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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.

Add a Comment47 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

I was on bc for 2yrs took on time always just found out I'm pregnant after to test took antibiotics month n a half ago so if ive been taken bc for that month n a half is my baby safe from any side effects from the pill or is there any side effects that u know of

February 6, 2012 - 10:55pm
(reply to Anonymous)

I would contact your doctor right away with your questions and stop taking your pills if you know that you are pregnant.  Your doctor will be able to give you better information with the knowledge of what pill you are taking.  Best of luck with your pregnancy! 

February 7, 2012 - 7:42pm

I'm with Susan on fatigue. For me it was such a drastic change that I thought there was something seriously wrong with me. ALL I wanted to do was sleep. Then came the missed period... no morning sickness really but sometimes when I would cook or take my prenatal vitamin I would get nauseated. That was really it in the very beginning for me. Then came the breast tenderness, frequent urination, and later breast engorgement. Everyone is different but these are all very common symptoms during pregnancy. Good Luck!

February 11, 2011 - 9:04am

Thinking back on my pregnancies, my first symptom was really fatigue, next was a missed period. I would be curious to know how things turn out for you. Good luck!

February 10, 2011 - 8:12pm
EmpowHER Guest

I have been taking birth control pills for seven years now. I am good at taking them everyday and around the same time each day maybe an hour difference some nights. My period is not due for another week but I have been feeling a little off lately. Foods have been smelling like fish (which I don't like), I vomited the other day for the first time in years, and I have been super bloated and lightly cramping for a week now. I know it's too early to take a pregnancy test but could you share if you had any early symptoms similar to mine? All logical reasoning tells me that I surely am not pregnant but I just have this feeling that it is possible.

February 8, 2011 - 7:33pm
EmpowHER Guest

Hello! I am on the pill, but I'm concerned that I might be pregnant. I've been on the pill for 9 months now, changed to a different brand of pills 2 months ago 'cause I was having too much breakthrough bleeding with the old ones. My breasts have been sore, tender and tingly and I've been having cramps for 8 days now. I've been feeling weepy and today my lower back has been hurting on and off the whole day. It kind of feels as if I was going to get my period but my PMS symptoms only come the week before my period comes. I don't know if I should stop taking the pills, and I think it is too soon to take a pregnancy test, since my period is only due on January 16. I am also worried 'cause I haven't been taking the pills at the same time everyday, sometimes I take an hour before or after I did in the previous day. I am not sure of what I should do.

December 31, 2010 - 11:33pm
(reply to Anonymous)

If it were me, I would contact my doctor and continue taking the pill for the next day or two until you can speak with him or her about your concerns.

January 1, 2011 - 6:37pm

Hey! I know this post is from last year, but I just came across it and I am kind of worried that I may be pregnant on the pill right now...

I have an 8 month old baby and I have been on the birth control pill since she was born, prior to getting pregnant with her I was on the pill for 2 years and it's never failed me :)

Basically, the reason I am concerned right now is because my breasts are sore off and on and have been for 3 days now... The only time I have ever experience sore breasts in the past was when I was pregnant with my daughter - it was my very first sign I was pregnant with her... The thing is, is that it's a bit different this time... Last time I remember them being very tender to touch and they seemed heavy and full... This time they are not tender to touch at all and they don't seem heavy or full, just sore and achy. As of right now I am not experiencing any other symptoms... So I am thinking that maybe I'm not pregnant... I am currently on my last week of this pack of pills.. next week should be period week for me and I know that there probably isn't much I can do until then, as it is probably too early to show up on a pregnancy test, if I am pregnant....

I think I am going to finish off this pack (3 more pills) and see what next week brings, I should at least be experiencing other symptoms by next week if I am in fact pregnant... and of course I should miss my period...

Did you take your pills at the same time every day?? because I am quite dilligent with them, so I don't understand how it could have happened!!!

November 10, 2010 - 10:53am
(reply to onebaby)

I am glad that you wrote. I was in a careful routine to take one pill each day and at the same time. For the longest time I told myself that I must have made a mistake because I didn't see any other way that I could have gotten pregnant. My doctor reminded me that the pill is not 100% effective. I just happened to be that very small percentage. Now I can't imagine our family without our third son. He is a blessing. Try to hold on until next week. I can also tell you that my first pregnancy test was negative and the second one (a week later) was positive. Keep in mind that each pregnancy may feel different so hopefully (unless you want to be pregnant) you will discover that you were worried for nothing. Let me know how it turns out. Good luck!

November 10, 2010 - 10:09pm
EmpowHER Guest

I would be so pissed off if this happened to me.

January 22, 2010 - 8:32am
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