Monday, July 5, 2010

Your periods, your way.


So a couple of days ago, I am at my gynecologist's office (which is always a great time), and I am sitting alone on the crinkly paper, in a paper robe (sorry you had to read that; do you think I liked writing it?), and I'm looking around because of course there is nothing else to do but look around. 

Covering the stirrups (yuck, hate that word) are the little yellow stirrup warmers advertising the Pill (oh, joy!). I am used to those (even though I never get used to those). 

Then, I glance at the poster on the back of the door, and here's what jumped out at me:


You want:      You'll get:

Underneath the first column were the three options a woman might "want": 0 periods a year, 4 periods a year, 13 periods a year. And the "you'll get" part went on to describe what type of Pill and how it would be prescribed.

I thought, Now, there's our culture in a nutshell: You want it, you'll get it! Your way! Periods served up just like Burger King! Yeeeee-haw!

It's been said that the theme song in Hell is I Did it My Way. If you've ever listened to the lyrics, you'll agree that must be the case. And by golly I couldn't help it, I started singing that tune in my head until the doctor came in! 

Now, I love my doctor. He is an incredible evangelical Christian, and one of the few OB/gyns in town who is vocally pro-life. In one examining room he had even hung a beautiful defense of the humanity of the human embryo. But, ironically, he has contraception ads all over the darned place. This particular poster was the most remarkable I have seen.

You gotta wonder, what is so wrong with a woman's body that we must chemically alter its functioning, stopping what it was designed -- by God -- to do? When did the suppression/derailing of a normal bodily process become "health," and when did we decide it was good to advertise it, convincing women to ask for something we never knew we wanted? And when did it become all about "me" and what I "want" anyway?

And the worst part of all for me personally? It's knowing that a few years ago, I would have thought this product was the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Like I said, Ewwwww!

And Lord have mercy.


  1. Uggh! The worst part of it all is that so many doctors also tell young girls they'll have great, clear skin on top of that!

  2. That's gross. I've heard that the docs are required by law to display birth control options, but mine doesn't have any so I don't know if that's entirely true. Maybe someday you'll be given the opportunity to ask him. It's great that you have an openly pro-life doc! Hard to find.

  3. Contraception is the only time medical science has set out to intentionally break or disable a system of the body that is in perfect working order.

    It's sick and it's wrong, but until we do a better job of convincing people the signs will be everywhere.

  4. I also question this as well especially with my baby catcher. Here is a man that claims to "love" to look at babies and I can literally have as many ultrasounds as I want, but yet BCP advertising is all over the place. I would love to ask him a about it. :) Before we go any further I should ask them to put in my chart not to offer me bcp after delivery.

    OMGOSH! I hate it. After I miscarried the doctor told my husband NO SEX for 6 weeks and if you must use a condom. I almost effing punched that fat rollie pollie in the face. He also told me that I needed to sign a paper stating that the D&C wasn't an abortion that the baby had died etc...And that they will do an ultrasound to make sure la lalalalala. I said well I agree with that and he didn't so we almost got into it and DH gave me a look....But I still stated my opinion and rollie pollie left the room.

    But backing up, I thought how dare you talk to my husband WHO can control himself and is not an animal on the street.

    Look, if my DH can't wait for me to heal then we have marital issues, he sees me more of an object then his wife and that is not love.

    I'm still ticked a year after the fact.

  5. Oh and the whole burger king have it your way is great! But we don't eat at burger king because we know it's not really food. So why would you want that on a regular basis? God gave us an intelligence that should be used.

  6. It's a shame that despite what he belives he must prescribe and distribute birth control b/c it's such a money maker. Sigh.

  7. Hmm, under the "you'll get" column, did it say, blood clots, stroke, heart attack, increased risk of certain cancers...etc etc etc. No! Because nobody wants to think about it! Well the problem with society is just because you don't want to think about it, doesn't mean it isn't true! Stuff like this makes me so upset.

