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Letter 24: A Mother-Daughter Chat

Dear Annie,

I never met you, but after meeting your parents and sister and reading their

wonderful letters to you, I feel as if I know you. 

I hope that these letters to you and this website will save the lives of young

women like you, who were never told that some birth control pills are safer than others. 

I’m a Mom and here is my message to other Moms:  the best Christmas (or Hanukah) present you can give a daughter on birth control is to make sure she’s taking one of the safer types of birth control, and not taking Yaz, Yasmin, Beyaz, Safyral, Ocella, or other birth control products that contain the hormone drosperinone.  For the complete list, see

And if your daughter is using any type of hormonal birth control, make sure she knows the signs of a blood clot – blood clots are the greatest danger of birth control pills and hormonal implants (and of pregnancy too, by the way).  See some symptoms below, from the National Institutes of Health website:

  • Swelling of the leg or along a vein in the leg

  • Pain or tenderness in the leg, which you may feel only when standing or walking

  • Increased warmth in the area of the leg that's swollen or painful

  • Red or discolored skin on the leg

  • Unexplained shortness of breath

  • Pain with deep breathing

  • Coughing up blood

Because Annie was taking Yaz, her symptoms were a little different: swollen ankles, weight gain, hair loss, yeast infections, insomnia, extreme fatigue, and headaches. 

Annie, I wish you could see how you’re making a difference for other young women across the country.

And to the Moms out there, please give the gift of a life-saving mother-daughter conversation.



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