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It dawns on me this day in age, that kids go for what they know. After a conversation with Cliff (my husband) about condoms and our kids, I am asking myself what about women? Girls? Boys? This is an ongoing challenge in today’s society. What do you do when you Want to have sex and want to be safe?

Most people, kids, and teenagers go for what they know. Girls go straight for the pill and boys reach for condoms (actually, boys go for porn… But… I’ll make that another article). This mostly has to do with marketing. It’s easy and known effectiveness.  However, there are A LOT of other options out there that rarely get discussed. I’ll also pause here to say, abortion is NOT a form of birth control. It’s a last resort. I’ll discuss abortion later too and while effective in the termination of a pregnancy, is NOT “birth control”, it’s a decision, a “birth plan” if you will.

This will be mostly informative dribble and feel free to get more information on any of these from Google. So, let’s break this down.

 

The Pill

The Pill Is Great… If you take it every single day. It can be 98% effective and it takes 2 months (that’s TWO rotations to work) that means if you take one pill, two pills or a single month’s worth of pills, they aren’t effective yet. Your body has* to build up to it. You can choose to take various kinds of pills, with various kinds of hormones, so make sure you discuss side effects with your doctor to find the best combination for you.

 

Condoms

97% effective and can cause allergies to male or female if you get colored or flavored versions. Easily available at any pharmacy or most superstores and even in some grocery stores.

 

Spermicide

This is available in a liquid or a gel. Can be applied with or without a condom. Kills the sperm during intercourse. Apply like a sexual lubricant. 72% effective by itself. (I’d double this up with a condom or the pill – just my opinion)

 

Female Implant

99% effective! Can last up to 5 years! This implant goes into your arm… And I know what you are thinking… How does something in My Arm!… Protect my Vagina?! It’s simple, really… In your arm, are lymph nodes, the same ones in your pelvic region, which admit hormones… Which tell your body ‘it’s time to release an egg and start menstruating.’ This implant will affect this cycle. It’s hardly palpable. I don’t know why more people who aren’t ticklish, don’t use this. Really I don’t.

 

The Patch

91% effective. Replace every week for 3 weeks… Skip that 4th week to have a normal period. All the normal side effects of the pill. In a handy easy sticker form. Yes, it can get wet. Does Not protect against STDs or STIs.

 

IUD

Can be metal or plastic, gets inserted into the cervix, and yes this can be mildly painful for some. Can last a year to 5 or 6, depending on the type. This form can also poke your partner… It’s also not very effective if you aren’t in a serious relationship… As can increase the risk of yeast infection and BV reoccurring as it can upset the PH balance internally, which is why it’s important to keep a steady partner when choosing this birth control. Does not protect against STDs.

 

Depo AKA the Shot

Is about 95% effective and is given in 3 months incriminates. Women either love it or hate it. The biggest side effect is weight gain. It’s the simplest birth control, in my opinion… Just see a doctor and get pricked.

 

Diaphragm and Cervical Cap

Work the same and look similar too. They both work somewhere between 80% – 87% of the time. You, the woman, insert them in before sex, and it acts as a shield for the sperm to reflect off of before it can get to the egg via the way of the cervix. Reach in and pull out when done. Does not protect against STDs.

 

Vasectomy

This one is for the men. Most states have laws regarding ‘permanent snipage’, how many kids you have to have first or if you are married. Please check with your doctor about local regulations and healthcare laws… It’s also Not 100% effective. The body is a wonderful and beautiful thing and you should see your doctor regularly because the process can be reversed within 2 years. Surprise! Also, rigorous testing is done for up to 6 weeks after the procedure to even see if it takes in the first place.

 

Male Birth Control Pill

Yes, this exists now. Suppose to be in the 90% effectiveness…?? Eh, my jury is still out. You can ask your doctor for news about it. So many men complain about the acne, I heard many men didn’t want to be studied… My thoughts? Um… What do you think happens when Women take the pill??

 

The Pull-Out Method

Guy’s all-time favorite… Right? A classic for how sex has been being “saved” for decades, if not longer. 18-40% effective (depends on the source). The “percentage” in this statistic here will ALWAYS widely vary because of the method and the people. Women will be more fertile, or the men will have a higher sperm count. The position will make the sperm more likely to get to where they’re going, or make it more difficult for the male to “pull out”. Also, Semen is present in Pre-cum, and depending on the health and masturbation habits of the male or several other factors, this can also increase the chances of pregnancy… Regardless of “pulling out techniques”… you get my drift. That’s still gambling… In my opinion… Either way, that’s like, one in two odds, my friend.

 

Plan B

Is ONLY 95% effective and should NOT be used as a regular birth control. It should be taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex for effectiveness.

 

 

Bottom line is that no birth control is 100% effective.

Abstinence is effective for preventing pregnancy & STDs 100% of the time. That’s it. If you are going to have sex, (and that’s your decision) … Be safe. Choose a method that’s right for you and your partner. Know that there are many methods out there. If something isn’t working, try something else. Also, don’t expect your partner to be responsible for bringing the birth control. Never assume the other person is ‘taking care of it’. Always assume an “accident” can occur if you are sexually active with anyone you engage with. Every. Single. Time. Come prepared. Every time. Be Safe. 

– Chloe

 

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