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Missed Two Week One Pills, But Not In A Row

By December 16, 2010 - 11:26pm
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I know you must get these questions a lot, but I have researched as much as I could without really finding anything! My question, as the many before me, involves birth control use. I have done researched the Journal of Contraceptive Technology and also online, but it seems like all the answers I get are from personal stories that don't really relate to my situation. I am on Ortho-Tri-Cylcin Lo and during my first week, I took my first pill on Monday, forgot Tuesday's, took Tuesday's and Wednesday's on Wednesday, forgot Thursday's, then took Thursday's and Friday's on Friday. On Tuesday and Thursday I had unprotected sex, during which my partner used the withdrawal method and I am confident in his abilities to do it right. I have looked at the planned parenthood website and looked at the stats in the Contraceptive Technology book, so do I have anything to fear? I want to be able to not panic so much!

Thank you so much!

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Thank you so much! It is so hard to find credible information these days online! You certainly have put me to ease and I hope that this information will be useful to other women too! Now I can continue on my stress-free life~ Thank you again!

December 17, 2010 - 8:51pm

That is great that you took so much time to research, and looked in very credible and reliable places for the information!

Also great that you took your missed pills as directed the following day with that same-day's pills. Bravo again!

You have not been able to find any exact information on your chances of pregnancy, because it is not an exact science. It all "depends" on many factors, and those that relate specifically to you include:
- Taking the pill consistently and correctly every day results in 99% effectiveness from pregnancy
- Taking the pill any less than perfect use results in a decrease in effectiveness. There is no statistic for exactly how much decrease.
- The withdrawal method has a 75-90% effectiveness rate when used alone, depending on typical or perfect use.
- You stated confidence with the withdrawal method, and if he did not ejaculate inside/near/on your vagina, this would be an added protection (guessing around the higher effectiveness-range).

If he knows 100% that he did not ejaculate, you would have no chance of pregnancy. There is some discussion that pre-ejaculatory fluid (the few drops on a man's penis when it becomes erect) may contain sperm, but most sources say it does not without the man ejaculating beforehand, at an earlier time and not wiping the semen off. I am not sure of any instances where a woman became pregnant from only pre-cum and no ejaculation.

With these odds, you are in pretty good shape for being protected from pregnancy. The only way you could have increased your odds were to: use a condom on Thursday (since you knew you missed Tuesday's pill), use emergency contraception after Thursday's unprotected sex. Those are just options in the future, as it is wise to plan for the "oops" in life...women can forget to take one pill, may go on vacation, may be sick and not take it...life's circumstances may result in the possibility of missing a pill in the future, and it's good to plan ahead.

One other statistic for you: women "only" have a 20% chance of pregnancy every cycle, even while actively trying (off birth control and having frequent, unprotected sex with ejaculation). Of course, it only takes that one time...but it is actually difficult to become pregnant with timing, ovulation, etc.

It is great that you did not have many hours without (synthetic) hormones, but please know anytime you miss more than one pill, the effectiveness rate does decline. This rate declines rapidly with additional missed pills (3 or more), it declines rapidly with missed pills on consecutive days, or when the pills are not taken as soon as remembered.

I hope this information helps!

December 17, 2010 - 8:24pm
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