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How many of you in long term relationships use condoms as your only form of contraception?

(53 Posts)
flameprincess Mon 11-Nov-13 23:28:06

Just that really, I want to know if anyone does just use condoms alone and does it affect your sex life much?

I've tried most forms of birth control, the combined pill gives me awful headaches when I am on my 7 days break, like an almighty dip in hormones - so I'm on a break from it at the moment and I'm quite enjoying it. My skin is better for one! I have tried progesterone only methods such as mini pill and the injection and both just left me with irregular bleeding (which obviously is a GREAT form of contraception). Am using condoms now whilst on a break from the pill and am thinking of suggesting to DP we use them alone. Thoughts?

Repeatedlydoingthetwist Mon 11-Nov-13 23:33:07

They're not as reliable as other forms of contraception, I have a 4 month old DD who is living proof of that!

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 11-Nov-13 23:33:36

We did for a while.

I had major side effects from female contraception, so stopped all of it.

It didn't make any difference to our sex life, in fact the convenience of having a ready-made little bag to prevent the damp patch/gravity-induced leg fall was quite a positive smile

Anyway, after a couple of years, my H had the snip so that was that.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 11-Nov-13 23:34:12

Have you completed your family, btw ?

DeathByLaundry Mon 11-Nov-13 23:35:55

We used to. Since swapping to the copper coil I haven't had a single baby. That's a 200% improvement on condoms wink

NoAddedSuga Mon 11-Nov-13 23:36:28

I couldnt use condoms every time

I hate them, feel awful, would rather not have sex than use them.

TarkaTheOtter Mon 11-Nov-13 23:38:29

We did. I don't like the way hormonal contraception makes me feel. It was at a point where we wouldn't have been particularly upset to get pregnant though.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 11-Nov-13 23:47:36

Depending on what source you look at, something like 97% success rate is pretty good

flameprincess Mon 11-Nov-13 23:47:53

I have one DS and haven't made a decision on whether I want another yet. He is 5 now and I still haven't found myself broody but don't want to write it off all together by a permanent solution. I have considered the coil but to be honest am really freaked out by it.
It's microgynon that I have been taking and has been giving me hormonal side effects, is there much difference between the brands?

I did this for years. Was terrible at taking the pill on time and didn't like the idea of long term contraception. I've never understood why so many people dismiss it as contraception.

It didn't affect our sex life at all. Although DH did prefer it without using condoms, but he was fine to use them.

Not using them now as I'm pregnant, but it was a planned pregnancy.

flameprincess Mon 11-Nov-13 23:49:36

and Mist I agree, I'm not missing the waddle the the bathroom after the deed grin

flameprincess Mon 11-Nov-13 23:49:56

*to the

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 11-Nov-13 23:51:42


fantastic little convenient seminal fluid catcher

MortifiedAnyFuckerAdams Mon 11-Nov-13 23:53:17

We do. been together ten years. pill and condom the first two years, thrn two years of just condoms, back on the pill for about two years, the condoms til we started ttc. pregnant within a month, and havr used condoms since.

Doesnt affect our sex life one jot, and im notworried about a sibling coming along as ive grown to trust condoms and how well we must be using them.

peggyundercrackers Mon 11-Nov-13 23:54:54

we do, pill made me ill so came off it. we dont know if we will have another yet, if we do we do, it we don't we don't - its no big deal either way as we are happy with what we have

WLmum Mon 11-Nov-13 23:55:27

Yep, for years pre-dc when we had a good sex life, in between dcs and again now that family is complete with 3 dc which leaves no time or energy for sex anyway never found them a problem, much better than feeling crap on hormonal contraceptives and also lack of wet patch/dribble is def a bonus! In many years of exclusive condom use we've never had an 'accident'
All good in my view.

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 11-Nov-13 23:56:44

We use condoms and have done for most of the 13 years we've been together.

I am very fertile and, other than when I had a particular health problem that affected my fertility, have conceived first month 4 times.

I've never had a pregnancy where a condom failed.

IME if you use them properly, and make an effort to figure out which brand and type fits (this really, really matters, they are very much NOT all the same) and which ones you prefer (they vary enormously in terms of how much you notice them) then they are a very effective method.

They also have the advantage that if they do fail (burst, split, come off), you have a pretty high chance of noticing and being able to take secondary measures to attempt to prevent a pregnancy.

I prefer sex without them, but I even more prefer not to have another baby at present.

I have used condoms in the past that reduced the sensation significantly. But the ones we use are pretty good.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 11-Nov-13 23:56:58

The Pill nearly fecking killed me

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 11-Nov-13 23:58:41

Also, microgynon is the work of the fucking devil.

I will never forget how much better I felt when I came off it.

No more fake female hormones for me.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Mon 11-Nov-13 23:58:52

Yes. Big difference between brands.I think microgynon cheap so prescribed first.

Gave me horrendous headaches that made me vomit and heavy bleeding.

Doctor switched me too binovum, no issues.

Now on implant, no bleeding for a bit then irregular but very manageable periods.

