When I travel, it sometimes feels like it happens all at once. One minute, I'm flying from city to city from timezone to timezone, and the next thing I know, I've forgotten to take my birth control pills. If I accidentally skip pills, I don't worry about sex, but my I do worry about how that will affect my period. I was prescribed the pill by my doctor to help keep my pain and excess bleeding from fibroids in check. But taking my medicine at the wrong time or not at all means I will be battling a heavy, painful, debilitating period —so the stakes are high. Whether you're taking the pill to keep your hormones regulated, as a contraceptive, or to keep heavy bleeding at bay — here are a few tips that will help you keep yourself on track as you jet set.
Set An AlarmGiphy
One of the most confusing things for me is timezones. Traveling from Los Angeles means I'm usually two to three hours behind or ahead of where I'm going in the U.S., and who knows how many hours behind or ahead when I travel internationally. The key here is getting ahead. Setting your daily alarms before you land in your next city will keep you and your body on track.
Keep Track With Apps
Apps like myPill and Bedsider have made it easier for me to keep up with my birth control when I'm on the move. myPill is excellent for setting reminders and keeping track of how you feel throughout the month if you suffer from side effects from a new prescription. The Bedsider app is an asset if you lose your pack on the road, as it helps you find clinics in your area. It can also help you find emergency contraception if you're in need.
Know Your Options In Case Of Emergencies
Most national pharmacies like Walgreens or CVS can fill an emergency order if you transfer your prescription to their location. Things can get a little tricky overseas, but there is good news. Many countries don't require a prescription for birth control, so if you have a photo of your prescriptions, you should be able to get it filled at a local pharmacy.
Pack Backup For The BackupGiphy
Vacation for many of us means more sex, so be sure to pack or buy a backup method of contraception if you end up missing two or more days of your cycle. That will help ensure you're protected from any potential unplanned pregnancies. K-Y Extra Lubricated Condoms are a classic favorite among women, but if you're someone that cares about what goes in and out of your body even during sex, SUSTAIN's ultra-thin, non-toxic condoms might be worth a try.
Featured image by Getty Images
Want more stories like this? Sign up for our newsletter here and check out the related reads below:
This Birth Control Method Might Change Your Life For The Better
3 Reasons The Female Condom Is One Of The Best Kept Secrets
The 411 On The Morning After Pill
My Complicated Relationship With Safe Sex
- Everything You Need to Know About Birth Control and Travel | Brides ›
- How does flying affect periods and fertility? — Quartzy ›
- Can you travel with your birth control pills in the Philippi - Philippines ... ›
- When should I take my pill when I'm traveling to a different time zone ... ›
- The pill: A guide for female travellers - Travelvax ›
- Safe travels : Birth control when you're abroad - Bedsider ›
Bianca Lambert is a proud Atlanta native soaking up the Los Angeles sun. She is the founder of Mae B: a stationery company for women of color and a digital content creator on a mission to elevate the voices of women of color everywhere.
Take Our 2-Minute Wellness Quiz To Up Your Self-Care Game!
Black women are not a monolith. We all are deserving of healing and wholeness despite what we've been through, how much money we have in the bank, or what we look like. Most importantly, we are enough—even when we are not working, earning, or serving.
Welcome to Black Girl Whole, your space to find the wellness routine that aligns with you! This brand-new marketplace by xoNecole is a safe space for Black women to activate their healing, find the inspiration to rest, and receive reassurance that we are one small act away from finding our happiness.
Want to discover where you are on your wellness journey? You don't have to look far. In partnership with European Wax Center, we're bringing you a customized wellness quiz to help you up your wellness game. Answer our short series of questions to figure out which type of wellness lover you are, what you need to bring more balance into your life, and then go deeper by shopping products geared towards clearing your mind, healing your body, and soothing your spirit.
Ready to get whole? Take our quiz now!
From Monogamy To Polyamory: 'I'm In An Asexual Poly Marriage With My Husband Of 7 Years'
Have you ever wondered what it's like to be asexual and in an open marriage? Relationship Coach Mikki Bey shared her first-hand experience with us as well as answered some of our burning questions.
Like a lot of people, Mikki met her now husband, Raheem Ali, online. As soon as they met, they instantly fell in love and got engaged on their first date. Just 90 days after they met, the couple tied the knot and have now been married for seven years. Raheem and Mikki aren’t your typical married couple, and despite being married for almost a decade, their marriage is anything but traditional. Mikki and Raheem have what she calls an "asexual polyamorous marriage."
