Charting to Avoid/ Fertility Awareness August - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 08-13-2011, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by FaithHopeLove29 View Post

Question for users of Fertility Friend online - is there an easy way to chart when we use back-up protection? Or do I just have to keep track with a note?


If you go to the data entry form for your chart, there's a section marked "custom" where you can create check boxes for anything you want. I created boxes for condoms, cervical cap, spermicide, etc. If you aren't a VIP member, the custom data won't show up on your chart, but it will be logged so you can see it by going back to the data entry form for a given day.

 

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Old 08-13-2011, 05:27 PM
 
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Originally Posted by FaithHopeLove29 View Post

Question for users of Fertility Friend online - is there an easy way to chart when we use back-up protection? Or do I just have to keep track with a note? I did some searching on the FF site and didn't see anything.



If you use the app for ipod/iphone, it has an option for protected intercourse.  It won't show online unless you have premium but it will show on the ipod/iphone.

 

 

 

Anyway, my own question! 

 

96.6 - 97.0 is my normal pre-O range from before-baby.  97.0 to 98.0 was my post-O range pre-baby.

96.7 - 97.7 has been my range post-baby so far.  Yesterday my temperature dropped to 96.36, nearly a third of a degree below any other temperature I've ever had.  I don't remember doing anything out of the ordinary.  Does this just happen occasionally?  Today it came back up to the lower edge of 'normal'.


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Old 08-14-2011, 07:46 PM
 
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My favorite condoms are Durex Avanti Bare, which are made of polyisoprene, a stretchy synthetic that's less allergenic than latex. Lifestyles Skyn are also polyisoprene, but I didn't like their lubrication and my partner complained about a lack of sensitivity.

 

Are you using a separate spermicide or just spermicidally lubricated condoms? I read in Consumer Reports several years ago that spermicidal condoms don't have enough spermicide to make much of a difference if a condom were to break or leak so you might as well avoid them, especially if they make you itch. As far as spermicides go, I've had no problems, or at least nothing worse than occasional very minor itching, with Conceptrol gel and VCF films, but thoroughly painful burning with Encare, even though they all have nonoxynol-9 as their active ingredient, so if spermicide is important to you, you might consider trying a couple of different formulations. Keep in mind, however, that condoms used consistently and correctly with proper lubrication have an annual efficacy of 98% so they are still a fairly effective method even if you have a sensitivity to spermicide and end up forgoing it entirely.
 

 



the only thing i ever tried was just condoms with the spermicide lube. i wanted to try the films or the foam or what not. bc dh doesnt sound too enthused about condoms. but i wasnt sure if i would have the same reaction to the film as i did the other. i might give it a try and check out your recc's. thanks!

 

 


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Old 08-15-2011, 07:17 AM
 
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My favorite condoms are Durex Avanti Bare, which are made of polyisoprene, a stretchy synthetic that's less allergenic than latex. Lifestyles Skyn are also polyisoprene, but I didn't like their lubrication and my partner complained about a lack of sensitivity.

 

Are you using a separate spermicide or just spermicidally lubricated condoms? I read in Consumer Reports several years ago that spermicidal condoms don't have enough spermicide to make much of a difference if a condom were to break or leak so you might as well avoid them, especially if they make you itch. As far as spermicides go, I've had no problems, or at least nothing worse than occasional very minor itching, with Conceptrol gel and VCF films, but thoroughly painful burning with Encare, even though they all have nonoxynol-9 as their active ingredient, so if spermicide is important to you, you might consider trying a couple of different formulations. Keep in mind, however, that condoms used consistently and correctly with proper lubrication have an annual efficacy of 98% so they are still a fairly effective method even if you have a sensitivity to spermicide and end up forgoing it entirely.
 

 


Thanks for the info!  I have to avoid latex, and I pretty much HATE the lambskin condoms.  Weird and smelly!  I'd never heard of polyisoprene before; gonna check those out!

 

Oh also, has anyone else ever tried the fem cap?  My midwife recommended it... 

 


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Old 08-15-2011, 07:26 AM
 
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Welcome, reborn!

 

You actually have a lot more options than you might think.  Check out this wiki for details.  If you qualify for LAM, I wouldn't worry about charting until your baby is 6 months old, starts solids or using bottles (even if it is breast milk), or you experience any spotting or bleeding.  Eventually, you may decide to start charting, and it will be confusing for a while.  Your CM information will be most important because it will help you know when you might get pregnant.  Temperature can't help you until after you ovulate, so the only thing that temping would do is to confirm ovulation.  The 6 hours thing is that you need to have gone to bed for 6 hours, not that you need to have slept through the night.  Most women can get good temperature information while nursing through the night, especially if the mom doesn't have to get out of bed to nurse.



