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Goldilocks and the 3 Birth Controls
Neddy (she/her)
|
7.22.2021

Once upon a time there were three forms of contraception, who lived together in a house of their own in the woods. One was a little wee birth control pill, one was a mid-sized arm implant, and the other was a great big vaginal ring. Before I continue, I want to start off with the disclaimer that no two bodies are the same, and the birth control of your dreams may have been the same one that caused my hair to start falling out. Also please do not let a negative experience I had prevent you from trying a form of birth control recommended to you by a doctor!

I would describe my attention span as akin to Goldilocks who, just to remind you, forgot she wasn’t at home and casually fell asleep in a bed she stumbled upon in the woods. As an absent minded 17-year-old, I wanted an IUD, but ended up opting for the Nexplanon arm implant. I had heard the tales of menstruators fainting from pain while having their IUD’s inserted and was comforted by the local anesthetic the implant promised. I really wanted to love the implant, but like the sting of the first porridge that was too hot, my moods were immediately more volatile and the rare side effect of hair loss had materialized in clumps in my shower drain. After extensive online research and conversations with a gynecologist, I opted for a product that required more attention than the IUD and implant, but less attention than the pill: The Nuva vaginal ring. I would be remiss, if I failed to mention that the Nuva Ring holds true to the second bowl of porridge being “much too cold” as it is conveniently stored in the refrigerator when not in use. While I loved the painless, monthly, self-insertion of the ring, for whatever reason my body retaliated with terrible cramps; a symptom I had never experienced on my period before, and a symptom I lived with for three years.

Coming off of a 6-month sabbatical from birth control and around my 20th birthday, I was hit with a stubborn bout of hormonal adult acne. Now older, and in my eyes a little wiser, I decided I was ready for the pill. After seeing a dermatologist, I was recommended a birth control called Trinessa. The third time truly was the charm, and I live in disbelief that I ever managed my birth control any other way.

In summary, the implant was too hot, the ring was too cold, and the pill was jusssst right. All tropes aside, looking at the abridged version of my birth control journey, it almost makes me forget the fact that I spent years complacent with a form of birth control that caused me physical pain. I even rationalized spending the rest of my life that way as “something most menstruators go through.” If a pair of sympathetic eyes should find this piece, I am here to let you know that with a little medically supervised trial and error, I was able to find the perfect birth control—and you can too.

PS. This next detail is completely unnecessary to the telling of this story, but the doctor who inserted the Nexplanon implant was named Dr. Footmeow, and I hope you all get as much of a kick out of that as I did.

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