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Mind and Contraception

 

BIRTH CONTROL pills have already been linked in some studies to breast cancer and lower male fertility. New evidence suggests they may alter the brain structure of women too. According to Scientific American,  a study reported in the journal Brain Research “found that birth control pills have structural effects on regions of the brain that govern higher-order cognitive activities, suggesting that a woman on birth control pills may literally not be herself — or is herself, on steroids.” The brains of women on the pill show smaller amounts of the “gray matter” that affects learning and memory. 

The human endocrine system is remarkably complex and delicate. The full effects of a ”steroid hormone cocktail” on this sensitive infrastructure may take many years to come to light. But there is already significant evidence that synthetic hormones damage the body and, when secreted into public water supplies, the environment. Here is a major public health issue seldom reported in the mainstream press.

Whether these effects on the physical structure of the brain are confirmed or not, artificial birth control unquestionably alters the psyche of women and tinkers with awareness. The birth control pill changes a woman’s mental outlook. Femininity is openness, a form of attentiveness which artificial contraception destroys.

 

                                                         — Comments –

Reader N. writes:

There is an abundance of evidence that artificial hormones in the water supply have effects on wildlife. For example, Florida alligators in some areas are affected. But it gets worse. The presence of hormones can be detected in domestic water supplies; children are drinking water laced with estrogens.

If the estrogens in the domestic water supplies were coming from an industrial source, there would be a massive public campaign to clean up the problem. Just look at the ongoing debate over some
common chemicals used in plastics. But this pollution comes from the bodies of women, and to stop it would entail reducing their choices.

So nothing will be done. Because it is more important that women be able to have sex at will, than that everyone drink cleaner water.

Laura writes:

There is reason to believe these hormones in the water supply are a factor in recent declines in male fertility.

N. writes, Because it is more important that women be able to have sex at will, than that everyone drink cleaner water.

I would revise that statement to include men. As far as I know, there has not been mass refusal by men to engage in sex with contraceptives.

Kimberly writes:

“The birth control pill changes a woman’s mental outlook. Femininity is openness, a form of attentiveness which artificial contraception destroys.” 

That statement is true on every level, not just a mental one. Emotionally, spiritually, and physically, birth control changes everything feminine about a woman from being open to being closed. But I doubt that it will bother too many people. Just like the nasty effects the pill has on our water, it will not be spoken of at length. 

I saw a youtube video with a young man (I don’t remember his name, but he’s popular) reporting that birth control pills have been scientifically proven to make women smarter. That was his perception of this. I think yours is much more insightful. And you don’t say anything like, “those lucky sluts”, as he does, yet many women will consider his understanding of it more respectful than yours! Amazing.

Kristor writes:

I read last year of a British study that the hormones in birth control pills also deform the ecology of a woman’s pheromonal system – both her output of pheromones, and with the gates in the cell walls of her olfactory system than enable it to interpret alien pheromones. One effect of this is that the woman’s ability to smell whether a potential mate is a good genetic fit is impaired, meaning she is less likely to make good choices about sexual partners. Her own deformed pheromonal output, meanwhile, impairs the male’s ability to make the same determination about her. Love really is partly about chemistry. My wife smells really good to me, and she says I smell really good to her, too.

N. writes:

I wrote: Because it is more important that women be able to have sex at will, than that everyone drink cleaner water.

You replied: I would revise that statement to include men. As far as I know, there has not been mass refusal by men to engage in sex with contraceptives.

There are methods of contraception that do not require women to expose themselves directly, and everyone else indirectly, to hormones such as estrogen and progesterone. So your point is moot
on the practical level.

But you skate past the larger issue, and that is 40 years of “choice for women” as a social good. Women hold the reins of reproduction in the vast majority of relationships, both married and unmarried, it seems to me. If a woman decides to use birth control pills, her husband has no legal right to deny her. He cannot order her to not use contraception, not legally. If she decides to “forget” using them in order to become pregnant without informing her husband, he has no legal right to object. He doesn’t even have legal right to be informed of this fact. And if later she changes her mind again, and decides to have an abortion, her husband has no legal right to stop her from doing that, either.

So to sum up, women have all the cards when it comes to conception. I thought you understood this. Men have no power over women on this issue, save in those cases where women choose to submit. Therefore I stand by my point. It is more important in modern society that women be able to have sex at will without risk of pregnancy than that everyone be able to drink hormone-free water.

Laura writes:

There are methods of contraception that do not require women to expose themselves directly, and everyone else indirectly, to hormones such as estrogen and progesterone. So your point is moot
on the practical level.

Then why aren’t men insisting women use these other methods? After all, men have the good fortune of not being the targets of self-interested forces who market contraceptive hormones. They have some distance from the issue. Therefore, they might be able to bring some impartiality and cool judgment to the matter. Am I missing something? Are there large numbers of men who have insisted that their partners adopt these riskier (riskier in terms of pregnancy) methods?

Feminists have championed the birth control pill in terms of women’s freedom and autonomy. They have defended this freedom and autonomy as a social entitlement and have always claimed the issue for their own. But men have defended this autonomy again and again, both in the civic sphere as voters and in private. Politically, it has always been portrayed as a women’s issue, but practically men have taken a stance on their own behalf, and that stance has overwhelmingly been in favor of artificial birth control and the Pill. 