Thanks, JMJ!  THat makes me feel better.  I've been scouring the information in that wiki-- very helpful!  

 

One question about ecological breastfeeding:  one of the requirements is no artificial nipples, including pacifiers.  My son has had a sucking ADDICTION (lol) since day 1 and I have milk oversupply.  If I let him, he would suck almost nonstop until he has a colossal barf or gets a stomach ache and fusses.  He would nurse, and start thrashing and fussing and looking miserable, but keep nursing!  So I've decided to use a pacifier.  I always offer him the breast first when he is rooting but once he starts to seem distracted and lazy I'll take him off.  If he keeps rooting I give him the pacifier.  Would this still interfere with the efficacy of EB?  Even with the paci he's still probably nursing no less than every 2 hours, except at night when he might go as long as 4 hours between feedings.


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Old 08-15-2011, 08:08 AM
 
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So I think I may have finally ovulated. I got a ++ OPK on Saturday, my temp was slightly higher on Sunday and now it is above my coverline today. A couple more days and I should have a confirmation.Since I possibly O'd so late in my cycle, should I expect my period to be late or should I start when a normally do( this cycle it would be on the 19th)?  I am hoping with time to get better at this. Thanks so much for all your help so far. I really appreciate it.


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Old 08-15-2011, 10:05 AM
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Thanks, JMJ!  THat makes me feel better.  I've been scouring the information in that wiki-- very helpful!  

 

One question about ecological breastfeeding:  one of the requirements is no artificial nipples, including pacifiers.  My son has had a sucking ADDICTION (lol) since day 1 and I have milk oversupply.  If I let him, he would suck almost nonstop until he has a colossal barf or gets a stomach ache and fusses.  He would nurse, and start thrashing and fussing and looking miserable, but keep nursing!  So I've decided to use a pacifier.  I always offer him the breast first when he is rooting but once he starts to seem distracted and lazy I'll take him off.  If he keeps rooting I give him the pacifier.  Would this still interfere with the efficacy of EB?  Even with the paci he's still probably nursing no less than every 2 hours, except at night when he might go as long as 4 hours between feedings.



Most babies have a sucking addiction.  In one of the cultures the Sheila Kippley cites in her books, babies were nursed on average about every 15 minutes.  (This same culture goes on to get over 4 year birth spacing, much more than what we would expect out of eco BFing in our culture.)  The frequent and unrestricted sucking at the breast is what makes ecological breastfeeding space children.  With what you are doing with nursing and a pacifier, it sounds like you are certainly meeting his needs for food at the breast, but with an oversupply, he is spending less time sucking at the breast to get that food.  It is not the amount of milk that comes out of your breasts that spaces babies.  It is the amount and frequency of sucking.  It sounds like you are using the pacifier in a way that is very protective of breastfeeding, but because the child spacing effect of ecological breastfeeding is so dependent on that comfort sucking happening at the breast, I would expect the use of the pacifier to cause an earlier return to fertility.  How much earlier?  I can't say, but the longer the pacifier is used, the more likely it is to affect your fertility.

 

Oversupply is another issue that does need to be dealt with, and in my experience, it makes ecological breastfeeding difficult.  In my case, my daughter would be comfort sucking, and I would have another letdown, and it would startle her and make her stop nursing.  Things got easier when my milk supply was finally regulating around 5 months, but I had some spotting at about 4 months, and I think a large part of that was because of my oversupply/overactive letdown issues that kept her from wanting to comfort suck at my breasts.  I was not using a pacifier at all, and even with that, I wasn't able to use LAM for 6 whole months.  Things did get easier, and I ended up not having my first PPAF until DD was almost 21 months old, but I really think that if I had not worked it out to get my daughter to comfort suck at my breasts, I would not have made nearly that long.  What really helped me was block feeding.  The child is allowed to comfort nurse on the breast that is mostly empty, allowing him to get his sucking in at the breast.  I would visit the breastfeeding forums or talk to a LLL leader for more advice on how to handle dealing with an oversupply.

