If you are using the calendar method of birth control, once you have kept your records for a year, you can determine when your safe days are.
The easiest way to track yourself is on a normal calendar. Circle the first day of your cycle on your calendar.
To determine when your fertility will possibly begin, you need to take your shortest cycle and subtract 18 days. For instance, if you charted that your shortest cycle was 25 days, 25-28=7. This means that on day seven of your cycle you will begin being fertile. Draw an X on this day in your calendar, counting from the first day of your period as day one (the circled date).
To determine when your fertility will possibly end, you need to take your longest cycle and subtract 11 days. For instance, if your longest charted cycle was 30 days, 30-11=19. Count nineteen days from the beginning of your period (day one), and draw an X on this day as well. You can choose to cross off all the days between 7 and 19 if you choose to as well, but recognize that these are your fertile days and days when you should not have sex without another method of birth control, possibly barrier based or hormonal.
Many women choose to mark their safe days on the calendar by opening a round bracket on the first day, and closing a round bracket on the last safe day, just before the X.
If your cycles are longer than 27 days, you can have some safe days at the beginning of your menstrual cycle. If your cycles are shorter than 27 days, consider using an alternate method of birth control.
Remember: sperm can stay alive in a woman’s body for up to seven days. If there is a chance you might ovulate on day 7, you cannot have sex during your period. For more information regarding this article, read how to use the rhythm method.
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