I’ve had the Mirena for a year now.
I heard plenty of horror stories about it, but I tried it anyways. The 5 year lifespan appealed to me as did the fact that I didn’t really have to do anything to maintain my baby-free status. The easy return to fertility was also a plus as I know that I was another child. Considering my long torturous history with my periods, the lack of a period was also a big plus. So at 10 weeks post-partum, I had it inserted.
It’s difficult to say how much of my early lack of bleeding was related to the Mirena and how much was related to pumping my milk for Elanor. But since I weaned E off my milk at 5 months of age, I have had very little bleeding. I have the occasional day with some breakthrough spotting, but that’s the closest thing I’ve had to a period since I got knocked up in early 2008.
I haven’t really found it to have major side effects. I am less interested in sex…or I was…but that seems to be resolving as my depression has been properly treated and my sleeping has been more consistent. It’s always been fragile depending on how much stress I’ve been under, and I think we can all agree that Elanor’s early life was a stresser, as was my husband’s layoff late last year and his job search. Depending on how things go, our lives may change radically or not at all (which is all I can say at this time).
However, what I have encountered both personally and anectdotally is that hormones affect each woman’s body differently. Hence those beaming goddesses of fertility at 7 months pregnant while I was wan and draped over a toilet at the same point. I have had nothing but great luck with Mirena and would recommend it to anyone, but with that caveat-just because it’s great for me doesn’t mean that it will be right for you.
One other piece of advice? Try not to bring your 15 month old to your annual exam. There’s a certain feeling of helplessness when you’re laying there in the stirrups trying to make out your GYN’s questions as your toddler shrieks at the injustice of stroller confinement just behind her.