Birth control, it is none of your business

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Teenage girls who opt to take birth control are often scolded by society because of the stigmas that many people place on sexual interactions among teens. Many argue that women should be more responsible when it comes to their sexuality and that they should abstain from sex altogether in order to prevent pregnancy. I would argue that the most responsible step a woman can take to protect herself is not to abstain from sex but to seek out contraception on her own terms.

Teenage girls who opt to take birth control are often scolded by society because of the stigmas that many people place on sexual interactions among teens. Many argue that women should be more responsible when it comes to their sexuality and that they should abstain from sex altogether in order to prevent pregnancy. I would argue that the most responsible step a woman can take to protect herself is not to abstain from sex but to seek out contraception on her own terms.

Much of people’s reservations about birth control come from a lack of knowledge on the effects of its long-term usage. Research in the past few years has revealed that taking birth control regularly and for long periods does not affect a woman’s ability to conceive in later years. Risks and harmful effects only seem to arise when smoking is concerned, or when the subject has other medical conditions that could interfere. But, there are more options than simply taking pills, and women can consult with their doctor on what type of birth control will work best for them.

California State law gives minors the right to receive birth control and other contraceptives with full confidentiality and without parental consent. Other states have begun to adopt similar policies of minor consent. This movement will open many doors for teenage women who wish to keep their sex lives private and receive contraception on their terms.

A thorough adoption of this privacy policy can dramatically decrease both the number of teen pregnancies seen in today’s society, as well as decrease the number of women who have to resort to abortion to avoid pregnancy.

Opponents to this movement fear that making birth control readily available to teens will only encourage sexual promiscuity and leave teens vulnerable to STD’s and other dangers. But these fears should be addressed at a personal level, with teens taking personal responsibility in being cautious and conscientious to avoid infection and other harm. But it is no one’s place but the individual’s to decide the limits of their own sexuality.

The cruel judgment placed on women trying to avoid pregnancy is unacceptable. It is a woman’s place and no one else’s to decide if she wants to have sex, and it should be her right to decide to use contraceptives.

This is not to say that it should singularly be the woman’s responsibility to seek out contraceptives however. Men should be supportive and helpful in their partner’s decision to protect themselves with more than just condoms. At the end of the day, it is both participants responsibility to ensure that they both feel protected and safe during sex.

It is time for the stigmas, controversies, and reservations about contraception to come to an end, and for society to encourage women and men to seek the kind of contraception that they deem necessary in their relationships. Because at the end of the day, it is no one else’s business to decide that, but their own.

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