While being a massive cliché of a mid-twenties woman, the issue of contraception has been playing on my mind for a while. Now don’t get me wrong, I haven’t exactly looked into this but just from talking to friends, other blogs and various ‘surprise pregnancies’ I’m guessing that when you get to this age, you start to think about these sorts of things.
In the swirling mass of thoughts on this issue, there is one certain thing: I definitely don’t want to be pregnant. So short of going celibate, I’m going to need some sort of protection. However the thought of pumping yourself full of hormones and chemicals every day just doesn’t sit easy with me. Tricking your body into believing it’s pregnant for the foreseeable future isn’t something to take lightly.
Although many, many experts will tell you that the health-risks associated with the combined pill are low; there is no escape from the fact the list is long and a little bit daunting no matter what the experts say. Higher risks of blood clots, strokes, heart-attacks, cancer, depression… the list goes on. And the risks apparently increase with time (though still staying relatively low.) I’ve already been on the pill for over half a decade, so presumably my risks are increasing. Which isn’t exactly fun.
Most other contraceptive methods that are based on hormones, including the implant, carry similar risks. Plus there is just something squeamish about having physical object hanging about inside you, isn’t there?
When I mentioned this whole ‘I don’t really like the idea of continuously poisoning myself’ train of thought to the boyfriend (in a very laid back, nonchalant way obviously) he said he wouldn’t mind if I came off the pill and we reverted back to condoms. Yet that still has to happen, because as petty as it is; the thought of scrabbling around to find one in the dead of night isn’t, to steal a colleague’s phrase, “passion inducing.”
Writing that last paragraph has just made me notice how unfair it is, even though there is no point in moaning, I’m gonna. When thinking about how to navigate the risk of pregnancy vs risk of poisoning field, I like to take my boyfriend’s opinions on board. After all, it affects him almost as much as me; if I were to get pregnant. Yet I’m the one who has to take the health risks. I love that I have the right to choose what contraceptive I can use, that I have the right to access them; but I’m writing this with my bottom lip stuck out.
I don’t want to get pregnant, but I don’t have a contraceptive that I like the idea of. I want to have my cake and eat it, and lose weight whilst doing so. On the other hand, as one website pointed out having a time of the month every month isn’t natural either – if we were all to live in caves again by our mid-twenties we’d probably have had a few kids to say the least.
One of the worst methods of contraception (in my opinion) has to be the morning after pill, mainly because I am yet to meet a woman who did not go absolutely mental in the day after taking it. I mean anything from crying in public toilets to being sick. It’s called an emergency contraceptive for a reason – you’ve got to be pretty bloody desperate to resort to it.
So now, as this blog post draws to an end, I’ve lost the point and found a dead end. We can either be pregnant or do things daily that we aren’t completely happy with. Whatever we do, we can’t do it naturally – unless of course having a kid a year until the menopause is what you want, in which case you’re sorted. Therefore, although unhappy with it, I guess I’ll stick to the pill, and if anything does go horribly wrong in the future, I guess I’ve only got myself to blame.