Here's a brief history of my body:
I started the combination pill at 18, when I started dating my ex. I've used it for most of my adult life, with the exception of 2002, when I wanted to have a child. Of course, I have my 10-year-old son to show for that.
After his birth, I resumed the pill. First, they gave me the progestin-only mini-pill to ensure I wouldn't have any problems with my milk supply. I had no issue, so they put me back on the combo pill. Gavin nursed until he self-weaned at 2 1/2.
So hormonal methods have always worked for me, both to prevent pregnancy and I had no issues whatsoever with breastfeeding.
Now some women do not do well with hormonal methods. My sister, for example, had a terrible time with the pill and the patch. Some women encounter supply issues with breastfeeding when they use a hormonal contraceptive.
Then there are non-hormonal types, like the Essure, copper IUD, barrier methods, or permanent sterilization.
I considered all my options with a Pros/Cons list, because that's what I do. If I was an alien race, I'd be a Vulcan/Borg mix, because I'm all about logic and efficiency. When I weighed my options and considered factors such as cost and the possibility of wanting another child at 40 or so, I decided not to go with anything permanent (Essure or surgery). I also decided a monthly-use contraceptive will be stretching our budget, with the financial landscape changing for us.
Yes, I am currently employed and capable of earning enough to support our family once my husband's enlistment ends. However, the monthly expense of using the pill or some other similar method is kind of costly.
So, in the end, I chose Mirena. It will be done at no cost to us, and give me 5 years of protection.
When I asked on a pregnancy forum about something else entirely, but mentioned Mirena (it was relevant to the question), there were a whole bunch of naysayers. They told me my milk supply would decrease due to the hormone in Mirena.
In matters of birth control, I think a woman knows her own body best. Mirena is progestin-only, like the mini-pill I used after I had Gavin. In fact, the dosage is significantly smaller than that of the mini-pill. If I didn't have supply issues with Gavin, I certainly don't foresee a problem this time around.
Our bodies are unique. What does not work for one woman, might work for me. Since I've never had a problem with hormonal contraceptives, and since I breastfed on two different types, I think those who had problems need to realize that we are all different.
Heck, mine and my sister's bodies are so incredibly different, it's hard to believe we're related: her with those 24-hour labors for babies 1 and 2, and me with 10 hours for Gavin and 3 for Rowan... Her terrible reactions to hormonal contraceptives, and my lack of problem with any side effects whatsoever...
She now has all sorts of other issues with her reproductive system and is finally getting a partial hysterectomy this month. My fingers are crossed that it will resolve those problems; she is 2 1/2 years younger than me, and I can't believe what she's dealing with when it comes to her body - it just sounds awful.
So I bet Mirena would be a bad idea for her too. But for me? I think I know my body well enough to say I'm a good candidate for it. So I'm getting it placed in 2 weeks. If it doesn't work out...? Then, oh well. But I think with my prior experience, everything should be fine.
It's a lot like religion, really: what works for one person, might not work for another. Maybe I'm content with my imaginary friend in the forest, while someone else is scoffing and saying, "God/dess? Shee-yah, right!"
And there is nothing wrong with that.
Copyright (c) 2013 Wendy L. Callahan