I’ve had a rough time with birth control over the years. I always forget the pill (Peanut is proof of that). The shot made me bleed for literally 3 months straight. The ring made me nauseous. Now I’m pretty sure that my IUD is giving me acne worse than a teenager (and I had none while growing up) along with some other symptoms I’m not going to get into (that may include my problems with keeping my milk supply up in the past?).
I thought that I had exhausted all of my options. I thought that hormonal birth control was all there is. I thought I would just forever have this battle with birth control until the day that I’m done having babies and get my tubes tied. So naive.
I found out about Fertility Awareness Method when I started looking into planning our next pregnancy. You may or may not actually know it by that name. That lady on such-and-such sitcom that’s taking her temperature and then telling her husband “I don’t care that we’re fighting, I’m ovulating so have sex with me!” (so sexy, eh?) That’s Fertility Awareness Method.
Little did I know, it can also be used as a birth control. If you watch your signs, you can tell when you’re fertile and either not have sex during that time or use some sort of barrier birth control. Speaking of barrier birth control, there’s more than condoms. Looking around the Mothering Dot Com message boards (and starting a thread) and a lot of women were recommending a diaphragm. What a cool idea!
I’m still figuring out the whole FAM method and I’m reading Taking Charge of Your Fertility, so I don’t have a lot of information on that. I just feel like a lot of women weren’t even told there are other options than hormonal birth control. I specifically remember having a chat with my OB (before Peanut was born) and him telling me that I’ll just have to get in the habit of remembering the pill or I’ll have to abstain. Ha!
Just know there are a ton of other options out there. Check out the Family Planning section of the MDC forums if you want more information. Read Taking Charge of Your Fertility for exact steps in how to do the FAM. Know it’s possible to do FAM if you have a nursling that wakes you up in the night, so long as you make the right modifications. Know that there are other options than hormones.