Opinion: Birth Control Is Always The Woman’s Responsibility

Women are literally responsible for everything. We clean the house, we cook, we take out the trash and fix light bulbs, we watch the kids, and we work full-time jobs — all with little complaint. We’re also the ones who have to worry the most about birth control, but here’s why I think that’s actually a good thing.

  1. Because when it comes to sex, guys can be foolish. Not all guys, but you know sometimes when you’re in the moment, birth control doesn’t seem like a great idea? I’ve been with guys who were begging to take off a condom mid-romp. And, no. Sex is enjoyable for me if I know I’ve tried my hardest to reduce the risk of STD’s and pregnancy. Taking off a condom midway through defeats everything and will make sex incredibly unsexy for me.
  2. Even if he brings a condom, it may very well be expired. Some guys like to carry a condom in their wallet, which is actually a bad idea. That condom goes through a ton of wear and tear based on the friction of being in his pocket. Also, who knows where he even stored that thing prior to? Instead, I have a box at my place that’s fresh and new and has been kept in the best conditions to avoid breakage. I doubt he’s checking the expiration regularly on his, or will understand why expired condoms just aren’t good enough. And if I’m having sex outside of my apartment, I’m the one making sure my stash of condoms safely comes with.
  3. I don’t know if he’s lying. Sure, this can go both ways. Pulling out isn’t a very good method to avoid pregnancy, but it’s at least marginally better than not pulling out. That means that right as he’s in his peak moment of passion, he needs to remember to take one step that’ll make it slightly less enjoyable for him but much safer for you. Are you willing to bet on those odds?
  4. No man can take my body hostage. There’s a lot that can happen after pregnancy, and every single choice is up to the woman. But say I’m in a committed relationship with someone I love and want to have kids someday. Then, I find out I’m pregnant because he didn’t pull out when he said he would. That means I’d probably go through with the nine months of changes my body has to go through. Pregnancy is a beautiful thing, but it’s also rough on women both during and after. Men don’t realize that those two seconds of time for him mean a lifetime of change for us.
  5. Guys can’t get pregnant. I mean, no kidding. We all figure this out pretty quickly in life. But since I’d be dealing with the morning sickness and the sore boobs, it’s also my job to prevent all that before I’m ready. Should it be? No. In all honesty, he should care about it just as much as I do. But I can’t expect someone to empathize with an unwanted pregnancy unless they’re able to go through it too.
  6. There are way more options for women. Again, it’s not fair, but it’s the way it is. That means it’s up to his condom he’s going to be unhappy about, or a device or hormonal plan for me that can won’t necessarily be doomed by a microscopic hole or tear. Getting an IUD or an implant isn’t wonderful, but the peace of mind does help.
  7. I’m not putting his sexual comfort before my health and happiness. Sex can be both good and bad. Sometimes, we have bad sex with people we love. Other times, it’s great sex with people we don’t totally respect. If you’re in a position where he first agrees to wear a condom and then flakes out, you are openly putting his one-time sexual preference above your entire life. Even if you choose not to go forth with a pregnancy, it’ll still change you forever.
  8. Because I’m a responsible adult. I learned about safe sex when I learned about sex. And even though it’s enjoyable, the initial purpose of sex is reproduction. So, in order to be sexually active and still avoid having kids before you’re ready, you have to be smart and educated about your options. Some guys are ready to have sex but too nervous to talk about it, which is absolutely ridiculous. You may not expect him to discuss options, but at least you can take action.
Karen Belz is a New Jersey native who is currently living in Maryland. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Communication with a focus in Broadcasting and Print Media Studies from Millersville University of Pennsylvania. Since graduating, she has written for sites like LittleThings, HelloGiggles, and Scary Mommy and is currently an e-commerce editor at Bustle.

When she's not writing, she enjoys making her phone run out of memory after taking too many photos of her dog. You can find her on Twitter @karenebelz or on Instagram @karenbelz.