Archive for ‘health’

February 21, 2011

Planned Parenthood is not synonymous with abortion

by d
Picture Of Ortho Tri-Cyclen oral contraceptive...

Image via Wikipedia

Planned Parenthood has a really descriptive name. It does exactly what the name implies. We don’t talk much about “family planning” these days, and we should.

Before modern science kicked in, conception was, for the most part, a game of roulette. Folk remedies and leather condoms weren’t nearly as effective as people wanted them to be, but they kept trying. All it took was some observation and life experience to see how inconvenient–and dangerous–the lack of control could be.

When a woman gives birth too young, she and the child suffer. (18 is the minimum recommended.) If she has children too close together, she and both children can suffer. Doctors and midwives knew these things; parents knew them. But what do you say to a couple who have had the number of children they want? Spend the rest of your lives together in separate beds? More babies happened.

Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood’s first president, was a remarkable woman who saw the effect this had on people, particularly poor people and women. She also saw this suffering as, at best, unnecessary. At worst, it was a deliberate means of keeping women in subjugation.

In 1912, after a fire destroyed the home that William designed, the Sanger family moved back to New York City, where Margaret went to work in the East Side slums of Manhattan. That same year, she also started writing a column for the New York Call entitled “What Every Girl Should Know.” Distributing a pamphlet, Family Limitation, to women, Sanger repeatedly caused scandal and risked imprisonment by acting in defiance of the Comstock Law of 1873, which outlawed as obscene the dissemination of contraceptive information and devices.

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January 28, 2011

Femme Funnies: Blasted feminists!

by d

Why aren’t you reading Hark! A Vagrant? You should be!

January 9, 2011

Coming Soon: The Menstrual Cup Review

by d
7. Don't Panic! (2005)

Image via Wikipedia

I’ve had requests to write about my menstrual cup, and I’ve wanted to for quite a while. Great, I thought to myself, I’ll take notes next month and write something good.

Next month is now this month. This month brought panic.

WHERE IS MY CUP!? OH GOD OH GOD WHY CAN’T I FIND IT!?

F can confirm for you, I was a real wreck Thursday night. Hormones combined with horrified realization do nto make for a fun evening.

It was then that I realized just how much I’ve come to rely on the cup, and how integral a part of my life it has become.

There were two reasons I was hyperventilating:

  1. The mess.
  2. The pain.
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December 30, 2010

The HPV Vaccine and You

by d
Pathology: EM: Papilloma Virus (HPV) Electron ...

HPV. Image via Wikipedia

If someone came up to you, out walking with your young child, and said, “Hey there, I have a vaccine that will prevent your child from ever getting a black eye!” would you say, “How insulting! My child will NEVER have a black eye! I am raising him/her properly and they shall never get into any sort of a scuffle! We use our WORDS in this family!”

(This would, of course, be followed by an incident where your child has an accident that gets them not one, but two black eyes.)

Of course you wouldn’t say this. You would recognize that accidents happen, that even if your child is an angel other people are not, and that your little darling might have a moment of poor judgment at some point in the future. You might still refuse the vaccine, but you wouldn’t act as though this sales rep were trying to blacken the family name.

That’s why I don’t understand statements like this:

“I was greatly offended that Merck suggest I vaccinate my nine-year-old daughter against an STD,” says Kelley Watson, a mother of two in the Chicago suburb of Oak Park.

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December 22, 2010

Aunt Flo and the Mystery of the Recalled Tampons

by d
tampons for sale at the checkout counter in Bu...

Image by joguldi via Flickr

A panic is sweeping the internet. For weeks now I’ve been seeing comments sprinkled across forums and news articles along the lines of, “My favorite o.b. tampons are gone–what should I try instead?” I didn’t think much of it, I’m not a fan of o.b. But you can’t ignore a rumor when the NY Times confirms that there’s truth in it:

Bonnie Jacobs, a spokeswoman for McNeil, said that the company had discontinued the ultra line but that other o.b. products should be available soon.

