Question for Women (really guys, you don't want to go here!)


Has anybody had their doctor prescribe birth control bills for non-birth control issues, such as heavy cycles, etc? Has anybody searched for other alternatives? I would like to accept help if it’s out there for some problems I am having, but I just don’t like the idea of the pill, with its increased risk of blood clots, stroke and heart attack . . .

Thanks! If y’all don’t want to post in a public forum, private replies will also be welcome.


NaPro Technology (endorsed by the Pope Paul VI Institute) might be helpful to you.


Here’s a great article on the topic by Dr. Paul Hayes. This article is on American Life League’s website:


Lol! Gwen I love the title of your post. Several men are probably now viewing it. I have nothing to offer you with regards to your question but thanks for offering me a laugh.


I second checking into NaPro Technology.

My other suggestion is to read Fertility, Cycles, & Nutrition. It might be in your library, but if not you can get it from Amazon and possibly Couple to Couple League.


Thanks for the responses. I regret to say I did decide to try it before I researched it, having read in the “Ask the Apologist” forum that it would not be a mortal sin if I was not taking it for contraceptive purposes. Already, though, I feel sick (3 days in!) and I can’t stop worrying about the long-term side effects.

The article was helpful, but I don’t “get” the Na-Pro technology - that sounds more like something women use to chart their cycles, which is not my need right now. Did I misunderstand?



You know it is a shame that for all of a woman’s "female " problems the first and usually only solution the doctor will give you is the pill. There are some really great books out there about the links between nutrition and cycles.
Have you been checked for endometriosis or Fibroids? I had surgery for both (both cases if bad enough cause infertility) before I was able to get pregnant with my daughter. Even if fertility is not a concern for you, these surgeries took care of all the pain and discomfort. The Fibroids were stubborn and took 3 surgeries but they were minor outpatient surgeries. I was back to work after a couple of days.

Good Luck!


Naprotechnology works hand in hand with the Creighton method charting of your cycles to identify, diagnose and treat medical conditions that impact your menstruation or other female reproductive issues. For instance, some women chart using the Creighton method, and based upon the unusual chart, it is determined that they have a hormone imbalance, or a cyst, or a cervical issue. Napro takes the Creighton method to the next level so that it may be used to actually treat and remedy dysfunctions found through charting. The treatments are all in line with what the Church teaches and are designed to preserve and protect your fertility.


Is the problem heavy flows? Or painful menses? What is the issue exactly? (Don’t worry–after a post or two…the men have stopped reading:p )


BCP did horrible terrible awful things to me. Made me horribly sick and I got every. single. side-effect. I would not recommend it to anyone, for any reason.
(That was of course years before I converted)

Napro is not just for help with conception, a Napro trained doc will actually try to find the REASON you are having problems. Most docs do not care WHY women have gynecological issues, they just want to cover up the symptoms with BCP so you don’t bother them anymore. :rolleyes: It’s all in your head anyway, right. :rolleyes:
Napro docs try to find the root of the problem and actually TREAT it, not just bombard your system with artificial hormones so that you appear on the surface to be ‘regular’. They can do this with lab tests, and, yes, charting, to help find out what’s really wrong so that they can prescribe the proper treatment, whether that is medication, surgery, or something else.
I had gone to about 8 docs in as many years, and not one had a clue what was wrong with me. I went to a Napro nurse practitioner (not even an MD!) and she immediately knew from my charts that I had PCOS. She prescribed the proper medication (NOT BCP, like all the other docs had wanted me to use), and guess what? It worked! My symptoms disappeared over time, and I even managed to get pregnant! :smiley:


I use NFP–primarily the Billings method, but I have a really heavy flow and it’s pretty dibilitating two days a month. That’s why I asked if the problem was heavy flow or pain… I have found that the product known as the Diva Cup is helpful in dealing with heavy flow problems like the leaking and discomfort I was having with tampons and pads.

(Gosh…I feel like that’s TMI for the internet:o )


This is a good book, but with regard to nutritional aids, didnt offer anything new. I found Heavy Mentrual Flow and Anemia by Susan Lark to be much better. Nutrional aids and dietary changes may help you though so it is worth trying. You have to commit to it for the long haul. It didnt help my periods but it was still a healthy lifestyle change.

If, as a last resort, you take the pill for medicinal reasons, please make sure you are taking the lowest dose possible. If one brand makes you feel sick, switch brands. Also, dont take it on an empty stomach. If you do take the pill for medical reasons, do not feel bad about it morally or spiritually, because you are not doing anything wrong. Not all pills have an abortificent side effect, and if you are not having sex, you dont need to worry about this yet.

Good luck! You have my empathy and prayers!




Did the medicine she prescribe contain hormones? I have yet to learn of a non-hormonal method for resolving hormonal imbalances which is why I ask.




Alright - there is a lot of good info on here now that will take me a little time to digest and look up. I appreciate everybody’s time and concern, especially since somebody did mention that there have already been threads posted - I “searched” but must have done something wrong because I didn’t find what I was looking for.

