Aunt Vadge: my period is a day late after me and my boyfriend got steamy

Dear Aunt Vadge,

I would foremost like to thank you for existing, as I have learnt quite a bit from reading others’ questions and your articles! Especially for someone who, unfortunately, doesn’t feel she has the comfort to talk with anyone about this…

Either way, my boyfriend came to visit me early February for a week and I knew I was going to start my ovulation period in a few days so I vowed off sex completely. I’m a really nervous person and I definitely do not want to get pregnant now, especially since I am starting university soon. However, we did get a little steamy; he gave me oral and fingered me a couple times and I also gave him oral where he came into a tissue we threw away (and I washed my hands).

Our genitals never touched and we were never both completely naked at the same time.

Now… my period is late. My cycle is usually between 27 – 35 with 28 being my average. The latest period I ever had was about 45 days but I was in an extremely stressful situation with my ex at the time. It’s day 31 now of my cycle and waking up to my period tracker saying I am 1 day late is terrifying for me. I keep trying to recall every detail of what happened those days when he was over but my brain keeps twisting it in ways that I might be pregnant.

I’m just really scared about being pregnant and feel like I can’t talk to my parents about this. Plus I live out in the countryside, so it’s difficult for me to just “hop into town” and grab a pregnancy test without a good excuse to them. I just feel lost, a little irrational but overall very stressed.

Thank you for taking time to helping people out… means a lot.

Sincerely,
Scared
Age: 18
Country: England

Dear Scared,

You are not pregnant! Our menstrual cycles vary, sometimes considerably, month to month, as you’ve noticed. Based on what you’ve told me, it seems impossible for you to be pregnant, so take a deep breath and try to put it out of your mind. You have all the facts you need to be confident in yourself: no sperm got near your vagina, let alone your eggs.

This is going to happen to you a lot during your life – I spent probably my entire 20s and early 30s thinking I MUST be pregnant every month, due to sloppy birth control procedures, and not understanding when I ovulated. Period trackers didn’t exist then, so I never really knew when my period was going to come either. You seem to be across that, so congrats! However, you have to trust yourself and your safety procedures. You’ve done great, and are not pregnant. Your cycle is just a little longer this time.

If the only sign you have is that your cycle length this time is now at 31 days, there is no need to worry. There are lots of reasons for uneven cycle length, but our hormonal fluctuations – including things getting interrupted by stress in particular – are normal and healthy. This will happen a lot, so just keep making sure you are safe, and trust what you’ve done.

Your period tracker just does an estimate, based on previous records. An average, if you like, so it can be wrong – like the time you were under immense stress from your ex-boyfriend. All it’s saying is, “Usually your period would come on this day, based on the averages of all the other cycles you have recorded, but it hasn’t”. It’s not truly late. It’s going to come in its own time, which I’m sure will be very soon.

Glad we could help you on your journey to understanding your body better, and write anytime!

Warmest regards,
Aunt Vadge

Posted on Last updated :March 2, 2019