7 Women Share How Birth Control Makes Them Feel

One little daily pill—or any form of birth control, really—has the power to do so much, even beyond avoiding unwanted pregnancy. Some can regulate your cycle or keep your skin from breaking out. All told, make you feel like you have some control over things that women generations ago had no control over. Of course that’s going to make you feel, powerful, and all the other adjectives these seven women shared.

Birth control makes me feel—free

Like a lot of people, I went on a birth control pill in high school but grew very tired of it by the end of college—it felt like such a clunky process. Having an unpredictable, varied schedule during my college years made it challenging to ensure I took the pill at the same time every day, and if I missed it by even an hour, I’d induce a period (and I think compromise effectiveness?). I had to carry it with me like I carried my wallet and ID and keep an alarm on my phone to stay consistent with timing. I opted to switch to an IUD after I graduated (from college) for ease. It has been so liberating to know that my birth control is “always on”, and therefore I no longer have the worry about it. Peace of mind is freedom to me. —Hannah, 25, New York City

Birth control makes me feel–in control

I took birth control for almost 11 years, and then off-and-on for almost another decade. When I first started the pill, I was relieved to see my skin clear up and my period stabilize—I was also relieved that the risk of unwanted pregnancy was off the table. I loved that it let me manage my cycle–like I could skip a period if vacation was coming up, or I could pinpoint the onset of related symptoms and minimize unpleasant surprises. I was always in control of my body and prepared. I’m grateful to have come of age in a time and place where birth control has been an accessible and affordable choice. It has definitely allowed me to choose my paths and adventures, and to make decisions based on wants and dreams versus unprepared necessity. —Sarah, 39, Kansas City, Missouri

Birth control makes me feel—empowered

I’ve been on Lo Lo Estrin since 2008. I’ve been able to navigate college hook ups, New York City dating, and long and short-term boyfriends without stress. I can focus on work and furthering my career, which is stressful enough without the added fear of accidentally getting pregnant before I’m ready. I will know when the time—and the person—is right. With birth control, I have the control; it’s all on my terms. —Carrie, 31, Greenwich, Connecticut

Birth control makes me feel—free

Taking the pill allows me to make the lifestyle choices I want right now. I feel much more sexually liberated and safer than I did pre-birth control, and I know I have the option to get off the pill and have children if and when I feel ready to do so. —Talia, 20, New York City

Birth control makes me feel—powerful

I have struggled with feminine health issues ever since I got my period back in my early teens, but having a medication that manages those symptoms allows me to have control over my body and my well-being. It’s given me back an enormous and very empowering sense of strength that I didn’t know was possible. —Ali, 25, Charlotte, North Carolina

Birth control makes me feel—enabled

I, alone, am in charge of my body and my reproductive timeline. There is no need to rely on my partner to provide protection (though safe sex is important with STIs, especially with new partners), stress-count how many days late my period is, or be sidelined by debilitating cramps and PMS symptoms each month. As someone who does not ever want kids—now or in the future—I’m able to focus my energy and time on my priorities, like my career and family, knowing this piece is taken care of by my birth control. —Catherine, 26, New York City

Birth control makes me feel—whole

I went on birth control decades ago to protect against pregnancy, and stayed on until I was ready to get married and have children. At32, I went off the pill to have my two wonderful children and fulfill my lifelong dream of becoming a mom (I was finally ready!). And I was excited to get back on birth control years later. I didn’t want to have to continually worry about getting pregnant unexpectedly, but I love how my period works like clockwork when I am on the pill.  —Chelsea, 40, Minneapolis, Minnesota

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