Body Image Lifestyle Reflection

Birth Control for Overweight Women

The wedding is less than two months away, and while Michael and I agree that we’d love to have a kid (or two) we’d like to wait a while on that.

I’m still adjusting to my post-surgical life, and he’s studying for the CPA exams he still needs to finish. He’s moving into my place once we’re married, and while all of the changes are good, they’re overwhelming enough for now.

We know that God will have His way, and we’re cool with that. We’re just going to do our part to walk out the path in front of us.

Birth control is a little scary, in my opinion. The idea of taking a daily pill that could mess with my hormones (emotions, weight, etc) and be considerably less effective due to my weight doesn’t seem like a good choice. It’s not going to happen. Condoms are awful too. I’ve been waiting for a long, long time to marry a loving, loyal, honorable, Jesus-loving man, and I’m going to enjoy it. Condoms = Nope!

Being overweight makes many things more complicated, but when I talked to the doctor about it she suggested seeing an OB/GYN who agreed with her that I should have an IUD. It’s the most effective for plus-size people, and it shouldn’t affect my hormones at all. Win!

I realize that there are risks associated with birth control, but I understand the very real risks that come from not trying to protect ourselves at all.

When I walked into my OB/GYN’s office the doctor and nurse put me at ease right away. I’ve avoided annual exams for several years because of discrimination and (mostly) my insecurity, and now I realize that there are some pretty great doctors out there. I’m thankful I’ve found a few in the last year.

Dr. C patiently explained what he was going to do and why, and it was over before I knew it. I’m spending more time in that office than I’d like to right now because my pap results came back abnormally, but again, I trust that God has a plan and has already handled whatever comes my way.

A month from now I’ll go in for the IUD procedure.

Has anyone here had an IUD? Was it effective for you, or did you find a better solution?

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  • Reply
    Danielle Bonine
    April 22, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    I don’t use birth control but my sister loves her IUD. She’s never had any problem.

    • Reply
      April 24, 2017 at 9:45 pm

      That’s good to hear!

  • Reply
    April 22, 2017 at 6:35 pm

    Easy and effective. I used IUDs, not because I was overweight, which I was, but because pills did not agree with me and an IUD was the most effective and convenient method. No issues, 100% effective, and no problems getting pregnant after using one.

  • Reply
    Cathy Crawford
    April 22, 2017 at 8:22 pm

    I used a diaphraghm for years. It takes away some spontaneity but was a more natural choice. I’m in my 60’s so I am sure IUD’s have come a long way in safety.

  • Reply
    Morgan C Joyner
    April 22, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    I love my IUD – I was never any good at remembering to take a daily pill, the ring gave me serious mood swings, and I never wanted the shot. The IUD has basically made my periods disappear, the hormones haven’t adversely affected me, and I don’t ever have to really think about it. For me it is the best possible choice.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2017 at 9:28 am

    You may want to research how an IUD works. You can still get pregnant, but it won’t allow the fertilized egg to implant into the uterine wall.

    • Reply
      April 23, 2017 at 5:16 pm

      I have a Mirena and I’ve been using this form of birth control for over 13 years now. As an overweight woman that gained 40 pounds on the pill and did not deal well with the emotional turbulence caused by it, and who also hard a time taking pills daily, an IUD was a blessing. It works primarily by releasing a small amount of progesterone which prevents ovulation and over time reduces the generation of uterine tissue, so that many women experience much lighter periods. In my case and others i have talked to, it reduced them to the point where i hardly ever have one. Yes, there is a very, small chance that fertilization will still occur, but it’s very unlikely and there are different types of IUDs you can discuss with your provider to choose the best option for you. There is discomfort and cramping during and after the procedure, but no worse than a bad period, in my experience. Good luck and congratulations on the upcoming wedding!

  • Reply
    Karen P
    April 23, 2017 at 10:55 am

    IUD’s are a good option- IMO. One was recommended to me, but a little voice said NO and I’m glad now I didn’t.

    Condoms are a great alternative, barrier, easy to carry for both sexes- IMO. Barrier to STD’s which can crop up no matter how Godly someone is- Hey, just hepatitis can be reduced by barrier methods.

    Here’s to finding what birth control works for you. I’m now in menopause, but have a teen in the house. I advocate finding the BC that works for her as it will greatly impact her life and finances in the future.

    • Reply
      April 24, 2017 at 8:30 am

      STDs don’t just “crop up.”

