When I got married almost 12 years ago I disregarded warnings from my mother and jumped on the birth control pill bandwagon. I didn’t think twice about them, how they would affect me, or what the long-term side effects might be. I wanted something easy.
My doctor (to my memory) did not warn me of any dangers of taking the pill. I am increasingly concerned about our society’s ready acceptence of these pills, especially for young girls to regulate their periods and relieve symptoms of PMS. (Did you know that a qualified wellness Chiropractor or Naturopath can solve these problems naturally with herbs?!)
I tried over 6 different kinds of hormone contraceptives over the first 6 years of marriage.
I’m not exaggerating, here’s how it all went down:
- I cried every night at 7pm on the dot, for no apparent reason.
- I became paranoid, insecure, and had bi-polar symptoms.
- I had suicidal thoughts and severe apathy (i.e.: “If I got in a car crash and died that would be fine…”)
- I was also horrible to my husband. Fights were blown out of proportion. Things were said that I’m positive I would have never said in my right mind.
- My behavior was completely out of character, irrational, erratic, and just terrible.
- I had HORRIBLE anxiety and struggled with irrational fears and panic attacks for the first time in my life.
I mean, I know why this stuff is effective: I wouldn’t want to be intimate with someone who acted this way either! Kidding…sortof.
Anyhow, the reason this happened is really simple: I put synthetic hormones in my body.
So, here’s the rundown of why I will never take pills, use hormone rings, or any other hormone birth control again:
1. They DESTROY good gut bacteria – we know that there is a link between psychological health and gut health. The pill goes into your body, destroys the flora in your gut, and voila – cray cray takes over. Not to mention all of the physical problems that come with a messed up gut like gluten intolerance, yeast infections, IBS, etc. By destorying the beneficial bacteria in your gut, harmful bacteria and yeasts can take over. I believe this is part of what is driving the increased incidence of Candida overgrowth, depression, and severe anxiety in so many women. Plus, studies show that the mothers of autistic children universally have imbalanced or unhealthy gut flora. Yikes.
2. It can actually make your partner undesirable to you – you know that chemical attraction that happens between two people that is hard to explain? The fireworks? Yeah, birth control pills can actually disrupt the woman’s attraction to her partner’s natural odor, often making the way he smells repulsive to her once starting the pill. So you meet the man of your dreams, and get on birth control, and suddenly, you aren’t drawn to him like you were. The love is there, but that chemical attraction can actually be destroyed. This was one of the most shocking discoveries to me. How terribly tragic.
3. They reduce your libido – enough said.
4. Studies suggest that they increase your chances of developing breast cancer – Ever notice that your Doctor will ask if you have ever been on the pill when going in for a breast exam or mammogram? You are also supposed to tell your doctor if anyone in your family has had breast cancer. On another note, I DO NOT recommend mammograms – I’ll post more about the dangers of these later, in the meantime – look up Thermograms if you are considering having one!
5. They may be linked to infertility – The research on this is primitive, but here’s my gut feeling: A LOT of girls I know are having a very difficult time conceiving after being on hormone birth control. Simply put, I don’t think we can ask our bodies to stop doing something that is natural (ie: ovulation) for years and years, and then suddenly expect it to begin functioning properly again.
6. Other documented side effects include lower bone density, blood clots, cervical cancer, reduced muscle gain, heart disease, blood clots, and migraines…just to name a few.
I can confidently say that I will NEVER take them again. This goes for pills, rings, patches, and injections. I wish so badly that I could go back in time and make a healthier choice. With the help of a naturopath, as well as a lot of nutritional support I am finally back to my “normal” self again, at least the emotional side. I am still working on rebuilding my gut flora after the use of both birth control and being given antibiotics during the births of my boys…something else I would go back in time and change if I could.
Fortunately, there are some wonderful, natural, and healthy alternatives to hormone birth control. I’m still working on this this post which should be ready within the next few days!
There is SO much more to talk about here, but I wanted to get the conversation started. I am asked about this topic so often, so I know that it is on my readers’ minds. I hope this is helpful!
live well. be well.
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photo credit: babymed.com