At risk of tempting the universe, I’m going to put it out there: my last period was in August 2008. I got pregnant about two weeks after, and since then, have not had a single bout of menstruation. My child will be fourteen months on the 27th, and, just to remind everyone, it’s May 2010. Jasper has started to wean, but part of me wants to keep going until August just to make it two full years.
I was getting a little antsy about this, because I think nearly everyone I know who had a baby around the time I did has their period back. Some of them are still breastfeeding, and some of them aren’t. Some of them never breastfed, so it’s no surprise there. Anyway, I started doing some online research, and here is what I’ve found:
- While not super common, if you’re breastfeeding, it’s totally normal for your period to still be MIA fourteen months after giving birth. In fact, there are numerous instances in which menstruation does not resume until eighteen, twenty, or even twenty-four months postpartum.
- If you aren’t nursing overnight, but are breastfeeding during the day, your period is probably going to come back before or around 20 weeks. It seems that overnight feedings, coupled with your unique hormone levels and arrangements, are what keeps the period at bay.
- Just because your period HAS come back does not mean you’ve ovulated. On the flip side, it could totally mean you’ve ovulated! The moral of the story? If you aren’t trying/open to conceive another child, use some form of protection.
- If your period HAS come back and it’s been super heavy (like it’s necessary to use tampons AND pads, for example) for months on end, there is evidence that acupuncture treatments can help regulate your cycle.
- If you really want to go on a period-after-birth head bender, read this Berkeley Parents Network forum.
So, now I know: I’m (most likely, barring any major medical conditions I’m unaware of right now) ok.
My question for YOU, Offbeat Mamas, is this: what are good alternatives to plastic pads and tampons?
Pre-baby, I always used whatever came wrapped in pink (or green) and sold by the dozen or two. Meaning, I always used plastic menstruation items. I never even thought about cotton alternatives until five or so months ago, when I was at a local store that sells them. At the time, I was politely bemused by the idea, but convinced they could never be strong enough. Once my period nightmares (about it coming back) started a few weeks ago, I started re-visiting the idea.
I know about the DivaCup. I don’t know exactly how it works, though I get the general idea. Lunapads seem like an alternative I can work with, but $17 a pop is a bit pricey (though I suppose spending $5 each month for the next twenty to thirty years, it would all even out). I visited the websites for Pandora Pads and Glad Rags, and am now more overwhelmed than ever. Too many choices!
You know where I’m not sure I can boldly go? To Lunapanties land.
So, riddle me this, Mamas: have you tried Lunapanties? Would you? Also, what did you pick–Lunapads, Glad Rags, or Pandora, or something else?