 

More important than using breastfeeding to space your children, though, is meeting your child's needs.  If there is something about your situation that makes it so that you can meet your child's needs best in a way that is no exactly ecological breastfeeding (for example, eco-BFing would be impractical for a working mother), do what you think is best and understand that your results may vary.  I think it is practical for a woman who is using breastfeeding to space her children but has a reason to not get pregnant again quite yet to keep an eye out for CM to be able to predict her return to fertility whenever it does come.  These BFing methods of spacing children are statistically very effective, but there is a huge range of actual results.

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Old 08-15-2011, 10:09 AM
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So I think I may have finally ovulated. I got a ++ OPK on Saturday, my temp was slightly higher on Sunday and now it is above my coverline today. A couple more days and I should have a confirmation.Since I possibly O'd so late in my cycle, should I expect my period to be late or should I start when a normally do( this cycle it would be on the 19th)?  I am hoping with time to get better at this. Thanks so much for all your help so far. I really appreciate it.



That's looking promising for ovulation yesterday-ish.  A couple days, and we'll know for sure.  Usually, your luteal phase length will stay about the same regardless of when you ovulated, so your period should come about 2 weeks after ovulation.

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Old 08-15-2011, 11:29 AM
 
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That's looking promising for ovulation yesterday-ish.  A couple days, and we'll know for sure.  Usually, your luteal phase length will stay about the same regardless of when you ovulated, so your period should come about 2 weeks after ovulation.


Thanks so much!!

 


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Old 08-15-2011, 02:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh also, has anyone else ever tried the fem cap?  My midwife recommended it... 

 


I got a Femcap a couple of months ago. Overall, I like it. It is occasionally noticeable to me during intercourse, but it isn't uncomfortable at all. It did take a while to get good at inserting it.

 

At this point, I'm using it with spermicidal gel as a back-up for condoms. I'm hoping that eventually I'll feel comfortable enough with charting to use just the Femcap during the safer phases of my cycle, but I don't think I trust it enough to use it as my only method during the fertile phase.(I really don't want to be pregnant right now, at least when I'm thinking logically. Emotionally is another story.) Also, I don't have kids yet, however, and I'm not sure I'd be comfortable with the significantly higher failure rate if I did (29% annual failure rate with typical use for women who have had a child). I'd be more inclined to consider a diaphragm after I start a family.

 

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Old 08-15-2011, 02:58 PM
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Butterflymomma, also pay close attention to what your CM is like today vs. yesterday and tomorrow vs. today.  I see that TCOYF has marked today as peak day (again not sure what it's thinking since you need to know what things are like the next day to know which day is peak day).  Usually, the day after peak day, there is a significant change so that your CM is significantly less stretchy/watery/slippery, less in quantity, and less clear in color.  Focus on the change and mark the last day before the change as Peak day.  Identifying both peak day and the start of your temperature rise are going to be important for determining the end of your potentially fertile period.

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Old 08-15-2011, 05:34 PM
 
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I have had a definite decrease in my CM today. I marked creamy/lotiony in my calendar for today, yesterday was watery/eggwhite and this is what popped up in my fertility advisor window from TCOYF.

 

* From the fertility advisor in TCOYF software program*

 

"You are in the post-ovulatory infertile phase of your cycle. It would appear that your cervical fluid had been drying up. However, FAM rules require that you consider "creamy" cervical fluid (or a "wet" vaginal sensation) as being potentially fertile unless the start of a complete thermal shift occurs on or before the creamy/wet cervical fluid observation. As a result, TCOYF must reset your peak day to the last day of creamy quality cervical fluid. This peak day calculation may change in the days ahead if a complete thermal shift occurs. While TCOYF is unable to identify ovulation and post-ovulatory infertility in this cycle using the data provided, based upon an analysis of your own cycle history, it is likely that you are now infertile. TCOYF will continue to monitor your fertility signs for indications that ovulation has occurred and will change this analysis, if required."

 

From what it says, I am gathering that it will adjust my chart for me if I get a definite thermal shift in the next couple of days.

 


 

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Butterflymomma, also pay close attention to what your CM is like today vs. yesterday and tomorrow vs. today.  I see that TCOYF has marked today as peak day (again not sure what it's thinking since you need to know what things are like the next day to know which day is peak day).  Usually, the day after peak day, there is a significant change so that your CM is significantly less stretchy/watery/slippery, less in quantity, and less clear in color.  Focus on the change and mark the last day before the change as Peak day.  Identifying both peak day and the start of your temperature rise are going to be important for determining the end of your potentially fertile period.



