Saturday, March 6, 2010

Men and the birth control pill  

I saw this posted on The Sexist. It's a video created by Amanda Hess, where she interviewed men on birth control and how it works. Watch!

Wow. Some of the things said by the men (the birth control pill is the same as Plan B? wtf?) are just shocking. Unfortunately, a lot of men who have sex with women don't bother to learn about birth control because they see it as something only women have to deal with. Birth control is as much a man's concern as it is a woman's, and deciding on a method of contraception should be a collaborative process.

But too many men take the birth control pill for granted - there seems to be this idea that it's this simple process involving popping a pill a day with ease, and there's no need to think or talk about it. But men should know how it works, and men should understand that it's certainly not easy for a woman to take birth control. It takes awhile to find the right brand, and with every brand comes a slew of terrifying side effects. Can most men even name one side effect of the birth control pill?

I'm not blaming men for being ignorant. I know the real reason is that somewhere down the line, men got the message from society that birth control is not a man's issue. So men, it's time to unlearn what society taught you and hop on Wikipedia to learn about birth control. It'll be one of the most manly things you'll ever do.

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10 comments: to “ Men and the birth control pill

  • March 7, 2010 at 10:35 AM  

    I agree with the sentiment that there needs to be a shared responsibility for knowledge of birth control options. However, I don't know many women who can explain why birth control pills or patches work. Unfortunately all most people want to know is that they can't get pregnant ... they don't care to know the how it works.

  • March 7, 2010 at 11:23 PM  

    Slew of terrifying side effects?

    Birth control can also be used to treat a slew of terrifying disorders.

    I think it works against our cause to overstate the problems; it should just be a shared responsibility, because it's a shared pleasure and shared risk.

  • March 8, 2010 at 3:03 AM  

    I don't believe I was overstating the problems. I think I was making the point that it should be a "shared responsibility," because it's a "shared pleasure and a shared risk." You seem to have captured the essence of this post.

    But yes, I do think the side effects of birth control are scary, and I don't think this is an "overstatement"... I think it's reality. I know many women who are on the pill and worry about the adverse effects. Medication, no matter how helpful, does have side effects, and my point is that both partners should be aware of the risks. Is that so terrible?

  • March 8, 2010 at 4:19 PM  

    I believe that if a couple decides that they are going to go on birth control instead of using any other form of contraceptive, it should be thought of as a joint effort. The woman may be the one who is taking it, but the man should know just as much about it as the woman does. Especially since this will now give the man extra pleasure while putting more pressure on the woman, so he should be more compassionate towards the woman's new situation.

  • March 9, 2010 at 1:36 PM  

    Urgh! Stupidity! Men should be required to take a biology of women class and talk about this stuff. What's really disturbing is how many of these guys talk about the pill in terms that make it appear really damaging to the woman's body, and yet do not appear distressed that women take it ... because it means they get more sex.

  • March 10, 2010 at 12:19 AM  

    I feel like I can't fault them too much for the NuvaRing lack of knowledge. Except I feel like women would either not know about it at all and not try to make stuff up or they would know the basics from a doctor, friend, or personal use. To be fair, I've read about how birth control methods work more than once but I probably couldn't give a great description of it if I were being filmed.

  • March 22, 2010 at 11:38 PM  

    I think men don't even care about what birth control does and the effects it has on women's bodies.
    The pill only makes them worry less about when and how they have sex. Most men don't realize that it is not only used for pregnancy prevention, but many other things dealing with periods and other parts of women's bodies.
    I wish there was a way to reach out to them and make them see how it works and why.

  • March 31, 2010 at 8:50 PM  

    I think that both men and women should be responsible for knowing how birth control works. It takes two to make a baby, or it takes two to consciously decide to prevent making a baby. Women know how male condoms work, even though they aren't created for us. I think that if a man is having sex, he should know what is protecting him from becoming a father, and also should have some knowledge of what medicine his partner is taking on a daily basis.

  • April 19, 2010 at 9:19 PM  

    I think that this video is ridiculous. I never have really thought about this until I saw this video, but a lot of birth control is 100% the females responsibility. This video shows how little men know about these birth control pills and patches but it makes me wonder if guys help pay for these things too. I'm pretty sure all of these forms of birth control cost money.
    It also shocks me that guys aren't interested in what these different forms of birth control do. it's almost as if they don't care if the female gets pregnant and they just think "it's her problem". If guys were concerned about not getting pregnant I feel like they'd learn about these different form and find out exactly what they do. Like I said earlier, this video truly baffles me.

  • November 28, 2011 at 12:15 PM  

    that pill saved my life several times! indeed is my favorite one!