After I read this blog post all about ten ways to cope with menstrual cramps, it got me thinking about finally writing this blog post. This is something that’s been on my mind for some time and a topic I wanted to chat about (because I can’t imagine I’m alone in how I feel) but never really felt comfortable doing so, until now. I want this blog to be an informative space for my readers but also somewhere they can see they’re not alone in how they feel on certain matters.
Photo by Uby Yanes on Unsplash
But before I get into this post, I just want to say that this is ENTIRELY my own opinion and isn’t influenced or swayed in any way. Nor is it a dig at anyone with differing views. Periods can be a funny topic sometimes. For some reason there’s still a taboo around it and some people can be pretty defensive when faced with an opinion that isn’t the same as theirs.
I’m not here to offend anyone. And I completely respect every person’s decision regarding their own periods. Whether you have them or not. Whether you like having them or not. What you use, what contraception you’re on, how you cope. It’s not up to me to comment. I’m just here to share my experience.
So what is my experience?
Well I’m not going to take you back too far but for the last 4 years or so, I’ve been on the mini pill. The progesterone only pill is a safer alternative to the combined pill as it’s suitable for smokers and those who are over-weight. It’s a pill you take every single day, without a break. Therefore, a lot of people don’t experience periods on this pill. Like me.
I actually went on this pill because I was SICK of having periods, I was sick of panicking every time I was 1 or 2 days late and I was bored of having rubbish PMS side effects that affected my plans. So the idea of not having periods any more was like a dream come true! And admittedly, it does make things quite a bit easier for me.
But over the last couple of years, I’ve actually found myself missing not having periods. I’ve mentioned this to my boyfriend and he just can’t understand it (fair enough) and it’s been a difficult thing for me to try and understand for myself. Because when I think about it… why do I miss having periods?
We’re not trying for a baby. Under normal circumstances (pre-covid), we’re often busy, attending races, going out for the day, taking staycations and visiting his parents in Lincolshire. We’re pretty busy people and having no periods is definitely a positive in that case.
So what was it that made me miss bleeding and cramping and being miserable for a week every month? I had a proper think and I’ve come to some conclusions as to why I miss having periods. Some of them are going to seem totally ridiculous but here’s why I miss having periods:
Photo by Uby Yanes on Unsplash
I love routines and being organised. To me, having a period was a part of my routine. I mean, obviously? Mine was usually like clockwork every month and I liked that monthly period routine and everything it encompassed. I knew where I was throughout the month based on my hormones and emotions. I even knew when I was ovulating – I was that in tune with my routine.
The excuse to get cozy
Okay I know this sounds totally stupid because you don’t need to be having a period in order to get cozy. But I dunno, it was just comforting. Especially when you’re cramping and feeling a bit gross, getting cozy with a takeaway, a hot water bottle and a girlie movie was always nice.
Knowing my body was doing what it was supposed to
I’m pretty health conscious, especially after having a bad time with health anxiety in August of 2019. Although that was nothing period related, I did used to like knowing that my body was doing what it was supposed to be doing throughout the month. Having a period is a great indicator of what’s going on. If you’re stressed, pregnant or perhaps have something going on down there that needs checking out.
Related: My First Smear Test Experience
Knowing I wasn’t pregnant
And speaking of pregnancy. I know this one is kinda silly because if I’m on the pill then OBVIOUSLY I’m not worrying I’m pregnant but of course there’s other issues that come with being on the pill. After having a pregnancy scare at the start of 2020 when I accidentally forgot to take a pill which caused a lot of stress and being ON the pill made it really difficult for me to know if I was pregnant. I dunno, I just like that little reassurance from your body.
Not having fake hormones in my body
Again with the health conscious thing. I dunno, I’m just over having fake hormones pumping around my body every day. I want my body to be doing what it needs to do naturally – what it was designed to do. I’m just on a bit of a journey of being more in tune with my body and I don’t think fake hormones are helping that.
Of course this is a very personal journey I’m on and one I need to figure out for myself. I’ve looked into other forms of contraception as being as sexually active person who doesn’t want to get pregnant, it’s an absolute must for me to be safe and not run that risk. I just wanted to share this with you in case anyone else felt the same.
Are you on the pill or any other type of contraception? Do you miss having periods at all? Do you struggle with anything I’ve listed above? Let me know and let’s chat!
