The birth control pill sparked the sexual revolution and transformed the ways in which women viewed sex and themselves. Women of all shapes and sizes have developed a personal relationship with the Pill since. Good or bad, every woman who has utilized it has a story, and so do I. Oh, the Pill. It offers so much more than the promise of preventing pregnancy: may cure moderate acne, symptoms of PMS, mood swings..Headaches, weight gain, depression? Don’t get me wrong, I am fully aware of the benefits the Pill can offer and what it has done for women; I was once a beneficiary but to be honest it pretty much f*cked with my head.

My relationship with the Pill started in high school, prior to my first sexual experience, and helped to regulate my period and stop painful ovarian cysts from forming. Other than mild weight gain I had only experienced positive side effects; it helped clear up my acne, regulated my menstrual cycle, eased my cramps and ovarian cysts and was a reliable form of birth control. After so many years I was reluctant to think that the Pill would have harmful effects on me but over the past five months I have seen a significant change in my mood.

With that said, all was well until this year when I started experiencing some strange symptoms that were not emphasized when my doctor was sizing me up for my best birth control option. I didn’t know about the possible side effects of hair loss, vision problems with contact lenses, nervousness, breast pain, depression along with many others. I believe that I have been experiencing some of these possible side effects over the last few months but just could not bring myself to attribute them to the Pill. Depression was the most significant and the difference in my mood was astonishing. I am typically an upbeat person and from time to time things would get me down but would not keep me down. Crying at the drop of a hat, feeling guilty, getting upset over the smallest incidents, becoming distressed over men I didn’t even like, suddenly becoming insecure, feeling depressed and developing dark thoughts are not part of my normal regime but suddenly became the story of my life. I felt like I had no good news to tell anyone, just the same sad song. I had no idea what was wrong with me and just thought I was going crazy and was stressed..it was awful. Nothing ever would have clicked if it weren’t for a conversation with my roommates one day about the Pill.

Three of my roommates shared their negative experiences with the Pill and how they felt that it made them “crazy” and they just couldn’t be on it anymore. This never resonated with me because I thought that the Pill could not possibly make me crazy and I needed to be on it..not only was my skin looking great but I wasn’t getting pregnant! How could something that I’ve always depended on and was so liberating and so reliable be doing this to me? I was emotionally attached to the Pill and couldn’t break up with it even though it was wreaking havoc on my emotions.

One day I got upset and could not seem to control my emotions. My mind somehow made me think back, and out of curiosity I did some topical research on “the Pill and depression”. There isn’t much clinical information or studies out there (at least readily available) but there are a lot of personal, firsthand accounts from women who suffered from similar side effects. The more I began to search the less hopeless I felt. I’ve stopped taking the pill since and although it hasn’t been very long in comparison to how long I took the Pill for, I feel fine but am waiting to see how my body adjusts without it (It may take a couple of months).

Now don’t get me wrong. I am an advocate for birth control; I think everyone is entitled to have access to accurate information and all forms of birth control– this blog is not about morals, it is about how the pill effected my emotional and mental health and how I wasn’t aware of it. It does not affect all women in the same way and won’t necessarily have the same effects on you. I am not encouraging anyone to suddenly stop taking their birth control if they think they have developed any side effects; I am just encouraging women not to take anything lightly, be aware of their own bodies and speak up if they think something is wrong. The birth control pill can be an amazing thing and for me it was, until recently. I think everyone should be responsible for their sexual health and be responsible and active in preventing unwanted pregnancies but I also feel as though the potential side effects of hormonal contraceptives are not emphasized as they should be. I personally feel as though the dosage of the pill I was taking was working fine and now my body is just changing and reacting differently to hormonal contraceptives than it used to. There are other options that I can try and probably will try in the future. I thought I absolutely needed the Pill to be safe and enjoy my sex life and therefore was oblivious to the negative side effects and changes it was causing, but I am stable enough to make decisions and utilize other methods of contraception. I’m not saying it’s over with me and the Pill..we’re just on a break.

