex drive etc. It was awful! I insisted that the doctors put me straight back on Yasmin and now I feel so much better and back to normal!Xx

  5. June 26, 2016 / 7:09 pm

    I have just been switched from Mercilon to Microgynon so hopefully it’ll work for me with no problems! But I agree, this topic really should be spoke about a lot more! X

  6. June 26, 2016 / 7:16 pm

    Fab post and some thing that I never really hear people talk about enough. I was on microgynon for years but thought it was contributing to my migraines so came of it and went onto the depo injection. People worry about their fertility with the injection but I went of it for a while and fell pregnant with no problem. I’ve been on it since having my daughter 6 years ago and love it. Also most people don’t have periods on it which is an added bonus!

  7. June 26, 2016 / 7:57 pm

    So refreshing to hear people actually talk about contraceptive methods! Totally unprofessional that you were on the first pill for so long with no doctor flagging up the issues. I hope you manage to right the right contraceptive to suit you X

    loulabellerose.blogspot.co.uk

  8. June 30, 2016 / 10:40 am

    Argh yes! Loette worked brilliantly for me, then the government in NZ decided to stop bringing it in! So my doctor prescribed the generic version, meant to be exactly the same. Well it wasn’t, my downstairs was as dry as the desert, totally and utterly like sand paper. I’m on Yaz now which is $90 for 3 months! Super expensive but I’ve only ever had bad side effects with the government subsided pills. It’s actually torture having to find one that works. Everyone is so different.

  9. June 30, 2016 / 10:43 am

    This is so interesting. Recently had a couple of nightmares with my pill, and have come off it only to realise all the side effects I was having without even realising them! I’m currently looking at other options (like the implant) so would love to read a follow up about what you decide to do!

    Love this post, so important to have girls talking about things like this.

    Charlotte x

    https://womaningblog.wordpress.com

  10. June 30, 2016 / 12:05 pm

    I feel this pain SO MUCH. I was on Microgynon for two years and loved it, after years of heavy periods. I ended up on Cerazette for the same reasons as you – migraines with aura – after going in to the doctor for something else. But I had the mood swings after only a month, so came off it immediately, and then they tried me on one where you had a three hour window to take it. That didn’t work, because I’m forgetful.

    The injections worked wonders (no more periods means no more spending money! Yay!) and now I’m on the implant. Periods are back, but no mood swings! (That I’ve noticed…)

  11. July 1, 2016 / 12:01 pm

    I had problems with the pill after long-term use and can’t go back because of cervical erosion. However, since having my son, I’ve been on the injection and haven’t had a period since October! I know everyone is different but it’s worth giving a go 🙂

  12. July 3, 2016 / 1:46 pm

    Yes! I loved reading this post – I don’t know why we’re collectively so nervous of talking about something so natural and important to our lives!

    I used to be on microgynon and I was extremely lucky, I think, because I never noticed a single side effect. I loved it, but I was a bit rubbish at remembering to take it so I’ve now switched to the implant (the one in the arm). If it wasn’t so useful in that I never have to worry about taking anything I would have gone straight off it – after a year and a half I still have worse skin and unpredictable periods, and for the first three months I was on it I was pretty much a psycho. Not even joking!

    I think I’ll probably go back to the pill again when I finish with the implant, but still not sure. It’s so nice to be able to hear about other people’s experiences, so thank you for sharing and encouraging us!!

    Rebecca xx
    http://www.thestyleshake.com

  13. July 3, 2016 / 3:16 pm

    This is a really interesting and important topic, well done for being brave enough to write it!

    I’m sorry you’ve had such a rubbish time with your contraception though, I couldn’t cope with that.

    I never went on the pill because I am always forgetting things and knew I just wouldn’t take it properly. I had the Implanon implant and it’s perfect for me. I don’t get any side effects, I don’t have periods, and I can forget about it for three years. Maybe worth looking into?

    Beth x

  14. Lauren
    July 3, 2016 / 11:03 pm

    This post hits particularly hard. I’m currently on a form of contraceptive pill that has turned me into the nastiest person ever – I don’t even realise it’s happening until it’s too late! Waiting on a doctors appointment so I can stop talking it. Not fun. I applaud you for having the courage to post about your experiences!

    Lauren X
    loulabellerose.com

  15. July 25, 2016 / 5:32 pm

    Ergh, I hate contraception! I have such a bad reaction to both progesterone and estrogen (major mood swings so bad I was wrongly diagnosed with depression) that I can’t use anything! I tried the non-hormonal coil for a year but it made my periods quite heavy and painful so I’ve just had to give up. Very frustrating, I wish they could make a pill for men instead haha! Good luck, let me know if you find anything that works! xx

    Charlotte | Just Charlotte

  16. Alison Shaw
    July 26, 2016 / 2:56 pm

    Think they have made a pill for men. Tried cerazette and microgynon but felt depressed and anxious so stopped. Have been advised to try implant as it has less progestogen in in but not got round to it

  17. Danielle Emma
    July 27, 2016 / 9:34 pm

    This is such an amazing post. I love how real and honest your blog posts are, especially this one – topics like this need to be talked about more often. I’m in a similar situation, I was on Yasmin and I was having the same migraines so my Doctor took me off it and wants to put me on Cerazette. After hearing all of the bad reviews, I don’t know if I want to eeeek!! Good luck and let us know if you find anything 🙂

  18. Emily
    September 27, 2016 / 5:37 pm

    This is really interesting. I was put on Microgynon at around the age of 15-16 for the same reasons – heavy periods! I then moved to Yasmin as I found that Microgynon made my weight balloon like crazy. About 2 years ago I was put on Cerazette because I was experiencing migraines with aura, and truth be told I can totally relate with the relationship issues. I’ve been with my boyfriend for 8 years now so he’s pretty used to me being a moody cow most of the time, but recently, in the last year, I have definitely noticed the same issues as you have had – lack of intimacy, not wanting any physical contact, highly irritable.. etc. But I assumed that was down to stress with finishing uni and job hunting!

    I’m really considering stopping the pill altogether soon and seeing if that will solve the issues! Especially as it seems to be quite a common side effect!

    Great post, and good luck!

    Emily
    Emily // Bambi’s Blogs

  19. September 28, 2016 / 5:27 pm

    I’m on Zeletta and whilst I’ve never had any problems, I’m starting to question whether its contributing to my anxiety and clyclothymia 🙁 we’ve talked about me coming off it and I’m currently stuck with what to do. Really enjoying these posts Hannah, thankyou for sharing 🙂 x
    http://www.elliswoolley.blogspot.com

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