Cause and Effect

I’m thinking of going off the Pill just so I’ll start having sex again. You see, I’ve discovered an inverse relationship between extent of protection and frequency of sex. Every time I’ve gone through a long lapse in sex and go off the Pill, deciding that partaking in daily birth control is not only unnecessary but also like rubbing forced abstinence in my face, that’s when I meet someone new. It’s the opposite of Build It and He Will Come. When sex is involved, it seems as if the less prepared you are, the more likely it will show up on your doorstop and taunt you with how poorly you’ve planned the moment.

Yes, there’s the Not-quite-properly-shaved/trimmed/waxed – whatever the current grooming trend is – phenomenon, the What-is-that-underwear? embarrassment, and the Why-didn’t-I-change-the-sheets? head-slap. If you’re north of thirty-something or not the most natural blonde, you might encounter the Is-he-tall-enough-to-get-a-good-glimpse-at-my-roots? scenario. But all of these pale in comparison, I promise, to going off the Pill.

If the yo-yoing weight associated with the on-off Pill scenario weren’t so disturbing, it might be worth dumping the hormonal birth control just to jump-start my social life. I refuse to even consider what torment I am causing my body by ingesting the Pill daily, for I weigh that against a broken condom and an accidental pregnancy. Yes, ever since deadly diseases intruded upon the spontaneity of my earlier sex life, I employ multiple forms of birth control.

I first went on the Pill at sixteen, before I’d had sex or even had a boyfriend, but I could sense it coming – my hormones screaming in my ear – and wanted to be prepared. About two years later, when my mom discovered I was on the Pill (in the era where the prescription price was actually affordable, as I was paying for it on my own), she casually mentioned that when she’d tried the Pill, she became amazingly nauseous. Thanks for the info, Mom. As if trying to poison my sex life, my mom’s subtle revelation passed the nausea to me, and within a week I found myself getting fitted for a diaphragm, possibly the least desirable way of avoiding pregnancy I’ve ever lived with.

In my youthful, cavalier way of thinking, I never understood accidental pregnancies. I always thought it quite easy to use birth control, and considered accidents the failing of the participants. When the time rolled around when I actually wanted to get pregnant, and following five months of constant sex and no looming baby, I apologized to no one in particular for my harsh assumptions, figuring that possibly I hadn’t been so skilled at using birth control. Rather, I was infertile. Apparently my atonement satisfied the pregnancy gods, for the stick gave me a double line, Yes, you’re pregnant indication the following month.

Coming into sexuality in the late 70s, I never imagined simple access to birth control and the knowledge or how, when, and why would ever be threatened. Birth control and the education surrounding it was a given, at least in California. So now when I read the papers and see how both education and access are under attack, I shake my head in complete disbelief. Personally, I see it as a bait and switch around the abortion issue, an effort to exhaust and divert pro-choicers. Woman – and hopefully concerned men – are going to get so distracted by protecting access to birth control that in comparison abortion rights will be an afterthought, which, of course, as a mere matter of sequential events, it would be.

The real issue is sex – who should and shouldn’t be having it, and who gets to make that decision. I hope all who voted for Bush are glad that this is an area where he is putting his energies because you sure better accept that it will effect your life, either directly or indirectly. If you think there are unwanted pregnancies now, just wait. And if this concerns you, please start flexing your vocals cords. Now.

While those of us with sons are affected by the restrictions on sex education and the attacks on birth control, those of us with daughters – and gee, those of us still fertile folks having sex ourselves – should be yelling at the top of our lungs. But of course, as so many disillusioned non-voters in 2000 and 2004 complained, “It doesn’t matter who wins. It’ll all turn out the same.” Do you still feel that way? If so, I’ve got some property in New Orleans to sell you at an exceptional price.


brainhell said...

I think that blod with dark roots showing is sex-ayyyy!

Gerald de Dios said...

thank you so much for stopping by my blog and the kind comments. I've been so swamped at work. it took ages to write back - sorry :(

Spring Cleaning for me has run into Summer Cleaning and this all better be done so that there's no Winter cleaning!