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A few random (and sort of weird) questions for the wise TTC women :)

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi all -


DH and I are TTC our second child (first DS is 5-years-old) and we're about 18 months in. I took us 18 months with DS too, so we FINALLY started getting tested and found out that DH's sperm quality and motility are lower than normal (not bottom of the barrel, but lower). He's on a bunch of vitamins to help, but in the mean time, I have a few random questions regarding all sorts of TTC stuff for you wise ladies - and please don't feel overwhelmed by my questions - even just replying with one little tid-bit is helpful. TIA :) ...


1.) This month was the first time I used an OPK. Everyone always says how unreliable they are, but I am a bit shocked because I feel like I am the one that's been unreliable! Normally, when my ff is gone, I think that I'm done ovulating and we don't BD anymore. I always thought the last day of super ff is the day of ovulation. Well, when I did the OPK, the day I got the LH surge, I didn't have very much ff (if any) at all, but I had it the days prior. So, if the OPK is accurate, all this time, we have probably stopped BD too early and never done it right on ovulation day! I swear nowhere in any books does it say that you can have low ff on the day you actually ovulate - they always tell you that ff is the key. Has anyone else had experience with this?


2.) Also, if OPK is right and I ovulated around day 16 rather than 14, is that considered late ovulation? And is there anything wrong with ovulating later? I read that after 20 days the egg can be older or something like that, but I wondered if anyone had any thoughts (or facts!) about that.


3.) Let's talk Pre-Seed. We used it this month when I had the aforementioned realization that O was coming within 24-36 hours and I had very little (if no) ff. I always thought Pre-Seed was something to help you get pregnant, but the box really didn't talk about that at all. It said it was the only lubricant that was babymaking friendly, but it didn't tout itself like the magic stuff I thought it was! But perhaps we used it wisely since I needed a little boost. What has your experience with Pre-Seed been?


4.) When I inserted Pre-Seed (this is gonna be TMI - warning!), about halfway in, the applicator felt like it hit something and then kept going. My past midwife told me I have a low cervix, so I'm wondering if the applicator bumped my cervix and then slid to the side. And if this is the case... when DH and I BD after the Pre-Seed, wow, it felt so much deeper than usual (which makes sense with it being so lubricated), but then I started wondering - if the penetration is deeper, does that mean that he probably slides to the side and a little bit above the cervix? And if so, does that make a further path for the sperm to have to swim to get back down and around to my cervix? Because if that's the case, maybe we don't want to go so deep. Thoughts??


5.) I am taking B-complex to help lengthen my luteal phase. I usually have one that's somewhere around 11-13 days and I would like to boost my progesterone to make it longer. I started taking the B-complex only about three or four days ago and am on CD 17 - is there any way the B vitamins could make a difference in my luteal phase this cycle, or do I need to be taking it the entire way through my cycle (before O) for it to work? And any thoughts on progesterone cream?


6.) Yesterday - CD16 (which is the day I think O occurred), I had a headache all day that I couldn't shake. I wondered if that is ever a symptom of O. Is this common for anyone else? I never ever feel the mittelshmerz (or whatever it's called), so it would be nice to have some sort of indicator - even if it is a crappy headache.

post #2 of 10
hi happy,

i'll take a stab at your questionse.

1. In TCOYF the author addresses the very issue you mention. If you can get your hands on the book, check on the section on OPKs. I also notice that most of my EWCM is gone by the time I get a positive OPK. What you want to remember is that you want the spermies to be waiting in the fallopian tubes before you ovulate. The EWCM helps the sperm get there to be positioned to be in waiting BEFORE the egg is released. I find it is good to use EWCM and the OPK as data points, doing the deed at a sweet spot that seems best for you. TCOYF also suggests doing the deed the day of ovulation, which you can really only determine if you temp. Do you temp? If not, I recommend starting so you have more information about ovulating.

2. I don't think there is anything wrong with ovulating at day 16; in fact, I think it is pretty normal. A lot of women have 29 to 30 to 31 day cycles (positing an appx. 14-day luteal phase).

3. The benefit of pre-seed is that it doesn't kill sperm, which is what differntiates it from all other lubes, which are inhospitable to sperm.

