Today's post is going to be kind of personal, but I hope you enjoy reading it . Last week, I got my contraceptive implant removed, finally! This was my second implant and before having the first one put in, I'd been on the progesterone only contraceptive pill (POP) for a few months. With contraceptive implants lasting three years, altogether I'd been on contraception for almost seven years! Seriously, that long! I just reminds me how fast my life seems to have flown by since then. That's longer than I'd even had my period for before going on contraception after only four years of natural, control-free periods! I decided that it was about time to give my body a rest, to let my womb have a break and to allow my menstrual cycle to get back to it's natural flow.
When I first made the decision to get the implant, it seemed like a great idea at the time. I was in a relationship and I found that the pill made me too anxious. What if I missed one? What if it stopped working after I'd taken a paracetamol? What if it just didn't work in general? I was quite panicky about it, even though I knew how it worked. Plus I didn't enjoy having to get up early on the weekends to take it at the same time as I did during the week, which was 6am before I got ready for college. I decided that the implant was going to be a lot easier and stress-free. It would go into my arm and for three whole years, I wouldn't have to worry about forgetting to take my contraception everyday. It wasn't that simple for many of my friends though. Some of them ended up getting a constant period, having really messed up, spontaneous cycles that were stressful to manage and impossible to predict. Some of them also found that the implant negatively impacted their mood, and made them feel down all the time.
For me, the implant made my periods stop for the most part; I only 'came on' the odd couple of times throughout the entire duration of each implant. At the time, I thought this was fantastic! I didn't want to have my period; I loved not having to deal with it. This is what compelled me to get my second implant put in at the same appointment in which my first one was removed. I had so many health concerns to worry about that at the time, I was trying to get a diagnosis for my irritable bowel syndrome too, and so I didn't want to have to deal with my period. Even though my period had mostly stopped, I still experienced all of the other typical symptoms so it's not like it went away completely. I was happy to have no period for a long time, until the day I started getting pain in my ovaries. With some of the other symptoms I was experiencing and still am, I was worried that I might have ovarian cysts, which is one of the reasons I decided that I would have the implant removed when the three years was up and not get another one put in. Another reason that helped me make this decision was that I'd read and heard so many cases where after having stopped using the implant, people's bowel problems had improved, as well as their low mood. I'm intrigued to see if I will also experience any changes now that mine is out.
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The final reason that I wanted to stop using contraception is that I wanted to give my body a break and I wanted to start embracing my period. When I was younger, especially around the time that I got my first implant put in, I thought my period was annoying, something that I didn't want and something that got in the way of being intimate with my partner at the time. I was embarassed by my period when it came to intimacy and I felt uncomfortable discussing my period with my partner because I was made to believe by society that it was something to not be talked openly about, a private thing and something that guys would certainly think was gross. Now that I'm older, I am comfortable talking about my periods openly and unapologetically. It's something that is natural and normal, and that shouldn't be taboo. It's something that we do not choose and we definitely should not allow people to make us feel like we should keep quiet about it. I now wouldn't care about talking to a partner about my period, if they find it gross that's their problem and to be honest, then they'd probably not be the right guy for me. I have met lots of guys over the last seven years that don't care about periods, or period sex for that matter.
I'm glad now that I can just let my menstrual cycle get back to normal and I can see if things have changed and if so, try to get referred to a specialist to see if I do have ovarian cysts. It will take a few months for my body to regulate my cycle again anyway and right now, it feels like my body is making me pay for the last seven years! Basically the last few days have not been fun, but once things settle down I can start the journey towards being more period positive and learning to like my period, which might not sound like an easy thing to do, because who loves bleeding right? However, I did find it particularly stressful sometimes over the last few years when I started having worries about my ovaries, that I wouldn't know if everything was working properly because I didn't have a period, and it made me wish sometimes that I'd get it just so I'd have peace of mind, if that makes sense. It was definitely a little concerning not having a regular period for two years straight, especially when people go around spreading myths and stories about people's implants not working or causing fertility problems. I'm ready to learn to deal with the period life again :D
I apologise if I ended up rambling in this post but I just wanted to share with you all the start of my period positivity journey and how I found having the contraceptive implant. If you have any questions about the implant, let me know in the comments.
Thankyou for reading!
Have you ever been on a type of contraception that didn't work for you? Tell me about it.
How do you feel about your period?
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