Imagine waking up one day to the realisation of a pregnancy several years after you believed that such an experience was well concealed under the illusion of contraceptives. Yes, I call it an illusion because what I’m about to spill has been a shock to many couples; in particular women who attempt a go at planning their families. In our previous editions, we carried true-life experiences of contraceptive fiascos which led to the birth of healthy babies as most women’s happy ever-afters, but after grappling with the battle of whether to keep them or sue their service providers for somewhat a ‘botched’ job. Some of them have faced relationship dissolutions over the perceived mistrust from unexplained expectations. Who would blame a spouse, really, to question a bulging tummy following rigorous and intense pill swallowing or many trips to hospitals for various bodily insertions to prevent conception over the years, accompanied by the full feminine body balances of a menstrual cycle as proof of success? Should we all say it happens and accept reality? This is a baby, a human life we are talking about.
Well, medics’ explanations, according to our ‘that moment when contraceptives fail’ articles is that family planning methods are never 100 percent effective and that no woman should be caught unawares when the inevitable happens. Some even go further to push the blame on the women themselves for the lack of consistency in adhering to the regimes such as different times for taking the medications. The explanations and blame games are endless. But does anyone preach this gospel to unsuspecting couples or women when advertising the various methods on offer? Are we ever told that a particular method may fail when advised to religiously take a recommended method or that some of us are just too fertile (as one doctor ascertained) to the extent that we beat contraceptive to conceive? I don’t think so. Most of the time, such information comes when things have gone bad and people are forced to carry a pregnancy to term under the guise of these medications that may fail in spite of the repercussions of unrelenting side effects.
Now, medication failure or success differs from person to person, but as a woman, I dread the thought of having to carry a pregnancy to term and raise a child I never planned for. It’s another thing to finance emergencies, but a baby born out of any means really is a huge inconvenience and breach of excessive trust and patient confidentiality to many women who have to confess openly to taking preventative measures in the event of the unforeseen.
Seeing that these contraceptives have failed, are failing and will fail, it is time medical personnel came out clean to confess that family planning has been a trial and error. It is time women, too, opened their eyes to all probabilities and opted for various methods with open minds when taking the exploration seat to the world of contraceptives into the journey of limited liberty. Trust me, there are many untold stories along the line; “I did not know I was pregnant”. Is it then worth risking the many side effects from contraceptives? n