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Old 12-30-2011, 09:52 AM   #21
 
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Don't rely on charting. You may not ovulate at the same time every month, and the temp. taking is not fool-proof. It is not as effective. I know the charting method well, but that is because I'm trying to have a baby. There are some really low hormone pills you could ask about. I always used Nuva-ring, because pills made me feel horrible. If you chart as your protection, I'd suggest using an organic condom at least. Don't take a chance unless you are with someone you want to have a baby with in the future. This is just my opinion...
I know it's just your opinion, but it is based on misconceptions. It doesn't matter whether or not you ovulate at the same time every month, because it's not the rhythm method. You are actively looking for signs of fertility every day, so whether or not this happens at regular intervals is irrelevant. It is the fertility signs and not the time of the month that are important. As to the effectiveness of charting, if used properly, its effectiveness approaches that of the Pill if used properly or is only very slightly less - I have seen stats with effectiveness of the Pill being around 98% and charting around 97%, or thereabouts. It is more effective than many barrier methods. Charting mostly fails because people take chances or don't get the hang of doing it properly, so I would say that if you want to rely on it alone you need to be very committed and very strict.

For myself personally, I have always tended to have irregular and long cycles, and I am also strict about when I want to have babies and when I don't. I have been very committed to charting and have not used any other BC. I have only gotten pregnant when I wanted to, and then almost immediately, and I have never had a pregnancy when I did not want one - granted, it's only been 7.5 years, but so far, it has worked for me.

Nothing other than abstinence is fool-proof...not even hormonal BC.
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:04 AM   #22
 
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Thank you! I started taking my temp yesterday just to get used to it. I know my hormonal BC still hasn't worn off. Curlylev, even if I don't ovulate at the same time every month, wouldn't I know when I am ovulating based on the temperature, mucus, and other symptoms like pain? When I wasn't using any kind of contraceptive, I always had some kind of pain on one side in the lower abdominal area every month about 10 days before my period. I'm pretty sure that was ovulation. Also, I'm getting married next year so I know he is the person I will be having children with at some point, but I want to be in control of that. I want to have my body in an optimal state when I become pregnant and I can't do that if I become pregnant without planning it.

Those of you who recommended the book TCOYF, who is the author? My amazon search gave me a few books with the same name and different authors..

Thanks!
The author is Toni Weschler. (I think that is the right spelling.)
And your thinking is correct (see my previous post.)
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:15 AM   #23
 
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Amneris, you are the reason why I am so confident about this method. My SO has doubts about it, but as soon as he comes home I will have him read your post. If this has worked for you for 7 years and you've been able to get pregnant when you want, I believe in it. I am aware that it will take time to get it right and that we have be to be strict and disciplined about it, but I would much rather make that effort than continue on the hormone stuff. Thanks a lot to everyone for all of your input. Anymore useful information is welcome. I will keep you updated on my journey.
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:26 AM   #24
 
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Amneris, you are the reason why I am so confident about this method. My SO has doubts about it, but as soon as he comes home I will have him read your post. If this has worked for you for 7 years and you've been able to get pregnant when you want, I believe in it. I am aware that it will take time to get it right and that we have be to be strict and disciplined about it, but I would much rather make that effort than continue on the hormone stuff. Thanks a lot to everyone for all of your input. Anymore useful information is welcome. I will keep you updated on my journey.
When I started, I educated my husband about it and he was fascinated as to how a woman's body works, and he has been right on board and it kept him really involved in the whole process.

I am sure most men would ultimately prefer this to having to wear a condom (or not having to wear one often), or knowing you have to stuff yourself with hormones or shove things in and up yourself, when it is the man who is potentially fertile far more days than we are. Charting is also cheap and portable and discreet.

*I don't mean to be disrespectful of other means of birth control - if you want or need to use them, do you, but no one should feel they have to use them when they would rather not if there is another alternative.
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Old 12-30-2011, 05:19 PM   #25
 
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I will be on amazon ASAP looking for that book. Please do Tell me more about this ovacue method!

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It's not really a method. It's an electronic recording device that tells you when you are most fertile based on either your saliva or your vaginal secretions. You take a reading every day and it spits out your info. It's about as much effort as taking the pill. Just google ova cue. Most insurance won't cover it though.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:37 PM   #26
 
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I had a similar experience, amneris. My husband found the whole concept interesting and was very much on board. We do not use any barrier methods and we make the decision together when to abstain, since he also understands the symptoms of fertility. It has bought us very close, and has given us a great perspective on our sexuality as a couple. I hope that it works out great for you and your finance!
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Old 12-30-2011, 11:45 PM   #27
 
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Thank you! That's exactly what I'm hoping for. I want this to be something that both of us can control as a couple. We make other, far less important decisions together ALL the time. I also want to get him to understand how my body what and what it is doing on certain days. This is ultimately my goal and if charting can give me that AND control of when I have children, I'm all for it! I'm glad you ladies have shared your experiences with me. I am curious to know though, has anyone had negative experiences with this?
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Old 12-31-2011, 08:06 AM   #28
 
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I know people who were dissatisfied with charting, but this was because they did not want to have the discipline required. My friend got pregnant on it, but she had one very ambiguous temp rise (like 0.2 degrees) in the morning and they had unprotected sex immediately that morning. The next day, her temp was down again and it didn't have a big rise until the day after that. She blamed charting, but it was really user error.
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Old 12-31-2011, 08:31 AM   #29
 
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I use fertility friend to input my temperatures and cervical mucus. It's a free site and I like it a lot. It shows me my luteal phase, average days in my cycle, and average day of ovulation. You can pay for the premium features of their site (which they often offer free preview days of) and those features would be pretty helpful when trying to become pregnant.

