Contraception does not fix a medical problem, however, no matter how unattractive the man. The capacity to bear children is in itself not a disease that needs to be cured. Having children is in fact, the primary difference between men and women, even though some women will never have children. So, for a doctor, denial of contraception is not denying health care as such, as it is denying women a medical means of neutering themselves and aborting any children they might conceive.
For yes, even on contraception, women can conceive children, it's just that their bodies are unable to nurture their children and so they generally die. This is what is known as the abortifacient effect of the pill. Of those that somehow manage to survive, many are aborted as the natural reaction of a woman to a child while on the pill is the desire to not be pregnant. A recent study in Australia found that 70% of women seeking abortions used birth control when they became pregnant, because the women who uses birth control is not wanting pregnancy, and if it does occur, the child needs to be dealt with.
Contraceptive pills also have side effects and dangers inherent in their use. Recently, a contraceptive Yaz or Yasmin is causing problems is implicated in deaths, and critics are calling for a world wide recall. From DrugNews:
Yasmin and Yaz were FDA approved in 2001 and 2006, and are sold by the German drug company Bayer. The fourth-generation birth control pills were marketed as alternative contraceptives with limited PMS (premenstrual syndrome), bloating, and acne.
Due to recent safety concerns over these drugs that have been used by millions of women worldwide, many critics are now calling for a Yaz recall.Recently, drug safety experts have found that the synthetic hormone used in Yaz and Yasmin – drospirenone, can elevate potassium levels in the blood. This may be linked to severe side effects, including:
So far, the FDA has received over 50 reports of death among women taking Yaz or Yasmin. They have also received adverse event reports indicating more than 20,000 episodes of blood clot injuries such as pulmonary embolism or deep vein thrombosis linked to the drugs. However, the agency has yet to issue a Yaz recall.
- blood clots
- deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
- pulmonary embolism
Although Yaz and Yasmin remain on the market, a federal court has ruled that those women injured have the right to seek compensation. Also, sales of the drugs have dropped as Bayer has paid nearly $1 billion to compensate those injured by blood clots.
When it comes down to life saving treatment, risking adverse reactions from drugs can be justified. But how do people justify women taking potentially dangerous chemicals to alter her own female biology so that she can have sex without becoming pregnant? Wouldn't it better for the couple to learn how to avoid having sex on those days where the woman is fertile? I'm not talking about the "Rhythm Method", but the more accurate charting and self-observation that women can learn to do using some of the NFP methods (Natural Family Planning).
I do wonder if the doctor who refused the 23 year old woman contraception actually really suggested the "Rhythm Method" to her, or whether that's what she supposed he was suggesting. So far, only she has gone to the media, and only she has given her side of the story and her translation of what the doctor said to her. I would be very wary of accepting all of what she said at face value, given that what Catholics say can be completely misrepresented, as it's happened to me frequently.
I'll finish off with Jason Evert talking about NFP and contraception, from the Catholic point of view, just so everyone actually knows what the real Catholic point of view on all of this is.
Related link: Women have reproductive duty, says 'rhythm' doctor ~ NZ Herald