The number of birth control options continues to increase, so has the need for discernment in using them.
Please can you share the knowledge you have on birth controls and how they have been useful to you.
Our birth control for the past 13-14 years is he was snipped (vasectomy). It’s definitely a viable option once you both know you are done having kids, and he’s okay with the idea that he might never have kids again, even if he is widowed and remarries, and there’s no personal conviction against it….but if one is seeking to control having kids or not, I am guessing that shouldn’t be an issue here. Here are my personal pros and cons….I am sure there are much more.
- no extra costs beyond the procedure,
- no need to remember to “take care” of things (do you have a condom, did I take my pill, can we or can’t we have sex in this window of time, etc)
- no hindrances or delays when the mood hits
- relatively speaking, not very invasive compared to a female’s procedure
- it’s fairly permanent
- a personal con, I have had regret, because the decision was made out of fear
I was on both the pill and the patch when we were first married. I have a strong reaction to hormones but both methods of hormonal birth control made me miserable (the patch actually made my physically throw up for 24 hours when I would put it back on after having it off for a week to get my period). I had mood swings, nausea, little to no libido, etc. even on the low dose pill. Another con was it was difficult to remember to take it regularly, and antibiotics and other medications can interfere with its efficacy. The last big con for me was that it apparently can have a secondary mechanism of not allowing a fertilized egg to implant, once I realized that we went off hormonal birth control and never looked back.
We’ve also used condoms at various times. Pros: inexpensive, easy to use, natural. Cons: not nearly as comfortable, much less sensation (once you’ve gone without its hard to go back to them) and for me the ones with spermicide burned. This is tied with hormonal birth control as my least favorite method.
We’ve also used what’s called a lady comp, its a little computer that helps you track your fertile and non fertile times by basal body temperature. Pros: Its 99.3% effective, completely natural, can help you plan optimal times for conception if desired. Cons: expensive, during your fertile days you still have to use condoms, abstain, or pull out etc. Which leads me to another method we tried:
Pull out: Pros; natural, no extra supplies etc. needed. Cons: not terribly effective (although we never had an issue), can be a bit messy (this can also be a pro), doesn’t always feel as nice.
The final method that we’ve been using which is not readily available to everyone: my husband is on testosterone injections for low testosterone which naturally decreases or eliminates sperm production. My husband’s doctor has said its 95ish% effective as a birth control. Pros: for me its great, we don’t need to remember anything (other than his twice weekly injection which we would need to remember anyway), its natural, doesn’t decrease either of our libidos (actually made his much better) and relatively inexpensive. Cons: does impact fertility for a longer time period, it took us many months after going off of it to conceive our final child (months that were not fun for him because he felt awful withdrawing from it until his body kicked in a started making some testosterone on his own) another con is that its an injection but he’d be getting it anyway (we don’t use it just for birth control he had a whole host of symptoms prior to being treated for his low testosterone).