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positive iud stories - here's mine

Recent article on NPR lately: It's Time To Rediscover The IUD, Women's Health Advocates Say.

It's about how IUDs are very reliable forms of birth control but a low percentage of women choose to use them. Probably because they're so damn expensive... mine were I think $800-$1000. But free to me, because both times I got them in I'd just had a baby and blown past my healthcare deductible.

I wanted to write a quick entry about my experiences, because the internet tends to be filled with only the bad stories about stuff like this, only angry people speak up. The rest of us who make up the majority don't have anything terribly exciting to say, so the only stories you hear are negative. So I want to chime in with a story about everything being okay.

I got my first IUD when Josie was about four months old. Marc and I were at a party talking to a friend who had a baby just a little older than ours. Our friend had just announced that she was pregnant again. She was all perky telling us, "It was so funny, I was still breastfeeding, hadn't even had a period back yet, but I guess it was time for the next baby, lol!" We LOLed and said congratulations, and she walked off, and Marc and I looked at Josie and looked at each other and we both had faces with fear-levels sort of like in "The Ring", you know? We hadn't really been sleeping together much, because we hadn't really been sleeping period, but after hearing that story we wanted SERIOUS BIRTH CONTROL. We loved Josie but that baby was nuts, she'd was just barely starting to grow out of her "I'm going to scream at you 24/7" stage and we felt like we'd been hit by a truck. (of love! of course!)

When Josie was a little over two years old we decided maybe we could do the baby thing again, I got the IUD out, had a period a month later, then I was pregnant. How about that. It took 4-5 cycles to conceive Josie and I'd already been off the pill for a while, but I guess with IUDs everything just clicks right back into place. And now we have Olive.

And I have my second IUD. Because once again, we love babies. But Josie is still insane. Ha ha, just kidding... it's not just Josie, she's calmed down, she's even cute most of the time now and very creative, but you know how it is. We're probably done with babies but since the IUD isn't permanent we didn't have to make any HUGE declarations, write it all in stone, that sort of thing.

Both times, insertion was no big deal... I took some ibuprofen, had a 15 minute doctor's appointment, then sat on the couch watching TV for an afternoon in case I got crampy (the cramps were no worse than a period though). The next day I was fine. Then a few weeks of spotting. Then no periods! And I love having no periods. And I'm still breastfeeding even though I got the hormonal IUD (Mirena), there's been no decrease to the milk supply, everything is cool.

I would recommend and IUD to about anyone, even though I too have read the side effects, if you think those are bad you should see the side effects of NOT using birth control. Hell just yesterday my angel threw a half-hour tantrum because I got the SPOON out of a drawer for her BEFORE putting milk on her cereal (have I mentioned that I love her?) then in the afternoon she refused to drink her milk unless she could have five straws and they had to be different colors... that sort of thing. Babies! Yay!

IUD! Yay!


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 8th, 2013 03:21 pm (UTC)
I'd be interested to know how popularity varies with cost-to-user; alas I can't actually manage to find stats on how many women in the UK opt for a Mirena (here all contraception is free at the point where you get it, so the cost argument is much less relevant (not non-existent - if you live in a very low-population-density area you might have to travel a long way to find a doctor who can do the insertion for you; and however near your doctor is you do have to spend some time getting it done)).
Oct. 8th, 2013 03:43 pm (UTC)
I just got one too! :) I love not having to remember to take a pill every day. I haven't had any spotting since I ended the period they inserted it, but it's only been about a month.

Even so, not having to remember to take the pill every day has been aweeeeeeeeeeesome
Oct. 8th, 2013 03:45 pm (UTC)
I got one in Feb after my cycle came back 19 months post-baby. I wish I'd gotten it much sooner. I super love it. Thanks to the health care changes, it was 100% covered by my health insurance.
Oct. 8th, 2013 05:40 pm (UTC)
Overall, I don't have too many complaints about Mirena Getting it inserted when Sephie was only about six weeks old was a nightmare, and I was in pain for a few days. In hindsight, I think I should have allowed myself more time to heal. Getting it out was less painful, but only marginally so.

The biggest issue I had with my IUD is that it eliminated my period. When you've gotten pregnant on contraception, this tends to make you REALLY insane about not getting that monthly reminder of, "Hey! You're in the clear!" When Sephie and I stopped nursing, I only had the IUD for a few more months before I had it taken out.

It also turns out that my IUD prolonged my recovery. Because of the low estrogen output, I had scar tissue from Sephie's birth that was still constantly activated and flaring up. When I switched back to the pill in May, the issue went away almost overnight. Prior to getting on the pill, I'd have the debilitating spasm of pain down south that would take anywhere from two to 10 minutes to recover from, during which time, my only manner of coping was through breathing exercises. Nothing helped, and it could happen several times a day sometimes.

I haven't had any flare ups of that old injury in about six weeks. After dealing with it daily for nearly three years...it was awesome to go away from that.

That's not really the IUD's fault, and I'd never use that as a basis with which to encourage someone else to choose a different birth control. But if they do have scar tissue build up like mine, I would share my story with them (provided they're asking for my feedback) and be direct that all the issues I have with hormonal contraception notwithstanding, it sure is nice not to be in ongoing pain anymore.
Oct. 8th, 2013 06:47 pm (UTC)
I have a 4 month old baby. Despite exclusively breast feeding and having too much milk my period came back (had it twice already - damn you body!). In fact, my mom's period came back super quickly also after she had my older sister, and soon after she had the surprise of finding out that she was pregnant with me. Knowing this, and not wanting a bundle of joy anytime soon I got the paragaurd IUD. It didn't hurt *at all* - ot even cramping. It's been great! No reason to remember anything and it's there as long as I needed.
Oct. 8th, 2013 07:34 pm (UTC)
I don't even have a sex life and I love mine because MY GOD not having periods is AMAZING.

I didn't take time off work to get it inserted but unfortunately although I felt okay while it was being done, I mean, it hurt, but not that bad, anyway after the doc finished and I sat up I passed out and then couldn't get steady enough to leave the docs for another hour, by which time I *was* late for work. But another couple of hours later and I felt just fine. So it's all good since then.

Oct. 8th, 2013 07:46 pm (UTC)
I got my period back six weeks after my first child was born. (And another at 10 weeks, so none of that "oh, no honey, that's not possible, it was postpartum bleeding" nonsense, please! I've heard it before. Also, YES, I was breastfeeding. With major oversupply, actually.)

I got a Mirena at 12 weeks. No pain going in (or coming out). But I bled for 70 days straight. Heavier than spotting, lighter than period. Then I got the Mirena removed. Insurance covered a bit but left me on the hook for $500. Expensive experiment. Ah, well. Side effects vary, and mine was relatively rare and not at all dangerous. Just obnoxious. (I don't DO sex while bleeding. And I am prone to diaper rash. Honestly, without the diaper rash I might've waited longer for the bleeding to stop.)
Oct. 10th, 2013 01:28 pm (UTC)
I'm on my second Mirena and have never had any children. I love it! I lost my period with the first one, but I still have it with this second one though. /pout
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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