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I Became Pregnant While Taking Birth Control Pills

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I was familiar with taking “the Pill.” I currently had been taking it over a year. My husband and I already had two little boys ages 4 and 2 ½. It wasn’t difficult for me to remember to take it each day. It was a part of my morning routine.

One month, as I was still consistently taking my pill, I began to experience some cramping. I believe it continued for a few days. If I remember correctly, I was on my third week of my pill pack, which was still a full week away from the week of my period and the “green pills.” The cramping was a similar feeling to when I would start my period or the first days leading up to it. But it was strange to me that it was happening earlier than it should. I started feeling like something was wrong with my body. I remember feeling slight nausea at times (almost like carsickness) and decided that something about the pill that I was taking was not working right with my body. I was also very tired, but I was always tired. I was a busy Mom with two active boys.

The green pill week arrived, but my period didn’t. Still, pregnancy didn’t occur to me. I had been taking my pill for so long that my periods were very light, almost non-existent. I had an annual doctor’s appointment scheduled with my OB three days after I finished the pill pack that I was on. I decided that I would not start another pack until I saw my doctor.

So three days later, during my annual appointment, I requested new pills. As I told my doctor about my symptoms, he looked puzzled stating that “those are not common complaints associated with taking this pill.” He gave me some new pill samples and told me to start them after my next cycle. But he told me that if I didn’t get my period soon, then I should take a pregnancy test. Staring at my blank face, he reminded me that the pill is effective when taken correctly, but not 100% effective.

A week later when I was still late, I took a pregnancy test. The result was negative but I knew that something was different with my body. One more week passed and this pregnancy test confirmed it, POSITIVE. Now I had something new to worry about. I had taken birth control pills without knowing that I was pregnant.
It is recommended that you STOP taking the birth control pill as soon as you find out that you are pregnant. If you have discovered that you are pregnant and have been taking the pill, consult your doctor.

I traced my weeks backwards and found the day that our new baby was conceived. I believed that I was very diligent about taking my pill. Why did it fail me this month when it had always been reliable before?

When taken correctly, the birth control pill is 99.9% effective. There are factors that will bring this percentage rate down. If you miss days, if you are taking antibiotics that decrease the effectiveness, or even not taking the pill at the same time each day. If this is your form of birth control, then you must follow the steps in taking it correctly.

I have no way of knowing why the pill failed me. It seems only likely that somehow I made an error in taking it. However, my husband and I believe that against all odds (including, birth control) our baby boy’s existence was truly meant to be. We couldn’t be happier.

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EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

It sounds like regular period pain. The only way to tell you are pregnant is to take a test either the one you buy at the pharmacy or the one the doctor administers (Blood Work, Urine Sample). My period was not completely regulated only 3 months in. And it's always suggested you use another form of birth control for 3 months in to the pill because it has to get in your system effectively. Which is why you need to start it before you even become sexually active to ensure it's success.

January 29, 2015 - 6:53am
EmpowHER Guest

Hi. I've been on the pill since August 16th and I take it every single day at the exact same time. I've never missed a pill. My boyfriend and I have sex a couple times a month when we get to see each other and we have protected and unprotected sex. The unprotected sex is far less often and when we do, he always pulls out before he ejaculates. I took my placebo pills and had some very light, almost nonexistent period which eventually ended. I have extreme paranoia and anxiety about being pregnant. I don't have any symptoms except extreme exhaustion but that's been going on ever since on started the pill. Nothing else. I just need some outside reassurance. Can you help me?

November 16, 2012 - 8:55am
EmpowHER Guest

HELP. I have been on birth control for a year and 2 months now. My boyfriend and I have been together for 2 years have regular unprotected sex. I usually take my pill regularly every night but I am a women constantly on the go between school and work so I forget to pack my pills sometimes when my plans changebut the second I get home i take the missed one. That has happeened twice this past month. Also, lately I have been having nausea randomly but do not vomit and my eating habits have changed. I have started to get grossed out my chicken and meats. I begin to feel nauseous after eating a couple bites and i love meat! I have lost weight at least 5lbs. I have been getting very bad lower back and neck pains. Yesturday I started getting flu like symptoms. My nose is runny and I have a constant headache and pressure in my sinuses. I feel bloated and am constipated and have been gasy. My body aches and I am always tired. I can't just sit down and relax without dozing off. My period is due in 2 days but my previous period was very short and light. Could I be pregnant?

November 5, 2012 - 2:33am
(reply to Anonymous)

If it were me, I would take a pregnancy test once I realized that my period was late.  (Keep in mind that you may have to take multiple tests, I have have a false negative test before.)  There could always be other reasons for your symptoms.  I know that it is not easy but try not to worry about it until you can actually take a test.  Keep busy with work, school or whatever you can. 

I would also talk to your doctor about other birthcontrol methods if you are finding it difficult to take your pill at the same time each day.  There are other options. 