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December 19, 2010

Femme Funnies: A pad more secure than the US government.

by d

Thank you, newsies at Care2, for highlighting this delightful ad:

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November 14, 2010

Paganism — Not What You Heard

by V

Comic by Roxy!

 

Paganism is often depicted as evil and Satanic, despite the prevalence of peace and equality throughout the majority of Pagan religions.

(A giant programming note: pagan religions are generally very peaceful. That’s not to say that there aren’t people who engage in “Devil worship” but these are usually not people who honestly believe in what they’re doing. They think they’re being rebels, they’re doing it to go against the grain, to shock people, and to rebel against their parents, society, their church, their school, whatever it is that they feel needs to be taken down a peg. They get their information from Hollywood and myths perpetrated by Christians. And the only way you can consider them to really be pagans is to use the broadest sense of the word “pagan” which is anything other than Christianity. Which also includes Hindus, Jews, and Buddhists among other non-Christian faiths.)

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October 27, 2010

What Women Want: Shaving?

by roxythekiller

Art by our own Roxy

Fear of my bodily hair consumes me— and rudely interrupts my sexual fantasies: I slide off my panties, and the sexy, shirtless guy lounging on the bed says in Antonio Banderas’s husky accent: “That’s not a pussy, that’s a Persian cat!”

Yikes.

Most men will never know why their girlfriends aren’t up for sex: shaving. Yes, shaving— female shaving: a time-consuming ritual which includes scraping hair off the armpits, crotch, butt, and vaginal regions. Although some women enjoy shaving, just as some men enjoy plucking their eyebrows, most of us shave for one key reason: Fear. Specifically, fear of rejection… that we won’t land that job, that guy, or worse, the acceptance of our friends and family. Although fear of rejection is about as old as mankind, and fundamentally human, the fear which compels women to shave their bodies is a recent one, encroached in disturbing double-standards and prejudice that dehumanize us.

Where the hell did this custom come from?

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October 20, 2010

It’s a SAD time of year

by d
A 30 kHz bright light therapy lamp (Innosol Ro...

Artificial light boxes can help. Image via Wikipedia

If there was any doubt about whether or not I have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) it’s gone now. I haven’t been feeling at all good the past few weeks. I go on medication for it, but it doesn’t seem to be working this year. It may be because I’m on an anonymous generic (which are NOT 100% identical to brand drugs, they’re morel like mirror images). I’ve called my doctor and a brand-specific Rx is on its way. We’ll see if that helps.

It was bad yesterday. Rain, lots of it. Enough to fuck with my brain. A real flashback to high school, when I first encountered clinical depression. I couldn’t think. I couldn’t concentrate. I just wanted to stare at silly TV or curl up with a bad book, anything but be an active participant in my life. My life seemed far too overwhelming. My life is certainly a bit scattered, pulling me in several directions at once, but it’s nothing a healthy person would be unable to handle. Up until now, I was handling it.

Today, the sun is shining. I was awake, I was happy, able to joke with the friend who gives me a ride to work. Subdued was no longer a word to describe me.

It’s that simple. Sun vs. no sun. Light, energy, motivation. Ironically, I avoid direct sunlight as much as possible, partly because I have fair skin and partly because I just do not like the heat and exposure. I may have to change that. 

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October 17, 2010

The Impossible

by d

Something astounded has happened. I am getting defensive of Snooki.

I adore South Park, I think it’s one of the most incisive shows around. Sure, they do disgusting and juvenile things, but they also lampoon all quarters of society mercilessly. They’re equal opportunity offenders.

I was delighted by this past week’s new episode, “It’s a Jersey Thing”, wherein they shredded the wave of “Jersey” reality shows. I appreciate the humor in the final solution, though it’s made plenty of people angry.

I nearly choked on laughter when I saw how they depicted Jersey Shore‘s Snooki:

“What is it!?” yelped Randy.

“It’s a Snooki!” said Butters’ father. “It’s very famous.”

“How is that famous?”

“I DON’T KNOW!” 

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