(Written by Guest Blogger JustAnotherTeen.)
Let’s face it, my girlfriend and I are far from the poster children of safer sex practices. Sure, we are not that bad, and try to use two forms of birth control, but no one could argue that they are the safest ways to go. When we first had sex, she had already been on the pill for awhile to regulate her cycle after she lost an ovary. That was at least one line of defense, but I was adamant that we have two. So at first we used condoms. But, unfortunately, no matter how thin the condom, there is still a difference. Sure, not enough that it should have stopped us. So instead we switched to pulling out as the second line of contraception. And yes, I know, horrible is it not? Pre-cum has semen, it is hard to pull out in time, sometimes you lose the will to, etc etc. But it was just the second line of defense so I did not worry about it too much. Fortunately, we got lucky and never even had a scare. Now she is off the pill for a bit and we have started using condoms with spermicide. Not as much protection as I would like, but definitely better than just pulling out! And lets face it, condoms are some of the most accessible and most effective forms of birth control.
That said, I don’t think teens know enough about them. Can they become less effective if kept in your pocket or a warm car? Do the cheap ones in bathrooms work as well as any off the shelf in your local drug store? Honestly I do not know for certain the answers to these two questions (if I had to guess I would be pretty confident saying yes and no, respectively.) But some teenagers know far less than I do about them, and that is just sad. Furthermore, some teens probably don’t have access to condoms, and that is even more sad.
What forms of birth control do you/have you used in the past? Had any failures or scares? Comment back and let me know. Oh yeah, and feel free to berate my bad second line of defense!
I have used the pill; condoms; fertility awareness; spermicidal inserts; and the copper IUD in my life. The pill made me too depressed to get out of bed in the morning, so I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone. Spermicidal inserts are messy and not too reliable so I would only recommend them as a “second line of defense.” Fertility awareness is wonderful and I would recommend it to anyone BUT only as a second line of defense UNLESS YOU ARE VERY, VERY SURE of what you are doing and in a monogamous relationship and an accident wouldn’t ruin your life (like you’re already married but don’t want to have a baby for a couple of years but if you did have a baby it would be okay). The only method of contraception that I would recommend to anyone in any situation is condoms.
I have been pregnant exactly one time and it was (very, very) planned, so it all worked for me.
I have used condoms, diaphragm, fertility awareness and the copper IUD. I am now the proud mother of a little girl conceived despite a condom AND diaphragm, so I am now wary of even that doubled-up method of birth control. Fertility Awareness works well if you’re willing to avoid intercourse when the woman is fertile – easier for some couples than others. I *love* my copper IUD now, but have also heard that IUDs are often more recommended for women who have already had a baby – I guess because then there’s more room in the uterus? I dunno.
I’m not exactly a good example of birth control working right, but it’s good to know that failures do happen, I suppose.
Yeah, I loved my copper IUD when I had it, too. I had to have it taken out last Thursday because it had slipped out of place. *sobs*
I’m not going to berate you for your choice of a “second line of defense”, I applaud you for talking with your partner about birth control and making some decisions together. I think that probably puts you in the upper 5% of teenage responsibility. Most men, young men especially, still all consideration of birth control to women. HIV/AIDS has changed that a bit, not near enough.
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