September 19th, 2013

Well, that's the end of that...

Hey all.

I was waiting to do my long term Gynefix update until I hit the year mark, just to be safe, but I may as well post now, as it expelled (or at least, came out) about an hour ago.

I'm pretty upset about it. My previous two IUDs (flexi-T minis) moved out of place and had to be removed. So, as a last-ditch effort, I hopped over to Vancouver to have a Gynefix mini fitted. My doctors told me it was a good bet if I'd had bad luck with other kinds. The fitting went okay. It was fairly painful and I was a little traumatized by the shot to my cervix, but it was in there.

That was in January. I've had the placement checked twice now by ultrasound, mostly out of paranoia, and both times everything looked absolutely fine to my doctor (Dr. Trouton in Victoria).

I've been having some pain during sex pretty regularly since having it inserted--mostly stabby pains in my abdomen during certain positions--and also some pain during bowel movements. My partner has also complained about the strings poking him.

Aside from that, I've really liked having the Gynefix. My periods are super regular, and have been getting shorter and shorter each month (down to 4-5 days). I'm currently on my period now.

The only thing that I suppose could have been an indicator that the Gynefix wasn't sitting right, or had come loose, was perhaps a lack of pain during bowel movements the last couple of days. Usually I feel crampy pains around my anus and uterus, but the last few days I've felt nothing. So perhaps it was already loose.

Today I woke up in the wee hours of the morn to use the bathroom and changed my tampon. However, my flow was pretty light so when I went to take it out an hour ago it was difficult and kind of dry--I'm sure you guys know the feeling. I pulled a little and eventually got it. I can't remember if I felt anything remotely painful in my uterus. The tampon came out, hooray, and then I felt... a pokey thing in my vagina. The string was hanging out of it entirely. I didn't want to pull too hard in case it was still in, but I barely needed to touch it and the whole thing came out. I guess it was just sitting in my vagina.

So that's that. I've done the exact same thing with tampons in the past, but I still feel like it was my fault the stupid thing came out. Or maybe it had already come loose? I don't know. I've been told it's okay to use tampons with IUDs, but I feel like I should have known not to pull on it so hard... At any rate, I need to look into a new form of birth control.

Goodbye, little Gynefix. I went through a lot to get you, but it was not meant to be. You served me well, and shall be missed.

And here's a picture of the thing under the cut (a little bloody) in case you're interested. It's much smaller than I pictured.

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EDIT: I called Willow Women's Clinic in Vancouver to let them know it had come out, and the receptionist seemed to agree it had come out because I pulled too hard on the tampon. Which makes me feel like an idiot, but oh well.

Now I'm not sure whether I should go and get another one, or go back on the mini-pill... argh. I have no idea what to do. On the one hand, I like my regular periods and the security and effectiveness of the IUD... on the other, sex was sometimes painful and my partner could never go as hard as I wanted without hurting me. But I don't know if I want the side effects of the pill, and my periods, although short, were waaay too heavy not to use tampons. I don't know right now. Fuck it.


Switching from Implanon to a hormonal IUD (Skyla or Mirena) - What was your experience?

I have an appointment for Skyla on Oct. 1st and have done a lot of research, including on this site, but have been unable to find a lot of experience stories from people who went from Implanon to Skyla or Mirena (I was looking for any one who switched to a hormonal IUD). I was hoping to get more info from people who actually made this switch so I know what to expect (or not expect) afterwards.


  • I am 26 years old and currently on Implanon.

  • Since I was about 16 I have used (in order) combo pills, Nuvaring, Seasonale, Implanon.

  • I have never had kids and I am in a long term monogamous relationship.

  • Previously, I had no issues with any birth control method and no side effects. However, on Implanon which is the first Progestin only BC I have used, I have experienced tender breasts, bloating, weight gain, no sex drive, and more oily skin (I can easily control acne as long as I wash my face once in the morning and once before bed though)

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Although I have made the appointment, I'm still obsessively reading reviews and experiences and with all that is out there I am getting mixed messages -- many from people not making the same switch, so I wanted to post and ask here since this seems like the best place I've seen with the most honest and balanced opinions and advice.

If you switched, what was your experience? I am having my Implanon removed at the same appointment as my insertion, is this what you did? Did you notice any difference with side effects (weight, sex drive, acne...). Was it better, worse? Do you have trouble losing and maintaining a happy weight?

I know everyone is different, which is why I feel the more information I can find, the better I can at least find a pattern in the data and maybe this will help some other person trying to decide between Implanon and hormonal IUDs.

Thanks so much in advance!

P.S. I love this community and it's really great to know there is a group of such supportive women out there who are willing to answer questions and concerns and share their experiences! If/When I get my IUD I will definitely try to post and help others with questions too!

Can't find my IUD strings...or my cervix for that matter

I want to start by saying that the posts here were immensely helpful in my decision to get an IUD. Some background I'm 26 and NP, was on Depo Provera for 6 years and Alesse for 7 months. I had a copper IUD inserted on Tuesday. It went fine...painful, but nothing I couldn't handle. The doctor said it went "perfectly" I took 800 mcg of misoprostol before hand which helped I guess.

