Off Birth Control -- Only Spotting!

Cynthia Flynn's picture


Dear Midwife,
My husband and I have just started trying to conceive. I have been off the birth control patch for a month now. Prior to that, I had been on some form of hormonal birth control continuously for 7 years. Before that, I had regular periods with a cycle length of 28 days.

This month I am 1 1/2 weeks late. The week before I should have started my period I had 2 days of brown spotting. 4 days after I should have started, I had 5 consecutive days of brown spotting. (very light -- 1-2 pantyliners a day)I have had cramping for 7 days straight now and nausea in the evenings.

I have taken 2 pregnancy tests, each 5 days apart, which were negative. What is going on?! Is this a normal fluctuation of hormones since I just recently went off birth control, or could I be pregnant? Please help!


The most likely explanation is that your body is adjusting to the hormonal change. It usually straightens out in about three months. Since ovulation can happen at odd times during this process, it is also possible that you are pregnant, but time will tell!

-- Cynthia, CNM. PhD.