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This is a bit dramatic, and only slightly mimics what I am like during my period. (I usually opt for a machete over an axe.) Plus, I would never destroy a kid’s birthday cake like that. That’s just weird.
What’s weirder is actual marketing for birth control. While the SNL skit does bash women and our hormonal episodes aka “Lorena Bobbit fest 2000” I really am starting to question the amount of information most doctors give on this “drug of convenience.”
I am by no means anti-drugs or western medicine. Just last year I was living in Switzerland and broke my ankle. The daily stomach-injection of anti-coagulants I administered, along with a few pills that were equivalent to a baby aspirin, caused me to hit the black market of my fellow roommates. My friend Jonathan had some Vicodin he had smuggled from the states and my friend Tyler had a self-made pharmacopeia. He gave me something he said was known as “Special K” on the streets. I didn’t care what it was, I just wanted the little men inside my cast, gnawing on my bone, to STOP!
But enough about me shooting up, back to birth control.
For being a drug that is so widely used, there has been little longitudinal research of its effects on women’s health. Being born into a family of eleven and spending time as a nurse, Margaret Sanger (hottie) fought with logical conviction to bring her beliefs to fruition and pioneer the birth control movement. Later developed as an oral contraceptive by Frank Colton in the 1960’s, it was initially given out at 10 milligrams of Progesterone. The high dosage led to numerous reactions, such as nausea, blurred vision, bloating, weight gain, depression, blood clots, and strokes. Today the dosages are significantly less, but symptoms still remain for many.
In researching and talking to a number of women, I know there are some who have felt few side effects on the pill. Fantastic. However, just because I don’t feel the tumor in my body, doesn’t mean its not having an effect. Extreme example? Yes.
What it is: Birth control pills are synthetic hormones that mimic the way real estrogen and progestin works in a women’s body. The pill prevents ovulation: the eggs are never released because the “magic” of the pill pulls a Pinocchio and says you are knocked up. And you are not.
Hormones in general are vital to both men and women. They are messengers that carry information from one group of cells to another. They regulate growth, development, metabolism, tissue, sexual function, reproduction, bodily reactions to food and trauma, our moods and more. That’s why, depending on the woman, some can experience, weight gain or loss, clear skin, O.C.D., anger, or the mellowing effects of an anti-depressant.
While one could make the argument that the effects of me popping a Vicodin is no different than tricking my womb into thinking its making a baby, I understand. I am tricking my broken ankle and masking the pain. However, chemicals I put in my body to affect inflammation don’t scare me as much as ones that play games with my baby-maker.
We don’t know if birth control connects to the mass amounts of infertility hitting our generation, or if partnership dissatisfaction is connected to a hormone cirque du soleil, but we are not asking enough questions. AND if I were the drug company making this bazillion dollar pill of “convenience” my research dollars would not go into proving it wasn’t as helpful to the female body as we had all hoped.
Blogs are supposed to be short, so this is simply scratching the surface of what I want to dive into. What is being discovered doesn’t set right with me. Birth control is one issue, (socially and economically, we don’t want babies popping out left and right) convenience is another, (as women we have a plethora of life opportunities before us outside of being a mother) but the overarching theme for me is women’s health, true liberation, and God’s ultimate design of the female body….
more to come…
What are the costs and benefits to convenience?
What questions do you have about birth control?
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