Girl Talk

Posted: March 23, 2010 in Headspace, Health/Fitness
Tags: , , , ,

The boys in the audience may want to find something else to read, today!


I take my final dose of birth control pill tonight. I’ve been on the pill since I was fifteen, using several different brands over the years. The past handful of years I’ve been using Yasmine, or Yaz. I plan on having the Essure procedure done in the near future, and after conversing with Bill about it, decided that I will just stop taking the pill now, rather than three months after the Essure procedure is performed (when they verify I’m sterilized).

On the one hand, I’m excited to see an abatement of the side effects of being on the pill. Yaz itself has been getting some bad press lately and I don’t know how much of that has to do with me, but I do know it’s pretty common to feel tiredness, anxiety, depression, and other symptoms while being on the pill for a long time. If going off the pill helps all of that, then great. I’m all for it.

I’m a little nervous about the Essure procedure itself, though. Mostly because my body is notorious for NOT behaving the way it’s supposed to, come surgery time. If there are complications to be had, I’m the girl that tends to get them. Plus the whole lack of responsiveness to anesthesia. Yeah, that’s always been fun for me.

Then there’s the reason that I went on the pill in the first place – and no, it wasn’t so that I could have sex with my boyfriend with immunity. No, I went on the pill to regulate a totally whacked out menstrual cycle. So if I go off the pill, will all of that nonsense (heavy cramps & bleeding, no period for MONTHS and then 30 straight days of bleeding) come back? If it does, do I want to try something along the lines of endometrial ablation to stop my periods? I mean, if I’m going to sterilize myself, I might as well go for the whole shebang, right?

Crossroad-type, once-in-a-lifetime, forever decisions like this just kind of aggravate me. I don’t plan on having children, and I don’t want to start all over again and go back down that parenthood road “one more time, from the top!” I don’t want to keep taking drugs and have been making very concerted efforts to lessen the amount of chemicals that I put in my body (I’ve stopped taking allergy meds, I’m no longer taking Prilosec, and I’ve been off antidepressants for a while now). Still there’s that nagging feeling – the day after the procedure, will I feel the regret after all, that I don’t anticipate feeling as of right now? Or will I just be relieved?

I do know that if one more “well meaning” person says to me, “You’re only thirty-five. There’s still plenty of time to change your mind,” I might have to punch them in the face. Right along with those people who scoff when I say I’ve already experienced motherhood, and could perform this sterilization procedure without feeling like I was missing out on something. “Yes, but you’ve never had children of your own,” they say. Sure, and YOU’VE never raised another person’s children AS your own, so get off your smug horse. The last person that said something like this to me, I shut right the hell up with, “So, you don’t think people who adopt are “real” parents, either?” Then walked away as they stammered.

People can be real assholes, sometimes.

I give myself permission to have regret. Really, I already have a little bit of regret – not that I don’t think my decision is the right one for me, but I am allowed to make that decision and feel sorry for the road not taken. Sorry that I will never know what kind of child a combination of my DNA with Bill’s would produce.

Perhaps the world is better off, at that.

Anyway, no response required if you aren’t inspired to do so. I just felt like writing about this somewhat momentous, yet anticlimactic, moment in my life. Just one last pill to swallow.

  1. iamheatherjo says:

    You’re taking the last of your pills, but you don’t know when you’re scheduling your other procedure? Aww! You’re gonna get knocked up before your procedure!

    I kid. I kid.

    You know I’m behind you no matter what you choose. I was looking for costs of the Essure procedure on my insurance and couldn’t find it, but I found out (and I don’t know that I completely believe this) they cover 100% of tubal ligation?!?! That sounds a bit odd to me. I’m tired of birth control. I’m tired of periods. And since we’re being candid and girlie over here, I think I might be pre and/or peri-menopausal.

    I’m so tired of being a girl sometimes.

