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Old 12-28-2011, 12:52 AM   #1
 
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Default Your experiences with 'natural' birth control methods

In an effort to live a more 'natural/organic' lifestyle starting in 2012, I'm looking for a method of BC that does not involve hormones. I am currently on the depo provera shot. I like not having to take pills, but I really want to get rid of the hormone use altogether. I want my body to go back to its normal rhythm and menstruate regularly. Please offer me some advice, methods, or anything else that might help. Thanks!
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Old 12-28-2011, 07:56 AM   #2
 
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Condoms? Copper iud ?


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Old 12-28-2011, 03:05 PM   #3
 
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I happily used diaphragms for over 20 years, with no oops pregnancies. Very natural.
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Old 12-28-2011, 06:42 PM   #4
 
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I chart. It requires daily temps (or at least select days once you know your body), but it's pretty nice to be able to see when ovulate. Taking Charge of Your Fertility is a good starting point.
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Old 12-28-2011, 07:23 PM   #5
 
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Second the charting thing... If you are going for natural, it doesn't get any more so. I have been using this method for 5 years and so far so good. Done properly it has the same rate of success as hormonal pills, and what really sold me is that it is truly birth control, negative and positive. My mom also uses this method, she says it was amazing how quick and easy it was to switch just a tiny little bit and have a baby. She said that all her pill-taking friends took months longer than her to have babies, even though they all started trying at the same time.
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Old 12-29-2011, 02:10 AM   #6
 
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Paragard IUD. I had one for 12 years. Very safe very reliable.
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Old 12-29-2011, 06:22 AM   #7
 
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Thanks for all the help! I have been looking into the charting thing. How do you protect yourself on the days when you know you are ovulating? Just abstain or a barrier method? Also, I currently still have the shot 'in me'. It will probably last another 2 weeks. It will probably take a few months for my cycle to get back to normal so until then what should I use? Any experience with spermicide sponges or other barrier methods? I am allergic to latex and the lamb skin condoms are a no go as well.
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Old 12-29-2011, 11:28 AM   #8
 
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I second the rec for charting - but your partner has to be on board and you have to be strict about it.

Even if you choose another method, I think it is important to be aware of fertility signs in general and to know when you ovulate.

During the fertile period, you can either abstain or use a barrier method. I abstain, and personally I think knowing I am fertile would scare me enough not to even take the tiny risk of a barrier method failure - I am very specific about when I do and don't want a pregnancy.

The book Taking Charge of Your Fertility is very good.

I do not like the concept of hormonal contraceptives unless there is some other medical or lifestyle reason to use them that can't be solved in another way, so I applaud your decision. I also think that as a woman it is very empowering to know what your body is doing.
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Old 12-29-2011, 11:30 AM   #9
 
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Thanks for all the help! I have been looking into the charting thing. How do you protect yourself on the days when you know you are ovulating? Just abstain or a barrier method? Also, I currently still have the shot 'in me'. It will probably last another 2 weeks. It will probably take a few months for my cycle to get back to normal so until then what should I use? Any experience with spermicide sponges or other barrier methods? I am allergic to latex and the lamb skin condoms are a no go as well.
I think there are various types of latex-free condoms, not just lambskin ones.
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Old 12-29-2011, 12:41 PM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curledlove View Post
Thanks for all the help! I have been looking into the charting thing. How do you protect yourself on the days when you know you are ovulating? Just abstain or a barrier method? Also, I currently still have the shot 'in me'. It will probably last another 2 weeks. It will probably take a few months for my cycle to get back to normal so until then what should I use? Any experience with spermicide sponges or other barrier methods? I am allergic to latex and the lamb skin condoms are a no go as well.


