The pill

Photo via Birth Control Buzz

I dropped off a prescription at the pharmacy today.

I dropped off a little piece of paper in exchange for birth control pills.

They were not for me. I am waaaaaay past the pill age. Way.

The are for my daughter. My teenaged daughter.

It was surreal.

As far as I know (and do we ever really know?) it’s not for controlling a potential birth. It’s to regulate out-of-control female hormones and hopefully alleviate the crushing pain and disabling headaches that have messed up my Girl from the West’s sophomore year of high school.

Still … it’s kind of crazy. I cannot imagine  my mother paying for a ‘script for the pill for me in high school. No way. No how. Hormones be damned. I’m sure I was told to “pray away the pain” or to “lay off the potato chips” or to suffer through “the woman’s curse.”

There is a part of me that feels this is somehow inappropriate? Premature? Asking for trouble? Yet, her friends (with conservative parents!) are also on birth control pills for hormonal reasons. I don’t know. It does open the door for … the possibility of … my Girl from the West becoming my Woman from the West, which just doesn’t sound right at all.  It sounds like a torrid lesbian tumble in the sage.

Her father and I discussed it. We mulled it over. In the end we let a doctor make the final call. I know, I know, doctors and their lucrative relationships with pharmaceutical companies and all that. I hear ya.


I remember what it was like to be 16. I had a steady boyfriend at 16. I know what goes on, what can happen, how you think you own the world at 16. Stuff like pregnancy and STDs and abortion all are things that happen on ABC After School Specials not to you or your friends. Yet it did happen to some friends. Most were whisked away to “boarding school” for a year or maybe missed a day or two of school for an “appointment.”  I do remember one girl in our class went through senior year pregnant. As she waddled across the stage to accept her diploma her full belly stretched against her navy blue gown. She gave birth shortly afterward to a child who is now 28 years old.

All I know is I have a child old enough to be on birth control pills.

That is a big pill for me to swallow.


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10 thoughts on “The pill

  1. I don’t have a teenage daughter (all boys over here), but I really like your careful approach to the matter. I have a niece who was put on bc in high school for hormonal reasons. Her mom felt the same anxiety about it.

    BTW, thanks for reminding me to refill my script. 🙂
    .-= Summer´s last blog ..Observations of a Nine Year Old =-.

  2. Summer: you are welcome. I don’t recall the pill being so prescribed and parentally approved when I was in high school.

  3. When I was 18 and wanted to get “the pill” I had to go by myself to a Planned Parenthood clinic, because I was afraid the family doctor would squeal to my parents. I swore I wouldn’t let that happen to my daughter. When she was in high school, she regularly missed three days of school every month because of the blinding headaches. Birth control pills were a way for her to get her life back. And I had been clear with her that they might prevent pregnancy, but not STDs and that condoms and serious self-control would be necessary for that.
    .-= unmitigated me´s last blog ..Spin Cycle: Curator? =-.

  4. Unmitigated: I really do help the prescription helps my daughter feel better. I remember having to go to the PP clinic, too, when I was in college.

  5. Mary: Just remember, I’ll be going through it all again when girl No. 2 hits that age. Who knows what the world will be like in 10 years? Soldier on.

  6. I remember being fifteen and just going on the pill just in case – I had sex occasionally and didn’t want to get pregnant. But my mum found them and flushed them down the toilet, she was a pro lifer and claimed they caused abortions or something. crazy when I think back on it because I was actually being responsible.

  7. If it makes you feel any better, or worse as the case may be, I have a 17 year old son who is dating a 17 year old girl who is on the pill for hormonal reasons. I’m not a fool. I was 16 once, and on the pill. I knew several girls who were not and they ended up having to make horrible ‘choices’.

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