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ada_nl
Sorry this is very long but I want to explain properly. And also vent a little bit because my first experience with a menstrual cup (Mooncup UK) was a tiny bit traumatic :) My first use of a menstrual cup left me feeling pretty bruised and vulnerable for a few days. But I love the idea of a menstrual cup so much that I want to keep trying - but I definitely needs some help. 

So I bought a Mooncup UK when I was in London in October (I live in Holland), having never seen a menstrual cup before I was very excited about this alternative to tampons. I bought a size A as I'm well over 40. I'm not a virgin but seldom have penetrative vaginal sex. I don't have kids. Also I've got strong pelvic muscles and I'm very tight, using tampons is not a problem but a getting a pap smear is basically impossible. Judging by my Mooncup adventures my cervix sits pretty high on day 2, 3 and 4 of my period. 

Trying out the Mooncup during my peroid didn't go very well, things ended with a trip to the ER. Hidden by the LJ cut below is a detailed account of what went wrong.
On the first day of my period I inserted and removed the cup successfully twice. The cup sat rather low and the stem was a bit too long though so I cut a bit off the stem as advised by the instruction manual. Boy, did I regret that later on!

On day 2 of my period I inserted the cup without problem but when I wanted to remove it  it had crept up quite high and I couldn't reach it. I tried everything I could to get it out by myself but no luck. When my friend came home that night she had to remove it for me. Very embarrassing and of course it made an unbelievable mess as my flow had been very heavy that day and the cup was almost full. 

I switched to an Instead softcup for the night and morning. The following afternoon I inserted the cup again, made very sure the cup was positioned low and that I could reach the stem easily. All was well until a few hours later when once again the darn thing had worked itself out of reach of my fingers. Once more I tried the 'bearing down' trick and 'relaxing in a bath' and so on. Even tried a toothbrush to try and break the seal, feeling very  silly :) Nothing worked. When I used my muscles to try to get the cup to go down it would move down a tiny bit – but only as far as the phenomenal seal would allow it to go.

Before going to bed with the cup still inside me I sent off an email to the Mooncup company. Their customer service is absolutely wonderful, can't say enough nice things about them. I called them the next day in a panic and they called me back (internatlonal call!) and they were so nice and encouraging. They said that size A probably was a bit too big for me to form a good seal down low in my vagina and because my  inner muscles were so strong they had pushed the cup upwards.

After talking it over with them it was obvious that I'd tried out all the troubleshooting tips available so I should ask my friend for help again. Well – we tried! We struggled for an hour and a half but because the cup was sitting so high she couldn't reach inside me far  enough to break the seal. After poking around down there for so long I was pretty sore and cranky with it. But the Mooncup people had told me that the cup really had to come out at the end of that day so off to the night GP we went! Thank heavens the female GP on duty managed to get it out fairly quickly – but I was whimpering in pain the whole time. I'm not convinced either she managed to break the seal, it  certainly felt like she just ripped it out. Ouch! Still, I was very relieved it was finally out!

The  Mooncup company very kindly sent me a small(er) size mooncup (size B) but it still looks pretty big to me! To be honest I'm a bit nervous to try it out as I don't fancy another trip to the ER. I feel it might be best to use another cup which is a bit smaller until I've become more experienced. But which one? 

Ideally I'd like a small (narrow) but long cup with a long and easy-to-grip stem. I looked at the sizecharts but long and small isn't available although a small size Keeper comes pretty close.
Also I wonder what stiffness I should go for? With being so very tight a stiff cup might be best, because my muscles might squish a softer cup so that it might not develop a good seal and/or might leak. On the other hand it might be easier to break the seal of a softer cup, making removal a whole lot easier.

And I have to say the ring version of the medium Meluna cups appeals to me because you can tie a piece of string to it so I won't “lose” a cup again. But will a string really  help me push the cup down? Are there any people here who've had similar problems who can help me decide? 
 
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on December 3rd, 2012 05:28 pm (UTC)
"Tight" is a function of your PC muscles and cups sit above them so you just need to relax them for insertion and removal. Then you can go back to holding them as tightly as you normally do.

The UK Mooncup and the Keeper/US Moon Cup (Keepers and US Moon Cups are identical in size and shape from the same company but made of 2 different materials.) both have narrow bodies but thick, stiff, flared rims. Maybe you'd be better off with one shaped a little differently?

