I have read TCOYF and am planning to have my mirena taken out on June 6 (YAY!!). I'm wondering if it's even possible for me to begin charting before then, or if I should wait until I bleed following the removal?
My last period was in June 2009. I had my dd in Feb. 2010, had my first Mirena put in 6 weeks later but my body rejected it (or it wasn't put in properly, we're not entirely sure which), so the one I have now was put in 8 weeks after I delivered.
I have had only occasional spotting after the placement bleeding, so haven't been tracking any kind of cycle pattern. The bleeding appears just about every two weeks... I am assuming at ovulation and when I would traditionally begin menstruation, but both times have the same amount of redish-brown tinged fluid and last for only one or two days. I have LARGE amounts of thick, opaque, white, sticky mucous every single day (one of the main reasons I HATE this thing).
I have ordered a basal thermometer but don't have it yet and I'm itching to get started. :)
I tried to check the actual cervical fluid today and definitely have eggwhite, stretchy, lube CF at the CO, but also the copious amounts of thick, white, sticky stuff as well. Is the eggwhite CF related to possible ovulation now? Is it -- like the other CF -- just a biproduct of the Mirena and not reliable at predicting ovulation while using the IUD?
How soon after removing the Mirena will I have a period? Is it immediate, or will we need to use another method of birth control until that happens?
Should I start charting immediately after removal/my first period, or should I wait until it appears that I have regular cycles?
How many have relied solely on this method during the 1-3 month "learning curve" when beginning to chart cycles?
I had planned to use a femcap while learning the method but after reading more realized that's probably not a good idea because it will make it impossible to determine CF following use. My husband isn't thrilled with the idea of condoms. Should we just wait until the post-ovulatory period, or is there a better way to handle this while I'm not quite sure what my body's doing?
Thanks for any info! :)
I can tell you my experience with the Mirena: I had mine put in at 6-weeks postpartum, and taken out at 8 months PP. I hated that thing - I bled/spotted constantly the entire time (there was literally 3-4 days with nothing).
I wouldn't trust any CF you notice from the Mirena, as it *could* be an attempt at ovulation or it *could* be from the Mirena. Too hard to tell. You could always start temping (mostly to get in the habit) but don't be surprised if its hard to interpret.
I didn't temp after my Mirena removal, but I did follow the Marquette Method (with a CBEFM). I was able to predict that first period, so that was nice.
I didn't get my period back until shortly after DD's 1st birthday (so 4 months later), but I also still nursing her so it could have just been from that. I feel like my cycles were pretty normal (for me)- I tend to have longer cycles anyway and gear up to "O" several times before I actually do. I don't solely rely on charting for BC (for us it would be too much abstaining time with my weird cycles), so we do use barrier methods before O is confirmed.
DH and I started by using a diaphragm during the fertile times, but I didn't like it very much and quickly switched to condoms. Which was nice for helping to determine CF.
Personally I would wait a few cycles to totally rely on charting if you absolutely do not want a pregnancy, as there could be some adjustment time coming off of the Mirena as well as a learning curve for charting.
Jen - 29, part-time LDRP RN and Birth Consultant. DH - 33. Married since 2006. 3/09. DD 2010. Expecting a surprise new one in May 2014!
Here's my experience for your consideration. Like you, I was chomping at the bit to get started charting before I had my Mirena out. It had been in for about 3 years and I never had much indication of a cycle after the first few months. But I decided to get into the habit of charting anyway, since I find it's something that takes some practice. What I found was that the bbt was fairly accurate, and showed some cyclical nature. CM was somewhat hard to read and slightly unpredictable, as were mood, etc. But when I started charting it all down in Fertility Friend (which I upgraded to membership status), I had a chart! It wasn't pretty at first, but it was a start. I recommend starting now. It's good practice even if you can't find a cycle.
My dh and I seem to be fertle, so our "results" may not be typical. But I had a period that started the week after I had my IUD removed. We used condoms that cycle and were pregnant the next. I knew exactly when I was ovulating based on bbt (I had used bbt for another pregnancy, so I wasn't a novice), and it was as easy as that. The Shettles method didn't work, though, lol. We have 2 boys.
Good luck and happy baby-making to you! I may be joining you in June. We just decided (today) to definitely have another. :-)