4. Not sure on this one. Probably a questions for your MW.

5. I don't know about this.

6. One way to find out if a headache is a symptom of Oing for you is to chart. In TCOYF the author discusses that individual women have all sorts of idiosyncratic O symptoms. Maybe headache is one of your symptoms! Start writing is down to see if there is a pattern.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thank you, writinglove, for taking a stab at my questions! I have TCOYF and have read it front to back, but I don't remember seeing anything in there about having no ff on day of ovulation - I feel like that was always an indicator of ovulation - doesn't it say something about, "You usually ovulate on your last day of FF"?? Perhaps I was "hearing" what I wanted to, though :)


I also have read the chapter on OPKs and how she says they're unreliable, but I still don't know that I agree since I had a good experience with it this month. I have temped quite a bit in the past and honestly, that always seemed a bit more unreliable, to me. My DS wakes me up early sometimes and sometimes I toss and turn in the AM, so I rarely ever had a consistent time to temp. I have no idea how women who have small children are supposed to have that be consistent! Also for me, it was just too much. I don't want to have to think about TTC everyday, first thing in the morning. Lastly, with temping, you only know you ovulated AFTER the fact, which seems just as unreliable (or just not super clear) as OPKs, if not more. At least with OPKs you know about your surge before you ovulate and can do something about it whereas with temping, you just have to hope you caught it once you see the temp shift. Although, I know OPKs are not helpful if you don't ovulate, but still get the surge. We'll see how I feel in a few months if we keep using OPKs, but for now, I am finding them helpful :) Also, once I saw a faint line on the OPK, I then tested every 12 hours instead of 24 and that's how I caught my surge so clearly.


And, can I just tell you how awesome it was to see TWO lines on a test?!!! Never mind that it was just for ovulation - seeing that second line come up gave me this weird, illogical hope (after so many one-liners)!

post #4 of 10

I often have the most fertile mucus a couple days before I actually ovulate.  Sperm can live for a few days in that ff.  I assume that's why it appears before O, so it can create a nice environment for sperm who arrive to await the egg.  On the day of O you don't need the ff as much.  Just my thoughts.


OPK's area annoying sometimes, but they must work correctly at least some of the time.  It's good that you could see a clear positive.  It sounds like you are tracking other signs as well so it's best to see how they line up.  The idea I follow is to see when 3 fertile signs line up.  This could be fertile mucus, a high open cervix and a positive OPK.  Or it could be feeling bloated along with 2 others signs if you always feel bloated around O time. 

post #5 of 10
hey happy,

glad i could be of a little help. i'll look up the pages in TCOYF that i am thinking of re: OPKs when i get home from work and will report back to you. i'm pretty certain that TCOYF's philosophy is to primarily BD when there is ff, even though it may not perfectly line up with ovulation. i'm like pokey, in that i have the most ewcm a few days before i ovulate, which really confused me the first time i used OPKs.

fx for you!
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 

Glad to hear that not having ff the actual day of ovulation is a common thing - I was wondering if that was going to be an issue, but it sounds normal. It makes sense that the ff would be there a few days early so that the sperm can hide out and wait for the egg, but in our case, with some sub-par sperm going on, I don't know that we have the luxury of sperm waiting around. That's why I even tried the Pre-seed, to not only give the sperm more fertile-type fluid in which to swim, but also at the time of the egg being released (hopefully) so that it doesn't have to endure too much. But we'll see. One thing I know is that even though this seems like such a science, it's not a science at all :) Thanks for the help, ladies!

post #7 of 10

i looked up the section called "A Word on OPKs" and one of the concern's the author lists is that an OPK may indicate a surge after your fertile mucus has begun to dry up. thank goodness for preseed! good luck!!
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for looking into that for me :) I am confused - does that mean that the OPK is wrong and the surge actually happened earlier (which doesn't make sense, scientifically if the test only shows a surge based of LH being present) or just that it's normal to not have ff when the surge is detected?


Either way - yes, thank goodness for Pre-Seed!!

post #9 of 10

you have to have the LH surge (OPK +) before you ovulate.  Basically you have the EWM, then positive OPK, then temp rise indicating ovulation has occurred.  You can start surging later in the day after you have taken the OPK, so that by the time you get a positive it has been going on for more than 24 hours, which I have read is part of what makes the EWM dry up?  the thing that is nice about temping and OPK together is you get the warning that it is coming but then you know when you have.  We have also started using the Preseed so that we can get a few more BDs in before O depending on CM.  

post #10 of 10
Originally Posted by newtoTTC View Post

you have to have the LH surge (OPK +) before you ovulate.  Basically you have the EWM, then positive OPK, then temp rise indicating ovulation has occurred.  

What she said thumbsup.gif
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