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Tampons, Diva Cups and IUDs

Dad. Go read something else. Now. Maybe Oatmeal.

Everyone else, we’re going to have to talk about menstruation.

Earlier this week I posted about the pink string on Kotex brand tampons, and how confusing pink can be. The twitter DM’s started pretty quickly.

Why aren’t you using a diva cup?

Eww gross, get a Diva Cup.

Don’t you know anything? You need a Diva Cup.

Ladies, in addition to tampons and pads for your menses, there are cups. Although the Diva Cup has made quite a splash with the bloggers, there are many other brands Soft Cup, Moon Cup, Lady Cup, Femmecup, and  Miacup are just a few.

Cups all seem to do the same thing. They collect your flow. You insert these things and collect away for up to 12 hours.

This seems great, and it seems that with the Soft Cup you can even have intercourse, but I see two big issues.

Removal and Birth Control.

I’m sure it’s really great to not have to buy tampons, but from the reviews I’m reading there’s still a need for pads just in case. Not to be gross, but just in case what? What happens when you need to empty the cup? What if you aren’t home, do you just walk to the sink at a public washroom with a hand full of grossness… I really can’t understand why anyone wouldn’t want their menses to be disposable. We don’t have to reuse everything.

I’m green. I’m just not this green.

My understanding was that you cannot use the cup with an IUD, but now they seem to be saying you can use both, but ask your doctor first.

If there is any chance of the cup ruining my IUD I’m out. I waited my entire adult life to have unprotected sex, then I got married and had sex to have babies. The IUD lets me have a sex life without trying to make a baby or hoping that I haven’t. I am not giving up an IUD for anything in the world.

That being said, I’m forever grateful to the Diva Cup for getting the mom bloggers on board. Tanis’ son mistook it for a nipple insert, Elly found out that she has a large sized vagina, and Annika picked one up only to find out that she was pregnant and wouldn’t be needing it for at least 40 weeks. Even if I don’t love (even the idea of) the product like Cathy does, I can love the hilarity it brings to the blogosphere.

20 thoughts on “Tampons, Diva Cups and IUDs”

  1. I FOUND THIS TO BE HILARIOUS! I have gotten lots of ‘looks’ and ‘suggestions’ from friends who USE the diva cup. I am green. I reuse, reduce, recycle all I can. But Amen to what you said: “we don’t have to reuse everything” love it!

  2. I’ve used both the keeper (the latex version) and the diva cup for almost 6 years. I absolutely love it. but I know it’s not for everyone.

  3. I used a Diva Cup. I loved it. But then I got my IUD, and read on the Diva Cup site that they don’t go together. Too bad, so sad, but I’m not giving up my IUD either.

    I use cloth pads now, which also aren’t for everyone, but there are green options with an IUD if that’s your thing.

  4. You know I love my Diva Cup. And I never use pads. I’d rather wear a diaper. Luckily, the IUD thing isn’t a problem since we have awesome, awesome infertility to keep us from pregnancy. ;)

  5. Oh, it’s really NOT that bad, I promise, but I get that it isn’t for everyone…at the very least, please use tampons without chlorine in them. ;)
    P.S. I hope your Dad listened.

  6. Diva cup all the way! I’ve been using mine for over 5 years and never had any problems with it and never had to use anything else as a backup. For me it has been minimalistic and clean – which I want so I can forget it’s that time of the month and go back to pretending to be a boy.

    I did a quick search and found a comment on another article stating that the Diva cup is the only type of “collector” that does work with an IUD. Something about the IUD string (Gross, that sounds like having a tampon in all the time! Obviously I don’t have a IUD or know anything about them.) and how the Diva cup sits. Just throwing it out there, everyone should check with their doctor to make sure there’s no chance of them not playing nice together.

  7. I have been SO TEMPTED to use the diva cup (or one of it’s similar counterparts). My problem…that cup is flexible…and in pulling it out, what if the lip FLEXES and spills period juice all over the place?

