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Going off the pill

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  • Going off the pill

    So this is a question to all the girls out there. About a year ago I decided to go off the pill since I have been on it since I was 13 (thats 15 years of hormones!!!!). It's not that I am trying to get pregnant or anything just really do not like the thought of what it probably did to my body. So I have decided to talk to my doctor about an IUD but thats not my question.

    It took me more than seven months to get my first period (which in itself is a bit alarming) and I am still not seing much regularity. A huge upside to going off the pill is the my sex drive has increased quite a lot, didn't actually think about this until I read the comments to Marks post on birth control.

    Anyway my question is how long it would take before the hormonal disruption (from just the pill) would be somewhat normal? And if any of you girls have seen different changes after going off the pill - other than getting pregnant


  • #2
    My first period was at age 15.
    I was on the pill from age 16 to 23.
    Was originally put on the pill because of irregular menstruation.
    By age 30 the menstruations were finally regular. This all on a SAD diet though.
    But menstruation was never dead on, always 1-2 days late and heavy.
    I was considered a late bloomer and didn't develop any pupic and underarm hair until age the irregular periods mightve had something to do with low hormone levels in general my whole life.

    Since going primal my periods are every 28 days, between 8-10 a.m. and are 3 days long. At day 12 I ovulate. I am dead on the clock with this.
    This goes to show that the foods we put into ourselves determine EVERYTHING.


    • #3
      I started the pill at 16 and was on it for a year. I was then on Depo Provera for 6 years, the pill for another year, Depo another year, the patch for a month or so, Nuva Ring for 6 years and then Beyaz the past year or so. I stopped the pill in September for 3 months, but now I'm back on it (long story and I'm going to see my Dr. on Monday to talk about the IUD).

      My 3 months off HBC were totally fine. My period came back immediately and was on time each month. I started my period at 13 so I only had it for 3 years before going on HBC, but those 3 years were perfect. My cycle was about 32 days, very little cramping, no bloating. My period the past few months has been the same as it was all those years ago.

      I've been reading a lot about the IUD and I'm slightly nervous because I hear so many horror stories. But I'm hoping that since my cycle is so good normally, that the IUD won't really affect me too much. Only one way to find out!


      • #4
        Originally posted by TriGirl View Post
        Anyway my question is how long it would take before the hormonal disruption (from just the pill) would be somewhat normal? And if any of you girls have seen different changes after going off the pill - other than getting pregnant
        I got off the Pill and was regular within a month. I now have a VERY regular cycle. My story is the same as Issabeau's: 28 days, starts on the day it should start, no cramps, I ovulate on day 12. Though I appreciate the lack of cramping, I do still have a touch of "malaise" (usually headaches, and lower energy).

        When I went on the Pill at 25, it was because I had a very irregular period and terrible cramping. My doctor told me I was probably infertile. That was a decade ago.

        I am continually surprised when primal fixes stuff that I just assumed was always broke about me. Painful periods, hypoglycemia, irregular cycle....
        My Primal Meanderings


        • #5
          I read on Cheeseslave's blog about this book called Lunaception, which talks about exposure to light while sleeping having an effect on your cycle. If you don't sleep in darkness, that may be something you need to consider for more regular cycles as well.


          • #6
            I have been off the pill for a year now (after being on it for 18 years) and I'm still not even close to regular. Last cycle was almost 9 weeks! I'm not sure what, if anything, I'm going to do about it. Hubby got a vasectomy so there's really no need for it to be regular, but it sure would be nice if it was! I found I have a bit more oily skin but that's not a huge deal. The good news for me, besides a better sex drive, is that I lost about 8 lbs. that I had been carrying around since I went on the pill.


            • #7
              I finally quit the pill at Christmas, after 15+ years. My cycle seems to have immediately returned to its previous length (23-24 days - ack! I blame my mother's side of the family for that), but my first two periods have been pretty cruisy (no bad cramps, no curling on the bathroom floor wanting to die). My skin has become a bit oilier, as it was pre-pill, but not accompanied by the horrid adult acne I used to have, which was why I chose to go on that pill in the first place. I think Primal-based eating and my resultant lower body weight have helped to heal and even out my formerly whackadoodle hormones.
              Last edited by Sigi; 01-28-2012, 04:46 PM.
              I have the simplest tastes. I am always satisfied with the best.

              Oscar Wilde


              • #8
                I convinced my wife to ditch the pill and we are back on condoms until we decide it's baby time. She's been on it for a very long time, and we thought it might be good to normalize that region a bit before trying for anything. It's been about 4 months and she's still not "regular" or whatnot. Her doctor said it's usually a minimum of four cycles, but it could be much longer. My wife has mentioned several times that her cramps are way worse and also that her sex drive is through the roof... which is great.