 


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Old 08-15-2011, 08:44 PM
 
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Butterflymomma, TCOYF did that to me this cycle.  When I put a high reading on day 17, it was changed to be my peak day but then when my temp did a full thermal shift, it backed it up to my original peak.  It may be that day 17 for me was a 2nd peak (although it really was very minimal that day but I went with high to be safe) but it just shows that TCOYF software will change things when it sees a temp shift. 

 

Just thought I'd mention that when I test with the clear blue monitor using Marquette, when I get a peak reading like you did with your OPK, my temperature usually shifts 2 days later which would be very similar to what you did today.  I guess you will know very soon if that is the case.


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Old 08-15-2011, 09:29 PM
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That makes sense.  I would be careful about it calling you in post-ovulation infertility, though until you have met all the criteria.  Everything looks like you ovulated yesterday, but there is a margin of error.  You can ovulate within 3 days of Peak day or the start of your temp rise, so you have to leave those extra days to confirm before you consider yourself to be in your post-ovulation infertility.  You will normally ovulate the day after your positive OPK, on or very close to peak day, and about a day before the start of your temp rise, so the fact that all your symptoms seem to correlate so nicely this cycle makes me pretty sure that you ovulated Sunday, but it is possible for it to be off by a day or 2, or that you double ovulated, and the egg can live for 24 hours, so to be safe, you're probably looking at Thursday evening as your first infertile day.  Depending on how strong your temp rise is, you may be able to get Wednesday evening, but we'd have to see.

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Old 08-16-2011, 06:57 AM
 
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so ff and tcoyf are giving me 2 different days here.

 

?i=4409644&
 
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do either of these look right to you? i got rid of the one temp on tcoyf bc it was the night after i went out with my dh and got a little too drunk. lol. but i didnt discard it on ff. i am going to go see if that changes anything on there.

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Old 08-16-2011, 10:22 AM
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Lionessmom, my vote is with FF.  As I recall, you said you took out your pessary?  Did you leave it out?  Were you able to record CM data from then on, and if so, when was that?

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Old 08-17-2011, 07:53 AM
 
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Lionessmom, my vote is with FF.  As I recall, you said you took out your pessary?  Did you leave it out?  Were you able to record CM data from then on, and if so, when was that?



i took it out the morning of the 10th. it was hurting me. i told dh we could get pregnant but i didnt say no. :baghead:   after that there was nothing. no cm. and what i saw on the pessary looked ew but it didnt stretch that well. so if it was the 8th then i am safe. lol. but if it was the 10th then i am screwed. i am having cramping today. and i was real moody yesterday.

 


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Old 08-17-2011, 09:10 AM
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i took it out the morning of the 10th. it was hurting me. i told dh we could get pregnant but i didnt say no. :baghead:   after that there was nothing. no cm. and what i saw on the pessary looked ew but it didnt stretch that well. so if it was the 8th then i am safe. lol. but if it was the 10th then i am screwed. i am having cramping today. and i was real moody yesterday.

 


Well, by the rules, you wouldn't be able to consider yourself to be completely infertile for sure by the 10th, but I think the 8th is your most likely O date.

 

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Old 08-17-2011, 12:04 PM
 
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Well, by the rules, you wouldn't be able to consider yourself to be completely infertile for sure by the 10th, but I think the 8th is your most likely O date.

 



 

well then. i dont know what to say. sigh.


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Old 08-18-2011, 12:37 AM
 
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Well, just thought I would check in.  It appears that my menses is arriving tonight a little earlier than expected.  I have started spotting.  I thought I would have a couple more days although I did have the tell tale discharge the last day or so, so it shouldn't surprise me.  I'm guessing that given this, I likely ovulated closer to the the peak on the monitor and 1st cm peak.  The 2nd high really was quite minimal, only once that day and I never was sure it really was a high quality.  This cycle was interesting since my shift jumped high right away and stayed high throughout my luteal phase which I have not had before.  Last cycle I jumped high quickly as well for the first time but then decreased slowly over several days.  I think as I am getting further postpartum, my cycles are getting closer to looking like standard charting cycles.  We will see what this next cycle brings. 

 

Okay, flow has now started.  I generally do not spot so I must have caught the very beginning of AF today.  Thattook about an hour, lol. 


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Old 08-18-2011, 01:47 AM
 
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Lioness, I just looked at your chart and agree with JMJ, looks like day 8 so good chance you may be okay, but you never know. 


Mom to three great boys Michael (Sept/01), Carter (Nov/05) and Reid (March/10).

