I have been on the pill for around six years and to be entirely honest, I wish I never went on it. Don’t get me wrong, the pill has made my life very convenient and I’ve never had any real problems with side effects or anything, but there are definitely things I would do differently if I had my time over. I wanted to write this blog post to explain why I personally have decided to get off the pill, despite being in a long-term relationship and having no issues (kind of) with the pill.
My journey with the pill first started when I was in high school. I went on the pill for contraceptive reasons and was first put on Monofeme. Being on this particular pill lasted me about six days because it instantly put me in this major depressive mood. Like major, major depression. So, I went back to my doctor and explained my mood and he changed me to Levlen ED.
Since being on Levlen ED I’ve never had any problems with mood, skin, weight gain or anything like that. The only thing that really changed in my body (externally) was my boobs grew and let’s be honest, what young woman doesn’t want some free extra boobies?! So I was pretty happy with my decision to go on the pill now that I had bigger boobs and could control when I got my period. Now, six or so years later, hindsight has kicked in and I wish I could tell my younger self not to go on it (or at least, not rush to go on it like I did). Here’s why.
First of all, no doctor or anyone for that matter ever educated me about the risks involved with the pill. It wasn’t until being on the pill for about three years that I found out (through a friend, not even a medical professional) that smoking and being on the pill is a massive no-no and that you are at an increased risk of blood clots and therefore should protect yourself by doing things like always walking around when you catch a flight anywhere and not sitting down for extended periods of time. Like hellllllooooo doctors, do you not think these are two MAJOR things I should have known?! Imagine if I didn’t do anything to protect myself against clots (which I didn’t) and then one flicked off, went to my brain and I had a stroke…
The pill impacts on gut health as well. If you don't know by now, I and many others are big advocates for gut health, so when I found out that the pill impacts the levels of yeast in your intestines and inhibits the intestines ability to absorb nutrients from your food, I actually felt bad for doing this to my bod for so many years - cue sad music and tears for all the good bacteria my bod has potentially lost. Then we’ve got the increased risk of certain cancers, heart attack and infertility. Three things that would change your life indefinitely, but let’s not tell a 17 ish year old girl about these. Are you kidding me?!
You might be thinking ‘as if she didn’t know about these, everyone knows this stuff’, but I can assure you none of these risks were stressed to me and this is NOT common knowledge to everyone out there. Now that I am in the health care industry and have studied for three years, I have a better understanding of finding reliable information and making informed decisions myself. This is what has brought me to the decision to stop taking the pill.
Side note - I actually stopped taking the pill earlier this year and had the intention to give my body a break and go back on it once I got my period back. Well, that failed. I waited three months for a period and nothing came. I wasn’t very educated about natural alternatives to the pill then so I panicked and went back on the pill. But since then, I have not been able to get the effects of the pill on my body out of my mind. I no longer want to interfere with my hormones and mess with my body for the sake of convenience.
With all of that said, I guess you can say my decision to stop taking the pill is solely health based. I felt a bit hypocritical spending all this time and effort working on my health with better food choices and exercise, but not changing the fact that every single day, I am messing with my hormones with an artificial pill. I am all about loving and caring for my body inside and out, and as the pill does not fit with this at all it was time to say see ya later pill!
I want to stress that I am not pushing my decision on anyone. This is a personal decision. I want to tune into my body more and treat it the way it should be treated, naturally. If you’re wondering about what natural contraceptive options I will be trying, I am going to trial a few different apps to track my fertility. Believe it or not, tracking has been proven to be as effective as the pill (if done correctly) and it allows you to tune in with your body and really understand what is happening with your body. I can imagine the next few months will be rough… my body is going to be freaking out trying to work out how to regulate my hormones again but I am going to do my best to trust the process, trust my body and remember why I have decided to do this. For my health, happiness and my future Happy Little Humans.
Please feel free to comment on this post or contact me here or on my Instagram and we can talk all things 'the pill'.