Nessalina Tue 12-Nov-13 00:15:23

I used to use microgynon but then I had a friend rave about how much better she felt not using it so I thought I'd give it a go. I was always rubbish at remembering to take it so we often had to use condoms anyway which neither of us minded, so it seemed like it was a bit pointless!
Felt no different without, but used condoms for two years prior to TTC, no issues! smile Quite liked getting to know my body's natural cycle a but better.

BeaWheesht Tue 12-Nov-13 00:20:11

Yes just condoms here, been together 13 years, married 8 and have 2 young kids - conceived deliberately not because of condom failure! Dh now trying to build up courage to go for the snip - I will be sad if / when he does even though we definitely should not have another baby.

We're supposed to, but tend to just do lots of stuff other than PIV because we cba to fish them out blush

I'm too old and overweight for the pill now, too disorganised for the minipill, injection gave me horrible side effects the one time I tried it, ditto the coil and a really close friend had an unplanned pregnancy at 40+ 5 years after her DH had the snip (vasectomy is still counted as successful due to low rate of sperm, but it only takes one and I would never be able to trust it)

Actually I should be honest - I'm not a big fan of PIV (doesn't do a lot for me, it's nice but not the be all and end all) so having to be imaginative and finding other ways of doing stuff has only improved our sex life imo. So condoms in themselves haven't actually affected anything, but trying to avoid using them definitely has grin

flameprincess Tue 12-Nov-13 00:54:27

Some really positive responses here, thank you all. Also having a titter at the 'imaginative' ways of avoiding using them. Something tells me there is just as much of a clean up job involved there grin
Sounds like a lot of you have managed just fine with them which is reassuring. I guess I will just see how we get on using them alone and if DP really dislikes it I will talk to GP about another brand.
All of my friends seem to be on Microgynon too so I think whoever said its cheap and gets prescribed first is right hmm

BerstieSpotts Tue 12-Nov-13 01:10:25

Yes there are differences - try asking for a different brand. Microgynon gave me awful mood swings and depression, then tried mini-pill (micronor I think) which made me bleed constantly. I am now on Marvelon which is absolutely fine for me although I get horrible mood swings if I run two packs together, so I try not to do that! Marvelon is apparently prescribed when someone has had a lot of problems with different contraception and is dubbed "Marvellous Marvelon" because it tends to induce side effects in fewer women.

Microgynon is indeed the cheapest. I saw a list once online with all of the prices on grin

Just on a quick google, Microgynon uses ethinylestradiol and levonorgestrel whereas Marvelon is ethinylestradiol and desogestrel. So they do actually have different ingredients. Desogestrel is apparently a "third generation" synthetic form of progesterone which might be why it is better? Yasmin, which is supposed to be "the best" (but is also the most expensive!) has something called drospirenone which is a much lower dose than the other two, so I am assuming this works differently again. I got all this from if you want to look up various options.

BerstieSpotts Tue 12-Nov-13 01:16:41

I found a list of them all! In fact, looking at that, I have been on Microgynon, Micronor and Cilest before finding Marvelon worked for me. As you can see there is a huge variety of different drugs actually used so it is worth trying a few different kinds rather than deciding "the pill is not for me".

AnythingNotEverything Tue 12-Nov-13 01:31:02

We have done for years, and will again when we resume our sex life now DD is born (planned pregnancy!).

I hate the way hormonal contraception affects my moods.

Once our family is complete our long term solution is the snip. To me that's a much smaller sacrifice than long term fake hormone ingestion!

TheFuzz Tue 12-Nov-13 08:47:04


Please be aware there is a 10% risk of long term pain in vasectomy. The GP won't tell you or your partner this. 10% is high, when they say it's 1 in 1000. It's not till you speak to a Urology surgeon, and the staff performing 'repair' operations that they tell you it's common and they see many men from GP practice.

My procedure has ruined our sex life and I've just had major surgery on one of my testicles and whilst it's fixed some damage that the GP did, I still wake in terrible pain every morning in both.

Never again. Lucky if we have sex once in a month or two. Absolute disaster.

ithaka Tue 12-Nov-13 08:57:18

We have used condoms for years and years with no accidents. Every time we haven't used a condom, I have fallen pregnant, so we are obviously super fertile as a couple but we have never had any accidents using condoms.

They don't affect our sex life, I don't think, we still have a good and active sex life after 20 years of marriage.

DH would hate me to use hormonal contraception - he wouldn't countenance the most minor risk to my health when a risk free alternative is easily available. He loves me.

I would quite like DH to get the snip, but he is squeamish and would rather use condoms, so fair enough. I love him.

scaevola Tue 12-Nov-13 14:03:31

We used a mixture of NFP and condoms successfully for many years.

When my cycle became really weird (perimenopause), I didn't feel sufficiently secure with the NFP, and DH had a vasectomy. But he is still not clear 11 months on, so condoms are still on the shopping list.

