Wednesday, March 7, 2012

About Birth Control Pills

First, have a lesson in Birth Control For Idiots. I found this on Tumblr and it is a very good explanation of the various methods of birth control, including hormonal birth control. After the flack and aftermath of Limbaugh’s saying that a woman who was explaining that a friend of hers was not able to get insurance coverage for hormonal birth control pills ended up getting an ovary removed due to a cyst was a slut. (Because he is just that classy.)

Earlier in the week I discovered that one of my followers on twitter was a rabid Rush Limbaugh fan who was agreeing that Fluke was a slut and stating that Rush was obviously the most awesome and right person in the world. (She was also being snide and malicious, whining about how Liberals were being mean to her and saying that all Liberals are sluts. She was also gibbering about Planned Parenthood. I am going to be very careful in the future about whom I follow back.) Since this woman and Rush Limbaugh and many others seem amazingly ignorant about hormonal birth control, the above link should be very helpful.

Next, a short overview: Hormonal birth control pills have to be taken every day or they do not work. You do NOT just pop one after you have had sex. You take one pill every single day through the entire month/menstrual cycle, whether or not you plan on also having sex. Hormonal birth control pills are also very useful for a variety of medical conditions, QUITE A FEW OF WHICH CAN INVOLVE DEATH OR LOSING BITS OF YOUR REPRODUCTIVE ORGANS.

So! When I was seventeen or so, I became somewhat sexual active with my boyfriend at the time. My mother was surprisingly supportive about it and my father was extremely non-supportive about it. (By non-supportive I mean he said extremely filthy, stupid things and I was kind of afraid of him because of the filthy and stupid things he said.) Mom got me an appointment with a doctor, who prescribed me hormonal birth control pills.

Now, here is the important bit! My mom and I both had an extremely irregular menstrual cycle. Mom almost never menstruated in the summer. I would have stretches of time of up to two or three months between menstruations. When I did menstruate, it tended to be very heavy and extremely painful. It would also usually coincide with me suddenly getting some kind of cold. When I was on the pills my cycles were regular and generally did not make me feel quite as sick as when I was off them, which was most of the time because I could not afford them. (Fortunately, I stopped menstruating entirely by the time I was twenty seven or twenty eight.)

Recap: Hormonal birth control pills must be taken every single day throughout the month or they will not work. They can be used for regulating irregular menstruation cycles and various other medical conditions besides being used for birth control. I took hormonal birth control pills mostly to regulate my erratic menstrual cycle as well as for birth control. Rush Limbaugh is an ignorant dumbass who does not know how hormonal birth control pills work and deliberately lied about someone who was offering testimony about her friend who had a totally treatable condition that she could not get treatment for because of what her insurance would and would not cover.

Also: Even if Sandra Fluke were in fact sexually active and had been testifying on her own behalf about her own use of birth control, calling her a slut would still be wrong.