Look into the Shecup (from India.) They are often available on ebay. Also look into the Natural Mamma or its generic knock-offs (also found on ebay.) And also look into the small Diva. Those are all long, narrow cups, relatively soft and don't have a thick flared rim. Gut feeling says you'd like the Shecup best but that is not based on anything other than "cosmic intuition."
ada_nlada_nl on December 3rd, 2012 06:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the reply! I'm well aware that tight is a function of my PC muscles, sorry I didn't make it clear that 'just relaxing them' is unfortunately not possible for me - never has been. Hence the no pap smear :)

Thanks very much for the suggestions, I'll definitely look into the Shecup. I did look at the Natural Mama but that was rather wide still - 44 mm, so not much narrower than the large Mooncup UK at 46 mm. Small Diva is a tiny bit narrower so I might look for that as well.
Ashatenlegspider on December 3rd, 2012 06:07 pm (UTC)
I could be wrong, but my impression from this community is that cups sit near the cervix wherever that is, so they'll always sit high for you.

The width is mostly an issue for getting past your PC muscles, and it sounds like you were ok with that both going in and coming out, since it was only when you had to fish for the cup that you had trouble. I don't think there's any need to look for a narrow cup, just get a long one that will give you the best chance of being able to reach the base and break the seal.
ada_nlada_nl on December 3rd, 2012 06:47 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the reassurance that a larger cup shouldn't be a problem. My flow gets very heavy for a few days so a smaller cup however comfortable for insertion wouldn't be very practical.
juliiie87juliiie87 on December 3rd, 2012 11:31 pm (UTC)
I agree with this and what Kuradi8 said... I've been reading on this community for hours and all points towards cups sitting around you cervix, no matter how low you place them... I'm very sorry about your misfortunes, but the cup companies are definitely very ignorant about this. Cups sitting low is a myth, except maybe for some rare exceptions, because hey, bodies are all different so I guess all is possible. But mostly, no.

You need a long cup OP, with a long good stem (so likely NOT the Shecup since the stem is pretty much non-existant), and you'll probably like a larger, somewhat softer cup too. Natural Mamma should definitely be high on your list (I'm not going to tell you what you should buy, but I like making lists). Another interesting option is the large Si-bell, there's something quite unique about this cup, as it seems that you can just pull it out by the stem, from the couple reviews I've read. OH and there's that new brand that's very unique too, and as long as they get : http://www.intimina.com/en/lily_cup_pd.php#lc_benefits
Not the highest capacity due to its shape, but the larger size holds a decent amount. It's brand new so there aren't many reviews available unfortunately... from what I hear it's fairly squishy, not the easiest seal to break but easy enough to use. It's actually longer than pretty much all cups including stems. Definitely high on the list too. Then in a much firmer style there's the large Yuuki, which is long, large, firm, and holds a lot, with a good grippy stem too. The Diva is one of the longest cups but... not the longest overall (short stem), so perhaps not the best choice available. Compare most of them here : http://menstrualcups.friendhood.net/t497-natualmamma-cup-comparison-photos
As you see, if you're interested in a Meluna then it would have to be the XL for a good length. Good luck in your research ! You can make this work !

Edited at 2012-12-03 11:36 pm (UTC)
Ashatenlegspider on December 3rd, 2012 11:39 pm (UTC)
(My cup does sit as low as in the diagrams, but I can easily run my finger all the way around my cervix during my period, so that'll be why.)
juliiie87juliiie87 on December 4th, 2012 12:04 am (UTC)
Oh yeah, if the cup takes up the whole space then definitely ! Same for me. I actually had to trim the stem a little bit.
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on December 3rd, 2012 06:09 pm (UTC)
Rereading what you wrote a little more carefully...

"They said that size A probably was a bit too big for me to form a good seal down low in my vagina and because my inner muscles were so strong they had pushed the cup upwards."

Ummmmmmmmmmmm... no. They meant well but "No."

Despite what the instructions say and what their customer service said, ANY cup will usually eventually position itself (O) around your cervix, however high or low it happens to be on that day. And apparently yours is pretty high up there.

Therefore you're right that you'd be better off with a long cup -- preferably one without a thick flared rim (so the Keeper/US Moon Cup would probably not suit you.)

