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Men vs Women: Who is Responsible for Birth Control?

When my husband and I first needed a contraceptive, there was never a discussion on which method was the best for us.  I asked my doctor for birth control pills, started taking them and it was never an issue.

Shortly after our first wedding anniversary, I noticed I hadn’t started my period when I was scheduled to according to my birth control pills.  With a suspicious mind, I decided to take a pregnancy test, just in case.

I honestly never thought I would see a plus sign on the pregnancy test because I was taking my birth control pills and had only skipped one day in the previous month (I took two the next day as soon as I realized I missed it.) Apparently missing one pill is a big deal, because after waiting two minutes for my results, it was positive.  Nine months later we welcomed a beautiful baby girl.

After the birth of our daughter, the birth control discussion came up with my doctor.  Clearly I wasn’t responsible with birth control pills the first time, so I needed to figure out my options.  Before making any drastic choices my husband and I had a long talk about what the best method would be for us.  There are so many options out there for women, and very few for men.  Unless my husband was willing to wear a condom every time (a vasectomy wasn’t an option because we knew we wanted more children,) I would be responsible for our contraceptive choice and preventing a pregnancy before we were ready.

About.com recently posed the question on whether men should become more involved in contraceptive choices.  They even went as far as asking if we think that men should help remind their partner to take her pill everyday.    Having sex involves both you and your partner, so should there be a discussion about each others feelings on contraception?

Before speaking with my husband, I automatically assumed that he wouldn’t compromise on our contraceptive method.  I figured that the responsibility fell on me and he didn’t want to be involved.  Only after I brought it up with him and we had the meanigful discussion, I realized it did matter to him.   We finally decided on the intrauterine device (IUD) after Harlan was born, because that was what was best for our family at the time.

I admit, bringing up the birth control situation wasn’t exactly the most comfortable thing, even with my husband.  Although we couldn’t feel more blessed that we have our daughter, getting pregnant on birth control really opened our eyes on how the importance of its effectiveness.

Here are tips given on About.com on how to talk to your partner about using birth control.

Who do you think is responsible for the contraceptive method in the relationship?

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