Fear of the Pill

As I hit perimenopause, my periods are more horrible and last longer than ever (and they have always been horrible and long.) And now, they come every two weeks. I am constantly hormonal and cranky, and really crampy and sick.

I am, once again, considering the pill.

When I was in my early 20s, the birth control pill triggered an anorexic episode that lasted for years. I went on the pill back then because, as I said, I have always had horrible PMS and long and awful, painful and miserable periods.

A doctor recommended I try birth control pills, which have been known to help ease menstrual symptoms. Unfortunately for me, whenever I take birth control pills two things happen – 1.) they make me crazier and 2.) they make me gain a whole lot of weight.

In my early 20s, I had just lost 80 pounds for the second time. Both times, I vigiliantly and fiercely starved off that weight. It was so difficult and the weight loss proved nearly impossible to maintain. I had to eat so little just to stay at an average, normal weight.

Once, I started the pill, everything bloated and fattened up. My already large breasts were tremendous and sore. Waist bands dug into my belly and left giant red stripes across my body.

It broke my heart. I was eating so little to begin with – I couldn’t stand to gain weight without even getting to eat. Heartbreaking, indeed.

And so, because I refused to gain weight, I pretty much stopped eating. And I found that I could exist (MISERABLY) on very, very little food.

But still, I hated the pill. The hormones messed with my temperment – I always felt like I was crawling out of my skin. So I stopped the pill, but was so enamored with my (lack of) food plan that I continued to starve.

I got very, very thin. And guess what – my period stopped. For years. I loved it. Who cared about bone density? Fertility? Estrogen? I was free from the misery of menstruation.

Luckily, I couldn’t not eat forever and re-gained enough weight to get my period again. It didn’t get better, but I figured that I’d rather suffer about a week each month, than suffer every single day on the pill.

However, now that i seem to be either having PMS or my period ALL the time, I guess I’m willing to try again.

I have to admit. I’m pretty scared.

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4 thoughts on “Fear of the Pill

  1. The pill was not good for me either. I know we’re all different but when my periods started coming every two weeks i thought I was dying. Instead it signaled the beginning of the end. Wasn’t long after that when I finally stopped for good. Not sure what other options you have but I don’t blame you one bit for being scared.

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  2. Thank you. I can’t tell you how much I hope this is the beginning of the end! I have hated my period for the last 43 years. Can’t wait for it all to be over. Thank you for your support!!!

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  3. I feel so fortunate to have fairly easy periods. Do you have endometriosis at all? I really feel bad for women that have to suffer monthly with terrible cramps, heavy bleeding, etc. So in that respect, I did get lucky! I tried the pill when I was 20-21 only. I don’t remember having any mood issues (more than normal, anyway!) and I don’t think I put on weight. So I got lucky there, too. Whew. But I have a lot of bad luck with lots of other things and I’ve since gained a ton of weight for other reasons.

    So yeah, tough call. Not an easy solution when both choices basically suck. You can always try a pill and see if it does make things better and if it doesn’t, then quit. So I guess I’m saying it doesn’t hurt to try! Maybe you’ll have a better experience this time around. Bodies change and birth controls have changed to an extent, too.

    Best of luck!

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  4. Thank you for your support!! I have always thought i have endometriosis, but I never wanted to get the procedure which finds it.

    I really, really hope things are different with me and hormones this time. It’s been awful – I either have wicked PMS or I have my wicked period 😦 Oh well..

    Thanks again!

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