Number of the Day

[Content Note: Reproductive rights.]

58%: The percentage of all oral contraceptive users who "rely on the method, at least in part, for purposes other than pregnancy prevention—meaning that only 42% use the pill exclusively for contraceptive reasons."
The study documenting this finding, "Beyond Birth Control: The Overlooked Benefits of Oral Contraceptive Pills," (pdf) by Rachel K. Jones of the Guttmacher Institute ... revealed that after pregnancy prevention (86%), the most common reasons women use the pill include reducing cramps or menstrual pain (31%); menstrual regulation, which for some women may help prevent migraines and other painful "side effects" of menstruation (28%); treatment of acne (14%); and treatment of endometriosis (4%). Additionally, it found that some 762,000 women who have never had sex use the pill, and they do so almost exclusively (99%) for noncontraceptive reasons.

["Other hormonal methods such as the ring, patch, implant and IUD offer the same types of noncontraceptive benefits as the pill" but were not included in this study.]

..."It is well established that oral contraceptives are essential health care because they prevent unintended pregnancies," said study author Rachel K. Jones. "This study shows that there are other important health reasons why oral contraceptives should be readily available to the millions of women who rely on them each year."
Just like the fact that most abortion-seeking women are already mothers gets left out of the "dirty slut" framing about abortion, the fact that contraception is used for reasons other than and in addition to preventing pregnancy is getting left out of the "dirty slut" framing about contraception.

I would suggest that someone needs to send a memo to the clueless dudes controlling the debate, but I know that they are already aware of these realities. They just don't fucking care.

[H/T to Jacqueline M.]

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