Again, have I missed something? I have never seen an article in the men’s press about the unhappiness of men with birth control pills or gotten the impression that this is a major plank in the movement by men against feminism (outside the anti-birth control movement of both men and women within the Catholic Church). If it is, I stand corrected and am absolutely delighted at this development. I would love to see a movement by men against all but the natural rhythm methods of birth control.

While a husband cannot legally force his wife to refrain from using synthetic hormones, he does have the power to insist before he marries that his prospective spouse promise not to use birth control pills and he does have the power to refuse to have intercourse with any woman he believes may be using them, including his own wife. It would be wild exaggeration to say that most or all women would be deliberately deceptive to the men they married if they were asked to make this promise. I do not in the least doubt that some men have not wanted their mates to use birth control pills and have been unable to prevent them from doing so, but this is not a widespread social phenomenon as far as I know.

It is not true that women have all the cards when it comes to conception. To say such a thing is to deny that sex is more than physical communion. Men have the power to refuse altogether and to influence women. It is almost impossible for a woman to force a man to have sex with her. 

N. writes:

As I have tried to make clear before, women control the reins of reproduction in the vast majority of relationships. Men under 40 years of age were raised in a culture of “women’s choice” as a social good. Women under 40 were also raised in that culture, and are taught in public school classes, in clinics, in most homes, and via the mass media that the decision is theirs
and theirs alone. [Laura writes: So neither men or women hold the reins of reproduction. They are both products of the mindless force of propaganda. I don't believe it in either case. I think both men and women want the Pill and choose to "use" it.]

Where would men learn otherwise? Would they learn from the mass media that they should have some voice in contraception? Would they learn from their public school health classes? Where would they even get this idea? [Laura writes: How strange that men are such helpless schleps. They know that prescription medicines always have side effects. They know the women they love are using prescription medicine so they can have non-reproductive sex with them. How complicated is it to speak up? How much intelligence is required?]

“After all, men have the good fortune of not being the targets of self-interested forces who market contraceptive hormones.”

But by not being the target of such hormones, men are also taught they have no right to voice any objection. [Laura writes: And I suppose women just mindlessly use the Pill. So, again this entire issue of who holds this freedom is moot.]

” They have some distance from the issue. Therefore, they might be able to bring some impartiality and cool judgment to the matter.”

Excuse me, but you don’t seem to have noticed the last 30+ years of mainstream media propaganda that teaches men’s judgement is rash, poor, and even stupid. Unless they are black or homosexual, of course. See any of the common sitcoms going back to “All in the Family” for examples.

” Am I missing something? Are there large numbers of men who have insisted that their partners adopt these riskier (riskier in terms of  pregnancy) methods? “

Yes, you are missing something, and I guess I haven’t put it strongly enough. Contraception, with the exception of condoms, isn’t anything any man gets to have an opinion about. It’s not his business, it is her business. [Laura writes: Okay, men are puppets and don't really want to have risk--free sex but are having it forced upon them by social conditioning.]

“Feminists have championed the birth control pill in terms of women’s freedom and autonomy”.

In fact, feminists have championed contraception in terms of women’s freedom and autonomy. Margaret Sanger predates the birth control pill by a couple of generations, for example. But you have just made my point for me: contraception is not a topic most men can raise with their wives, because both have been taught for 40+ years that it’s “her choice”, and hers alone.

“Again, have I missed something? I have never seen an article in the men’s press about the unhappiness of men with birth control pills”

No, of course you haven’t, because most men have internalized the lesson pounded into them from all sources that contraception is a women’s choice. Furthermore, the effects upon the larger
environment are not generally known. So why should there be any protest? Again, you are making my point for me.

“While a husband cannot legally force his wife to refrain from using synthetic hormones, he does have the power to insist before he marries that his prospective spouse promise not to use birth control pills and he does have the power to refuse to have intercourse with any woman he believes may be using them, including his own wife.”

 I have pointed out over and over again that in Western civilization, the cultural and legal norm is that contraception, including abortion, is the sole province of women. Men are not to have an opinion.And therefore, I still stand by my point: it is more important to modern society that  women be able to have sex at will without risking pregnancy, than that everyone  be able to drink hormone-free water.

Laura writes:

Yes, the cultural and legal norm is for women to decide. But, men have agreed not to have an opinion. Men have agreed to let women decide. Most people in modern society know that long -term use of prescription medications has side effects. I don’t believe men are so conditioned they wouldn’t take an interest in the side effects of the Pill on the women they love, not to mention on the environment. There are very powerful reasons why they ignore the dangers.

I’m sorry but your argument is utterly astonishing to me. I cannot grasp the idea that men have given in to risk-free sex and a passive role regarding contraception because they were forced to. And while superficially, yes, it is more important to modern society that women be able to have sex at will, practically this freedom is an expression of the desire by both men and women to have sexual freedom. 

Now men can realize they have been conditioned. Let them speak up. Let them reject the birth control pill, not just out of concern for the environment, but out of concern for the women who are using it. The spiritual and demographic effects on our culture also make it incumbent on them to reject the Pill and refuse to be geldings.

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