by EVAN MATTHEWS, editor

Forms of male birth control are coming, and so they should.
For years, the burden and responsibility has fallen on the women of our society, but science is suggesting change is coming. Could it be possible?

The most recent study comes out of Switzerland, where researchers have been studying a birth control injection showing an almost 96 per cent success rate, many media outlets reported last week.

However, the study was halted because of unpleasant side effects including, but not limited

to, mood swings, depression and acne, at least this is what was reported.

Some news outlets had headlines carrying some connotation.
Global News’ headline read, “Male birth control study halted due to ‘mood swings’ in participants,” or USA Today’s published the headline, “Male birth control study nixed after men can’t handle side effects women face daily.”

I question some of the motivations, and angles, taken with a lot of the male birth control articles I’ve seen, mostly because of social media response to headlines such as the ones I mentioned.

One woman on my social media feed wrote, “Wah, wah, wah. It’s nothing compared to the real, natural, hormonal changes women face.”

Another wrote, “You’ve got to be kidding me. Men dropped out of contraceptive trials due to mood swings and body sensitivities? Maybe they need to learn to suck it up? It happens with female contraceptives, too. These men just aren’t used to handling that. It’s a new age, an age where women aren’t the only ones being held responsible for preventing unwanted pregnancy at the hormonal level. I, for one, think it’s about time.”

For effect, one other wrote, “Could my eye roll get ANY bigger?”

Look, I get it.

Women face a hellish amount of physical, hormonal and emotional trauma, simply because they shoulder the burden and responsibility of effective contraceptive.

Women have been pointing out harmful side affects for years, and not much has been done about it. Now that men are pointing side affects out, experts and doctors are taking note.

It’s unfair to the female gender, and I think based on many of these social media responses, it’s time for change. At the very least, it’s time to try.

Women should be celebrated for providing our world with life, in addition to holding the contraceptive responsibility. To date, the circle of life starts and ends with the women of the world, and so have the physical and hormonal hardships of contraceptives.

Modern birth control methods are not as safe as they could or should be, and with medical advancements being what they are, there is no way the current methods should be exclusively female.

On top of it being unfair to women to have no alternative, having options available to men empowers men in making their own choice regarding contraceptive responsibility.

However, I find this notion of, “Men can’t deal with the side affects… women are tougher because they shoulder the burden,” to be concerning.

I fear at a time of societal innovation and breakthrough, social stigma will eliminate a great concept.

With much of society pointing the finger at men, saying, “You can’t deal with these side affects… Women have been dealing with them forever… Men are weak,” whether it’s true or not, I just don’t see much positive coming from it.

When I say positive, I mean positive outcomes for women.
I mean an effective, approved male birth control.

I fear pitting the genders against one another means accepting that men can’t deal with side affects, the side affects are not a male problem, and society is going to keep things the same: with women shouldering the burden.

That doesn’t sound good for anyone.

I honestly don’t know if I could deal with the side affects, likely not, I’m not very tough.

I know I don’t want to experience mood swings, acne, and unwanted physical sensitivities. Nobody should have to experience these things, women included, obviously.

We all need to get on board in order to have options available.

We need to advocate for better contraceptive and care for our women, and better contraceptive and care for our men.
Things have been this way since the 60s, but maybe it’s time to review what is viewed as an acceptable contraceptive, and hopefully these studies lead to that review.