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Why women are (not) using birth control

via Catholic News Agency

by Hillary Mast

Last week the social media entertainment site, Buzzfeed, published a list of 22  reasons why women use artificial contraceptives. With the recent Supreme Court ruling for Hobby Lobby causing a collective outcry from those who believe other people should pay for their contraceptives, it’s no wonder that the site wished to portray it as a necessity to women everywhere.

Although the article claimed that all the women’s answers were different, half of them had to do with wanting to have sex without having a baby, while a handful of others echoed some sentiment of “my body, my choice” and some were related to medical conditions such as endometriosis, PCOS, menstrual cramps and acne (all of which can be treated with alternative or natural methods).

I found this post very disappointing mainly because it seemed to act as an advertisement for the miraculous wonder-drug. Strangely enough, however, the post made no mention of the fact that hormonal birth control is actually listed as a class 1 carcinogen by the World Heath Organization (just like tobacco and asbestos, but we all know those are perfectly harmless, right?) nor that the makers of other contraceptives such as Yaz and NuvaRing are embroiled in large class action lawsuits because of the damage and deaths their products have caused.

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Strange. I thought prescription drug advertisements always had to list the possible side effects, but I suppose pages of tiny subscript about mood swings, nauseamigraines, weight gain, stroke,  blood clotsdecreased sex drive just wouldn’t have seemed to flow very well with, “Because sex is fun, but kids are not … yet.”

I was, however, very pleased to see a response post on the same site that listed 24 reasons why a different group of women don’t use birth control.

Their answers ranged from wanting to respect the natural way a woman’s body works to the joy of raising children. My personal favorites were the following:

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These women seemed to have a better understanding of and respect for the way their bodies function. They know that although a woman isn’t fertile 24/7 and pregnancy can be avoided during infertile times, that sex is naturally geared towards the creation of new life and intimacy between the couple — something our culture has only half remembered. They know that the use of artificial birth control comes with a whole laundry list of unnatural side effects and that when used to “treat” illness it can often mask symptoms instead of treating the medical issue.

See the full list

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