                I think going off the pill is an excellent decision.


                • #9
                  This is all really interesting! I went off the pill a week ago (on it 6 years), after reading Mark's post. I had already done some soul-searching about it but I was afraid to quit because I'd heard there might be really bad side effects of quitting. Still, it seemed liked staying on it would ultimately be much more dangerous, and might possibly be keeping me from achieving the mental and physical health I want.

                  So far, no period (it's only been 9 days.) I feel more emotionally ALIVE, and I have more energy for exercise. I'm glad I'm not taking it anymore!
                  28, female, 5'2"
                  Went primal 7/28/10: 154 lbs.
                  1/12/12: 135 lbs.
                  Goal: 120 lbs.


                  • #10
                    Thanks for all the replies... Funny that some of the things you mention actually apply two what I have been experiencing even though I didn't put two and two together, definitely great to hear it from others!


                    • #11
                      "It took me more than seven months to get my first period (which in itself is a bit alarming) and I am still not seing much regularity. A huge upside to going off the pill is the my sex drive has increased quite a lot, didn't actually think about this until I read the comments to Marks post on birth control."

                      Oh, thank GOD you posted that. I just went off the Nuva ring (for different reasons than yours but I've also been hearing a lot of scary things about its side affects) and haven't gotten my period. Its been a little over a month and I'm freaking out. Pregnancy tests are negative and we've always used protection, but I could be one of those few percenters who get pregnant. I'm glad I read this thread, I feel a whole lot better now.
                      January 14th-306.2
                      January 21st, lost 2" off my waist.
                      January 30th-300.2

                      Come to the edge she said.
                      No, I'll fall.
                      Come to the edge.
                      No, it's too high.
                      Come to the edge.
                      I came
                      She pushed
                      And I flew


                      • #12
                        I went off the pill just prior to going primal, about three months ago. My cycles are still wack and seem to be getting longer. Sex drive definitely increased after the pill was discontinued. I also have a return of the mind-altering cramps that spurred going on the pill in the first place when I was 18. Cramps are not as mind-altering as they were then however My PMS is now so bad that PMS as a name fails to capture the severity--"there is no Shaman, only Zool" might be more appropriate. I honestly wonder if its a form of natural birth control to offset the increased sex drive (yeah, I'm horny, but for a week nobody wants to come near me ) I think that all of these things are not Primal-related, I think it is absolutely related to going off the pill after having been on them for over 15 years. I'm going to wait everything out a bit longer prior to going back on, which is something I am seriously considering.


                        • #13
                          I learned how to chart my cycle easily by reading the book Taking Charge of Your Fertility (lame name, awesome awesome book, even if it is a bit anti doctor for my taste) For those with irregular cycles this can be a real help in determining why the cycle is long: either non ovulation, or late ovulation, or other. It can give you a clue to which phase is out of whack by taking your oral temp just after waking.

                          Faster than getting that book is the website fertility friend. I don't think their charting "course" (free) is as cool as reading the book, but it will get you started. TONs of ladies on that site can answer questions about your cycle and what they think is going on. Good community there. I have charted on and off for 4 years, and have found temps are way steadier (good thing) on primal/leptin reset protocol.
                          Started Whole30 December 31, 2011
                          Integrated Leptin Reset/Jack Kruse plan Jan 13, 2012
                          Starting Weight: 174.8
                          CW:160.0 lbs


                          • #14
                            I'm on the pill at the moment but I had a year when I was off. I was on from 16 - 22 and then 23 to now (26).

                            When I was off for a year, it took 8 months before I had another period!!! That was quite a scary time and the doc said it wasn't unusual. Apparently because I went on to reduce cramping, they hadn't naturally settled themselves so she implied it was my hormones and body playing catch up over the years.

                            They came back but when I met my husband we decided the pill is the best option for us just now. I'm horribly squeamish so IUDs are out for me. We're planning on going travelling soon so the pill will be a reliable option then (not sure how easy to source condoms etc) but once we're back I'm considering coming off. Have been for a while but marks post made me think more seriously about it...

                            Sugar is my nicotine...


                            • #15
                              It's funny cause I started because of cramps as well, but even though I do feel a bit the first day now (helps me know when my period is coming haha) it is in no way as bad as it was back then, don't even have to take anything against it. Also my period last maybe a day and a half at the moment and is very light, which was definitely not the case back then, but I am not sure if this is the norm for me now or if my body is still not back to somewhat normalsy.

                              Anyway I am definitely not going back on the pill again, just feel so much better without it. Now I just hope my doctor will be ok with the IUD.