According to researchers a male contraceptive pill, that identifies and blocks two specific proteins which in turn prevents the launch of sperm cells from the testes during ejaculation, may be ready for mass production sooner than we think. The pill has been initially tested on genetically engineered mice which made them temporarily infertile, while they continued to mate as normal. For fertility experts this pill is the holy grail, and one that has proved particularly elusive.
But we’ll leave all the technical jargon, and science natter for another article, this development also poses many social and sexual questions for men and women alike. Would men really take this pill? Would the rise in popularity of this pill jeapordise safe sex? What side effects would this contraceptive entail? And is this a progressive step for feminists?
One argument is that if both men and women were to regularly take the contraceptive pill then maybe both sexes would have a greater emotional and physical understanding of one another. Would the new image of contemporary feminism look more like women throwing their hormonal contraception out the window, similar to those burning their bras in the 1960s. For women it may mean no more doctor’s appointments, repeat prescriptions, injections and mood swings but for the male to take responsibility and pop the pill.
So in the name of ‘gender equality’ and all that, is it time we men took the pill and endure the same emotional and physical side effects that women have for the past 50 years? For example understanding that women don’t just wear makeup for shits and gigs just that due to the pill they might just have a full scale acne outbreak. Furthermore if I was to take the male contraceptive and filled with artificial hormones I’m not sure how well I’d take the Chinese delivery man ringing to say he is stuck in traffic and will be another hour. From what I’ve seen emotional eating is quite traumatic.
While speaking to one of friends that is a lady she stated about men taking the pill “I would love it! There is so much pressure and assumption on girls taking the pill that I think guys need to take responsibility. But obviously use a condom as we’ll (insert wink face)”.
On the other hand when speaking to a male friend they suggested “If men were to take the pill it could go down two possible avenues, one the birth rate could dramatically decrease causing a stronger economy due to people not paying for children or two could potentially result in a lot of unplanned pregnancies due to men saying they are taking it when in fact they are not. In my opinion the idea would not be wise!”
Personally I’m hoping for a ‘Children of Men’ scenario with Clive Owen saving civilisation.
But will this new contraceptive pill for men mean less safe sex, for example with the male party be lured into a sense of false security, will we simply think that STDs are also stopped by the pill? I hope this isn’t the case and people are much more informed as we live in a 21st century Western society where we are bombarded with safe sex advice and given goody bags of condoms and lube. But there is really no such thing as safe sex but only safer sex, and so all precautions and check ups must be taken, such as a doctor’s note with the words “CLEAN TACKLE!” written in felt-tip or something to similar effect…
In closing, the development of the contraceptive pill for men is exciting both scientifically and socially, giving men a real say in family planning for the first time. But with the turbulent mood swings that go with it I’m not too keen ladies, sorry but I’m keeping my sanity.