Male Contraception: are you on the pill?


For years women have been taking different forms of birth control which often have a negative impact on their bodies, however, due to the fear of unexpected pregnancy, they continue to carry on – even when the side effects aren’t so nice. 


However, with new developments with the male pill, could this bring a more positive attitude towards shared responsibilities with sex?

At the moment there are only four types of contraception for men:


remaining celibate, which for the majority isn’t really an option; the withdrawal, better known as the pullout method, which still carries massive risk of pregnancy; condoms which are becoming less popular due to being ‘less satisfying’ and a vasectomy, which is rather extreme and not always reversible.

Bringing in a male contraceptive pill will increase male awareness surrounding birth control and the responsibility behind it. Men will then be forced to create doctors appointments and have to try different methods to see what suits them. This will then normalise equal responsibility when it comes to birth control in general.

If eventually this became as normal as female birth control, it will then shift a lot of sexist blame off women, when it comes to accidental pregnancies as it won’t only be the women sat in the doctors office being asked why they weren’t on birth control. It will lift the stigma from women ‘falling pregnant’ as men will have just as much responsibility as women do now. A man taking the pill would also allow women who can’t be on their own form of birth control due to health reasons, to relax and not have to worry as much.


However as positive as this creation is, the negatives could possibly out-weigh the pros due to their extreme outcomes. Such as, increased STIs, if two people are on the pill, it is unlikely they are then going to take a third precaution by wearing a condom, even though they are the only STI preventatives. Following on from that, the excuse ‘I’m on the pill’ could also be used to get women to have unprotected sex, a lot of men already try and find any excuse to not wear a condom, this will be a perfect excuse and a very convincing one to use to get out of wearing one.

Trust has also been found to be a big issue within this invention, not many women have said that they would trust their partner too take it correctly, or even at all, especially since they are the ones at risk. Men will have less motivation to take the pill at the same time everyday as it’s not them who are physically affected by the outcome if they don’t.

There were a number of side effects that came with the contraceptive when it was being tested, including pain, depression, acne and a change in libido; although this is relatively similar to female contraception, the rate of the side effects was higher than what women experience using hormonal birth control. However, the hormonal side effects in men were less than what women go through, it’s just a matter of tolerance for these side effects and although preventing pregnancy is important for men, it is not important to their health.

More male contraception will bring so many positives to peoples sex lives and the taboo around safe sex, but until they can bring it up to scratch they should think about making better alternatives; female birth control should be more accessible and safer; the plan b and the morning after pill should cost less (and in some cases be free) and abortion shouldn’t be branded as murder and should be more accepted.

So ladies, next time he asks “are you on the pill?”, don’t forget to ask, “are you?”.

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