Bubbles1066 Wed 13-Nov-13 20:02:16

We do. Have been on Microgynon (bad) and Mercilon (much better) but had to come off the combined pill due to migraines. I was going to get a Mirena coil but whilst waiting we used condoms and we were both surprised by how good they were! They don't get in the way at all I find and the lack of mess is great. OH was thinking of the snip but is worried about pain so we both agreed to stick with condoms rather than me risk side effects with Mirena.
The best part is that I am getting to know my natural cycle again. I can have a good guess as to when I ovulate based on temperature and discharge and to be extra sure we avoid PIV for those days. We don't do full on NFP though and always use condoms but it's an extra safety thing. I never realised how flat I felt on the pill. Not ill, just the same. Going back to being the natural me is fab!

cupoftchai Wed 13-Nov-13 20:09:33

Combo of condoms and rhythm method until I (intentionally!) got preg. First month of trying so clearly method was working. Now just condoms as periods only just returned so don't feel we've enough data on cycle yet to use rhythm confidently.

BabCNesbitt Wed 13-Nov-13 20:11:05

We do. I don't like the idea of pissing artificial hormones into the water supply, and the one time I tried the coil, I had horrendous bleeding and bacterial vaginosis. Condoms haven't failed us yet. And the lack of a wet patch is a major plus! (Mind you, our sex life is pretty much non-existent at the moment, which also works as an effective method of birth control hmm ).

TCOB Wed 13-Nov-13 20:13:14

Condoms here. Makes me laugh sometimes to be using this method with husband whom I adore and with whom there is absolute fidelity... BUT my constant reminder of my last pill adventure is my darling 10 yr old DS :-) it just doesn't suit some people. Doesn't bother is in the slightest any more; in fact I would be so anxious without condoms that sex would be fraught!

Mouldypineapple Wed 13-Nov-13 20:16:50

We used just condoms for years with no problems. Stopped when ttc only. Sex is better without but wasn't a big hassle to use them when we needed to.

Lizzylou Wed 13-Nov-13 20:17:18

We do. Have done for years. No hassle at all.

Thants Wed 13-Nov-13 20:17:45

We have only ever used condoms. It's absolutely fine. I would recommend them. I have never had one fail but if they do at least you can tell straight away! I hate hormones and condoms are perfect.

MickleMe Wed 13-Nov-13 20:18:20

We use condoms and I also have an app on my iphone to track my cycle. This means that we can give the condoms when i'm not fertile. This seems to be working for us. I had my last baby 4 years ago and we're not planning anymore but it wouldn't be the end of the world if I did get pregnant...but i'd rather not grin

5madthings Wed 13-Nov-13 20:22:10

Yep, fifteen years, five children, planned 2-3yr age gaps, got preg first month of trying each time so very fertile.

I am debating a copper coil but condoms are fine.

Bragadocia Wed 13-Nov-13 20:25:06

Never used anything but condoms with DH, for almost a decade. Bit of rhythm too, but only because my cycles are very regular and it wouldn't be a disaster to become pregnant again.

ouryve Wed 13-Nov-13 20:28:35

We did, right from the start, until DH had the snip.

Agree about the lack of wet patch grin

shockers Wed 13-Nov-13 20:28:42

We do at 'unsafe' times of the month. We've been together for 16 years, married 15... no problems whatsoever.

GetOrfGetStuffed Wed 13-Nov-13 20:30:55

We do. I haven't been on the pill for years, never found one which worked, and although mirena was fine I became pregnant on it so that put me off coils.

We went through a sex drought anyway for a while, but since things have gone back to normal condoms have been fine, but also am like dimitri in that we don't always have pig sex and so half the time we don't need to worry about contraception.

But condoms are great. I am not pissing about fiddling with hormones any more.

GetOrfGetStuffed Wed 13-Nov-13 20:31:40


We don't have sex with pigs I promise you.

FFS grin

Twoandtwohalves Wed 13-Nov-13 20:35:14

We did for over 10 years until we started ttc. I actually quite miss the "ceremony" (struggled for the word and this still isn't the right one) of reaching for it and putting it on as part of foreplay. That and that DH was the one who had to go to the bathroom after grin. That genie is out of the bottle now though, I had a copper coil a few months ago after DS2.

I'd like to think I'd go back too but like the idea of DC3 too much to trust myself with it in current circumstances.

fuzzpig Wed 13-Nov-13 20:38:35

Yes we just use condoms, have been together 11 years. No accidental pregnancies, touch wood (ahem), 2 planned babies

I resent using them really as it's nicer without but I am really uncomfortable with any hormonal contraception/coils etc but also not ready for DH to have the snip (I'm 26) so we just put up with it or stick to foreplay

fuzzpig Wed 13-Nov-13 20:39:16

Ahahahaha getorf grin

MistAllChuckingFrighty Wed 13-Nov-13 20:51:43


< points and laughs >

Lizzylou Wed 13-Nov-13 21:16:36

Sorry but grin at PIG sex.

I feel like I should be defending myself from Getorf's pig sex claims grin

*no animals have been harmed in the making of this thread.

MrsJohnDeere Wed 13-Nov-13 22:27:13

Yes, have done for the past year.

It's the only form of contraception we can use right now (not allowed anything hormonal for complicated oost cancer/chemo reasons)

I hate them and would certainly have sex more often if we didnt use them, but needs must. Dh reluctant to have the snip.

GetOrfGetStuffed Wed 13-Nov-13 22:44:36

Haha dimitri it's your bloody fault!

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