      • Reply
        Karen P (@gardengirl_kp)
        April 24, 2017 at 4:24 pm

        STDs are infectious diseases that can go undectected for years without adequate testing. I stand by my “cropping up” statement. Plus, I’m a Midwest native. Lol

        • Reply
          April 24, 2017 at 9:49 pm

          I was just tested during my full blood panel before my primary doctor would refer me to the ob/gyn.

    • Reply
      April 24, 2017 at 9:47 pm

      I’m not sure of any way an STD can crop unless someone is unfaithful. Am I missing something there?

      • Reply
        Karen P
        April 24, 2017 at 10:28 pm

        STD’s are diseases from different transmission routes. Hepatitis B and C can be transmitted sexually, say from your man without a condom. Or condom broke or oral sex. Or other partners not wearing a condom. Because both can lay dormant in your body for quite some time, you may not know at all.

        It’s also transmitted other ways. Let’s say your tattoo parlor or your surgical center didn’t do their job cleaning needles or surgical 5-10 years ago. Boom, there you go.

        Chlamydia is famous for being asymptomatic in both sexes. Without a full screening (DNA based) , you can be passing back and forth from former partners who were monogamous while you were with them, but had no idea.

        So if you think risk based and get the proper screening, that can help you avoid STD’s and save your health and family finances. Infection based rather than unfaithfulness.

        Read more about it here:

        Also, here

        HPV infections are causing havoc with both men and women. Oral cancer rates in young people is through the roof. There’s now a vaccine, so check into that. Some off label use of people who are older than the cut-off has shown some promise. Most people have had HPV infections and clear it on their own. For those who don’t, I pray for complete recovery, because it can be a tough road. Infectious diseases are expensive and painful.

        Happy Laboratory Week for all of us who celebrate the art of Lab Medicine!

  • Reply
    April 23, 2017 at 1:48 pm

    I have several friends that have the IUD and love it. Only one friend had an issue where her body rejected it (not painful or anything though, she was just frustrated). I opted not to go for it because I don’t have any side effects from my birth control (orthotricyclin lo)- and it took me a while to find one that worked for me. Good luck with the procedure!

  • Reply
    April 23, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    I tried an IUD but when I had it taken out it was very painful. I liked the diaphragm much better.

  • Reply
    Michele Friedman
    April 23, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    I got an IUD last month and love it. The insertion was not a big deal, and now I need not worry about anything for 5 years. Also, apparently there are no problems getting pregnant right away after its removed. It’s an excellent choice.

  • Reply
    Michelle Sparacino
    April 24, 2017 at 7:13 am

    I have the Mirena IUD. I’m actually on my 3rd one (you have to switch them out ever 5 years). I absolutely love mine. My new hubby is fixed, but I still keep my Mirena because with it I have very light, to no, periods.

  • Reply
    Alesha B Poche
    April 24, 2017 at 8:59 am

    I have had my Mirena IUD since 2013…and it was the best decision I ever had. Insertion wasn’t horrible but a little extra pressure since my uterus is tilted. I have had a great result with it and my periods come like clock work and are extremely light (like hardly any bleeding) and only last a day or two. I am very pleased with it! Good luck to you!

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 9:00 am

    My husband and I have 2 kids and now we use condoms for birth control. I did not like having an iud and birth control pills because both mess with your hormones and your bodies natural cycle.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 9:55 am

    My daughter had 2 IUDs and her body rejected both. The main thing with IUDs is if something doesn’t seem right don’t ignore it. Many women successfully use them with great results! After years of using pills I changed over to a diaphragm and loved it. Your Dr knows what best to offer you personally 😉 Best of wishes!

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 10:44 am

    I got the Mirena IUD years ago. I had some light cramping after having it inserted that lasted a day or so. I took some Ibuprofen and was fine. I had it removed because my husband and I were ready to start a family. We got pregnant, had our son, and 6 weeks after delivery I had a new IUD inserted. I love it. I don’t have to remember a pill. The hormonal side effects are minimal. I still get a period, though it is very very light and lasts only a day. I still get PMS (moodiness, greasy face, breakouts), but the period itself is nothing. I no longer get cramps during my period, which is fantastic! Before the IUD I had a very heavy period and would have awful cramps that made me want pass out. My OB uses the IUD as well and it came highly recommended.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 11:38 am

    You might not have meant for it to seem like, if you use condoms then you clearly don’t care enough about sex or your partner, but it did come across like that. People CAN and DO enjoy sex using condoms. Even Christians. Even Christians who waited until they were married to have sex. I’m glad you’re so open about your journey and it’s been a blessing to follow along, but I encourage you to be careful not to alienate your readers, especially since some of us have very similar journeys.