You could use silicone condoms, or get fitted for a silicone diaphragm. The sponges have too high a failure rate for me to be comfortable using them alone...I know several sponge-babies.
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Old 12-29-2011, 02:52 PM   #11
 
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Thanks again for more valuable advice! We have been talking about it for some time now and I have finally decided to start. I will be taking temperatures starting tomorrow even though I know the hormones are still active. How will I know when I'm ovulation again? Do I just have to wait for regular periods or are there other signs?
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Old 12-29-2011, 03:10 PM   #12
 
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Thanks again for more valuable advice! We have been talking about it for some time now and I have finally decided to start. I will be taking temperatures starting tomorrow even though I know the hormones are still active. How will I know when I'm ovulation again? Do I just have to wait for regular periods or are there other signs?
You need to read a book, such as TCOYF.

The most definitive proof that ovulation has happened (short of ultrasound or conceiving a baby) is temping, but that becomes apparent after the fact (though you will start to see patterns.) If your goal is to avoid conceiving, you want to avoid sex or unprotected sex during the fertile period leading up to ovulation (usually 3-5 days, sometimes slightly less or slightly more.) You can tell you are in this zone by the quality of your cervical mucus, and some choose to check the feel and position of their cervix internally, and some have secondary symptoms such as ovulation pain. You can also use ovulation tests or a fertility monitor or some other device. The mucus is the main thing to look out for.
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Old 12-29-2011, 03:42 PM   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curledlove View Post
Thanks again for more valuable advice! We have been talking about it for some time now and I have finally decided to start. I will be taking temperatures starting tomorrow even though I know the hormones are still active. How will I know when I'm ovulation again? Do I just have to wait for regular periods or are there other signs?

Yes, as Amneris says, you need to get a book on the subject, and really study it, if you want NFP (Natural Family Planning - temping, mucus, cervical position, etc.) to work for you. Since you are coming off of Depo Provera, it's possible that you won't ovulate for up to 9-12 months...or you could ovulate right away. It's just so unknown that I STRONGLY recommend you use barrier contraception until you are in a regular ovulatory cycle.
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Old 12-29-2011, 03:49 PM   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curledlove View Post
Thanks again for more valuable advice! We have been talking about it for some time now and I have finally decided to start. I will be taking temperatures starting tomorrow even though I know the hormones are still active. How will I know when I'm ovulation again? Do I just have to wait for regular periods or are there other signs?

Yes, as Amneris says, you need to get a book on the subject, and really study it, if you want NFP (Natural Family Planning - temping, mucus, cervical position, etc.) to work for you. Since you are coming off of Depo Provera, it's possible that you won't ovulate for up to 9-12 months...or you could ovulate right away. It's just so unknown that I STRONGLY recommend you use barrier contraception until you are in a regular ovulatory cycle.
For sure - if not getting pregnant is a high priority for you and you are just coming off hormones, I agree that you will likely need a back-up method or a very long period of abstaining until you figure out charting. It can take 3-4 normal (your normal) cycles to get the hang of charting, and you may not have your normal cycles immediately, so you should not rely exclusively on charting at the beginning. You also shouldn't wait to see your first period because you ovulate before then - you could catch that first egg and not see a period because you are pregnant.
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Old 12-29-2011, 07:49 PM   #15
 
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I used ovacue. It's like charting for dummies (or the lazy, or for busy people). Not using it now because I am expecting.
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Old 12-29-2011, 09:29 PM   #16
 
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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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Old 12-29-2011, 11:03 PM   #17
 
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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...
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Old 12-29-2011, 11:04 PM   #18
 
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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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Oh, on a side note, I LOVE your hair!!!
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Old 12-29-2011, 11:08 PM   #19
 
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Originally Posted by Amneris View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by curledlove View Post
Thanks for all the help! I have been looking into the charting thing. How do you protect yourself on the days when you know you are ovulating? Just abstain or a barrier method? Also, I currently still have the shot 'in me'. It will probably last another 2 weeks. It will probably take a few months for my cycle to get back to normal so until then what should I use? Any experience with spermicide sponges or other barrier methods? I am allergic to latex and the lamb skin condoms are a no go as well.
I think there are various types of latex-free condoms, not just lambskin ones.
You are correct about the condoms. There are condoms that are latex-free and not lambskin. There is one brand they sell at regular drug stores, I can't remember the name, it's been a while since we used protection since we actually are trying for a baby.
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:02 AM   #20
 
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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!
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