Twenty percent or 30% of the women who take oral birth control pills experience depression and have to take medication for it. So the difference just struck me. They terminated this study once it showed 3% depression for the men.
– Elisabeth Lloyd, Kinsey Institute
Gather round boys and girls and I will tell you a story of love, lust, and whiny, whiny men…
Once upon a time, a male birth control was found, one so powerful it “held the sperm count at 1 million per milliliter or less” and had an efficacy rate of 96%. The shot was similar to the female birth control shot Depo-Proveria, with efficacy rates that were approaching par with this well established option. During a study on this clearly viable option, however, it was discovered that a wicked witch had cast a spell on the potion, and as a result men would have to endure the agonies of mood swings, headache, increased appetite and weight gain. Fear not, dear audience, the brave men of this research project were not subjected to one minute more of these horrors, as the study was halted before completion, and women once again were tasked with preventing all the births. As God intended it.
Ok, we all had a bit of a laugh, but this is a seriously sad subject. Young women’s lives have been cut short because they were taking the pill. One of the most dangerous risks to women of taking the combined pill is the increased risk of deep vein thrombosis (2/10 000), which can be fatal. There is also an increased risk of breast cancer, cervical cancer and stroke. The advice from the regulatory agency? “The benefits outweigh the risks.”
So what gives? Why is it acceptable for women to continue to bear the burden of risk alone, while men are sheltered from side effects that their wives and girlfriends have been taught are a normal part of family planning since grade school? And, honestly, why coddle men like this? My male friends would gladly take a bullet for the women they love, why not let them take a shot in their ass for her, even if it comes with some breast tenderness and a few tears at the end of Forrest Gump? (She was the carrots to his peas. It’s beautiful, dammit).
Equality means equal control and equal responsibility, until this is achieved in regards to preventing unwanted pregnancy, we will never achieve that parity we claim to want so much – and we are so close. Women can die fighting for their country, and they can die working in the most dangerous fields along side their male counterparts… but they should not die trying to plan their families, not when it is in the place of a man having the blues, or a headache.