Do you need Plan B…

plan b The morning after pill and I are intimately acquainted. I am sure that it is acquaintance of a lot of women. Both of my experiences happened when I was over the age of 18 and did not have to worry about the pesky issue of parental consent. One of my experiences was way before they made “Plan B,” rather they gave me a pack of birth control pills and told me to take half of the pack almost in a hr interval or something like that. The second time around it was less pills but the result was the same…nausea being one of them. The difference between the first and last time I needed to stop something before it started, I had to go to a health provider. The second time, it was to my local pharmacist.

First things first, what exactly is the morning after pill or Plan B as it is now called. For all the lost and confused, don’t make up stories. It is not the same thing as the abortion pill. If you are pregnant unfortunately it won’t work.  The morning after pill works by delaying ovulation when sperm meets egg by preventing the sperm from reaching the egg. Depending on the type of pill, thickening of the cervical mucus may occur. That is it. Mystery solved.

A few years ago, legislation was put in place to make the morning after bill available over-the-counter. The catch, you had to prove that you were age 17 or older. Recently, a Federal judge ruled against the age limit going so far as to blast the Obama administration stating that,  “It had let election-year politics trump science and were making it hard for women of any age to obtain emergency contraception in time for it to work.” As a result of the ruling, the morning after pill will now be able to girls/women 15 years and older. The FDA has a mnonth to make it happen and it looks like they are making ithappen.

That’s great news right? Perhaps. While there is nothing wrong with giving a 15-year-old control over her body afterall a long time ago she would have been a married woman by that age she must also be responsible. The morning after pill should not be used as a form of birth control. It should not give one license to engage in risky behaviors. If the morning after pill is not taken within the window time period more than likely it will not work. Even if it is taken in the window period it may not work. This is no miracle pill. It an emergency option for an unplanned situation. Yes young people have sex. That is clear given that teenage pregnancies occur. However, most of these teenagers really do not understand the consequences involved with having sex.

So yes while I see no issue with making the pill available to those who are considered to be legal adults, I need adults to understand that conversations must be had with our young people. We must take our heads out of the sand and stop denying that they are having sex. They are and sometimes more than grown people. We all know about abstinence. Most adults actually see the benefits even though they love sex you can raise your hand and some will even admit that they should have waited. These babies may have women parts but they don’t really understand how said parts work. For them sex is something to do. It is really more than that. It is emotions, heartache, headache, frustration, etc. It is devastation, accidents, incurable diseases, nine months later. So while the morning after pill is available to even more girls/women than before, lets not delude ourselves into thinking that a problem does not exist. It does and until we are honest with ourselves that issue will remain.

Words of wisdom:  “Sex: the thing that takes up the least amount of time and causes the most amount of trouble.” ~John Barrymore

In health,

Maliyka

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Freezer burn: Egg freezing

Some time ago my mommy (she’s actually my cousin who is like a 2nd mother to me), asked me if I had ever thought about freezing my eggs. Before you start offering condolences, no I am not dying. Rather my eggs are dying. At the time, I had entered into my 30th year and had no still don’t really real prospect of a mate to help me in child making activities. Knowing how much I wanted a child eventually, she was concerned that when I got around to it I would not have any eggs left to fertilize. At the time, I was startled. I was not ready for a child. Children weren’t even on my radar yet here was someone wondering more about my eggs than I was. However, as I detailed in the blog post a few weeks ago I realized that my fertility had a ticking clock attached to it. Even still, I will not be freezing my eggs.

Although, this is not Fertility awareness month over the past few days there have been many post related to freezing ones eggs. One op-ed piece that I read in  the NY Times , did bring home a valid point. That doctor that every woman loves to hate, the OB/GYN almost always talking about pap smears, cancer, and contraception but they never really discuss whether you plan to have a baby. On a personal note, I can attest to that. During my last visit, my doctor asked me what form of contraception I was using. Not once did she say, “Hey you are almost 32 years old, do you plan on having children anytime soon.” While I am not in a rush, it is a conversation that I believe my doctor should have discussed with me. Go figure, she is not even aware that both my maternal grandmother and mother were considered post menopausal way before they were 50. As a matter of fact, my grandmother started going through menopause right after she had my mother. She was 38.
There should be nothing to big or small that a doctor will not talk about with their patients. Even if that patients says, “you know what doc, I don’t plan on having children.” At least the doctor can notate that they had the discussion. Even if my doctor, had broached the topic with me i would not rush to have a child. I am sure that this is one of the reasons why doctors are cautious about broaching this topic. No doctor wants to be liable for any decision that a patient made which is not in their best interest. Here is the thing, as a doctor it is your duty to talk about the good, bad and the ugly. at some point personal responsibility must come into place and this is one of those situations. Some women, may bot even realize that their eggs have am expiration date and the longer they wait the harder it may be to conceive. It is all about education. While I am not promoting egg freezing it cost too much money there maybe someone who is interested. Who better to receive that information from than by your doctor.

As the oldest of 10 children, while I would like children freezing those little things that pop out of my ovaries and roll down my fallopian tube is not a reality for me. I am comfortable with never having any children. But to the woman who has $12,000+ to freeze their eggs good for you. For those women who have a medical condition that may destroy your chances at fertility, you are in luck. With all the health policy changes and us living in a society that values procreation insurance companies may actually pay that high price tag.

Today’s prescription: There is nothing wrong with planning but remember that your plan must be realistic. Tomorrow is never promised.