I use a Walgreens bbt and am happy with it. I only temp around 5-8 days before (suspected) ovulation, or once I see ewcm, until ovulation is confirmed.
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Old 12-31-2011, 10:54 AM   #30
 
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I had an app on my phone that served almost the same purpose. It was password protected so that anyone who picks up my phone cannot see my info. I am going to check out the site too though. How have you gotten success with only taking your temperature 5-8 days before suspected ovulation? Don't you have to take it everyday?
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:31 AM   #31
 
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I had an app on my phone that served almost the same purpose. It was password protected so that anyone who picks up my phone cannot see my info. I am going to check out the site too though. How have you gotten success with only taking your temperature 5-8 days before suspected ovulation? Don't you have to take it everyday?
Once you know you have O'd, you don't need to temp until you get your period - those are safe days and you are not going to get pregnant once you know your egg is gone. Most people are dry for a few days after their period finishes so some may choose not to temp then either - that's a bigger risk, because there's always the chance your fertility can return earlier than it normally does, so if I were trying hard not to get pregnant I'd be careful with that, but if you always have longer cycles and/or are OK with raising the risk of pregnancy a tiny bit, you might choose to wait to temp until you see cervical mucus. I would never do that.

The only reasons to temp every single day are:

1) to get in the habit and discipline yourself to do it so you don't skip days

2) if you are trying to get pregnant, temping after O can show possible signs of implantation (this is controversial) or if you are conceiving and miscarrying very early on, which can be helpful if you have to see a doctor

3) to have complete charts that can tell you what your body does and what is a normal cycle for you - if after a while you have lots of those, this may be less relevant. I also know people who when they are trying to conceive don't temp once they are sure they have O'd so that they don't obsess about potential implantation signs, etc.

4) if your luteal phase varies (which it usually doesn't, but some people say theirs does), if you are new to charting, or if you are trying to get pregnant, temping after O can show signs that your period is coming so that you can be mentally or physically prepared

I don't recommend not charting every day unless you are a very experienced charter and you are not absolutely adamant about not conceiving. For the first several months, you need to do it every day to really get the hang of it.
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Old 12-31-2011, 11:57 AM   #32
 
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Fertility friend has an app too I now put my temps & cm into the app and sync it to the website.

I charted temps everyday for quite a long time before I felt I was familiar enough with my body and cycle that I could change to temps only on certain days. I wouldn't recommend it in the beginning - not until/unless you see and become familiar with a consistent pattern. My 2 year old son loves my bbt so now it's easier for me to hide it for part of the month and only take it out for a week or two
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Old 12-31-2011, 12:09 PM   #33
 
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Makes sense. Although I know I am still protected, I am temping already. I was just putting it into a regular calender, but I will be using fertility friend so I can learn more about the different phases that my body will be going through during the month. Since the point of me doing this is to avoid conceiving for now, I want to make sure I do it 100% right. Since I still have hormones from the BC shot, will my first temperature rise be in a few months when those hormones are totally gone? Is there any possibility of seeing a temperature shift even if I am not ovulating yet?
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Old 12-31-2011, 12:29 PM   #34
 
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Everyone comes off bcp differently so you may ovulate your first month. You will see a temperature rise if/when you ovulate. Your first cycles may be different than how your body will regulate depending on how your body reacts to coming off the additional hormones.
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Old 12-31-2011, 02:21 PM   #35
 
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Makes sense. Although I know I am still protected, I am temping already. I was just putting it into a regular calender, but I will be using fertility friend so I can learn more about the different phases that my body will be going through during the month. Since the point of me doing this is to avoid conceiving for now, I want to make sure I do it 100% right. Since I still have hormones from the BC shot, will my first temperature rise be in a few months when those hormones are totally gone? Is there any possibility of seeing a temperature shift even if I am not ovulating yet?
I think with residual hormones in your system, there's just no way to know what your body will do. You only recognize temp shifts after the fact (if you have temped for a really long time and know what your normal temps are, you might suspect when a rise has just happened, but to confirm O, you need 3 high temps so you still have to wait for that. Temps can also rise for reasons other than O - illness, stress, disturbed sleep, etc.) You're going to need to use a back-up barrier method for quite a while - I don't think I'd have unprotected sex at all right now if I were you.
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Old 01-01-2012, 08:10 AM   #36
 
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It sounds like that is what I need to do in order to be on the safe side. I have been temping the last few mornings just to get into the habit. In the last 3 days my temp has been going down slightly. What's that all about? Could I be doing it wrong?
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:16 AM   #37
 
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It's normal for your temp to vary a few tenths of a degrees within either phase. Some women see a lowering pattern in the few days approaching ovulation; some even see a distinct drop on the day of or before ovulation. As others have said though, the only thing that is "for sure" is three high temps in a row, which means you have ovulated on the day before the first high temp. Sites like fertility friend will draw what's called a coverline do that you can better see your own pattern.
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:23 AM   #38
 
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Also, it's important that you take your temp at the same time every morning after at least 3 hours of undisturbed sleep.

Note that I used charting to conceive... I haven't attempted using it to avoid pregnancy yet. I started temping after my first natural period after stopping hormonal birth control though. I was able to verify ovulation in the first cycle. I think people have mixed results though - especially w/depo; I was on the pill.
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:35 PM   #39
 
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Right now it all seems confusing to me. I've been on fertility friend a lot and i feel overwhelmed with all this information. For now, I will keep temping every morning and using protection. I can see how this has already brought us closer as a couple. Being able to actually share such important life changing decisions with someone is invaluable. I hope I become a bit more knowledgeable about this soon.
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:44 PM   #40
 
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I was on Depo for 10 years and when I stopped I did not have a period for 6 months, that was 5 years ago and my periods are like clockwork now even though I am 51, no sign of the menopause yet!
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