Defining Her Sexuality
It wasn't until last summer that Mikki found the language to define her sexuality. "I didn't have the language for it until last summer," she explained to xoNecole. "Looking back, I just thought sex wasn't my thing. It was never enjoyable for me, and I'd go years without even noticing.”
Mikki always thought she was broken because she had no interest in sex. Mikki noticed after her friends came to visit and started discussing their sexual fantasies that she realized something was different about her. “At that point, I knew something was definitely different about me since I do not have sexual fantasies at all. It was truly news to me that people are at work thinking about sex! That was not my experience.” This led to Mikki researching asexuality, which she soon realized fit her to a T. “It felt like breathing new air when I was able to call it by name," said Mikki.
"Looking back, I just thought sex wasn't my thing. It was never enjoyable for me, and I'd go years without even noticing it."
Asexuality refers to people who experience little or no sexual attraction, experience attraction without acting on it sexually, or experience sexual attraction differently based on other factors. Like most things, asexuality falls on a spectrum and encompasses many other identities. It's important to remember, however, that attraction and action are not always synonymous: some asexuals may reject the idea of sexual contact, but others may be sex-neutral and engage in sexual activity.
It's possible that some asexuals will have sex with someone else despite not having a libido or masturbating, but others will have sex with a partner because it brings a sense of connection.
From a Traditional Marriage to Kitchen Table Polyamory
Although Mikki never really had a high sex drive, it wasn’t until after the birth of her son, that she noticed her sex drive took a real nosedive. “I never had a high sex drive, but about a year after my son was born, I realized I had zero desire. My husband has a high sex drive, and I knew that it would not be sustainable to not have sex in our marriage at that time.”
She was determined to find an alternative to divorce and stumbled upon a polyamory conversation on Clubhouse. Upon doing her own research, she brought up the idea to their husband, who was receptive. “It’s so interesting to me that people weigh sex so heavily in relationships when even if you are having a ton of sex, it’s still a very small percentage of the relationship activity," Mikki shared.
They chose polyamory because Mikki still wanted to be married, but she also wanted to make sure that Raheem was getting his individual needs and desires met, even if that meant meeting them with someone else. “I think that we have been programmed to think that our spouses need to be our 'everything.' We do not operate like that. There is no one way that fits all when it comes to relationships, despite what society may try to tell you. Their path to doing this thing called life together may be different from yours, but they found what works for them. We have chosen to design a marriage that works for us,” Mikki explained.
"We have chosen to design a marriage that works for us. We both consent to each of us having everything from casual sex partners to lifetime partners if it should go there. We believe love is abundant and do not limit ourselves or each other on how we express it."
She continued, “We both consent to each of us having everything from casual sexual partners to lifetime partners if it should get there. We believe love is abundant and do not limit ourselves or each other on how we express it. Our dynamic is parallel with kitchen table poly aspirations.”
Kitchen table polyamory (KTP) is a polyamorous relationship in which all participants are on friendly terms enough to share a meal at the kitchen table. Basically, it means you have some form of relationship with your partner’s other partner, whether as a group or individually. A lot of times, KTP relationships are highly personal and rooted in mutual respect, communication, and friendship.
Intimacy in an Asexual Polyamorous Marriage
Mikki says she and her husband, Raheem, still share intimate moments despite being in a polyamorous marriage. “Our intimacy is emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and physical, although non-sexual. We are intentional about date nights weekly, surprising and delighting each other daily, and most of all, we communicate our needs regularly. In my opinion, our intimacy is top-tier! I give my husband full-body massages, mani-pedis and make sure I am giving him small physical touches/kisses throughout the day. He is also very intentional about showing me his love and affection.”
Raheem and Mikki now use their lives as examples for others. On their website, thepolycouplenextdoor.com, they coach people interested in learning how to be consensually non-monogamous. “We are both relationship coaches. I specialized in emotional regulation, and Raheem specializes in communication and conflict resolution. The same tools we use in our marriage help our clients succeed in polyamory."
Mikki advises people who may be asexual or seeking non-monogamy to communicate their needs openly and to consider seeking sex therapy or intimacy coaching. Building a strong relationship with a non-sexual partner requires both empathy and compassion.
For more of Mikki, follow her on Instagram @getmikkibey. Follow the couple's platform on Instagram @thepolycouplenextdoor.
Featured image by skynesher/Getty Images