I really liked this post! I love having a period. Yep you heard that right. Like you I love the cosy factor, getting in oversized jimjams, hot water bottle and chilling on the sofa. I like all the feelings, the bloating, the stomach cramps, achy thighs and back, the heightened emotions and excessive crying – it’s an indication that my body is preparing to menstruate and doing what it should be doing. Its also a release of all those feeling and that feels great. So when I start feeling like this I understand what is happening and I just allow myself to feel it. I have never been on the pill (in all my 30 something years and I am sexual active. We use protection, we always have done and have been very lucky – no major scares). The pill was always scary for me, though it was recommended to control my acne when I was younger. But I refused it – I didn’t want my emotions controlled by fake hormones (as you say), and I just preferred the natural way, as natural as can be. I will miss all of this when the menopause kicks in – I don’t know. I just feel like having a period is something to be celebrated – look at how clever our bodies are and I always feel like – why would I want to interfere with its workings.
It’s a part of who we are and I guess that’s it isn’t it. Anyway – thank you for writing this post x
Thank you for sharing your experience! I’m glad you’re at a good place with your period and how you feel about it!
Kind of… Yes to all of this?
I developed endometriosis while on the combined pill, so now I’m on the mini pill and I miss periods a bit even though I do get breakthrough spotting monthly. They were something more tangible that I could do something about rather than an unexpected smear of blood ruining another pair of knickers.
And it was definitely the perfect excuse to sack everything off and get cosy with chocolate and wine.
Cora | http://teapartyprincess.co.uk/
Ah sorry to hear that! But nice to know you can relate!
This is a topic that I can really relate to Jenny! I got an implant when I was 20 and continued on that for the next ten years. But as I approached 30 I really wanted to come off it – I felt weird about the fact my body wasn’t having periods when it was supposed to, and that I had hormones doing all sorts of stuff to me! So I got it taken out in December and my periods started again in April. I loved the convenience of the implant for my 20s but now I’m older I’m kind of enjoying getting periods again. Being able to track my cycle is so weird, apps didn’t exist when I was a teenager so it’s a whole new experience! My poor husband though – he basically has never seen me pre-menstrual so the last few months have been a learning curve for him hahah!
OH my gosh I bet! I’m similar to you. Early 20’s, it was amazing to not have periods but now I’m 27 (almost 28), I’m like, well I want my body to just do what it has to do going forward.
I’m in the against camp atm as periods after a baby are horrific haha! I personally find contraception that stops periods odd but everyone’s own decision after all! xx
Fair enough! Can’t relate to that as I don’t have kids!
I’m on the mini-pill too – it’s the only one I can use because of my migraines, but it has fully stopped my periods (and eradicated period migraines with it, yay!). Funnily enough, a couple of months ago I was almost feeling a bit FOMO and sad about not having periods… And then I didn’t get my top-up in time, ended up having one, and it was SO awful that all sadness surrounding not having them went out of the window haha. I feel the same about fake hormones, but when I remember the excruciating pain and inconveniences of it all then I’m all good!
Oh wow really! I’m really dreading coming off this pill – whenever I do. I’ve heard pretty awful things about that first period!
I have the implant and get like one. year but always get panicky about being pregnant! lol xx
I’m thinking about the implant!
I have suspected PCOS so my periods are all over the place and it’s an absolute nightmare! I always used to hate having periods when I was a teenager but I’d be so happy to have them regularly like that again so I can relate to some of the things you’ve mentioned! In this heat it’s awful though. Really interesting post Jenny! Loved it xx
Tiffany x http://www.foodandotherloves.co.uk
Periods in this heat is something I don’t miss. Hope you get the PCOS sorted!
This is such a great topic and I completely get where you are coming from. The points you have raised are all things that I have thought about over time.
Thank you 😌
this is the same for me. I don’t have periods anymore because of the pill. Before going on the pill, my periods lasted 12 days and were extremely painful, so I needed to do it really. But now I’m thinking ‘can i even have periods anymore’? i know deep down i can but it’s strange. Also I don’t know how many of my other health issues have resulted from going on the pill, as it can cause side effects. I am also on other medication so it is difficult to know what causes certain things. It’s been 6 years and in some ways it has helped me a lot. But I still think it is weird, not having periods. I still get cramping sometimes.
