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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » EXPERT ADVICE » Emergencies and Crises » Emergency Contraception - Please Help!

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Author Topic: Emergency Contraception - Please Help!
SugarPlum1334
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Hello,

I am new to the forum and also, have never taken any form of Emergency Contraception (or even regular birth control for that matter,) so I have a few concerns I am hoping some of you can help lay to rest for me.

My periods are long, usually seven days, and I started my last cycle on June 24. I went to a party and had been drinking. I was assaulted. This was close to the end of my period, about 2 AM on June 29. I am not sure if he used a condom, but I doubt it. The whole ordeal is a blur. I feel it is unlikely I would get pregnant so close to the end of my period, but I was concerned nonetheless, so I went and purchased Next Choice. I took the first pill on June 30 around noon and took the second one 12-15 hours later as directed. Although I had a normal, full length period, I started bleeding again on Monday, July 2 and it continued for about two days. I had some mild cramping and the blood was a bright red. It abruptly stopped as quickly as it had started.

However, now my period is late. I should have started on July 28 - if you count from a 28 day cycle. Sometimes my cycle is a little longer, occasionally 32 or 34 days. My breasts are tender around the edges like they are typically before I start my period and I feel somewhat bloated and might have noticed a little nausea this morning, but I am wondering if the latter part is psychosomatic or from anxiety over this. Like I said, I have never taken any form of emergency contraception before and am therefore, not sure what to expect.

Is it possible that the pill is making my period late? Could it also be making me feel a little nauseated and my breasts be sore or is that just my period getting ready to make an appearance? Also, does this sound like I might be pregnant? I took all necessary precautions, but this is new to me and I am very worried and stressing myself out. Someone please give me some good advice and put my worried mind at ease. I am so scared.

Thanks so much,
SugarPlum

P.S. I just moved back to my home state after living in another state for over a year. I left to get away from the stress of a very controlling and verbally and mentally abusive relationship. As a result, I left my job and all the people I had met there. My ex has been sending threatening texts and e-mails and I have had to change my number and close several accounts because of him. Plus, the added stress of being sexually assaulted has very much messed with my mind. Could this possibly be playing into my late period as well? Could the stress of all that be delaying it as well as the pill?

Posts: 13 | From: Southeastern, USA | Registered: Jul 2012  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Onionpie
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Hi SugarPlum1334, welcome to scarleteen! I'm so sorry to hear about your assault. Is there anything we can do to help you heal from and cope with this? I also see that you got out of an abusive relationship fairly recently -- have you had any therapy/counselling for that? Counselling can be really helpful and important for survivors of abuse, as well as for survivors of sexual assault, so if you haven't had any counselling it's definitely something to consider.

A common side effect of the emergency contraceptive pill is spotting and/or a late period. It is also fairly common to feel nausea with use of the EC pill. It would be far too early in a pregnancy to be feeling symptoms like sore breasts due to that -- the first symptom of a pregnancy is a missed period -- so that's not anything to be worrying about right now.

It is also definitely possible that your stress has contributed to your period being late, too. So I'd really say you don't need to be worrying about pregnancy right now, although I do suggest going and getting screened for STIs asap if you haven't already, since you don't know whether the person who assaulted you used a condom or not.

Is there anything else we can help you with?

[ 07-25-2012, 07:58 PM: Message edited by: Onionpie ]

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SugarPlum1334
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Thanks for the swift reply. I have been seeking counseling after the assualt and also for the aftermath of being in a very difficult relationship. It has not been an easy road, but I feel like I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I have a wonderful group of family and friends that are supporting me as well through all this.

I have not been screened for STI's yet, but made an appointment to go. I cannot get my mind off the thought that I might be pregnant. I cannot even sleep at night for worrying about it. How late can EC make your period? Is it possible that I can miss my period all together? Do you think the sore breasts, etc are a sign of my period?

Also, is it normal that I started bleeding a day after taking the EC, even though I had just finished my period a day before? I am so stressed over this. Thanks again for the reassurance and information. It helps immensely.

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Onionpie
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No problem [Smile] I'm really glad to hear that you have such a good support system and are getting the help you need in healing from the abuse and the assault. It's so good to give yourself the care that you need.

It's also good to hear that you've got an appointment to get screened for STIs. And EC tends to make your period up to a couple of days late, you tend not to miss it entirely. However, I hear you talking about an AWFUL lot of stress over the possibility of pregnancy, so that is very likely to mess up your cycle even more.

You took EC very soon after the assault took place -- that means that it is close to its highest effectiveness. For now it would really be best to try not to worry about pregnancy, since the chances are low and all worrying will do is make your cycle even more out of whack which will just lead to more stress [Frown]

I do think that your breasts being sore is a sign of your oncoming period, since you said that that's a typical symptom you get around your period. There is also a possibility that it was caused by the EC pill.

And yes, as I said, spotting is very common with emergency contraception -- so the bleeding after taking your pill, even being right after your period, isn't anything to be worried about [Smile]

[ 07-25-2012, 09:14 PM: Message edited by: Onionpie ]

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Onionpie
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Oops, I'm sorry -- I forgot to also add that since your period is late, you should be able to take a pregnancy test at this time and the results should be accurate. Taking a pregnancy test after having used EC is a good idea to check if it worked.

