Facts for the Contraceptive Cheerleaders

Contraception is NOT the simple technology its cheerleaders suggest. So, how do you explain this to people who may have only heard the PP pep rally?

I wanted to clue you in to the kinds of governmental or “high level” medical resources that you can rely on to provide reasonable people very credible reasons for why there’s more to the story. What’s more, these resources are often the very studies commissioned by birth control’s biggest cheerleaders!

Here’s a recent report issued by the uber-contraceptive-cheerleader: the Population Council. They cooperated with researchers from Harvard University, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the University of California at Berkeley. It’s called Contraceptive Discontinuation: Reasons, Challenges and Solution, December 2015.

The report shows generally how, the world over, women are mentally and physically uncomfortable with contraception in large numbers. For example, over 38% of women who start a method, stop it within the first year. Over 50% stop in two years. (Exec Sum iii.) Methods less often removed, including the IUD and implants, are less often removed partly because of the “need for removal by a health care professional.” This has unpleasant implications for the intense push for IUDs and implants among poor and minority American women. Providers KNOW the women will have greater trouble getting these methods out.

This international report continues by informing us that the majority who discontinue their birth control are reacting to “method related concerns” (iii) like prolonged bleeding, pain, headaches, mood problems, severe vaginal dryness, dizziness, and stomachaches (6). (They don’t even mention cancer, blood clots, strokes, or other known risks).

A domestic report from the Federal Department of Health and Human Services raises similar concerns. It reports high rates of failure (9 to 30%) and of discontinuance (40%) among women in the United States. It further states: “hormonal contraceptives have the disadvantage of having many undesirable side effects,” and “are associated with adverse events, and obese women are at higher risk for serious complications such as deep venous thrombosis.”[1]  NIH ranks 36% of U.S. female adults as obese.[2]

In short, you don’t have to be Catholic…you don’t have to agree theologically on the moral status of contraception… in order to worry about its effects on women, on families and on relationships. It’s an important health issue for any woman—religious or not.

[1] See Female Contraceptive Development Program, at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-HD-14-024.html.

[2] Dept. of Health & Human Servs., Nat. Insts. of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Overweight and Obesity Statistics (Oct. 2012).

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