This all started for me not too long after my wedding and honeymoon, when I went on the birth control Depo-Provera. This is a 3 month shot of birth control, which you can not stop, like you can with other methods. You have to wait out the medication, and then some. I had gotten two shots (6 months worth) before figuring out what was going on.
I want to also bring to your attention that the Depo-Provera shot is, has been, and continues to be used as a method of chemical castration for male inmates with sexually-based crimes. It may not remove their thoughts, but it removes their physical reactions to their thoughts. It removes their physical ability to become aroused by their actions, or their thoughts, removing the physical need and ability. Hence, why it is called chemical castration.
There is a stated risk, among other risks we all take when deciding on a birth control method. I was aware years before I decided to go with Depo-Provera that there was a “slim” chance that this would happen to me. It was always purported that the risk of this was far lower with women, because of their basic chemical make-up. Having worked and studied as a pharaceutical technician, I had educated myself pretty well on the different products available.
However, as I’ve come to find out from the periodic offering of my story, I’ve come to converse with a far larger number of women who have been through what I’ve been through with Depo-Provera. I’m offering this now, not only as a supportive nod to those that have been somehow changed, damaged, or thrown off by birth control, but also for those that have had issues either naturally, or from other medications.
Not too long before we arrived back from our honeymoon, I went to the doctor and requested to be put back on birth control, I had been on the NuvaRing not too long prior, and had had no issues, nor had I had any noticeable issues with the other products I’d been on since I started birth control as a teenager.
I don’t do well with travel, physically, and we’d been on planes often leading up to the wedding, as well as a trip to Ireland from the States. While in Ireland, we were on a tour bus damned near every day. This put me in a state where being intimate was hard, and it is still something that bothers me to this day, which I will hopefully get past with more experience travelling.
So, some of this started around the wedding, and experiences since then have proved that it’s largely to do with the travel. Though, it was something we weren’t too sure about starting out.
Because things had slown down sexually and intimately during that time, we didn’t initially attribute it to the possibility of the Depo-Provera being a factor. Considering his career, his schedule was a shifting one, and we didn’t always get to see each other as much as we would have liked, let alone been able to spend our sleeping time together.
Things continued to fall off over time, and I still didn’t think to attribute anything to the Depo shot. Not too long after getting the second shot, things came to a head between us.
Here is where I explain some of the more intimate details, so bear with me if I try to make it a bit ambiguous, for my own comfort. Yes, we had sex, not as often as we had in the past. We have been together since 2005 and neither of us had really ever had issues with being able to be intimate, unless we were ill. And even then…sometimes that didn’t stop us. So it’s easy to say that we were both used to a fair amount of intimacy.
We started noticing a difference, and a few times we talked about it in passing, attributing things to either my physical condition (bad back) or to his crazy schedule. Eventually, things became a little too weird for us to not look at it closer. What triggered it was a particular time that we were having sex, and I was in such a twisted up state of mind that in a completely irrational state, I felt like I was on the boarder of finding what we were doing as rape.
This is part of what that medication can do to you, not only physically, but psychologically. It can and will effect a peron, if their chemical make-up is build right for it to change. Not only does it take away the urge to have sex, but it also takes away the comfort with cuddling, touching, being close. It can turn the mind into a numb state, zombie-like and incredibly neutral. But at a certain point, ignoring the lack of want for intimacy, but engaging anyway can twist a person’s reasoning all up.
I broke down and started crying and we somewhow managed to get out our feelings that had been building up, his resentment and frustration at not understanding why I wasn’t being as intimate as I had been, my inner turmoil over the change in body and mind, and the incredible swtrangeness it was for me. I could finally address it directly. I had to. And being a growing rational thinker, I knew that none of what was going on made any sense, aet alone my thoughts that he was raping me.
You can imagine that having this happen in the very first year of our marriage, literally right after, this was a tense thing, and rocked our world some. This was not something we fought over, we aren’t really the types to fight (he changed that tendancy in me over time). But now that it had come to a boiling point, we had to deal with it.
Because of the medication, there are things I’ve enjoyed greatly in the past that were altered, some incredibly altered, some partially altered. I didn’t have the tolerance physically or emotionally for the things that I had loved not so long before. This is something we’ve been working on slowly since I decided to stop getting the shots. We had 6 months to wait until the medication would really start filtering out of my system. But unfortunately, the effects and the damage were done, and now, it’s April 2011 and we’re 6 months out from ourt 3 year marriage anniversary, and we’re still dealing with the after effects of this drug and it’s damage.
One of the things we’ve managed to figure out in dealing with this, is that you can’t look back. You just can not wish for what was. It’s unfortunate, but incredibly true. Not only from this experience in my life, but from others, I’ve learned that you have to look forward. You have to look to the new, you can’t lament too long on what was, because that will generally only breed negativity and resentment, despondency and a lack of motivation.
What will help, is to look for new things, new ways to be intimate, new experiences, things to give you and your partner hope that things can be rekindled. Things CAN grow again, new arousal triggers can be found. There is hope for a blossoming of a new thing. Sometimes it might take time (and sometimes a lot of time), but focusing on the new rather than the old can possibly eventually reopen those old doors. You can possiblly work your way back to things that you enjoyed before. But the important thing is to work together, to stay positive, to not worry so much about the end result, don’t focus solely on the orgasm, but just learning each other again, enjoying weach other again, finding incredible enjoyment and pleasure out of the little things, new things. Ket the bodyand mind become accustomed to arousal and intimacy.
There is hope. There are people out there who have gone through this, are going through it, will go through it. There ARE ways to work through it, new paths to take.