You take a pregnancy test either 14 days after you took the emergency contraceptive, or when you have missed a period. I'm so sorry for forgetting to mention that sooner. I didn't realize how far into july we are [Razz]

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SugarPlum1334
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That is fine [Smile] . I was thinking of taking one anyway. I am now 6 days late. My breasts are increasingly sore, which seems to be the case most months before I start my period. I have felt some very mild aching or cramping in my lower abdomen, but besides that, no signs of a period coming. I am starting to get worried again, even though I have reread your posts here and tried to calm myself down. I know stress isn't helping things. I am just so scared. I will arrange to take a pregnancy test in the next few days. I am almost too afraid to take one and am pretty unfamilar with EC and how effective it is when used as directed. Thanks again.

Sincerely,
Sweating Bullets

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WesLuck
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Gee, that sounds painful! I wish you all the best.

-hugs for SugarPlum- [Smile]

EDIT: Oops! I did it again, replying in this section. Mods - feel free to remove this post if you want, or put a note next to it.

[ 07-26-2012, 06:16 PM: Message edited by: WesLuck ]

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Robin Lee
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HI SugarPlum1334,

EC can be anywhere from 75%-98% effective depending on how soon it was taken.

As onionpie said, EC can delay periods, so the fact that yours isn't here yet isn't an indication of anything either way.

I know the prospect of taking a test is scary, but the sooner you know the sooner you can either relaz or start doing what you need to do to make the best decisions for you.

We're here to provide you support and information either way.

--------------------
Robin

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SugarPlum1334
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Thanks for the information, Robin Lee and OnionPie. I am a week late for my period today, if I counted correctly. About two hours ago, I scraped up the nerve to take a pregnancy test. The result came back...NEGATIVE! I was relieved to say the least, but I do have a few questions now.

The instructions that came with the test said to take in the morning if you are testing before your missed period since the levels of hCG are often higher in the mornings and therefore, the test is more accurate. Does this apply to me since I am a week late? I have a second test I can take in the morning, if so.

The test I bought was a store brand. Does this matter? Should I have gotten a name brand or are the cheaper tests just as accurate and effective? The box said it could be used up to 5 days before a missed period.

Last question: even though my period is still not here, does the negative result mean I can assume the EC worked and I can rest easy that I am not pregnant? I guess there is still some bit of lingering dread in the back of my mind that I tested too soon, tested incorrectly, or somehow might still be pregnant despite the negative test result. Just looking for a little reassurance and some answers to the above questions.

As always, thanks so much for the great information and support I have gotten on here so far. It has been a blessing!

SugarPlum

P.S. Thanks for the e-hugs WesLuck. They are much appreciated [Smile]

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Onionpie
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Hi Sugarplum! Good on you for taking the pregnancy test, I know how scary it can be. Hopefully you can start to feel better now [Smile]

Store brand tests are just as accurate as the brand-name tests, so you can definitely rely on the results from them just as much.

It might be a good idea to take the second test in the morning just to be on the safe side. Even though I'd say this probably counts as AFTER your missed period, it wouldn't do any harm to take it in the morning, so you might as well [Smile]

If the second pregnancy test also comes back with a negative result, then you can rest assured that you are not pregnancy. TWO negatives makes it practically impossible for it to be a false result [Smile]

[ 07-28-2012, 01:31 PM: Message edited by: Onionpie ]

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SugarPlum1334
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I am going to take the second test in the morning. I had heard that hCG increases every 48 hours or something like that. I do not know if that information was accurate, but it sounded good, so I figured I would wait a little longer than one day before testing again. I will keep you apprised of the situation after I test in the morning. Thanks again!
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SugarPlum1334
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Ok, I did it. I took the second test this morning and...again I got a NEGATIVE! Sigh of relief. I have read on this forum and one other a few people claiming that their pregnancy tests did not show positive until 2 to 3 weeks after their missed period. Is this even plausible?

Also, on the NextChoice EC insert, it says that if your period is more than seven days late, you might be pregnant. No where does it say that it can make your period as late as mine is now. Can I now fully trust the two negative test results? Or should I retest again in another week if I still have not started by then?

Thanks for all the support! This website and all the volunteers who have helped me through this so far ROCK! [Smile] Hugs to all.

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Onionpie
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Hey SugarPlum. Happy to help [Smile] The test results should be accurate at this point, since it takes up to about 10 days after a risk for a pregnancy to take place, and it's been quite a bit longer than that by now.

However, if you think it will help you get peace of mind, you can test again in another week or so. If you want you could even go in for a blood test at a doctor's, as I know that helps some people rest easy.

Also, here's an article that might help you begin to relax about this. The section at the bottom, "Not Pregnant, still scared" will hopefully be of use to you.
Pregnancy Scared?

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SugarPlum1334
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Ok, I am going to try to relax and just sit back and wait on my period to show up. I know pregnancy and PMS symptoms are very similar, but my breasts are sore and it feels very much like when I am about to start my period, so keeping my fingers crossed [Smile] I might test again in a week if it is still M.I.A., but I feel pretty confident that after two negative tests, I can assume I am not pregnant. Thanks for the link to the article.
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Onionpie
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No problem! Good luck [Smile]
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SugarPlum1334
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Just wanted to do a quick update to my original post. I started my period today! I have never been so excited to have cramps, haha. I wanted to post the outcome on this forum, so that anyone reading this somewhere down the road, possibly in a similar situation to mine, can have some reassurance. Once I took the pregnancy tests and saw the negative results, I was able to relax and stop stressing. After that, my period seemed to come naturally in a day or so. I was still over a week late and I think the EC may be making my cramps worse and my bleeding a little heavier than normal. Hope this post helps someone else during their time of need and again, thanks to the amazing volunteers who helped me through this.

Love,
SugarPlum

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