Please participate in the polls below and share your experiences or thoughts on this topic.

http://www.womens-health.co.uk/risks.html

http://www.aphroditewomenshealth.com/news/hormones_depression.shtml

http://www.webmd.com/sex/birth-control/birth-control-pill

*I did not want to mention the specific hormonal methods I have used over the years I don’t want to attribute any problems I’ve had with certain brands – I am attributing the side effects I had with hormonal contraceptives in general.

Is it possible to fail at finding your own happiness? I never thought it was until I realized I had done it. I moved to San Francisco, found a job, enrolled in school and tried to make a little life for myself about a year ago and have yet to accomplish anything that could make me happy. An entire year and I have nothing to show for it. I don’t feel like I fit in here, or anywhere. I feel like no one understands me or what I’m about and no one cares enough to even try. I’ve been used countless times by people who I thought at least cared enough about me not to do such a thing. Apparently I’m only as good as my car and I’m only good enough to date until someone else comes along. I’m also a great friend to go to the store with and chat with at lunch, but when anything else rolls around I’m just the friend you put on the back burner. This is not how my life was and is not how I intended it to be. My kindness has been taken for weakness and it makes me wonder why I ever left home and left amazing people who genuinely enjoyed me and the person I was. My heart is broken and the pieces are scattered all over San Francisco. Every time I get back up from a disaster and think I’m okay I just get knocked down again. I don’t deserve to feel upset and useless; I am not.

Don’t get me wrong, over the last year I have learned a lot. I know that I can survive; I can find a place to live, find a grocery store, find a job and meet people who give great directions. But with that I have lost something within myself and don’t feel like the same person I once was. I’m used to doing things on my own and am ok with figuring things out and being alone but I’m not used to being a lonely person and that is exactly what I’ve become.

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So I have five days to figure out if I’m going to give my lonely miserable life another try or if I am going to pick everything up and move back down to southern California. Staying means that I’m enrolled in the fall semester, I prove to everyone that I can hack it and I shut up and wait until my lease is up. It also means that I remain miserable and fall deeper into the skin of someone I’m not. Leaving, on the other hand, means that I failed miserably at something I desperately wanted for myself. Leaving means that I go home and face everyone I love and who loves me and supported me and show them that I couldn’t do it; that I’m weak and have become something less than they remember me as. It also means going back to the same place as a different person and I have no idea how I am going to deal with that. It also mean a possible clean start and a chance at figuring myself out. It may also mean finding peace within myself and not feeling empty anymore.

The next few days will prove to be daunting for me. I have no idea what I am going to do or how I am going to do it. Whatever decision I make will be accompanied by difficulty. I realize that either way I am going to lose a lot before I can win anything.

So I’ve been seeing pictures and videos of giant German rabbits everywhere. fo/Germany-bigbunnyI haven’t heard about them until recently. These rabbits are huge and they can grow to weigh up to 30 pounds which is the size of a small dog. Apparently North Korea wants to raise them to feed their country because they reproduce and grow quickly and you could eat almost every part of the rabbit. When I was a kid my dad and grandfather raised rabbits and I grew up eating rabbit meat  which is actually really good, high in protein and low in cholesterol. The story is much more involved but I just think they are awesome and I would definitely get one and keep it as a pet if I had an apartment with a yard. So anyways, I was at work looking them up and am just fascinated and wanted to share. Enjoy

EBERSWALDE, GERMANY – JANUARY 15:  Pensioner Karl Szmolinsky, who raises a breed of rabbits called giant grays, shows Robert, an 8.5kg giant grey who is 74cm long and has ears 25.5cm long, in the backyard of his house on January 15, 2006 in Eberswalde, Germany. In November Szmolinsky sold eight giant greys to a delegation from North Korea, whom he said want to raise the breed as a source of meat for the North Korean population. Szmolinsky said his rabbits reach a maximum weight of 10.5 kg (23.1lbs.).  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Karl Szmolinsky