    • Reply
      April 24, 2017 at 4:13 pm

      No where in my writing did I say that using condoms means you don’t care about your spouse, abs I respectfully disagree with your assumption. I don’t like condoms, and I don’t want to use them. End of story.

      If you think they’re great that’s awesome for you.

      What does knowing Jesus have to do with condom usage?

      I had sex long before I cared what Jesus thought about it (before I was in relationship with Him.) I didn’t like condoms then, and I don’t plan to use them now.

      I’ve been writing here for nearly a decade, and occasionally I offend people. It’s certainly not my intention, but I’m not sure how to gauge what people may or may not assume based on my words.

      All the best to you…

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 11:42 am

    I had an IUD for about 2 months before it fell out (I was having female issues anyway – fibroids & polyps, etc and my gyn had noted my cervix was dilated some when she put it in) so I can really only vouch for the minor discomfort at insertion and the fact you can’t feel it at all while it’s in.
    I was on the Pill for years and until the issues began, never had an issue with it. I liked knowing when to expect Mother Nature to visit without looking at a calendar.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 12:31 pm

    I personally have not used an IUD but I can say that I personally know three people that got pregnant with the IUD in place.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 12:45 pm

    I chose the mini-pill – progesterone only – over the IUD post VSG. I had been on the mini-pill for a number of years and my doctors agreed it was best not to mess with anything post op as my hormones would be crazy (and they were). That being said, I was going to go for the IUD, but post VSG my blood pressure dropped to acceptable levels and I chose a pill that I could take daily and only have my period quarterly. It’s been the best option as it’s curbed my normally horrible PMS. The progesterone only pill is also not weight dependent; it works at any weight. (And I can vouch for it working at my pre-opp 330+ lbs weight.)

    Since you’ve never had children, I assume they are going for the non-hormonal, copper only IUD? If not, ask for it! It’s a little but smaller (since the uterus will be smaller not having had kids), and from what my doctor told me, less uncomfortable.

    I agree too about understanding how the IUD works at “preventing” pregnancy. If that’s important to you, a hormonal birth control may be the way to go.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    I got a Mirena in August. I love love love it! I’m 44 and I got it to try to control my heavy periods. It works like a charm – I wish I had known about it earlier. Insertion was uncomfortable, but not terrible (it helped that my hubby was in there to hold my hand so I could squeeze his hand during the brief ouchy parts). I had cramps for the first 5 days or so, but nothing that ibuprofen couldn’t handle. I have very light spotting for a few days now (instead of a period) and my cramps are no longer the huge deal that they used to be (I haven’t taken anything for cramps in months!) The only thing that really drives me crazy is that I get breast tenderness now as a PMS symptom. It can be annoying at times, but compared to the heavy bleeding and anemia of my past, it’s not a huge deal. I’m so happy with my IUD.

  • Reply
    Erin Miller
    April 24, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    I have had an IUD for almost 10 years with no problems at all. I, too, wanted nothing to do with anything that had hormones and this has been great for me!

  • Reply
    Charley Hill
    April 26, 2017 at 11:15 am

    Hey! Just a heads up, when I had my Mirena IUD inserted, I had heavy bleeding for well over 2 months (which is normal). You may want to consider that with your wedding coming up soon and having your insertion a month away. Otherwise, you should probably plan for some bleeding during your wedding. But other than that, I love my IUD! This will be my 4th year so I’ll be getting ready to have it replaced soon. I’ve never had any issues with it. Good luck!

    • Reply
      May 23, 2017 at 4:15 pm

      SAME HERE! I got the mirena at the end of March. Besides still having an incredibly heavy period every 21 days, I also spot continuously. I am past the 2 month mark, so i am HOPING that i stop bleeding sooooon so i can say how amazing the IUD is. Currently, i am in the “blah” stage!

  • Reply
    May 14, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    I get the shot every three months. Aaaahhhmazing. No side effects at all.

  • Reply
    June 7, 2017 at 3:24 pm

    I have a Mirena. I was pretty crampy the first week (like a really rough period) and had acne for about a week, and that was pretty much it. No extra heavy periods, no spotting, just a little more crampy. I’ve had mine 3 months. So it seems to really depend.

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