  8. GIMH, that's how it was sold to me at 19! After I kept repeating (over and over again) that I was a virgin, he finally stopped talking about it as birth control, said, "Well, if you ever meet the right guy... plus, it'll be great for your skin!"
    Gag me.

    I'd like my periods to stop due to pregnancy. Is there a pill that can do that for me??

    Leila, my DH wants "I Did It My Way" played at his funeral. I am not even kidding. I guess we know where he's going... hmmm...

  9. I was put on the pill for my horribly painful periods, and we all know where that got me! Argh!!! Every time I would complain that my periods were painful my doctor would say, "Well I can prescribe the pill for you."

    When I was a teenager and I was having horrible cramps my doctor told my mom that it was an option to manage my pain and my mom said, "No we don't believe in the pill." I was angry because I just wanted relief and when I went to university I went to the doctor and put myself on the bcp.

    In retrospect I wish that I wasn't so naive and that I did more research. Then again, I guess it is part of God's plan for me to go through what I'm going through now!

    And I agree with TCIE, I want a pill to make me pregnant too!

  10. Oh sorry...He said I had to sign a paper saying that I was going in for a D&C and it had nothing to do with an abortion. Idiot.

  11. My periods are awful enough that I am thinking, since they do me no good. WHY have them? I know I know. But a girl can dream right?

  12. I had horrible acne in college and that was the first thing every single doctor wanted to put me on...even my dermatologist. Ugh!

    And doctors aren't required by law to display those dad refuses to display or prescribe b/c for any reason. Because there isn't any reason to prescribe it.

  13. You know that commercial that says, "Who says you have to have 12 periods a year?" I always say, "Um, God!"
    And I completely agree with Hebrews about the side effects! I always listen to the laundry list of side effects at the end, and think, "Seriously? Why would women do this to their bodies?"

  14. I've known women on the "regular" pill for YEARS who have said to me, "I didn't want to take Seasonique because I think it's unnatural to not have a period." Um... exactly. Do you realize you're still not getting a PERIOD?

  15. I totally agree with you Leila that this is exactly the mentally of America today..."you want it? you got it!"

    It's disgusting.

    Until people open up their hearts and minds, ears and eyes and wake up to the TRUTH they are not going to get it. Gotta keep praying!

  16. GIMH, JB and PW, I know! It's insane! And infuriating! The Pill as magical cure for everything (except for IF). What a crock. Good for your dad, PW! He is a great doc. :)

    SC and Brenda, my friend Kim (conversion story on my sidebar) did talk to this doctor years ago about contraception and the abortifacient qualities of the Pill. Also, she gave him a copy of The Bible and Birth Control. He is in denial about the problems with bc in general, and really is fine with it. I don't get it, but so many evangelicals are fine with it, even though they are pro-life on direct abortion.

    The Mom, exactly! What if we made someone's healthy liver go bad? Would that be considered "healthy"? Of course not. It's only the devil who would inspire souls to think it's okay to derail reproductive organs, and that's because he hates humans. So, what better way to derail humans than to derail the means to bring them here.

    Sew, I love your fighting nature! And yes, you need to tell him not to ask you about bc, because that is an awkward convo after the baby is born. My guy finally stopped asking me, but he did tell me the other day that until I stop nursing, NFP doesn't work "since there are no mucus signs." I told him there was a lot more science on it than he knows. We sort of agree to disagree on this. Sigh.

    TCIE, oh, ha ha that is so funny about DH's funeral song! Whoops! :) Hey, as long as his way is God's way, it's all good. And you are right to note the irony about what those women say about Seasonique! UGH!!

    Barbie, I get your point on that....sigh. :(

    Megan, yes! God says!!

  17. Angela, you're right. If only the bishops hadn't dropped the ball when Humanae Vitae came out.

  18. Hebrews, your point is perfect... that's what you'll get: strokes, blood clots, loss of libido, etc., etc.! But we will do anything, apparently, to make a woman sterile so that she can be used sexually at any time as an object.

  19. "It's knowing that a few years ago...."

    So. very. true. (only it was only a year ago for me).

