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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Safer Sex & Birth Control » Kind of weird situation

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Author Topic: Kind of weird situation
Dolphins_Cry
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Member # 36415

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Wow, this is embarrassing.

Ok, so I'm currently on the pill and have been for about 6 years. I skip the inactive pills constantly so that I only have 3-4 'periods' a year.

But even this is too much for me. It's kind of... triggering. The blood. Because of being assaulted. So basically for that one week I just want to die and it's really messing with me. I've tried using tampons so I don't have to see but the last couple of years I haven't been able to because of a pain problem down there. So I'm stuck using pads and it's just a total nightmare for that week. [Frown]

I've tried researching to see what is available that could completely stop me from having a period and I came up with the Depo shot. But then even that doesn't happen for everyone and some women still have periods on that. Is that right?

Still, I'm thinking it's worth a shot (no pun intended. Ok, maybe a little bit intended). Except I read that it causes you to lose calcium which concerns me because I have a history of anorexia and it's already suspected that I have weak bones (stress fractures. etc) so this could be a problem for me.

But I think maybe it would be worth it if I totally lost my period and never had to be triggered like that ever again.

Thoughts/suggestions/other possibilities I haven't thought of?

Thanks

Posts: 31 | From: Australia | Registered: Jan 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Personally, what I'm hearing is you only addressing this by trying to get rid of the trigger, rather than by working to deal WITH the trigger.

Ultimately, when it comes to any kind of trigger, the latter is the way that we're ultimately going to need to work, in part because there's just no completely avoiding many triggers, especially something as universal as blood and your own body functions.

Have you had any counseling and brought this up with your counselor?

But with Depo, while yes, you may find your periods are suppressed, that often also means a lot of spotting frequently. If you still want to try it, per the calcium issue, you just want to be sure to take a good calcium supplement or eat more calcium-rich foods.

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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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Dolphins_Cry
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Thanks Heather.

I guess I am trying to just completely avoid the trigger because I don't know how to work through this one. There are so many other triggers that are absolutely unavoidable that I thought this one might be easy to just 'get rid of'.

I am in counseling, have been for over 2 years. But, well, he's a guy, and it would be kinda awkward to bring up this issue. It's just the 'ick' factor, y'know? I don't want him to be grossed out.

I went to my GP this morning to get the Gardasil vaccine and I wanted to ask him about the Depo shot but I'm not sure he would be totally up to speed on it and I suppose I kind of need to be honest about my reasons for wanting to try it so I can get the right answers about whether it would be a good fit for me. I guess I should probably look around for a gynecologist but then they'll just push the exam issue even more than my GP does every time I ask for my pill script.

I hate being a woman sometimes. [Razz]

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Heather
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I'd say it's not likely to be so easy to get rid of: being able to suppress menstruation for the whole of your life not only isn't likely doable (even if it works for you with Depo, it's not recommended to use Depo for too long, so that'd hardly be a lifelong solution), it may not be safe. We still don't even have any study at all on menstrual suppression for younger women. And again, blood? Going to be kind of tough to avoid in the world.

I'd say if your therapist can't handle talking about basic body functions, that's a serious maturity problem for a therapist to be having, and I'd be really shocked to have a therapist NOT address that with the same calm and maturity as anything else. And obviously, this is something you need to work through and talk through with someone so you can develop some tools to manage it. Are you otherwise satisfied with this therapist when it comes to working with your abuse issues?

Can I also suggest that it might help to try and remember that menses actually is only blood in part? Most of it isn't actually blood at all, but your uterine lining in liquid form and other discharges. What you saw when assaulted was blood: menses is menses. Not sure if a bran-switch with that would help, but I'd say it's worth a try. It might also help to remember that in some ways, it is a signal of your reproductive health: in other words, you weren't harmed in THAT way, so it's possible to try and turn this around and look at that flow as validation of your wellness despite assault.

Per looking for a GYN and your issues, I think a recent Sexpert Advice answer from CJ may be of great use: http://www.scarleteen.com/article/advice/i_want_to_avoid_abuse_triggers_and_flashbacks_but_i_really_should_go_to_see_a_gyn

[ 02-21-2009, 10:14 AM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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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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Dolphins_Cry
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My therapist is great, I really like him. I've only really started opening up to him about the assault over the last 5-6 months and his reaction to everything I've said so far has been really supportive and helpful. I always have this fear that if I say anything about it he'll think I'm dirty and disgusting and stop seeing me, so I guess it's the same fear with this issue.

I get what you're saying about it only being part blood but when I go to the bathroom and see red, I just panic and it's hard to think logically when I'm in that state. That initial panic sets off the flashbacks and then it's hard to get back to 'normal' so that I can try to rationalise it. (Oh and also, I don't have an issue with blood in other circumstances. I'm a regular blood donor, and an ex self-injurer so I'm totally fine with it in other contexts.)

It's also hard to see it as a sign of health and wellbeing when it comes with so many bad feelings. Stomach cramping, aching joints, lethargy, headaches and crying over spilt milk.

Thanks for the link. I can relate to that question because I know I should have an exam but I'm terrified to at the same time. It is definitely not a good idea any time soon though because I only just got through a series of dentist visits that turned my world upside down. I'm still trying to deal the consequences of that.

I'll try bringing up the issue with my therapist. It seems like the only option I really have. (Can you believe I was considering going to a GYN and asking for a hysterectomy?!)

Thanks for your help.

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Heather
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I can believe that, honestly. I can believe that because...well, a) a lot of folks don't realize how totally out of whack a hysterectomy can throw the body of someone, particularly someone in otherwise sound reproductive health, and b) triggers that trigger very intensely really are hard. I get it.

I also figured the logic wouldn't help, or not in a huge way, but it might just be something to try walking your mind through the next time you do get triggered by your period. I'd suggest trying to make a couple little mantras you can repeat with that information and see if that helps. Can I ask what you use to manage other triggers?

[ 02-22-2009, 10:58 AM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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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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Dolphins_Cry
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Mostly Valium [Razz]
I'm not very good at dealing with triggers so I try to avoid them completely and if I can't I tend to get overwhelmed quickly. The Valium takes the edge off so then I can try to sort myself out. I just try to concentrate on my breathing and if I can, I sit down and slip my shoes off and I'll slide my feet along the floor. Not sure why but that seems to help.

Weird, but even after reading that link about the hysterectomy, I'm still not completely against the idea. I think I'd have trouble finding someone who'd do the surgery on an otherwise healthy 24 year old though.

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Heather
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Eh, you might feel differently if you talked with some women who were given hysterectomies when they were young or didn't actually need them. Seriously. Given, the cons would be different cons than you have now, but I'd say only different, not lesser.

But you're right: finding someone to give you an elective hysterectomy at your age, especially because you haven't really yet explored other ways to manage your triggers -- beyond a medication like Valium, which should be a stop-gap, not the permanent way you manage triggers -- not so likely.

Has your therapist done any work with you with tools for triggers? If not, it's high time for that.

--------------------
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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Dolphins_Cry
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I chickened out of telling him about this trigger. Bummer.
Maybe next time.

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LacieC
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This might sound odd but what if you wrote a note to the therapist about it so that then he was the one bringing it up to you? I just know that sometimes when dealing with something really hard it's easier to talk freely when someone else is starting the talk.

Good luck.

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