Thank you for sharing your experience. 12 day long periods sounds awful! I’m not surprised you went down this route.
This was an interesting and I appreciate your sharing of this post because this is definitely a different perspective and one not heard a lot of. Knowing my body is doing what is supposed to be doing is actually one of the reasons I’ve been hesitant about using any medication, although I have severe menstrual plan.
I definitely understand that!
I was on the mini pill until we started trying for a baby. I didn’t get periods either, and coming off it was a bit of a shock to the system, but it wasn’t too bad. Then I got pregnant, so obviously didn’t have periods again. I would honestly love to go back on the pill, but we want a second baby, so I can’t.
Although I’d love to go back to being period free, I do agree with you about the fake Hormones, and knowing that your body is doing what it’s supposed to do.
After years on the pill, I was worried I’d messed up my body, so having periods again is a bit of a comfort. I see them as something that we have to learn to accept!
Yes exactly. Although I have no doubt that if I came off this my periods would be right back to normal. I am worried about that first period after though.
Really ineteresting to read. I was on the minipill too because I was a smoker and I hated my period. I was on them for about 4 years. During that time I had to have the LLETZ procedure to remove abnormal cells in my cervix. Since I had surgery, things weren’t quite right down there for a while. Sex was becoming more and more painful, I was in and out of gynae consultations having numerous people poke me and prod me and “having a look”. I was diagnosed with provoked vulvodynia – pain in the vagina without obvious cause. They said it was psychological cause by trauma. I was given creams, lubes, lotions, attended women’s physio and even recommended couple’s counselling/sex therapist. The last appointment I had I was left with a prescription for lidocaine, an anaesthetic gel to use before sex. It took all the intimacy out of our relationship and I hit rock bottom. I was done. Last September I decided to stop taking the pill to give my body a rest, and what do you know? 3 months later, my “provoked vulvodynia” is cured. Thank you for sharing this x
Wowzers! Thank you for sharing this! I’ve had abnormal cells too but didn’t have to have that procedure because they were only mild and went on their own. But there’s literally SO much going on down there with hormones and things isn’t there? I’m so glad it’s cured too!
Thank you. Yes I’m on the mend now, although I’m still a tad sensitive. I swear, birth control pills have a LOT to answer for!! X
This was super interesting to read. I have been on the pill before and didn’t have periods for a while and I loved it, but then I did decide to stop for a little while. I totally agree with you with so many of these points, I kind of felt comfortable knowing that my body was working okay and having periods was a good way to know. And also the thought of having the fake hormones pumping around your body, it does seem a little scary! I can totally see why you would miss having periods.
Thank you for sharing Chloe and glad you understand! xxx
Thanks for sharing your experience, I’m not on any thing as I’m not in a relationship so I don’t need that kind of protection, also I would have to manage the other health issues I have to, as my Diabetes can be effected as well, my BS levels go up before my cycle, which is a normal day of a diabetic!!
So I wish sometimes not having to wait to guess when they are but sometimes it’s fun to guess, keeps me on my toes!
Nic | Nic’s Adventures & Bakes
I didn’t realise your cycle affects your BS levels!
I’m currently on my period (TMI) and it’s awful in this heat so I wish I didn’t have it but I’ve tried the pill a few years ago and I absolutely hated it x
Periods in this heat is something I DON’T miss!
I felt the exact same way when I came off of birth control!
I’m obsessed with how candid this post was! I totally understand you not wanting to be on the pill anymore so your body can be its natural self again. And I’m with you on the part about getting cozy! My cramps can get so bad that all I feel like I can do is curl up with a heating pad and cuddle with my dog in bed. I had an awful time with the depo shot in high school so I’ve been very against getting back on any birth control because I felt every symptom possible. But I’m glad you opened up a conversation that not a lot of women feel comfortable having, especially on the internet! Can’t wait to see more of your candid conversations! 🙂
Awh thank you so much. I really appreciate that.
I love your honesty here! It is pretty incredible how we can miss something like having cramps and curling up to get cozy, but there is also plenty of reassurance in knowing that our bodies are doing what they are supposed to.
I get bad cramps, but I have never thought about taking a pill. I love my hot water-bottle!
Thank you. I agree. I never thought I’d miss something that caused me so much pain haha!
