Skip to comments.The Problem With Male Birth Control Is Not That Men Are Wusses
Posted on 11/05/2016 4:08:32 PM PDT by NYer
Unless youve been hiding under a rock, youve seen the headlines jeering at men after the news broke that a trial for male birth control was cancelled because men couldnt handle the side effects. The mocking was practically immediate. Men were derided as being whiners who were unwilling to tolerate the side effects that women endure every month, so not only were they weak, they were misogynists as well.
People titled Julie Mazziottas article Men Back Out of Male Birth Control Study Because They Couldnt Handle the Changes in Mood. She wrote that it was time for guys to woman up. At The Wausau Daily Herald, the headline was Male birth control study nixed after men can’t handle side effects women face daily. The Independent writer Anna Rhodes declared, Yes, contraceptives have side effects and its time for men to put up with them too. She sneered, How sad for these poor men they couldnt handle the side effects that so many women have to deal with every day just to avoid an unwanted pregnancy.
Omar Rimawi at Distractify shrugged off the side effects as not only minor, but also temporary, writing, The effects of the injections are completely reversible, and would’ve finally provided a method to remove the sole burden of birth control off of women. Cosmopolitan writer Laura Beck claimed the men quit because the birth control was giving them mood swings, writing, Welcome to the club, dudes. Also: WOMAN UP.
Theres just one problem: there were serious flaws with this trial, and that is why it was stopped. Its easy to dismiss these side effects as trivial, and to laugh at men for being weaklings who refuse to go through what women must to prevent pregnancy. But the reality is, the potential side effects were dangerous, and women would notand should notaccept them, either.
In all that has been reported about the study (which can be read here), it rarely is mentioned that one of the side effects was infertility. Of the 320 participants, one man was completely infertile after receiving the treatment. A year after they stopped taking the shots, eight men had not returned to normal sperm counts. There were also cases of erectile dysfunction, so the birth control was preventing some men from being able to have sex at all. Further, one study participant committed suicide.
Would it be as funny, or as trivial, if women took a birth control method that left them sterile, unable to have children when they decided they were ready? Or with no libido? Or suicidal? Despite this, though, it wasnt even the men who shut the study down. The World Health Organizations Department of Reproductive Health and Research chose to shut down the trial after reviewing the data and determining it needed to be stopped for safety reasons.
In addition to the potential infertility, there was the much-maligned mood swings. This wasnt just a case of men feeling a little blue for a few days before they perked up. They actually experienced depression and mood disorders. Mood disorders isnt code for PMS-like mood swingsit indicates an actual mental illness, which can include anxiety and bipolar disorder.
Sneering at men because they refused to tolerate being unnecessarily stricken with a mental illness is not only dishonest and misandrist, its stigmatizing as well. Downplaying depression and mood disorders as something people should just be able to tough out is legitimately harmful. Millions of people suffer from mental illness, and newsflash: its not something that you can just woman up and get over.
But women have to deal with all of this, the complainers cry! Why should men be exempt when women arent? Well, first, its important to note that the female birth control pill was approved in 1960. A year later, a worldwide drug disaster forced the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to undergo a major overhaul, which resulted in the 1962 Drug Amendments. Now, drugs would have to be proven to be not only safe, but scientists would have to prove that the drug worked. There is a very good chance that the female birth control pill, approved by the FDA in 1960, would not meet the more stringent standards of the FDA today.
Yes, the pill does, indeed, come with a bevy of side effects, the most dangerous of which is blood clots. It has also been linked to mood disorders, just like with men. This is why many pharmaceutical companies have created lower-dose birth control, or non-hormonal birth control methods, like intrauterine devices.
The reports make it seem like whiny men stomped their feet like toddlers, and their temper tantrum made researchers halt their work. But the research is still ongoing, and while this study didnt result in publicly available hormonal birth control for men, scientists are still hailing this trial as a major breakthrough. Research is planned to continue in the future, and scientists hope it will be on the market in the relatively near future. So fear not: men will soon be able to suffer through needless side effects just like women do!
This brings us to the real crux of the issue. The women complaining about men not being forced to endure the side effects of hormonal birth control basically have the attitude that, if they have to do it, men should have to also. But isnt the more sensible answer to refuse to force women to endure these side effects, rather than also dragging men into it?
Think about it: the entire point of hormonal birth control is to prevent a healthy biological system from working as it is supposed to work, all so people can have sex without making babies. This is evidently so important that people should be willing to risk life-threatening side effects. Men and women alike should not be forced to endure mental illness, infertility, low libido or erectile dysfunction, blood clots, acne, weight gain, and the myriad other potential side effects, just to prevent pregnancy (and especially not when an essentially risk-free method of birth control exists). Our bodies arent broken, and we arent animals that need to be fixed.
