Friday, July 16, 2004

Ovary rosaries?

Yesterday's article on the latest and most radically simplified form of "natural family planning" was interesting, if disheartening. I appreciate that this adds one more choice to women's birth control menu, but what an underwhelming innovation: a bead counter you use to track your cycle? We're too flighty and stupid for calendars and need a shiny plastic toy? If anything, the fact that this is comparable to diaphragms and condoms just highlights how horribly deficient most methods of birth control are.
Ms. Sarah Hempel takes issue with the language used in the article to describe your chances of getting pregnant: "high-risk" and "low-risk," by her reckoning, make pregnancy sound like a disease.  Without entering into the pregnancy: natural or unnatural state? argument, I'll simply point out that the risk being minimized is that of an unwanted pregnancy, which I think almost anyone will acknowledge is undesireable and thus properly characterized as a negative. To refer to days as fertile or non-fertile, besides being deceptive, speaks in the language of the baby-wanting classes: the fertility clinic frequenters, those who are "trying." If you're selling to the aspiring barren wombs of the world, you tailor your language.
UPDATE: The Slithery D points out the kerfuffle over Seasonale. Being able to take control of your body in that particular way is pretty cool, but nothing new, as the article points out. The absolutely revolutionary new birth control method is Essure.
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