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To use the withdrawal method?

77 replies

Steenac7 · 12/11/2019 16:13

Context : we are having fertility treatment for male issues (low sperm count). During treatment we have to have protected sex in case we get pregnant and the meds cause issues with the baby (even though our chances of getting pregnant are crap!). I hate condoms - tried loads of types and they all hurt and I end up getting tears- can’t go on the pill or any other kind of female contraception as that will interfere with the fertility treatment.

WIBU to suggest withdrawal method to DH? Does it work - has anyone used it as contraception? We tend to just abstain whenever we’re getting treatment but it makes an already crap situation even worse!

Is withdrawal reliable enough?

OP posts:
Orangesandbananas · 12/11/2019 17:38

We used a combination of the rhythm method and withdrawal for a year and I didn't get pregnant.

PurpleDaisies · 12/11/2019 17:43

About 80% of people don’t get pregnant. Th problem is that it would be disastrous for the op. It’s not one to use if you absolutely don’t want to be pregnant.

Whatelsecouldibecalled · 12/11/2019 17:47

I had fertility treatment. We abstained as the risks to potential baby for me we’re too high to justify the need. There are other ways than penetration....

WagtailRobin · 12/11/2019 17:56

@Steenac7 I don't have any advice per se but I just wanted to wish you luck with your treatment. I can't imagine how disheartening trying to conceive for so long must be, it really must take a toll on your well being and relationship.

I hope you get your dream, a happy healthy baby, the very best of luck to you and your husband.

VenusTiger · 12/11/2019 18:00


Gustavo1 · 12/11/2019 18:03

OP, I understand that keeping some form of sex life is important. Fertility treatment can be invasive, perfunctory and very emotionally grinding. Sex is important to keep the bond between you strong, in my opinion.
Can you talk to a health professional about contraception? I think, despite the minimal risk so far, you should follow advice and actively prevent pregnancy. Just in case.

BuildBuildings · 12/11/2019 18:04

People always say it is not a form of contraceptive but I have used it for 15 years with my partner and never became pregnant.

StillWeRise · 12/11/2019 18:12

can't believe the number of people here who are using withdrawal!
is it being confused with rhythm/fertility awareness?

why would you want to use it, it must be so unsatisfying for both

OP, I used diaphragm perfectly happily for years, if you are intent on having PIV sex, I recommend it.

PurpleDaisies · 12/11/2019 18:13

That’s not relevant build. The op could be lucky and not get pregnant, or she could be one of the 2 in 10 women who do.

LolaSmiles · 12/11/2019 18:25

MN is maddening at times. On one hand there's loads of posters who'll tell you that some magical superfertility powers exist that means loads of unplanned pregnancies happen to occur through 2 methods of contraception and the morning after pill, and then on the other people claiming that the withdrawal method but is a contraceptive method
It's like people missed KS3 biology or think personal anecdotes equal sound advice.

ChileConCarne · 12/11/2019 18:25
  • Chile
    And some people drink and smoke through pregnancy and have no issues...
    And others do no exercise and have a bad diet and live to 80 whilst someone fit and active has a heart attack at 57.
    The fact you have chosen to chance unprotected sex for years and haven't conceived doesn't mean withdrawal is a contraceptive method any more than someone not being pregnant after only having sex on every other Wednesday and on Thursdays when the moon is in Jupiter could claim they have used contraception*

    ^ Relax! 😬 I didn’t say I recommended it as a method for anyone else! For us though, it’s working. And it seems to be working for lots of other people on here too.
PurpleDaisies · 12/11/2019 18:27

And it seems to be working for lots of other people on here too.

Yes. About 8/10 of them! That’s statistics for you.

getthroughthisgrr · 12/11/2019 18:29

I used it for 4 year no pregnancy, no incidents either. DH did not want a baby. So it depends on your DHs erm timing.

ChileConCarne · 12/11/2019 18:29

its not a form of contraception

To everyone saying this, I hear you. I think though, so far, those of us who have said we’re using the withdrawal method are in committed relationships so, if the method fails, we’ll deal with it one way or another.
Would I recommend this method for one night stands, people in shaky relationships, or to teenage girls? No.

leopardprintlara · 12/11/2019 18:29

Same as @Tiggery 8 years for us, 3 dc each time ttc successful on first cycle. I definitely wouldn't though given the medical advice you've been given about the risks. Good luck with the treatment.

LolaSmiles · 12/11/2019 18:31

Except it's not a method that works for you because it's not a method. Wink

You're just chancing your arm on unprotected sex, which is fine if you've made an informed decision but when people are considering it s an option when they've been given medical advice then I always feel a bit Confused about "it's fine for me".

Onekidnoclue · 12/11/2019 18:41

OP your situation sounds horribly stressful.
I hope you find a method that works for you and the treatment afterwards works. Withdrawal is not a contraceptive though.

Novemberblu3s · 12/11/2019 18:44

is your cycle very regular. You could look at NFP.

Bobojangles · 12/11/2019 18:59

Sorry if this has been asked but have you been explicitly told not to get pregnant on your specific medication (I know things like roccatane are known to cause birth deformities) or is it just a general anxiety about being on medication when pregnant? Lots of people with chronic conditions take medication while pregnant

bluetue · 12/11/2019 19:01

I did it for 4 years with success

Now trying for a baby

elanna · 12/11/2019 19:09

I totally get where you're coming from but don't chance it. My husband and I were in your position for a long time so I really do get the frustration but it's not worth the chance. We suffered from infertility and went the IVF route. IVF took over a year in the end and I was on drugs the whole time so were told no sex at all as even protected sex is not foolproof though we were given a 1% chance of conceiving naturally. We did have the same thought as you but five years worth of trying and £12000 wasn't worth the risk. I don't know which drugs you are on of course but they made it clear that if we got pregnant the baby would be deformed and woukd result in a termination and we just couldn't take the risk. So a year of no sex it was and then a pregnancy of no sex. It was all worth it now we don't have long till due date! Could you live with the heartbreak and guilt if it somehow failed to work? I couldn't but that's not call. Good luck. xx

elanna · 12/11/2019 19:11

*your call!

blahblahblahblahhh · 12/11/2019 19:20

I ended up with DS - so am guessing not so reliable!

HavelockVetinari · 12/11/2019 19:24

I genuinely don't know of any fertility drugs that require abstention from bare-back sex (and I'm a veteran - 7 rounds of IVF). Which specific drugs are you taking? I know quite a few people who've managed to get pregnant naturally when starting IVF, their babies are fine!

scrivette · 12/11/2019 19:27

I used it for about 10 years and had 3 children in this time - so it is reliable some of the time!

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