What’s your birth control timeline?

Some people stick to one birth control method their entire lives, and some people switch it up until they find what works best for them in their current life stage. These choices can be influenced by health changes, relationship changes, financial changes, technological changes, if or when you want children, or just your experience or reaction to a particular method.

Here’s my birth control timeline:

When I started having sex, my boyfriend and I used condoms. We hoarded free ones from clinics and first sheepishly, then more confidently, bought them at drugstores. After a few months, I decided I wanted to try hormonal birth control pills for menstrual symptoms and pregnancy protection. I made an appointment with my awesome pediatrician (who I still call for medical advice), and she wrote me a prescription. I started out using a brand name pill, and my partner and I split the cost of the pills every month. 

I stayed on the pill after the relationship ended — but switched to generic. I’ve been a loyal pill user ever since. I don’t have trouble remembering to take it, as long as it’s within sight, and the whole just-take-a-pill-and-not-get-pregnant thing has always felt a little magical to me, as well as the ability to skip periods whenever I want. I still use condoms— with a new partner, for STD protection, or just to feel even safer about preventing pregnancy.

But lately I’ve been thinking about getting an IUD. I don’t want to have children in the next five-plus years, and the prospect of never having to remember a pill or deal with a last-minute scramble to get a refill sounds pretty great. I’ll keep you posted. In the meantime, reblog and tell us about your birth control timeline. What’s influenced your birth control choices over the years? Where’d you start, where have you ended up, and how’d you get there?

- Nina at Planned Parenthood