Good luck.

November 5, 2012 - 7:50am
EmpowHER Guest

I realise this article has been written quite some times ago, but here is my story.
I have been on the pill most of my life, the only time I didn't take it was when I was TTC and then got pregnant with my daughter who was born 3 years ago. Breastfeeding didn't work for me, and I stopped it at 6 weeks, my periods returned 4 weeks later and I went back on the same pill I had been before getting pregnant on my OB's advice. I've been on that pill for 3 years now, never had any other symptoms on it exept mood swings when there are about 3 pills left on the pack (mine is a 21 pills no placebo pill brand).
Now as I write I am still left with 2 pills to take for this month, but I have been having a crazy sore breast for over a week, peed more in the past week, and raging mood swings for the past 5-6 days as well. This past weekend I even had brief moments of queaziness. I finish my pill pack this coming Wednesday and my period never come until the Monday after that. I took two tests already, both negative, but I can't shake the feeling something is different here, so I am waiting for the time my periods should come to see what happens, but this is getting crazy, just today I noticed my sense of smell is sharper too.
I keep wondering how can it be that I have so many symptoms that could be linked to pregnancy that EARLY! I mean come on my period is not due for another week. With both my daughter and the missed miscarriage I had before her the only symptom I had until 6 weeks into pregnancy was sore breast, not nausea and crazy smell sense.

October 8, 2012 - 8:15pm
EmpowHER Guest

while i am reading all of these comments, i tried to compare the symptoms of pregnancy on my case..i started my new pack of birth control pills as an extension.i'm a Monday starter and i took 2 pills the next morning, Tuesday..i believed that,that was the only time that i missed to take my pill.and that was on my 1st week of taking them..on my 3rd week (5 more pills including the Wednesday pill) i had sex with my boyfriend.it happened last week, Wednesday, February 15, 2012 before taking my pill.i usually taking my pill at 6pm or 7pm...the thing happened between 3pm and 5pm..i was so worried..i took my pill on my usual time, 6pm that day..i asked Empowher and answered that i'll be fine coz i am still covered by the pill that i took the day before..i felt relieve..it's been 10 days now since that happened..i felt dizzy and feel like vomiting past few days,i slept and it gone..last Wednesday,February 22, 2012, i felt that my lower abdomen just in pain (it's the feeling that you'll have your period).my boyfriend and i had sex on the same day but we did use another method of birth control to avoid pregnancy.i was on my 7 days interval that time.on that day, after we had sex, my period came. im so happy but still worried until now..coz i have this feeling that i might be pregnant..i got dizzy sometimes and i feel like my lower abdomen's falling.and nowadays, i felt hungry all the time..i will take a test as soon as i finished my period..but when is the best time to take a pregnancy test to get an accurate results?

so now, please tell me..is there any chance that i might be pregnant?i'm going to start my new set of pills next week,Monday.should i start taking them or should i perform pregnancy test first?

and one more thing, what are the DO's and DON'Ts during your 7 days interval?

hoping for your soonest reply..
thank you so much..

February 24, 2012 - 12:23pm
EmpowHER Guest

Hi, I'm so glad to find someone who were in exact situation as i am in now.
every thing you said is similar, taking pills everyday for two years, the first pregnancy test which was negative, and the second test that turned out to be positive.
Now I'm four month old pregnant, but the only thing i'm worried about is the probable side-effects of the pills on my baby.
do you know something about bad effects of the pills on the baby?
by the way i was using Diane-35.

February 8, 2012 - 4:09pm
(reply to Anonymous)

I am sorry that I can't offer any information about that pill.  Have you discussed it with your doctor?  He/she should be able to provide answers to your questions.  Best of luck with your pregnancy and baby!

February 11, 2012 - 12:59pm
EmpowHER Guest

Hi ther im very scared! I think im pregnant because I hav all of the symptoms except nausea bt im stil taking birth control ive been switched from two different birth controls in the past 3 months and havnt had a period since november! I havnt went to my doctor yet because my appointment is the 13th this month so I decided to wait but the part that scares me is that my last birth control gave me no period at all so my doctor put me on a much stronger birth control to bring my period down but yesturday I was supposed to start my period bt stil nothing not even spotting! All pregnancy tests came out negative bt I feel heart beating in my stomach thatz not the same az' mine if I am pregnant I would b 6 months now shud I stop taking my birth control or wait to see if my period might stil come down? Please help me!

February 7, 2012 - 7:36am
(reply to Anonymous)

To give yourself piece of mind, I would call your doctor's office tomorrow and explain your situation even though your appointment is next week.  If it were me and I truly believed that I were pregnant, I would probably stop taking the pill and but continue to use condoms if need be.  Don't wait to see if your period comes, always ask your doctor questions if you have them.  It's your body and your health.  Wishing you the best of luck.

February 7, 2012 - 7:55pm
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