    I do use a diaphragm…and have used it to keep the flow back so I can get busy or just get by without a pad or tampon for a bit, but that is very differently shaped than the diva cup…and does spill things about when it gets taken out. But it’s not a big deal, I tend to do it over the toilet or in the shower.

  8. Boy, am I outta the loop. And I have never been so grateful for my hysterectomy. No babies, no tampons and no Diva Cup. I’d never heard of one before this post. Uh, I recycle but…yeah. There’s a limit.

    I suddenly feel very old.

  9. I’ve been using a Diva cup for a couple of months, now, along with cloth pads for overnight. For me, the cup had a bit of a learning curve, but once I got the hang of it there was no need for backups pads in the daytime. I get as much mess on my hands as I did using OB tampons – so, not much.

    But wearing a Softcup (they’re call Instead in Canada) during sex? Um, no. (gag) They’re good for swimming, though. (I prefer not to take my pool water internally.)

    There are green disposable pads and tampons, made by Natracare, among others. Bleach and chemical free, and I think they’re biodegradable, too. I haven’t tried them, but they’re popular at my local green boutiques.

  10. I’m not sure about the IUD bit, but removal in a public restroom is no problem. Just dump it out and reinsert. You can wash it when you get home and have a moment in a private restroom.

    I’ve been using the Diva Cup for years with no problems. I think the pads are probably in case you have a leak. While you’re getting the swing of insertion and whatnot, there’s a chance you’ll leak. I sometimes leak if I forget to change it for too long, too.

    It took me a long time to go from fascination to actually using the cup. What finally changed my mind was learning about the huge amounts of menstrual products we send to landfills every year.

    If you’re not ready for the cup, you might also look into organic cotton tampons, so at least you know that the products you’re using were produced sustainably.

  11. Have you looked into Instead? I used that to get used to the idea of a ‘collector’ (instead of an absorber or diaper). The Instead cup is disposable. Once I got used to that, I took the plunge into the Diva Cup. So much less mess and less hassle. I honestly forget I’m wearing it, and usually only need to empty it out once a day.

    Other ways of being sustainable on the rag: unbleached organic cotton products from Seventh Generation.

  12. I used a Keeper (like the Diva) for years and years with an IUD in place. I wasn’t really aware there was some sort of potential problem with this, I didn’t have one. The only issue was that with the string I wasn’t able to get quite as good a seal and so there was a little bit of a leak (but just tiny, really). I used a pantyliner and all was good (BTW, great use for a Gladrags pantyliner).

    I guess there is a bit if an ick factor, but seriously, are you afraid of touching yourself? Down THERE? Just remember to wash your hands afterwards, which you should do anyway.

    I have also used Instead, and I think it sucks, at least comparatively. It’s more like a diaphragm and way more prone to spilling. Also not as comfortable, and ladies, let’s not forget it’s meant to be disposable. Talk about ick.

  13. I had problems using the Diva Cup. I kept not getting a good seal, and had to continue to use a pad for backup. After three months, I just started using tampons and pads again.

  14. I have a diva cup.After months and months of messing around found i was unable to use it because my cervix is to far down in my vaginal canal. This in turn makes the diva cup hang out as soon as I sit, bend over, bend down etc. I was very excited about it but am dissapointed that the company has only thought to put out 2 sizes and only for width not length!!! I even tried cutting off the little tip on the bottom but i still have the same problem. I did find it much messier and problamatic to empty, like dropping it in the toilet!! EWWWWW!

  15. You can use these types of cups with an IUD since these cups don’t sit very far up in the vagina. The bottom is just above your vaginal opening. There is no way these cups could dislodge your IUD. Now Instead softcups, since they sit around your cervix, they could possibly dislodge your IUD. Also, divacups etc. are easy to use in a public restroom, you simply empty out the cup in the toilet, and then quickly wash out the cup with a water bottle. Honestly, you don’t have to empty it out in public often, because you normally only need to empty out every eighty or so hours. And sometimes you leak, but only enough to fill a pantyliner. I have been using my Divacup for two years now, and I love it.

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