This is so interesting! I’m on the combined pill so occasionally I would overlap my break so I don’t have a period (for holidays etc) but in those rare times I do miss being on my period. I agree with the comforting thing – it sounds weird but there’s something about having cramps and getting cozy like you said. This is such a rarely talked about subject so Thankyou for sharing your experience 💜
I used to do that when I was on the combined pill!
This is such a great post girl! Thanks for sharing a taboo topic. I honestly miss having periods too. I have endometriosis so I am on birth control pills and a strong hormone to keep it under control and it therefore causes me not to have any periods. It actually gives me menopausal symptoms like hot flashes (and I am only 27!) so I would much rather have a period than that. But unfortunately the only cure for it is a hysterectomy and I am obviously too young for that too so I guess I just have to suffer through a few more years lol
Oh wow, really? I didnt know that that gave you menopausal symptoms x
Totally different perspective, so sure. But, I can relate. Every time I visit the doctor, and they ask me when my last cycle was… I can’t answer LOL It’s very rare and I haven’t had a normal cycle in years. I do hate the hormones, too. They aren’t good for my migraines, either.
No, I can’t imagine they are. Lots of pills can’t be taken by those who have migraines.
What an interesting perspective! I don’t know if I could ever miss my period. I think most of that comes from a place of pain and frustration because my period is much worse than most due to chronic illness. However, I think I could understand your thoughts based around routine and knowing that things are “regulated” to a degree. Would you ever consider going back off the pill again to normalize things a little more?
I would love to go off the pill but I need a strong reliable contraception because I’m sexually active and don’t want kids and don’t want to run that risk! It’s such a difficult situation!
Thank you so much for posting this! I completely agree and it is something I never thought I would miss. I think, for me at least, it’s knowing that everything is working as it should be.
Yes absolutely. I loved having that reassurance.
Thanks for being so honest, your feelings are definitely valid! The pill didn’t agree with me, but it’s so interesting reading about the experiences of others. Lovely post!
Anika | chaptersofmay.com
Thank you x
While there is one part of me that is TOTALLY envious of the fact that you no longer have periods, I can also see where you’re coming from. Honestly, the inability to see that my body is doing what it’s supposed to properly would definitely have me a little on edge. I’ve never understood why the topic of periods is SO taboo… It’s a natural bodily function and one that’s SO important for bigger and better things, aka children! Right?
I don’t know why it’s so taboo either. I’ve always been so open about periods, even since I was little.
All of your feelings are incredibly valid! There is something to be said about periods and how they affect us; it makes sense that taking them away after having them for most of your life would come with its own set of emotions and feelings that are complicated. I agree with those comforts, especially routine and knowing that I’m not pregnant. I’m happy that you were able to express your feelings and also speak to those who share them. Thanks for sharing your perspective!
Thank you and I totally agree. It’s something so personal to us and when that’s gone, it is a bit of a weird feeling.
I really appreciate this post because I feel like, as women, we don’t have much space to talk about our periods and/or pills even though it’s part of our routine. I get bad cramps, so I’ve been thinking about going on the pill lately. But, I’m also not sure if I should go through it because I agree with the points you’ve mentioned. Thanks for sharing! 🙂
Thank you. Glad you agree. It’s definitely a personal choice. Have a chat with your GP!
I can understand how it might be a difficult thing to get used to, even if it’s something that you’ve chosen for yourself. Thank you for your honesty in sharing your experience.
I’m a total mix on this. On one side I hate my periods. They are a bit fickly, always have been, and I can’t really count on when they’ll come, even when on the pill. Its like my body just decides now its time and no pill or anything else is gonna change that. On the other hand they are a nice way of the body to do a natural clean out and well, its nice to know everything is working even if I don’t plan on any more kiddos. Thanks for sharing
I totally understand where you’re coming from. Thanks for commenting x
I’ve just started taking the mini-pill again after a long break (specifically chosen due to being a smoker and overweight), and I’m at the stage where my body is getting used to everything again. One thing I did like about not taking it was the stress of not having periods, so it’s nice to see you talking so frankly and openly about it!
Hannah / hannahpeaches.co.uk
Thank you 🙂
I can completely relate! I am on the implant and my periods have stopped, which is great in some aspects but I do find myself missing them! x
– Charlotte / charlottesspace.com
I have considered the implant. Do you like it?