Another reason that you had so much trouble with removal is because your Mooncup has tiny little anti-suction holes. Enlarging them with some sort of small punch (like a body piercing tool) would be ideal but a sharp drillbit or small scissors could do the job. FYI: I think the largest holes are 2mm in diameter (Miacup.) And that same advice applies to any cup with teeny anti-suction holes.

As for the Medium MeLuna that you mentioned, it's even shorter than the UK Mooncup that you have. And the large is only 1mm longer.

Now I'm leaning toward the Natural Mamma for you. http://www.ebay.com/itm/190650713809 44mm in width so it's right between your small and large Mooncups. And 56mm in length with large anti-suction holes and good grip rings if you decide to lop the stem off. (As you discovered, don't remove it until you're absolutely sure that you want to. You can always cut it at a later date but can't put any back.)
ada_nlada_nl on December 3rd, 2012 06:35 pm (UTC)
Good to know about the tiny anti-suction holes of the Mooncup UK! When I bought my Mooncup I had no idea that there were so many brands and so many things to consider.
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on December 3rd, 2012 06:58 pm (UTC)
Tiny holes are not a deal-breaker and many cup users don't bother enlarging the holes on theirs. But it seems that the learning curve can be longer and more complicated for those who pick cups with tiny holes.

All in all, despite your trip to the ER, you're actually doing OK. Enlarging the holes in your Mooncup would probably help a little -- but there are 2 things that you can't change. One is that the Mooncup seems to be too short for you. The other is the wide flared rim that makes breaking the seal even harder.

You might be able to use your Mooncup in the future, once you get through the dreaded learning curve. But at this point, the features of the cup are impeding your progress. And if you decide not to keep it after all, the mc_sales community is a good place to sell it. Or trade for something else.
ada_nlada_nl on December 3rd, 2012 06:22 pm (UTC)
Wow - you guys are fast :) Thanks so much, will read everything carefully.

About the Mooncup UK people - they're not customer service reps as such but Advisors (registered nurses). That doesn't mean they can't be wrong though :). I've been reading a lot on here and you all seem to say that the cups rise up anyway.
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on December 3rd, 2012 06:35 pm (UTC)
Whatever their other credentials might be, as Mooncup advisors, they are obliged to keep you with their product -- not steer you to a competitor's.

Sticking with the 3 I recommended for you, they are all relatively long, narrow, don't have flared rims, and are squishy all over. (The body of your Mooncup is pretty squishy but the rim is quite stiff.) The Natural Mamma has the largest anti-suction holes of the three and needs the least modification. The Shecup's are down low so either enlarge them where they are or make new bigger ones up closer to the rim. And the Diva's are up high but also notoriously tiny so many users enlarge them. The advantage to the Diva is that it is most easily flipped inside out to shorten the cup to accommodate your low-cervix days. But don't do that until you've gotten the hang of removal. ;o)
ada_nlada_nl on December 3rd, 2012 06:45 pm (UTC)
Natural Mama it is then! Thanks very much for the advice. And yeah the stiff rim of the Mooncup was rather uncomfortable for insertion and removal. I think that's partially why having a narrower cup appealed to me :). But if I understand you all correctly a large size shouldn't be a problem as long as I can easily fold it for insertion.
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on December 3rd, 2012 07:28 pm (UTC)
Before you order, take a look at comparison photos:
http://menstrualcups.friendhood.net/t497-natualmamma-cup-comparison-photos


The Divas are right at the top. Their bases are a little pointier. The Mamma's is rounded and blunt.

The Shecup is down toward the bottom. The overall shape is narrower compared to Natural Mamma

And the UK Mooncups are the last ones. You can see how it compares to what you have.

Length:
your Mooncups = 50mm
Shecup = 54mm
Natural Mamma = 56mm
Diva = 57mm

As for rim width -- forget about that. You have already successfully used the 46mm A-Mooncup. You can handle "any" rim. Go with your gut about body shape.