Maybe this is the real problem, that pregnancy is seen as such a catastrophe, that everyone should just suck it up and accept such horrendous side effects because anythingeven potential death!is better than a pregnancy resulting from our choice to have sex. Women, dont be bitter because men arent forced to live with the same side effects we are yet. Its time that we demand more than this.
I just put a pebble in my shoe it makes me limp
Neither men, nor women, should tolerate the side effects of a regular bombardment of hormones.
Marry a person, use barrier birth control if you want, and accept the occasional pregnancy. You are married for heaven’s sake. No need to keep yourself in a chemical stew.
Infertility is also a side effect of the female “pill”, and just as bad, I suspect its a cause of cancers also.
Any form of birth control other than condoms or external barriers is risky as far as fertility problems.
Women really shouldnt be experimenting on themselves like that. Babies are natural.
Viagra also has side effects but not that hard for men to overcome?
Gee, millions of infertile males. That would really help eliminate unwanted pregnancies and thus drive down the need for abortions. I’m sure that Planned Parenthood will be putting up male contraceptive pills as a major sideline. (Sarcasm)
Is sex for recreation or procreation? If the former, birth control -- with all its side effects -- makes sense. If the latter, then pregnancy isn't a side effect; it's the very PURPOSE of the act!
In short, it isn't the technology that's at fault; it's the morality.
They put chemicals in their bodies I wouldn't put in my compost pile.
P.S. Some of the more "organic" or eco-feminist ladies actually know this. It does bother them. It would be pretty enlightened for them to become advocates of "natural" methods that won't leave them depressed, flat-libido, acne-prone, cancerous, sterile or dead.
The hatred for men exhibited by these critics of them, is palpable.
I have known women who took birth control. I expressed my view that I wished they didn’t need to. I encouraged them not to.
For a time several decided to give it a try. They backed off and let nature take it’s course. In both cases as time went by their monthly cycles became less cyclic, less predictable, and even problematic. One month they’d have a very light cycle and the next month they would have a very very strong cycle. After more discussion both women went back on the pill, and after they did, they become more regular with normal cyclic activity, much easier to manage, and far less scary to put it mildly.
I recognize that some women have problems with the pill. I don’t like that. My concern would be for their safety and well being. I would certainly be supportive of them stopping using the pill or finding alternatives that would be less trouble for them.
I would never dream of attacking them, insulting them, belittling them, or doing anything else negative toward them due to their personal choice on it.
Women that act the opposite toward men are just beasts.
Women fought for the right to be more like men. When they got the chance to do that, some women picked out the worst men imaginable and became them.
Intelligence, it’s not for everyone.
No need to "suspect": birth control pills are known carcinogens and would almost certainly be disapproved if they were a drug for any other purpose.
not only that, but some women taking birth control pills find that these seriously interfere with their desire for sex, and their ability to achieve orgasm.
These hormones are not worth the havoc they play with a healthy body.
I agree, for either women or men. Nobody should be making themselves sick when they're not; this refers both to the intended function of the drugs AND the side affects.
In general, it is best to weigh the costs and benefits of any prescription drug. If the benefits do not significantly outweigh the costs, then it is best to look for something else.
There is nothing at all wrong with recreational sex among married couples. There are only 3-5 days in the average menstrual cycle when it is even possible to get pregnant. Normal, happily married couples are going to have intercourse daily or even multiple times per day during the first years of marriage, gradually settle into a pattern of 2-4 times per week after a few years and even less once they get into their 40s, 50s and 60s.
Sex is a gift from God to provide not only for procreation, but also to cement marriages by providing recreation. This is why the need is constant and ongoing. Properly used between married couples, it also provides an additional layer of stability to a marriage and ensures that father and mother stay together, not only to protect their children, but also support each other long after the reproductive years are over.
Yeah, there are a lot of sick jerks out there who think this statement is funny or that, somehow, Christians and Conservatives are sex-obsessed with even making this argument. I've been a target of them myself.
But if it weren't true, God would have created us like animals who only have sex during a brief breeding season. Think about that, you sick critics and scoffers.
Men must either convince a woman to let them have sex with them or commit a felony that can lead to life in prison. They, for some reason, are convinced that they can take sex as lightly as men can. They can't. They get pregnant.
Luckily for men, women have been shown to have poor taste, poorer judgment and low standards when it comes to men. They also have become even less discerning over the last several decades.
LOL. Women are stupid enough to take poison every month and they think men should be morons too? Good luck with that, ladies.
With all the diabetes going around and the resulting ED, there is really no need for male birth control.
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