Every sentence I read in this post I found myself nodding along with you. Felt like I was speaking to a friend! The scariest part about contraception for me is the fact that there are so many ‘fake hormones’ involved. It’s enough to send me for the hills, I hate the thought of interfering with my bodies natural cycles. Thank you so much for sharing X
Yeah I mean, it doesn’t scare me or anything. But I would like my bodies natural hormones to just “do their thing” you know?
It is the WRONG time of the month for me to be reading this. 😂 I totally get what you’re saying about fake hormones because I’ve known a couple of friends come off contraception for the same reason. But my cycle isn’t my friend and having periods doesn’t give me any of these things. The only contraception on offer to me that doesn’t make me extremely ill is the coil and the thought of having one of those things inserted makes me feel almost as ill as an actual period so I don’t have a lot of choice. I’d love to be able to get rid of mine. But each body is different and to be honest, even if I did have the option I don’t think I’d like being on something for an extended period of time. Can definitely see why Carl didn’t get it though…x
I have the same thoughts about the coil. Honestly even thinking about it now is making my toes curl. I could NEVER.
This is such an honest post Jenny, thanks for sharing! x
Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk
Thank you x
Thank you for sharing.
This is interesting. I, for one, wish to stop my period because it’s just painful for me and causing discomfort on my first two days. But I learned a lot from your post. Thanks for sharing! ☺
Thank you x
Ah this is an interesting one! I completely understand where you’re coming from as I was in the same boat in my early 20s and ultimately came off the pill for a few years before I got pregnant and then diagnosed with endometriosis. Now it’s a like it or lump it situation! I’ll be on the mini pill now until menopause relieves me. 😅
Oh no! I do like the mini pill. It’s a good egg. But I’m sorry about the endometriosis!
Great post, I was on the combined pill for years so still had periods. I decided to come off it because I was concerned about how long I’d been pumping fake hormones into my body for. I’m much more in tune with my body now and have more of an idea of what’s going on and why I feel certain ways (sometimes to my detriment), but on the whole I think being off it is better for mental wellbeing, I don’t feel as flat. I lost a lot of weight coming off the pill but many of the other side effects (cramps especially) now seem to be much worse, it’s bloody hard work balancing the pros and cons out.
I don’t get why we’re still so embarrassed when it comes to talking about periods, I read a book by Emma Barnett last year called Period, which addresses assorts of topics related to periods, in her case not discussing openly and being on the led to it having an impact on her health and her having undiagnosed endometriosis for years. I guess there’s a multitude of other similar stories because periods are still taboo. I wrote a post about periods and the pandemic a couple of months ago because I thought I was going crazy with my hormones, a doctor got in touch and told me actually it was normal and that was a big relief. We probably should all share our experiences more, like you say it’s good to know you aren’t alone 🙂
I agree, I don’t know why it’s so taboo. It’s ridiculous. Any books or posts which talk openly about it help!
I totally get it – as much as they aren’t enjoyable there’s a certain comfort in the day that you get it and now “for sure” no matter how diligent you’ve been with the pill
I totally agree!
Great post! I went six months without having a period and I’m not on the pill or anything. But finally I got my period last week, was so relieved!
Zoey | http://www.zoeyolivia.com
Oh wow, really? What caused that, do you know?
I’ve used many different types of contraceptives, the pill I used for years. I am regular but I totally get the need to get cosy – that week when I’m due on, I cant get as comfy as I want and really just give myself a bit of a break!
This is def a topic that should be discussed more openly. Sometimes I feel uncomfortable when I want to complain about my cramps or discomfort online (but I usually do it anyway) because I know that is just the old ‘taboo’ notion still in my head even though it’s a completely natural thing.
I’ve been on the combined pill since I was 16 to regulate my period (it was the kind that was three days early, a week late or didn’t appear at all) and absolutely horrible cramps and it changed my life. I still get it and I’m glad. I can relate to wanting my body to function like it’s supposed to and I wish I could just control the days with a calendar and no fake hormones!
Absolutely agree. Glad you still talk about the cramps and things online. We need to break this weird taboo around periods!
Great post! Thank you for sharing this! I totally get you!