Anyway, my period is just ending today and I wanted to check the strings for the first time. I have never felt my cervix before, because I had no reason to until now. I am trying to find the strings...and I can't feel anything, including my cervix. The doctor said she cut the strings at 3cm long. Maybe my fingers are just really short? Has anyone else had this problem? Any advice?

Shift in cycles on Paragard

Hi all,

So I got my Paragard inserted about a year ago (early last September). Overall, I'm happy with it; it does what it's supposed to do. However, I'm a little concerned about my periods recently. My cycles have always been a bit irregular, in that they're never the same number of days every month, but they've always been on the longer-end of normal (usually 30+ days). For the last few months, though, I've had really short cycles--my last two were 23 and 22 days, respectively.

Right now I'm bleeding again...I was hoping it was just spotting, but it's looking like it might be the start of my next period. And it's only been 17 days. :( My periods are still really long, so it's only been a week since I stopped spotting on the tail end of my last period, too. I was really hoping that I would see my periods/cycles calming down a lot as I approached the one year mark, so this is stressing me out a little.

Has anyone else experienced cycle shifting with the Paragard long-term? I've checked my strings and everything seems to be in order, so I think I'm okay on that front...I don't know if I should just attribute this to outside stuff/monthly variations/stress/etc. Thoughts?

3 IUDs and counting...

...The whole point of getting an IUD inserted is to NOT end up with 19 kids and counting, like a couple of Duggars we know, right? But would 19 IUDs be much better? My goodness, ladies - what is my life?!

It's been a while since I posted about my first IUD insertion experience here, and I did it because I SO wanted to dispel any nerves of preconceived notions that insertion had to be painful at all - mine wasn't. You can read more about that here ( I thought that'd be the only post I'd need to write - at least for 10 years, but due to my crazy uterus, it's not to be so. My beloved Paragard expelled after 3 months the first time, and after about a year, an ultrasound showed that my second one had dropped to the lower section of my uterus and my lady doctor told me I'd need to use back up protection because she couldn't guarantee its effectiveness in it's position.


I FREAKING LOVE MY PARAGUARD. I've decided it is legitimately the ONLY birth control for me, for ALL of the positive reasons it has been for countless numbers of you divas out there. I like to play rugby, children frighten me, I can't remember to do the same thing at the same time every day - ever, and I will NOT deal with hormones screwing up the only thing I hold sacred - my body itself. My doctor told me that she was upset for me, because she knows me and my lifestyle and Paragard truly is perfect for me. She does honestly doesn't know why my body is rejecting the IUD, and my ultrasounds have shown no signs of my uterus being positioned abnormally. Whyyyyyy does everything have to be so hardddd?!

So I PLEADED with the lady doctor. She had no options for me besides a number of barrier methods, and she suggested Nuvaring as a last option that, although hormonal, was easier to remember and sort of no-fuss. My next question was, "Well, can I just put in the Nuvaring after you insert my Paragard?" And she was like, "I don't think you understand. Your uterus hates Paragard." And I was like, "I don't think YOU understand. I NEED Paragard. What I don't need is a CHILD. I will do whatever it takes to NEVER have a CHILD happen in my uterus. I NEED DOUBLE PROTECTION!!" I was screaming at this point. It was emotional, and awkward for both parties. She ended up almost whispering as if speaking to someone who wouldn't understand, "I think using two contraceptives at the same time is a little unnecessary."

I legitimately was like, uh uh. Nope. you are not understanding how desperately I do not want to be a mother. Just stick another one in, girl. Doesn't matter anyway.

So today, I got Paragard number two pulled out, and in went number three. Ridiculously enough, It felt like it it was straight up SHREDDING my insides, and both me and my boyfriend cried and held hands and waited for it to be over. I'm still SO confused by this because the first two went so smoothly and I had taken 1000 mgs of Naproxen beforehand (Homegirl does NOT play when it comes to pain.) This insertion was ultrasound guided, which means that they did the insertion while watching it being fed and released into the appropriate position, and all went well.

Whatever. Pain, no pain - it's all freaking WORTH IT! I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT IT!

I implore you divas - am I crazy?!  Here's where I stand on all of this: my insurance covers every IUD I am ever to insert, 100%. It's free, every time. I'll be darned if I have to start paying even 10 dollars for a pill that's LESS effective than my pretty copper companion; plus I know not everyone is lucky enough to have that option, so I want to use it to the best of my ability, you know? If insurance makes it free, and all I have to do is check every few months to make sure it's in a good position until it falls out (which it seems like it will between 6 months to a year), do you think it's worth it to continue to replace it that frequently? Will that do damage to my internal lady parts? I'm fine with the pain, and I love being hormone free. If need be, though, should I try Nuvaring so I'm doubly protected in case Paragard isn't sitting where it needs to be in my uterus? Help, please!