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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sex Basics and Sexual Health » Hey Gals--Fertility Awareness?

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Author Topic: Hey Gals--Fertility Awareness?
Eclipse
Activist
Member # 2254

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Do any of you all keep or want to keep records of your (entire) fertility/menstrual cycles? How do you do it and why? Do you know anything about it? Do you think it'd be too much trouble?

Fertility awareness can be used as part of a birthcontrol plan. Later in life, it can help you get pregnant if you want to. It helps me anticipate and deal with sometimes frequent yeast infections. But in general, it's a way of learning more about yourself and about your body, and I think it's a really good thing.

I didn't find out about fertility awareness until about two years ago though. I think a lot of things that list methods of birthcontrol don't mention it because, well, it would be really stupid not to use other kinds of birthcontrol too. It also seems that a lot of people assume that teens or women in general aren't going to want to take the extra time and inconvenience to do something like that. Still, I *really* wish I'd known about it earlier, and I wish there were more accessible information out there! It can't hurt you, it's not very expensive, it's something anyone who wanted to could do, you can stop whenever you want, and it helps you learn about your body. It takes a while to learn, but there's no penalty for making mistakes (unless you're having unprotected sex, but then it's the unprotected sex that's the problem!)
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What I do is use a digital thermometer to take my basal body temperature (BBT) every morning at the same time, and every day I look at and feel my vaginal mucous and my cervix (to look at your cervix, you need a speculum, a hand-mirror, and a flashlight). I write everything down on a chart on my computer, along with notes. I've been doing this off-and-on for about a year now, although I lost some information when my hard drive broke down, and there have been months when I've simply been under too much stress to do it. Now I'm back into it, and doing well. I do daydream about what if my mom had given me a digital thermometer, good book about it, notebook and speculum at my menarche? I'dve used them when I was ready (probably after a couple years), and I'd have years of records and good habits by now! Mmmmm...


Posts: 257 | From: Sarasota, FL | Registered: Jan 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Mophead
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Member # 7

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I wouldn't use fertility awareness as a birth control method unless I wanted to have trillions of babies.

It's great for women who want to have children and are having trouble. It's great for women who want to get to know their own bodies better. It's horrible for women who are using it as birth control.

If you only abstain from sex during ovulation, you will, read, you WILL get pregnant. But you already said you knew that.

It sounds like something I would try, once I get my lazy paws on a thermometer. However, I keep my period on a calendar, so I know when I'm ovulating. I also get horrible ovarian pains. Lucky me.

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My menstrual diary
Updated as often as my uterus


Posts: 752 | From: Canada | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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quote:
Originally posted by Mophead:
I wouldn't use fertility awareness as a birth control method unless I wanted to have trillions of babies.

It's horrible for women who are using it as birth control.

If you only abstain from sex during ovulation, you will, read, you WILL get pregnant. But you already said you knew that.


However, there IS a way it can be used as excellent birth control, and I've done it for years. If you simply abstain from ANY sex with a risk of pregnancy when you are ovulating, or within four days of ovulating -- even WITH a condom or other birth dontrol, and then use a condom (and another method with it, if you like) during the rest of the month, what you have is practically foolproof birth control that is about as close to 100% effective as it gets.

And to be honest, for anyone for whom pregnancy is simply NOT an option, or something they are prepared to deal with, I'd advise total abstinence during ovulation, no matter what you use, and to do that, you gotta know when you ovulate!

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Heather Corinna
Editor and Founder, Scarleteen

"If you're a bird, be an early early bird --
But if you're a worm, sleep late." - Shel Silverstein


Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
KittenGoddess
Scarleteen Volunteer
Member # 1679

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I agree completely with Mophead, not a good method of birth control (when used alone) unless you want to be changing trillions of dipers. But there is value in very carefully charting your cycles, especially if you have something like endometriosis (sp?) which will make it more difficult to get pregnant later on. Although infertility treatment has come a long way since the time when my mom had to go through all this, it's still important to chart your cycles if you have fertility problems. Anyway, just thought I'd add that in there as a side note.

~KittenGoddess

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"Love is a fire. But whether it is going to warm your hearth or burn down your house, you can never tell."
~Joan Crawford

[This message has been edited by KittenGoddess (edited 01-15-2001).]


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Rizzo
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Member # 802

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Hmm, I used to track my period, but I never did any of that temperature taking stuff... now that I'm on the pill I don't even track my period anymore, because it's always the same.

Ms. Scarlet, that's a a great idea, to avoid sex around ovulation as well as using a condom at other times. If I ovulated, I would definitely consider that. But even when I used to track my periods, I coud never tell when I was ovulating, so I guess I'm clueless :/


Posts: 582 | From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada | Registered: Aug 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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