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Stopped birth control 2.5 weeks into a new pack. A few days later I bled for 4-5 days. Is this considered withdrawal bleeding or a "period"? Does withdrawal bleeding mean not pregnant? Could I have gotten pregnant before this bleeding? When would I expect to ovulate next?

Hi Grace,

Thank you for your message. You say you stopped your pills 2.5 weeks into a new pack and you are wondering about ovulation and pregnancy.

If you got your period this implies that you are not pregnant. This would be a withdrawal bleed and not a true period assuming that you took the pills correctly and were on them for more than a month. This withdrawal bleed means that you were not ovulating because the pill stops this from happening.

You ask when you will next ovulate. Can I assume that you stopped the pill because you want to get pregnant? Some women ovulate in a normal cycle after stopping the pill while others can take several months for their bodies to get back into a normal cycle. The best indication of whether or not you are ovulating is to py attention to your cervical fluid. This is the normal discharge women get that changes with their hormone levels of their cycle. If you are ovulating you will see a stretchy egg white type fluid for a few days close to the days you are ovulating when you wipe when you use the toilet. If you are wanting to get pregnant then any day you see fluid you should consider yourself fertile and have sex.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions as I am trained in fertility awareness methods.

Take care,

Birth Control

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Allison Macbeth


I can answer questions about how to choose which method of contraception is right for you, how to deal with mistakes, effectiveness, and emergency contraception. I also have training in HIV, STIs, and sexual health education. I cannot tell you what is the right choice, but I can tell you the pros and cons of each method to help you make an informed decision for your circumstances. If you have had a condom break or had unprotected sex and need emergency contraception please call you local Planned Parenthood or check out


I have been working in the field of sexual health for a decade with specific training in contraception, STIs, HIV, and sexual problems. I have worked in several Planned Parenthood-affiliated charities, telephone helplines, research, education, and currently work for a local health authority evaluating HIV programs in the city.

Macbeth, A., Weerakoon, P., Sitharthan, G. (2009). Australian Parentsí Opinions about School-based Sexual Health Education. Sexual Health. 6, 328-333. I write a weekly advice column for Morning Quickie website which can be found here:

I have a Masters in Applied Science (Sexual Health) where I did research on sex education in schools and at home with parents and young people, as well as many counselling skills courses.

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I have worked extensively with young people under 25, people living with or affected by HIV, and parents.

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