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9 Things I Wish I Knew About Tubal Ligations, Before I Got My Tubes Tied

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According to Facebook, I got my tubes tied a year ago. I didn’t make the choice to permanently prevent pregnancy lightly. My youngest baby was a few weeks old, so I was feeling all those "yay babies!" feelings, but my pregnancy was horrible. So, in the end, I knew I was done having babies. I was also done worrying about getting pregnant and taking birth control. So I scheduled my appointment, thinking it would be an easy procedure. Turns out, there are so many things I wish I knew about tubal ligations before I got my tubes tied.

First of all, there was the pain. My OB-GYN described it as a “slightly uncomfortable” outpatient procedure, but guys, it hurt. A lot. Especially considering I had a baby at home to take care of, so "resting" wasn't really an option. I honestly wish I had the procedure while I was still in the hospital, so I’d only have one recovery to worry about. Instead, I was just beginning to feel like myself again when I was sliced open and forced to start the postpartum recovery process all over again. Then, to make matters worse, my surgical incision got infected. Yay.

Apart from the physical aspects of getting my tubes tied, I also had no idea how much it would impact me emotionally. Once it hit home that my perfect baby was the last one I’d ever have, I felt a little bit broken. For some reason it really was difficult, even though I was absolutely, 100 percent, so done having babies.

I wish I had known the road to permanent birth control would be bumpier than expected, and way before I decided to get my tubes tied. Then again, if I had known what I was in form, maybe I wouldn't have gone through with it. I guess, at least sometimes, what you don't know actually helps you.

It Would Hurt So Much

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I'm not going to lie, getting my tubes tied hurt. I thought that because the procedure was relatively simple, and done laparoscopically, it wouldn't be so bad. I was wrong, though, and it ended up hurting in ways I didn't expect. Because they put me under general anesthesia, I had a sore throat for days. My incisions hurt, which I expected, but so did my belly from being blown up like a balloon. I took every single pain pill they gave me (and kind of wish I had had more).

Recovery Would Be Terrible

In some ways recovery from my tubal seemed harder than recovering from childbirth. I totally didn't expect to be off my feet as long as I was.

I Would Experience Complications

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Before undergoing any surgery you're told there's a chance you can experience complications, but, like most people, I totally thought those complications wouldn't happen to me. I wasn't so lucky, though. My surgical site infection and the office visits to clean the wound were some of the most exquisitely painful moments of my life.

I Should Have Gotten It Done Right After Delivery

If I would have known how much it would hurt, and that it would take a few weeks for me to recover, I totally would have gotten my tubes tied in the hospital right after labor and delivery. Oh how I wish I had a time machine. I later learned that according to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, right after delivery your Fallopian tubes are closer to the surface, so maybe the entire experience would've sucked less if I had gotten it done right away.

My Husband Would Worry

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My husband thought it was no big deal for me to get my tubes tied, until the moment that I was wheeled out of my hospital room to the operating room. He describes the 45 minutes before my OB-GYN came back and told him I was OK as long, tense, and scary.

I Would Regret It A Little

While I still never want to get pregnant again and am so done having kids, I still feel a tinge of regret when I remember that I now can't get pregnant. It's such a bizarre realization.

Sex Would Be So Much Better

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I have to admit that I enjoy sex so much more now that I am no longer worried about preventing pregnancy or trying to get pregnant. It's so freeing to have sex and not have to take birth control, and after spending over 20 years trying to be as vigilant as possible.

It Would Feel So Final

I can tell you that getting your tubes tied feels extremely final. It also makes you feel old. I wish that getting my tubes tied would have stopped my damn period, though, because I am so done with that, too. I swear, I almost want to go back on birth control so I don't have to deal with Aunt Flo every month.

I Wouldn't Trust It

I still worry a little bit when my period is late, or when I get a stomach virus. I don't want to be pregnant, and honestly have no idea what I would do about a surprise, post-tubal pregnancy. So, you know, fingers crossed.

Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.