SHE SAID WHAT?!
Posted By Gaby
After having our second child, Eric and I have been contemplating the possibility of a third, but it usually goes back to the reality that three kids might not be the best for our family. With our busy schedules, jobs, and our town’s cost of living, having only two kids is something we’re happy with and feel we can manage.
Obviously, in order to ensure we have only two kids, we have to consider effective birth control methods. As many of us learned in high school, abstinence is the only method of birth control that is 100% effective, but really, who’s going to abstain if they don’t have to? That means there are only two methods of birth control that don’t require chemicals or foreign objects in our “bathing suit areas:” either Eric gets a vasectomy or I have my tubes tied.
You’re probably thinking that we’re going to extremes, especially when things like IUDs and the pill are not only available and effective, but also allow for us to change our mind about having only two kids. But I don’t think so. Please brace yourselves while you read the rest of this post, as we’re venturing into TMI territory.
For many years, the responsibility of birth control has been borne by women, which is pretty sexist, if you ask me. Not only do I have to carry the baby for nine months, nurse it for another nine (or more), deal with the physical and emotional recovery of childbirth, and put my career on hold, but I also have to take a pill or tie my tubes when I want it to be over? Please realize that I don’t believe women shouldn’t take responsibility for their bodies or be in charge of their own birth control methods. I’m specifically speaking to being in a relatively equal, monogamous relationship with the father of my children in which I’m not experiencing any physical and sexual abuse or risk of. In other words, I’m talking about my situation.
I fully support a woman’s right to her body and to her choice of birth control, and if I was a single lady, I’d be carrying condoms in my purse and taking the pill. But that’s not my situation at the moment and I don’t want to take the pill, damnit!
So here’s the deal. When Eric and I discuss a vasectomy, he usually argues against it. I think it has to do with this preconceived notion that it somehow strips one of his manhood. Okay, maybe you’re shooting blanks, but how about some support here? Why should I have to fill my body with chemicals when a more effective, essentially reversible set-up is available? With the pill come risks and it’s not 100% effective if, for example, you are on antibiotics or if you don’t take it at the same time every day. Not to mention, the pill’s hormones turn me into a raging lunatic. “You mean you can get worse?!” Yes, yes I can, and you don’t want to see it.
The other and most likely approach I’d consider is the IUD. The IUD is a little T-shaped piece of plastic that gets inserted into a woman’s cervix. There are two forms of the IUD, one that secretes hormones and one that contains copper. Both work their magic and are effective birth control methods, but the idea that I have to have something jammed “up there” does make me uncomfortable. Not to mention that there are risks, like it puncturing your uterus, it coming out, or it causing ovarian cysts. No me gusta.
Of course, we can go old-school and either stick with the tried and true condom or go the route of “We’ll take what God brings us”. Well, those are all fine and good, but I’m not one of those women (TMI COMING) who’s blessed with having “Aunt Flow” (I hate that bitch) visit me at the same time each month. The non-chemical methods freak me out, because what if there was a breakage? Then I stress, which delays Flow’s visit, only stressing me out more. What for? So Eric doesn’t shoot blanks?
The reality is that with two c-sections, I’m not really able to go beyond a third without major risks to my health and our potentially unborn child. If I can be honest, us not wanting go beyond two kids is tremendously impacted by my fear of uterine rupture or death. Yes, I’m aware I can die at any point at any time and leave my kids, but I feel that I have more control of whether or not I have more kids than I do of an illness or a plane crashing into my house. So yes, if Eric chooses not to get a vasectomy, am I just going to lie there, and not do anything about it? No, I’ll get the IUD or take the pill or whatever. I would just hope he’d consider what I’ve gone through for us to have kids and take one for the team.
HE SAID WHAT?!
Posted By Eric
We are talking about my manhood here! I can honestly say that I have backed off a lot on my stance about not snipping my junk. At first I was just being a typical man thinking that if my wife gets pregnant, that is her problem. I figured it is her responsibility to either tie her tubes or use birth control. I could wear a condom, I guess, but I would rather not.
Then I realized that if Gaby does get pregnant, I am the one that has to deal with the raging hormones (on top of Gaby’s normal rages), child expenses, and lack of time for my hobbies. I also recently became aware that if Gaby had another C-section, she might be in danger medically due to scar tissue. Being a medically scared freak I would never want to put her in that kind of danger. So maybe me getting snipped really is an option.
Medically, it makes sense. A big part of me still says, “but that’s my manhood!” Maybe it is a defense mechanism. What if later we have marital problems? Gaby could move on and continue with her new family. While now I as a man am left without any ammo. (Though I do understand that if women tie their tubes, they are left in the same situation.)
I also want to make a case for women about why men shouldn’t get vasectomies. If you have husband and he’s had a vasectomy, he now has much more access to cheat. Why? Well, for starters he cannot get any women pregnant. Therefore, his chances of getting caught are much lower. I am not saying all men will cheat, but studies show 50% of married men cheat. Only 26% of married women cheat, so play the percentages ladies!
My last case for not getting a vasectomy comes from a family member. He had two children with his ex-wife and then got a vasectomy. After his first marriage failed, he married my cousin. And what happened? He got her pregnant twice within two years—this was almost eight years after his last child with his ex-wife! I read up on WebMd that apparently 1 in 100 vasectomies fail. I just have a feeling that if they tested vasectomies on only people of Mexican descent, the rates of failure would be much higher. Because if Mexicans can do something well, it is getting women pregnant.
This is definitely a tough debate and even I’m not sure where I stand on this anymore. I feel a little less strongly about not getting a vasectomy as I did before, but I’m still not ready to go get snipped tomorrow. I say, get it on and worry about it in the morning. =)