    I have to just focus on being grateful that I learned the truth and now use NFP or else I get so upset I want to yell (very loud, not-nice, words) at people.

  20. My doctor knows to never mention the bcp to me. And I love her for that! However I am sick of seeing the damn Essure add that's like 3 feet tall hanging on the back of the bathroom door when I have to give my "sample" every time!

    Are you talking about Fr. Larry Richards saying the theme song in hell is "I did it my way!" We LOVE Fr. Larry ;)

  21. Birth control ads make me the angriest nowadays, mostly on TV since I'm not at that kind of dr.'s office much anymore.
    I too, went on bcp for a short time when I was in the Army b/c I was in sooo much pain. It helped for a while, then...not so much. And I had every side effect in the book. And, no one ever told me what it was doing to me and I had no clue I wasn't having a true period. It's just sad what a lack of education most women have about their bodies. I am thankful to endometriosis and infertility I guess if nothing else, than for providing the impetus to learn how my own body works.
    And bcp are the devil.
    Eeevil. So evil you have to call them the fru-its of the dev-eeel. (I love that scene from So I Married an Axe Murderer :)).

  22. This has nothing to do with your post, but I just found your "Reversion Story"...oh my gosh! Wow! My husband's faith is shaky at times and more solid other many of your points are going to help me in conversations with him. I'll have to look up the book you were given to read as well. I'm already seeing a change in our discussions about our Church, which is promising to me. He obviously wants to raise our children Catholic, but both of us have a lot to learn in terms of what that exactly means. Thank you so much for sharing.

  23. Rebecca, you are awesome!! :) I know how you feel.

    Beth, oh how I hate Essure and those damn TV commercials! (See post on Essure TV commercials!).
    Wow, I did not know about Fr. Larry Richards! I have heard the name; must find out more!

  24. What I can't stand (other than the obvious wrongness of the pill) is how it's existence and promotion seems to suspend medical advancements and common sense. Have a problem? Why figure out the source? Why do more research and educate doctors on treating illnesses? Just throw the pill at those pesky, whiny patients and move on! That's how I feel, at least. I've been told by so many doctors that the pill is the "only" treatment for many things. Either these docs are woefully uneducated or they just don't care about the ethics of shamelessly pushing the pill. I had one dermatologist tell me there was nothing - *nothing* - I could do to improve hormone health. (Really? Not exercise? Taking vitamins? Cutting out bad foods? Getting more sleep? NONE of those things could improve my endocrine system? ONLY the pill can improve my "health"? Right, okay! I'll just smoke some cigs, down some drinks, and stay up partying all night cuz hec, NOTHING can affect my hormones except the glorious pill. Thanks Doc!). I wish it was the exception, but this kind of medical advise and pushiness seems to be the rule.

  25. Leila you would love fr Larry. Go find his website and order The Truth CD. Then order a bunch more. ;)

  26. When I see those ads in my ob's office it makes me want to gag. Sometimes I feel like they are preying on poor women who just have no clue what they are getting themselves into.

    I fell for the trap at the ripe ol' age of 16. My periods were so painful that I wanted anything to make it go away. Unfortunately, I had no clue what they would do to my body in the long term. Looking back I feel like I was seriously lied to.

    DH is reading this book called "Fatherless" I forget the author but it is a really good book. In the book they talk about how women who take bcp for 4 years before they have their first child are 50% more likely to get breast cancer. Made me want to vomit. With my family history of breast cancer (that my doctor DID know about) I should be a shoe-in. Yippee!

  27. Can I just say how great it is to be in the company of such wonderful women??

  28. Yuck, yuck, double yuck. It is like the culture has gotten to point of practically saying: "Human beings, available, if and when you want them to be." Good Post!

  29. Yuck, yuck, double yuck. It is like the culture has gotten to point of practically saying: "Human beings, available, if and when you want them to be." Good Post!