  2. Bill says:

    I have to say I was with my ex when she had a tubal and if I were you I would pay the extra out of pocket to go with the Essure.
    Tubal was way more invasive than we thought.
    I also had the nightmare that before the procedure was completed you would hear from the dark bedroom WHAT THE FUCK DO MEAN THE CONDOM BROKE!!!

    • iamheatherjo says:

      I was looking up pricing on Essure because I have the flex spending deal. I’m not considering tubal ligation, myself, I just noticed that it’s supposedly completely covered under my insurance. I just thought it would be weird to cover the more expensive procedure and not have any information about the other.

      I wouldn’t stop taking my pills until I had a something signed from the doctor saying “ain’t nothing knocking you up now, sister”. Yes. I want documentation in those exact words. 😀

      • Tiffany says:

        I’m not too terribly concerned, but yeah, I thought of that. Last refill on my prescription + 3 weeks before I can get in to see the doc = cessation of BC pill takeage.

  3. crisitunity says:

    I’m sorry that you feel nervousness and some degree of uncertainty. I totally understand. It’s part of the reason I haven’t researched any procedures myself yet: the little voice keeps telling me to wait one more year. (I know I’m only 28, but I’ve been sure I don’t want children since I was 16 and haven’t changed my mind an iota in twelve years, when literally everything else about me has changed.) For the record, I don’t think you’ll regret it and I don’t think you’ll feel particularly different once it’s done. It’ll be like getting a tattoo: life-changing, yes, but soon enough just part of the package of you.

    Although using the term “sterilization” gives me the shivers a little bit.

    I can’t guarantee that this is the reaction you’ll have, but for the spells that I’ve been off the pill, my period was completely different than the way it was before and during the pill. I can’t really be specific because I just can’t remember, but I do remember thinking on all occasions, “Well, this wasn’t what I was expecting.” I hope that that transition isn’t too painful for you.

    • Tiffany says:

      I did think of the tattoo analogy – but rather more, um, dramatic? It’s not the inserts themselves that give me pause, but the though of making an UNALTERABLE change to my body’s inner bits. Though, hah, I had my wisdom teeth removed with no qualms, and I seem to be managing without a gallbladder just fine…

  4. Jean says:

    Ablation ROCKS! You still get to have all the “fun” (and natural progression) of the hormonal part of being a girl without the PERIOD part of being a girl. I have lost count of the number of women that I know that have had it and, without exception, every single one of them is thrilled with the outcome. One caveat – don’t let them try to convince you to do it without anesthesia. Sleep through it, wake up and go buy all new panties!

    Why not ditch the period, too????

  5. Dyskinesia says:

    I have friends who have had the Essure procedure, felt crampy and slept all night, but otherwise did great and are thrilled. Haven’t heard of a bad experience yet. They also don’t usually use anesthesia, just maybe some Valium/maybe Xanax that patient takes that morning to help kill off the nervous. I’ve also not heard of an insurance company not covering it. Cheaper than tubal, less risk for complication, no more babies. win-win-win for them.

    I loooooooooved getting off the damn pill; of course, that also made my own biological clock kick me squarely in the ass and made me want sex ALL.THE.TIME. Too bad for my poor husband that he knocked me up 8 days later, huh?

    And I have no ovaries and still get periods. Total suck. 😛 Maybe I should look into ablation, but yeah, I’d be the one that some fool would shove the cauterizer through to my brain.

  6. Kami-O says:

    I had the same issue you do and was on this drug(can’t remember the name right now-nice!) but if I don’t get a period in 3 weeks I take it and a day later I get one.. I used it alot when I had the big “C” and have only used them a handful of times since.. Perhaps you could try that? Just a suggestion. Your very much like me when I was told I had to have my surgery and was I couldn’t have kids blah, blah..I was olny 35 as well and they were heeing and hawing over to remove the cancerous organ because of it..I’m like “really, IT’S CANCER?!” They just want to avoid a law suit sometimes, I swear! That aside, I had more of an issue not having the “choice”.. The games the mind plays!

