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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Safer Sex & Birth Control » Combining birth control methods

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Author Topic: Combining birth control methods
Lenxi
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Hello,

I've been in a relationship since October now, and I've been sexually active with my partner. We always use a condom when have sex, but I ended up having a pregnancy scare when I realized that we had protected sex on the exact day I was supposed to be ovulating.

My period came normally, but ever since that experience I've been looking into combining an additional BC method with condoms.

The thing is, my partner will be going back to the UK when the school semester ends, which means at most I'll be seeing him till June. Afterwards we most likely won't see each other until another six months - or a year, and even then I don't know if he's willing to continue with the relationship when he goes back.

That's where my problem lies: I thought about going on the Pill, but I don't know if it's worth it to use a hormonal birth control if it's only for another four to five months. Not to mention, I'm very worried about the side effects it'll have on my body, as well as the effects of me coming off the Pill.

The alternative that I'm considering is the contraceptive diaphragm, which I know will have to be used with spermicide. I've never used spermicide before, and I don't know if I'm allergic to it. I've also spoken to my partner about it, and he supports my decision either way - though he doesn't know if he's allergic to spermicide either. And I really don't want to have to find out about the allergic reaction right when we're getting into the heat of the moment.

So my questions really are (after all that meandering) - should I take the Pill if I'm going to see him for such a short period of time? And if I use the diaphragm, will it be hard to use/messy to use with all the spermicide inside? And lastly, is there an alternative to spermicide that won't induce an allergic reaction?

Thank you! Hopefully this wasn't too long to read.

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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For either of these methods, you will need to see a sexual/ reproductive healthcare provide, and part of their job is to answer exactly these kinds of questions for you. You do not have to walk in there knowing exactly what you want.

In terms of diaphragms, if you have used a menstrual cup and that works fine for you, putting diaphragms in is basically the same. The only difference is the small dollop of spermicide you out in the middle of it, not "all that spermicide," just a dollop, and it stays right in the cup of the device easily.

Some people are allergic or sensitive to spermicides, but most are not. Since your partner will be using condoms, he will not have any contact with it, so no need to be concerned about any reaction from him, and a healthcare provider can check in advance for you if you are.

But the pill is also a perfectly sound option. Why don't you go make that appointment with the healthcare provider to get started in this process with them, where you can work together to find the method or methods that seem most likely to work well for you?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Lenxi
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Hello Heather, thank you for the prompt response!

I have been to the clinic once last month, actually, and obtained the Pill from them already, though it was a really rushed appointment - there was a long queue, and the doctor sounded like she wanted me to get out ASAP. It was after getting the Pill that I started to doubt and get really anxious about taking it, which is why I'm still waffling about going on it.

Never used a menstrual cup before, but there's always a first time for everything. I will definitely make another appointment though, and go over the options again. Hopefully with a more patient doctor this time around.

[ 01-09-2014, 10:36 AM: Message edited by: Lenxi ]

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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I am sorry to hear you did not get the quality of care you should have. It may help, when making this new appointment, to be clear with the receptionist you are also going because you want a contraceptive consult and education. That way, they can schedule that extra time, making it more likely you will get it.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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CraftyKid
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I know I'm not staff, but I can give you my personal experience - I use the Pill along with male condoms and I feel very safe and sound with my choice (and so does my partner). I was leery of harmful side effects of the Pill at first but I actually have mostly had good side effects such as reduced PMS symptoms and shorter, lighter periods. Again, not proclaiming any facts here, just giving you feedback from another woman using those methods [Smile]
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Lenxi
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Bwip, sorry for leaving this unanswered for so long - I've given a call down to the clinic, and I'll be heading there on Friday to see what they have to say!

@CraftyKid: Thanks for the information - I know that there are good side effects (and that on the Internet, generally the bad side is the one that's thrown around more often), but it's generally how short I'll be seeing him that's making me hesitant on taking them.

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