Thought Catalog
February 14, 2014

The Pros And Cons Of The Rhythm Method Of Birth Control

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POSITIVES

You don’t have to fuck with your body’s hormonal cycle.

I hated birth control because I was getting twice the amount of periods as I normally would have. It also made me itch from the inside out. There are other options like IUD’s but they’re expensive. There’s low-dosage birth control but that’s still annoying and I don’t want to take it.

You get to feel cum.

Vaginal walls are very absorbent and semen has a lot of “therapeutic” effects. Apparently the hormones in semen make females feel “happy.” I think that’s a pretty rigid way of explaining the emotional experience, but in basic terms, yes, cum feels nice!

It makes you listen to your body.

I take great interest in my reproductive cycle. I’m aware of when I’m ovulating, I’m aware of the emotional peaks that happen before menstruation, I feel happy when I get my period because it means that I’ve been doing things right, and generally I feel like I’m managing myself with more autonomy; working with my body, rather than against it. I’m lucky though, because I have a 35-day cycle and it has been consistent like this for 2 years. If I was someone who experienced irregular periods or shorter 20ish-day-cycles I would definitely be more hesitant to try the rhythm method.

Skin on skin.

Condoms are saggy and rubbery and awkward. Condoms are great!!! But skin is obviously top choice, hence condom marketing schemas.

NEGATIVES:

Higher risk of disease transmission, duh.

I probably have HPV but ??? Once I heard Gavin McInnes say, “STDs are no big deal, you go and get a shot in your dick and then you’re fine.” This is something my memory has clung to out of self-contained guilt. Gratefully, I’ve never experienced a venereal disease before and I’d like to keep it that way, so blood tests are good. Even in a relationship this is still a legitimate concern. I know several people who got infections from their “monogamous” partners. Syringes don’t freak me out at all so I don’t mind the checkups. Disease transmission is way more serious to me than the possibility of getting pregnant- which is another reason why birth control stupid.

Getting pregnant would suck.

I know a healthcare professional who preferred rhythm method and then she had to get an abortion because of it. She said, “I don’t know what happened, I was keeping track of everything.” Which leads me to believe our bodies are fucking sneaky. I wouldn’t be surprised if because she was in a good relationship, her body realized it was missing all of this sperm and made a temporal change to facilitate reproduction. So spooky!!!

Timing sex.

For me this isn’t a problem but I imagine it would be others. Normally, there is only a 3-5 day window when you can actually get pregnant, so if I want to have semen-filled sex I make sure that I’m as far away from that window as possible. I think the most important thing to focus on is recognizing signs of when you’re ovulating, rather than calculating around menstruation. Women are only ever taught this when they’re planning a pregnancy, but it’s valuable information!!! You’re body temperature rises, you excrete clear, thick mucus- throughout each monthly cycle it’s interesting to see commonalities in mood, appetite, etc. Every body is different though so I think it’s really up to the individual to find out how their body works. TC mark

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