Anyway, the problem is mostly heavy flow, which is getting worse and is affecting my ability to do my job. I do notice more cramping, too,which seems to be getting worse. Thanks to those who gave a better explanation of the creighton and napro charting - my initial read made me think it was for fertility problems, but fertility is not the problem. I know a lot of this is probably natural peri- or even menopausal – that is the age I am at. But I simply can’t take 1-2 days off work a month, and I worry every month that I’ll be unable to deal with it.

Y’all have given me plenty of things to check on, though, and convinced me that the BCP is not a good option, so thanks again!


One other comment - I don’t understand doctors! My doctor convinced me it would be OK by telling me she took it for the same reason, and her husband is so glad she does. Her nurse then seconded that glowing recommendation . . .

How can a health professional not know of these risks,or knowing them, simply ignore them???!!!


In perfect honesty, I was on the pill and it saved my life and probably others lives too. After a very severe bout of PPD where I was literally suicidal and homicidal every 3 weeks like clockwork, my docs did hormone testing and found that my baseline and my current were at opposite ends of the spectrum. My normal was high estrogen and low progesterone, my post partum was very high progesterone and low estrogen. I was put on the pill with high progesterone because they wanted to flood my body with progesterone to make my body react by producing more estrogen.

Actually it sounds stupid and wrong but it was working until they decided to supplement the pill with anti-depressants… why do doctors know so little about PPD? Depression is a symptom that occurs because of the hormones, it is totally unnecessary to prescribe antidepressants in most case. All it served to do in my case was take someone who was suicidal and homocidal…make them more agressive until the estrogen kicks in and add antidepressants… and well you get an aggressive person pinging off walls! When the estrogen started kicking in, I became a weepy woman pinging off walls… killing a person because I had to wait in a line to have my vehicle looked at didn’t seem unreasonable at the time.

Thankfully, with low impulse control at the time I informed the garage that I could kill them and legally get away with it… the manager asked if I had just had a baby and when I said yes he put me at the front of the line. This all seemed perfectly normal to me at the time, but in reality I have always been very calm, patient and even tempered… the mix of the hormones and the antidepressants turned me into my biggest nightmare. I went AMA and went off both cold turkey… Thank God I finally went back to my normal self.

Later I found out that the anti depressants they put me on had a tendency to make you act like that… I wish I had sued!

****Did I mention that I tried to tell my doctors from the beginning but they didn’t believe me until I threatened to kill my boss? Then all of a sudden they were willing to do the hormone tests and treat me? I really should have sued!!! I swear I am a normal sane person…really!!! Well now anyway…


Actually birth control pills are the only thing that helped get my periods in order. When I was younger I had very very very heavy periods (one day I stood up from sitting down for about 30 minutes and blood poured out of me, down my leg and made a puddle at my foot). My doctor suggested nutrition being a problem, after 6 months of me being on certain foods and off other foods the problem was still there, that’s when we tried birth control pills and voila, problem gone. To me the blood clots and all the other side effects were worth it…I know that’s bad to say or to think about, but the way I was bleeding was horrible and it had stopped me from living normal when I had my period (not being able to leave the house for 4 and 5 days at a time).


I have a similar story. Sometimes the pill really is a medical treatment. Just because some people use it for immoral reasons doesn’t make it “evil” anymore than rampant premarital sex makes sex evil.

Also I find that because people are so against the pill, they tend to blow the side effects out of proportion. Yes you do feel a little nausea at the beginning. But the serious ones are RARE and are usually caused by a person already being high risk, or people smoking while on the pill. Which they tell you adamantly NOT to do. , along with looking at your medical history to see if you are high risk for the dreaded blood clots etc…

Just because you use the pill for moral, medical reasons, it doesn’t make you any less of a catholic. It doesn’t make you any weaker than anyone else, it’s just the medical treatment you need for your specific issue. Frankly I find it a little heartbreaking that women are suffering what I went through because they are so afraid of this “evil” pill. The Pope himself said it was perfectly acceptable to use it for medical reasons, in the same paragraph that he condemned its use for contraception. It’s not the best option if you can avoid it, but some people can’t. It doesn’t make them any weaker, or any less of a christian than anyone else.


I agree with you completely. There is nothing wrong with the pill when the decision to take it is an informed one. Your doctor can and should screen you for bleeding disorders to make sure you are not predispositioned for blood clots etc. If you are not overweight, are a nonsmoker, do not have any genetic disposition toward blood clotting disorders, your doctor may decide that is the best treatment option for you. If that turns out to be the case, there is nothing morally wrong with taking the pill. There are other options, but they do not work for everyone. Charting can, and does, help you and your doctor better undestand the root of your problem, but it does not solve it.

The pill is often overprescribed, but that is not always the case, and it is important not to jump to conclusions. Some women are unable to leave the bathroom when their period is at its heaviest. For women who work outside the home, it is not possible to work from the bathroom stall at the office!

The decision to take the pill for medical reasons is a decision between you and your doctor. If you have tried other options, and they did not work, there is nothing spiritually or morally wrong with taking the pill. With everthing in life, there are side effects, but for many women, the side effects of being on the pill are much less than the side effects of being off it!!

A Catholic taking the pill for medical reasons is no less devout than anyone else.




Thank you ladies, for some alternate points of view. I appreciate hearing all sides.

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