  30. Hello,
    I found your blog through the blog of a friend and was just browsing around. :-) I'm not Catholic, so please forgive me. :-)

    Anyway, one of the commenters here said that BCPs are the only time we purposely medicate to tamper with a correctly functioning natural process. I found this to be a very interesting perspective, but would like to add the following:
    BIRTH is a natural process that we regularly render more complicated and dangerous with the use of unneeded intervention. I know many of you are battling infertility, but I encourage you to read about natural birth when you do get that much awaited second blue line on the stick.
    Doctors manipulate us into taking BCP. They also manipulate us into unnecessary ultrasounds, epidurals, and c-sections.

    Anyway, just thought it was an interesting parallel. (I'm a doula)

  31. Monica - wow, fascinating that you are a doula! Interesting perspective, too. Many of the Catholic women I know strive for natural births. Some are able, some are not. My sister's labors, for example, do not progress without an epidural (ended up with a c-section for her attempt at natural... her two VBAC's have been great with the epidural). We all have our stories, I guess. I am just thankful we have expert doula's to help those of who can go natural try it, and we have "modern medicine" for those who, in eras past, would have died in childbirth.

  32. Monica, welcome! Non-Catholics are always welcome in the Bubble! :)

    I love what you are saying, and it is true that there is often unnecessary intervention during childbirth. But I would add that it's not entirely correct to compare that situation with birth control. Even in their worst excesses, the interventions you describe are intended to facilitate birth, not derail it. So, it's not an exact analogy, but I do appreciate and understand your points.

    I agree with Sarah. I have given birth eight times, three times completely unmedicated and natural, and five with epidurals. I liked the unmedicated births, but I also really did enjoy the pain-free labors. :)

    I love your blog! I have relatives in Switzerland. Beautiful nation. I am sure you are doing a lot of good there.

    I hope you will come back to the Bubble soon and keep commenting!

  33. Thank you both for responding to my comment. I just wanted to clarify that I, too, am absolutely grateful for medical intervention- it's the reason I have a healthy niece and nephew over at Hafsa's blog!

    I think my point, which one of you summed up much better than I did, is that we can trust our bodies and ourselves to determine our own fertility (I think this is called NFP in the Church) and we can also trust our bodies for birth, with the safety net of a midwife or OB to help us out if necessary. Any time we tamper, unnecessarily with a natural process, we put our health at risk.

    While I would like to believe that most birth interventions are done with the best of intentions, this is sadly not the case. The statistics are clear- more "emergency" c-sections are performed Friday's at 4pm than any other time. Strange that such dire situations only arrive right before docs want to get home for the weekend...

    Anyhow, just thought you all might be a group of women who could relate to why natural birth is a part of life, just like not ordaining the number of cycles we get per year or any other strange methods of tampering with a working system.

    Take a look in your area for doulas- we support women in both natural and medicated birth!

    I'm not going to make any claims that one type of birth is superior to another, there are a lot of factors that go into it. BUt the pain or lack of pain is only a small part of the equation. The major part is- who is in control? You? Your doctor and anesthesologist? (God?)

  34. Monica, are you Hafsa's sister-in-law? Welcome!! She is so great!

    I completely agree with you about the unnecessary c-sections. It is a travesty. And I hate that some women (celebrities come to mid) schedule c-sections to keep their bodies more "tight"! It is wrong, for sure.

    A lot of Catholic friends of mine do homebirths, and most try to look for the most natural way to give birth... So you are in good company here! :)

  35. Glad to hear it! Yes, Hafsa is my (wonderful) SIL. She and my brother, while they haven't converted me to Catholicism, have given me a lot to think about in terms of spirituality, something I really appreciate. They are good at challenging me in many ways that I appreciate.

    I have an innate belief that the human body, whether by God, evolution, or both together, is designed to give birth, and the more we tamper with it, the worse things go. Doctors are in place to help the few women who truly need help bringing out their babies... and midwives are for the normal, low-risk women who most of us are lucky to be.

    I look forward to reading your blog from time to time!

  36. Monica, that is wonderful! I am so glad to have you hear and I do hope you will keep reading and commenting. You have a lot to offer! And, any friend of Hafsa is a friend of mine! :)


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