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Old 08-18-2011, 06:49 AM
 
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well i am emotional! just got into a fight with dh for the second day in a row. granted we are stresed out. ds was not doing good in school last year and we just started a new year and he might have gotten into some legal trouble. so we are all stressed out. and then the hormones. i feel like i am going to start af and even had a temp dip today but i dont know. i dont suppose my chart could have been anovulatory could it? i am bloated too, but i dont have any breast pain so... but my forecasted af start day is tomorrow.


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Old 08-18-2011, 09:02 AM
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Hugs, Lionessmom.  That's a lot of stress at once.  I hope it all works out.  This was definitely an ovulatory chart, but the huge temp drop today is looking like AF is probably on her way, not pregnancy.  In fact, with a drop like that, I would be keeping an eye out for her today as well.

 

Jodi, I think you're right that you probably ovulated with the original peak, so I would count your LP from that or from the start of your temp rise.  It's just always better to be safe than sorry.

 

Butterflymomma, I'm chart stalking you, but your chart isn't updated.

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Old 08-18-2011, 09:49 AM
 
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Originally Posted by JMJ View Post

Hugs, Lionessmom.  That's a lot of stress at once.  I hope it all works out.  This was definitely an ovulatory chart, but the huge temp drop today is looking like AF is probably on her way, not pregnancy.  In fact, with a drop like that, I would be keeping an eye out for her today as well.



 

:) that would certainly make me feel better as the cramps are getting worse, i feel like up chucking, and i need a nap. lol. if it does come today or tomorrow then my freak out will be over.... well until the next o. lol.


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Old 08-18-2011, 09:54 AM
 
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Good morning! Another look at my chart please? I had three days of temps above my coverline which gave me an O date of Sunday CD24. Today my temp went down below my coverline.  Not quite sure why. My CM is still dry, CP is m/m. Any ideas? Does it still look like I o'd on Sunday? Maybe AF is getting ready to show? Uggh this is confusing..lol.

 

 

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Old 08-18-2011, 12:18 PM
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Butterflymomma, I think it's likely that you did ovulate on Sunday-ish, but today's temperature is a good reason to be cautious as we wait and see.  Here are our 3 theories:

 

1) You ovulated, but something caused your temperature to drop shortly after ovulation.  It will likely jump right back up tomorrow.  Can you think of any reason why your temp might not have been valid today?

 

2) You ovulated, but you're having an very short luteal phase.  This is not uncommon in postpartum mamas and mamas that are coming off of hormonal birth control.  Since you are in both those categories, I wouldn't be too surprised if this were the case.  In this case, your period will likely start today or tomorrow.

 

3) You didn't ovulate.  Your apparent temperature rise was caused by fluctuations in hormones or other factors (can you think of any?), but you didn't ovulate, so your body will try again to ovulate later.

 

Technically, you are at P+4, and you are on your second dry day (if you stay dry all day), so if you are confident in your mucus observations, you are unlikely to conceive even if you did not actually ovulate yet since your CM will likely return before you ovulate.  However, there is a small chance that you would not have enough days of CM before you actually ovulate, and if you have not been specifically trained to use CM observations by a Creighton or Billings instructor and/or have a serious reason to avoid pregnancy right now (such as having a newborn!), I would be very cautious about assuming that you are infertile quite yet.  We'll check back tomorrow.

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Old 08-18-2011, 01:26 PM
 
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Missed two temps (one very bad night with DS and a 4 AM phone call) and FF still put new cross-hairs up.  My CM/CP fits great but I'm iffy on temps.


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Old 08-18-2011, 01:57 PM
 
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JMJ~Thanks! I think AF is here. Just went to the bathroom and had blood tinged mucus when I wiped. I am also having light cramps.  If it is indeed AF it will be heavy tomorrow.

 

 

 


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Old 08-18-2011, 05:37 PM
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WifeofAnt, I'm not convinced you've ovulated.  The rules that FF uses will give you a lot of false positives postpartum.  However, you're looking pretty infertile to me.

 

Butterflymomma, it's looking like theory 2 is it, then, but I still would be careful for today.  Blood tinged mucus can also be a sign that you are just about ready to ovulate, but theory 2 is looking the most likely at this point.

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Old 08-18-2011, 06:46 PM
 
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Jodi, I think you're right that you probably ovulated with the original peak, so I would count your LP from that or from the start of your temp rise.  It's just always better to be safe than sorry.

 



Wow, you have been busy helping everyone, lol.  I agree, I wouldn't have felt comfortable not playing it safe.  It sure was nice to see such a nice temp shift this cycle though.  Hopefully that will continue as I get further postpartum. 


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