Other comparison photos:
http://menstrualcups.friendhood.net/f52-moderator-s-photo-library
and
http://en.afriska.ch/which-one-for-you1.html
mood_swinger23 on December 3rd, 2012 07:43 pm (UTC)
I have a high cervix as well and just am ending my 1st cycle. I had some leakage issues on my first two days... I'm still not quite sure what caused them. I also wanted a narrow cup-- not because I need it but because it would bring me more piece of mind. But I ended up going with a L- Fleurcup for my next time around. It is slightly longer than the small Lunette I have, is bigger in terms of capacity (but mostly comes with width I guess), and is really soft. I feel like a softer cup could maybe help you but I'm not sure since I'm still new here myself. I'm not sure how the Naturalmama rates in stiffness, since it's not on the stiffness chart:

http://menstrualcupinfo.wordpress.com/cup-stiffness-comparison-chart/

I'm also going to assume you have seen
http://sizecharts.livejournal.com/

but in the case you haven't, there's the link.
There is M Naturcup, L Rubycup, and L Mami also around the same size you are looking at. You may also want to look at the capacity chart there.

And this is just a great picture I referenced a lot when I decided what to get myself:
http://menstrualcup.co/communitypics/picture_comparison_menstrual_cup.jpg
and as you can see the Natural Mamma has a different kind of stem-- more like Meluna's ball stem-- which should/could make for easier removal. The stem, though, is a bit short.

Lastly there is more photo comparisons here
http://menstrualcups.friendhood.net/f52-moderator-s-photo-library
specifically http://menstrualcups.friendhood.net/t497-natualmamma-cup-comparison-photos if you are looking at NaturalMamma and http://menstrualcups.friendhood.net/t225-mooncup-uk-comparison-photos to compare most cups out there (not all) with your mooncup.

Not trying to make things confusing but just making sure you compare all your options :)

Edit to add LOL at the person above me posting just before me with similar links. :P

Edited at 2012-12-03 07:44 pm (UTC)
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on December 3rd, 2012 07:57 pm (UTC)
Great minds think alike. =8oD
ada_nlada_nl on December 4th, 2012 12:44 am (UTC)
Thanks for your info and links! Yes, I looked at the sizecharts and all the comparison photo's and youtube vids I could find but you and kuradi8 got me some new ones. I wasn't a fan of the short stem of the natural mama cup, it doesn't seem as if I could grasp that type of stem easily. But it's not that expensive so it couldn't hurt to try it out. And it's nice that it's relatively easy to break the seal of this one.

Besides the Meluna cup which I loved because of the ring, I looked closely at the Fleur cup. Mostly because of the pretty colours - I'm shallow that way - but also because the rim seemed less thick than my Mooncup UK. I like that you opted for the Fleurcup even if you have a high cervix. Maybe it could be good for me as well.
juliiie87juliiie87 on December 4th, 2012 01:12 am (UTC)
This might be repetitive, in which case I apologize, or you might just not see it if you're not checking this page, so here goes my rec (already posted in a different thread) :

"You need a long cup OP, with a long good stem (so likely NOT the Shecup since the stem is pretty much non-existant), and you'll probably like a larger, somewhat softer cup too. Natural Mamma should definitely be high on your list (I'm not going to tell you what you should buy, but I like making lists). Another interesting option is the large Si-bell, there's something quite unique about this cup, as it seems that you can just pull it out by the stem, from the couple reviews I've read. OH and there's that new brand that's very unique too, and as long as they get : http://www.intimina.com/en/lily_cup_pd.php#lc_benefits
Not the highest capacity due to its shape, but the larger size holds a decent amount. It's brand new so there aren't many reviews available unfortunately... from what I hear it's fairly squishy, not the easiest seal to break but easy enough to use. It's actually longer than pretty much all cups including stems. Definitely high on the list too. Then in a much firmer style there's the large Yuuki, which is long, large, firm, and holds a lot, with a good grippy stem too. The Diva is one of the longest cups but... not the longest overall (short stem), so perhaps not the best choice available. Compare most of them here : http://menstrualcups.friendhood.net/t497-natualmamma-cup-comparison-photos
As you see, if you're interested in a Meluna then it would have to be the XL for a good length. Good luck in your research ! You can make this work !"
ada_nlada_nl on December 4th, 2012 01:45 am (UTC)
Thanks for posting again juliiie87 - sorry, I missed your answer higher up the thread.

LOL at Lelo jumping on the menstrual cup bandwagon. And why not - as long as they're 'down there':) This company makes quality stuff so definitely worth doing some research on their cup when I'm more experienced.

For now though my best bet seems to be the natural mama cup. Hopefully it will be a better fit for me.