Your Happy Little Accident, My Traumatic Mishap

by d

The DailyMail is a paragon of trash, there’s no sense in pretending otherwise. It’s a tabloid. Thanks to the Internet, I can now browse their car wreck of a front page whenever I want. After this evening, I’m quite sure I never want to again.

The Daily Mail’s Leah Hardy opines:

Of course we women don’t want a male pill – it would end those happy little ‘accidents’

That headline makes my stomach churn. It implies deceit, selfishness, and a cavalier attitude that is unforgivable.

Imagine, for a moment, that you know of a couple who are undecided about having a baby. It doesn’t matter if it would be their first or fifth child, they just aren’t sure about having one right now. Maggie is on the pill, and every night she pauses before swallowing the next. She wonders, should she skip it tonight? Should she tell John she is ready for this, and just not fill next month’s prescription?
In the end, John makes the decision for her. He swaps her pills for candy. In two weeks, she is knocked up, and confused.
John has stolen Maggie’s right to choose. If this scenario doesn’t anger you, it should. If you’re pro-abortion, you’re probably fuming, wishing you could give John a swift kick to the nuts.
Ms. Hardy is suggesting that John’s actions are to be expected, that he may well have a point, that a little sneakiness is worth it if what he really wants is a baby. And why shouldn’t he have control? It’s his sperm. He should have some say in whether or not the poor things are wasted. Hardy is providing justification for John, because her article is suggesting that most women would do the same if their husbands were on the pill.
To be fair, her opinions in the column lean more toward, “I bet you this is how it’ll be,” rather than “This is how it SHOULD be.” Even given that, I am annoyed with her, because her article is pushing evidence that this is so. She’s tacitly suggesting that this is how it should be. At least, that’s my reading.
In Hardy’s proposed scenario, Janie and Mark are also wavering about having a baby. This time Mark is taking hormones, either a pill or a shot (injections are currently being tested in the real world). Mark is dutifully keeping up his routine, purposely shooting blanks. This time it is Janie who comes to the conclusion that she wants a baby. And she really wants a baby. But, Mark won’t budge.
Now, we all know how countless women have gotten around this scenario in the past. Get hubby drunk enough to forget the rubber, or not apply things properly. She could let the diaphragm come loose, ‘forget’ a pill or a ring or whatever she’s on. In weeks it’s evident that she is pregnant. If Mark is wondering how it happened, well, Janie can just call it a “happy accident.” After all, she’s happy.
I’ve never advocated this sort of thing. It’s akin to stealing Mark’s sperm, forcing him to impregnate her against her will. If we find it easy to get worked up over a coerced ovum, why can we not also sympathize with the sperm that was supposed to run into a barrier and didn’t?
Ms. Hardy suggests that putting Mark on his own version of hormonal contraception will take all the power away from Janie, giving it to Mark instead. Lo, she says, this shall cause women across the land to weep and tear at their hair for lack of half-expected babies. The poor females!
Did anyone ask men how they felt when women were given the pill? If we’re going to talk about subterfuge, what about the thousands/millions of women worldwide who are secretly taking contraception so that they WON’T get pregnant? The IUD is the most prevalent preventative found in developing countries, specifically because it lasts for years and is nearly undetectable. (I’m guessing that the majority of these men are not cunning linguists.) Some of these women are putting their very lives on the line, disobeying the wishes of their husbands who may be abusive or just progeny-mad.
Putting men on hormone contraception will not stop a determined woman from getting her baby. Just as her pills can be tampered with, so can his. His regular doctor appointment for his next stab can be shuffled around and rescheduled ad infinitum or ad infans, whichever comes first. As Hardy points out, men have a reputation for being unreliable, which can play into a mother-to-be’s favor. If she has a friend at the office, she can try bribing someone to swap out the meds. Should these shots be made home-ready, and there’s no reason they can’t be, she can procure another medication and replace his supply with, say, insulin or blood thinners.
Still feeling sympathy for this woman who will break the law just so she can have a bundle of joy?
How do you feel about Mark if, while on a hormone regimen, he decides that, actually, he does want a baby. He doesn’t tell Janie this. Instead, he quietly stops taking his medication. They’re a monogamous couple, they don’t use condoms. Before she knows what happened, Janie is pregnant and NOT happy.
In this scenario, Mark is like Maggie–he has taken control of his private affairs, and is now forcing his wishes upon his partner.
It is for this very reason that many women polled in the past have said they don’t trust men to stay on their version of the pill. As much as women have complained about bearing most of the responsibility for contraception, there is comfort in knowing you have the ultimate control. In Ye Olden Times, it was every body for him or herself. Lambskin condoms and the rhythm method were as much luck as intention. You couldn’t really blame either partner (though many did anyway). Modern advancements have given control to women. Maybe it’s time we even the playing field again.
What Hardy and her sources are neglecting to think about is that marriage, or any relationship, should be a partnership of equals. Modern contraceptives allow either partner to kibosh plans for pregnancy.
So what if “the birth rate would drop like a stone”? GOOD! There are too many people on this planet anyway, and way, WAY too many children are born to parents who cannot care for them or who just plain have no business being parents. You all know the sort of people I’m thinking of. Need a suggestion? Octomom.
The simple facts are that even with the myriad of options available, babies are still being conceived. And they’re still being carried to term. We always hope that each child is going to a loving home where it will have only the best opportunities for growth… but the statistics prove that that doesn’t happen for everyone. Expanding the options can only help to reduce the number of unhappy children.
And, lets throw out another boon of male hormone contraceptives. The fucking anti-abortion assholes can’t complain that it’s going to end lives. When you fiddle with things on the woman’s end, there’s also a teensy chance that the ovum and sperm have bonded, that conception has indeed taken place. People scream about the pill because they think it’s aborting little lives. Are we going to start defining life not only at conception, but pre-conception? Are half-human gametes now to be granted full rights by the law? God killed Onan for spilling his seed upon the ground; should every teenager be tried as a mass murderer?
Why should a one night stand result in a single mother and a clueless father? That man deserves to have a say in whether or not his genetic material is carried to term, just as much as that women deserves the information and safe environs needed to either abort or raise that child.
We call this blog “subterfusex” but that’s nothing compared to “subterfuception.” Tricking someone into having a child is just as deplorable as forbidding them from taking steps not to have a child.
So, Ms. Hardy, you and your sources can whinge about no longer having the power to sneak in one last child before menopause kicks in. The equal rights feminism strives for does not grant you the right to bring children into the world without the consent of the father. If I were a man, I would be cheering.

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