The Female Travel series continues and in my quest to discover the answers to every female travellers problems, I believe that I’ve finally cracked the answer to the hardest one!
Whether you’re in a relationship or enjoying some ‘free-love’ it is SO important not to let an unexpected night put your adventure to an end. It goes without saying that picking up your contraception isn’t going to be quite as easy on the other side of the world. So what is the alternative solution to a man-made, synthetic chemical that you have to remember to take EVERY day?!
Why not pack the pill?
I have personally struggled with anxiety and hormone imbalances since I was 11 – its been a fun road of acne, heartbreak and cramps just about everywhere – cheers oestrogen! I tried out 4 different contraceptive pills over the course of 6 years and finally became happy in my own skin when I took a 3 year break from ANY hormones at the age of 21.
(I wont go into all the details in this post but you can read exactly what I experienced when coming off the pill and why I think it’s totally toxic by clicking here. )
During those 3 years I travelled to 25 countries, mostly solo and protected myself with my old friend ~ the condom. *Please consider clean sex as well as safety!
But now that I’ve found my main man and we are travelling long term across South America VERY SOON I thought it was wise to sort out something a little more sexy and spontaneous.
I thought she was the one …
I went for a chat with my doctor and discussed the options. I specified that I wanted to keep as far away from hormones as possible and I was introduced to my first possible match – The Mirena Coil.
This little device (otherwise known as an IUD) sounded like everything I was looking for. She would only release a tiny amount of hormones when needed – rather than every fricking day – and she would be implanted in my body for at least 5 years where I didn’t have to worry, I could trust her. At first things were perfect, I couldn’t feel her, she did wonders for me ‘under the sheets’ and my periods were barely turning up anymore.
Then, after 6 months of bliss, the honeymoon phase ended. I was going through rage, depression and anxiety every month in a cycle. I started searching for answers everywhere, blaming the fact that work was stressful and I was taking a travel break but it was her. I started getting big headaches which made me more irritable and I quickly noticed it was just like the pill all over again. I tried to make it work for 6 more difficult months until our 1 year anniversary – I couldn’t take it anymore, anything had to be better than this. So we got her removed.
Unlike the pill, the hormones only took 1-2 weeks to leave my system and I swore that I would never do that to my mind or body again – I’m just not cutout for the fake stuff. So I let my uterus recover (it’s not the most comfortable place to have metal implanted and removed) and enjoyed 4 months of being au-naturel.
Where have you been all my life …
We were swiftly running out of time before our departure date and I knew that it was time to take the wheel on the rocky road of being a woman. ‘I mean, why do these things always fall on us?! ‘
I did a TON of
research Googling and found only ONE hormone free long-term contraception option. Welcome to… The Copper Coil. This little lady works much like the Mirena, she sits in the same place and works like magic but with 0 hormones! The T-shape device is made out of Copper rather than plastic like it’s hormonal friend and nobody can really figure out why she works so well but it turns out copper does a great job at killing sperm!
The copper coil does however have a minor side affect; slightly heavier, longer and uncomfortable periods. For me – I would much rather carry around an extra tampon than deal with depression every month!
The copper coil sits pretty inside my body for 10+ years and is the only contraception that has allowed me to feel like myself. I honestly thought after nearly 10 years of trying different protection methods that nothing would ever work for me and I was preparing myself for a life of latex and ruined moments!
If you are a hormone hater like me then I urge you to seriously look into an IUD for the ultimate confidence boosting sex secret!
Do you react the same way I do? What is your natural solution?