Thank you x
I was on the pill for years in my 20’s, but it was one I still had a period with. What I can totally relate to is not wanting to have all those fake hormones in your body. I felt exactly the same. Mine was partly for my skin, but the side-effect was that it increased your risk of DVT and blood clots if you were on it too long. I finally reached a point where I wasn’t comfortable putting myself at risk like that and I didn’t want to change my natural hormones. I felt so much better when I came off it. But you’re right, everyone is different!
That’s why I won’t go back on te combined pill now – I don’t want those risks again. I can’t justify it!
I am in the same boat as you, but I love the fact I no longer have periods! Due to having heart issues and high blood pressure I was put on the mini pill, and for the last four years I haven’t had a proper period at all. Occasionally I might get light spotting for two days, but it’s such a relief for me to have one less thing to worry about. Luckily I don’t need to worry about if I’m pregnant or not since that can’t happen at the moment! I completely understand your reasons though, and I’m glad you chose to speak about it too x
Emily | emiliamarlowe.co.uk
That’s totally fair enough and it’s great that there’s a pill out there that you can go on with those additional conditions!
I’ve been on the combined pill since I was 18, it was originally for my skin but I can’t remember if it helped. I haven’t had any problems with it, others say about weight gain but the only weight gain I’ve had is the usual getting older and eating rubbish type. I’m 31. But everyone is different. I don’t really like the idea of taking it either but if you don’t want children it’s the only reliable method. It’s strange, they make you so scared when you miss one pill but I’ve heard that (random conversations you get into) it can take some time for your body to go back to normal after taking the pill (some get pregnant straight away, as always everyone is different). I don’t think I’d ever miss my periods, PMS ! Need I say more.
I wouldn’t go back on the combined pill but everyone is different. I agree about the weight gain. There’s definitely a few different factors that have contributed to that!
I was told that I can only take the mini pill and not the combined one due to being high-risk for strokes. It was better for my mood (the combined one made me batshit crazy) but it caused a ton of weight gain for me, and I still got spotting…for weeks at a time. I ended up stopping the pill and got a period from hell soon after. I ended up switching to NFP (natural family planning) where I track my cycles.
I did end up getting pregnant in 2015 which wasn’t planned (ended in a miscarriage), and this was before I knew how to do NFP properly. I didn’t like the pill back then and I still don’t like it now. I agree that the mini pill is a better pill overall, but NFP is the best option for me. I’m scared of IUDs, otherwise I would have chose that option.
The mini pill is 100% the safest pill. I wouldn’t go back on the other one for that very reason.
I can absolutely relate to this, I have the coil and don’t have periods and although like you say the convenience of it is great!! Loosing that routine and not feeling as in tune with your body is something I don’t enjoy, I’m also not a fan of filling my body with fake hormones it concerns me that I’m not allowing my body to do what it’s naturally supposed to do…… but I don’t want any more children and don’t want to have that worry of getting pregnant so it’s definitely a tough one.
Definitely agree with those reasons. Although I don’t think I could have the coil – it makes me shudder!
It was actually alright, I think once you have babies you stop caring 😂
I get this! You explained it so well! I’m on the mini pill too but I usually have a period every couple of months, it’s not a proper one, only lasts 2 days roughly and it’s not as bad as the ones I had before I took the mini pill. So guess I’m lucky I get those days to feel sorry for myself and cosy up! Though hate it when it happens on holiday or when I’m doing something!! Thanks for sharing!
Oh wow you still get periods on the mini pill? Mine stopped almost instantly!
You explained your reasoning so well, I get it, thanks for sharing 😊
Thank you x
I get what you’re saying totally and thank you for sharing. I’m on the pill too but come off maybe twice per year to check my body is still okay and periods are normal etc. The pain however makes me realise that I’m fine not having a period every month haha. Sometimes I get phantom period pain but there’s nothing quite like the real thing.
Kate | thelittlecrunch.co.uk
Maybe that’s a good idea to come off it every now and again to check everything is okay. I’d never thought of that tbh.
I fully understand what you’re saying!! I changed my contraception up about 8 months ago and haven’t had one since, annoyingly I do still get cramps though haha! It’s always reassuring to know im not pregnant but without the periods I’m just praying everythings all working as it should be!xxx
Ah that’s annoying. Probably the worst thing is cramps without the period!