Ignorance Is Not Always Bliss: Choosing Contraception

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Before my husband and I got married we were both excited to start our family, however the timing wasn’t right. I did not want to go on the pill, so we looked into other methods of not getting pregnant. We had no idea there was an option outside of contraception. We talked about how we would react if I were to become pregnant while on birth control. We were both open to life if it were to happen, it just wouldn’t be perfect timing.

I have always been pro-life, and while I was naive enough to trust a doctor at his word instead of reading the small print myself, I wasn’t completely ignorant. When my husband and I set up my appointment to discuss options for which contraception was right for us, I had my list ready. Here were some of my questions, how they were answered, and the actual facts (I wish I had known then) in italics.

Me: How did it prevent a pregnancy?
Doctor: “Stops ovulation altogether.”
No contraception can prevent ovulation 100% of the time. The hormones required for this would be so strong that they would (and did during testing) cause death. You can read more about the back up mechanisms regarding many contraceptives here.
Me: If I were to conceive, would the baby live?
Doctor: “Absolutely.”
There is a back-up mechanism in every form of contraception I took that works by altering the lining in your uterus when ovulation does occur (see above). If you conceive, chances are rare that the altered lining would be able to support the nutrition and oxygen that a baby would need to survive. The baby die and pass through our bodies at such an early state that we might think it was just a tough and slightly odd period.  Again, see here.
-Was there anything that could actually harm a baby or cause complications if one were to be conceived? “No.”
If you become pregnant while on contraception, your hormones are altered and you do not have the strong hormonal foundation you have naturally. Because of this, risk of miscarriage and preterm birth are much higher. It is a basic practice to counsel my clients to whom I teach the Creighton method, who have previously been on the pill to wait six months and have 3 “normal cycles” before trying to achieve a pregnancy so that their hormonal foundation can be rebuilt. Clients are considered “post-pill” for one full year after they stop taking it. (Read more…)
-Would it throw off my cycles? “It will completely turn off your cycles; you shouldn’t have a period.”
RED FLAG, ABORT MISSION!!! Is what I would scream at myself looking back here.
I asked questions for the better part of 45 minutes. Every answer I remember was a lie or inaccurate. Every possible side effect I asked about I was told was a thing of the past, old news, as this was the new and improved version. Yet 90% of those side effects hit me, and stayed with me for years after discontinuing. Some women never regain their fertility even after just one shot.
I want to make sure that every woman and couple has the knowledge that she doesn’t have to suppress the way her body is supposed to work.  We have options besides contraceptives, and we should feel empowered with solid and scientifically proven knowledge of our own fertility. Furthermore, we should walk into our doctor’s offices and be an active participant in our healthcare long before we are even in the position of achieving and avoiding pregnancies. Women who are empowered with the knowledge of their fertility and how their bodies work gain a lot more knowledge about their overall health than just knowing if they are fertile or infertile at any given time. For me, I will no longer accept sub-par “healthcare” which throws a pack of pills at me instead of giving me real answers to health issues.
For more information about a natural method as well as a comprehensive look into contraception, I like to refer people to the following links:
www.fertilitycare.org
www.abbyjohnson.org/discussions-2/2015/3/31/discussions-test-post
 

April

April

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