    • Tiffany says:

      Never heard of that, thanks for the suggestion. Although it’s not the NOT getting my period thing that concerns me, but the getting it and having it stick around for a long time…

      • Kami-O says:

        This drug prevents you from having it longer than 4 days.. I was either no getting them or having them for a month and I was having all these damn issues from bleeding so much.. This stopped that from happening.. Can’t go on birth control cuz, what’s the point of preventing something that can’t happen?

        • Kami-O says:

          I’ll get back to you with the name of it.. There are no side effects from what I gather..

  7. Taoist Biker says:

    I think your one line about giving yourself permission to have regret makes all the difference in the world. Life is about choices, and only something subhuman or totally superhuman could go through life without ever looking back on choices made. As long as you’re not paralyzed by reliving that choice, you know?

    It’s like getting married. Sure, sometimes you think “Boy, I was young and stupid and thought I knew everything when I signed up for this, huh?” and sometimes they drive you nuts and sometimes you wonder what life would be like if you were single or with that other person that you randomly met that one time and sometimes you cruise around idly wondering where you could hide the body and maybe even notice when Home Depot has a sale on shovels and quicklime but that doesn’t mean you would ever undo the decision.

    …wait, where’d everybody go?

    I think you’ve done everything you need to do to take care of yourself with regard to your decision, and I think you’ll be fine. I hope it turns out to be everything you want it to be. But yeah, in the meantime, I’d double-bag it just in case Karma has a wild hair that day. 😉

    • joanna says:

      …or Bill could…you know…get the “kindest cut of all.”

      • Tiffany says:

        Heh. We talked about that, there’s a good reason for him not to which I won’t discuss. Not that Bill would mind us all discussing his nether regions, of course. I’m sure he’s flattered!

    • Tiffany says:

      Hah! I’m still here. And I get it (and you). You typed that whole thing without taking a breath, didn’t you? And, ahem, double-baggage is a GIVEN. 😀

  8. Taoist Biker says:

    crisitunity :
    That’s one of my favorite PAs.

    I was pretty sure you’d have guffawed at that one already!

  9. Shelli says:

    A bit late to the party, as usual, but thought I’d share with you a funny (sorta) story. Back in 2000 (?) my fiancé at the time and I discussed our lack of wanting any more children. He had 2 before we met, and we had 1 together. He was pushing for me to get “fixed” and I told him “hell no! It’s easier for guys to get snipped, and I wasn’t going to have another surgery! No way, no how!”. So he got snipped. And wasn’t all too happy about it, because of the very small amount of discomfort he experienced. I reminded him that I pushed a fat head out of me, the LEAST he could do was feel some discomfort.

    Anyway, fast forward a couple of years to 2002. I was having a cycle that was 2 weeks of bleeding, 1 week off, then 2 weeks of bleeding again. It was horrendous. We eventually found out I had a giant cyst on an ovary. After fighting with the insurance company and my GYN, I decided that in addition to getting the cyst removed (which required a massive cut down my belly; the cyst was the size of a grapefruit), I was also going to have a hysterectomy because of my Endometriosis. Even though I’d already had a child of my own, I was STILL hounded by everyone I knew (and some I didn’t) about my decision. “You’re only 32!” they’d say. My own mother said, “what if something happens to your son? You’ll want another one for sure!” … as if I could ever “replace” my Son. *rolls eyes*

    Anyway, it was the best decision I ever made! I still have a very tiny piece of one ovary left, for hormone production, and my cervix. But nothing else! No periods, no cramps, no PMS … NOTHING! And I haven’t spent as much as one second regretting my decision!

    You do what you feel is best for you! Don’t give in to the fears and desires of others! And most of all – good luck with whatever you decide to do! 🙂

    • Tiffany says:

      Hi Shelli, thanks so much for sharing this. There are so many options out there and it’s hard to know what, exactly, will work best for me. It’s a matter of just picking a direction and going, and if there’s aftermath it just has to be dealt with at the time. I’m mostly worried about the whole hormone thing, so you’ve given me food for thought. Thanks so much!

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