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It’s Not All That Taboo: My Journey with Birth Control

This article is going to be part of a four-week series about my experience with birth control.

Growing up, the topic of sex and women’s health was more taboo than people from my church finding out that I listened to Lady Gaga, read about the witches from Harry Potter and had a celebrity crush on a vampire (thanks, Robert Pattinson). Mostly, it was the word “sex” that was considered taboo. Coming from a religious household and school, I was taught to keep my mouth shut about the word sex, because it was more controversial for me to know about my body and it’s functionality, other than the “S-E-X” word.

However, I couldn’t help but be fascinated by the human body. Its functions and capabilities are still a mystery to much of the world. If you fall down and tear your skin, it’ll patch itself up. It can mend bones back together. It has the power to keep a human being alive inside of you for an extended amount of time.

Frankly, I thought it was downright awesome and amazing that the human body was capable of such things. Like other college women around me, I knew that being pregnant was something I didn’t want to experience at eighteen-years-old. 

Birth control is something I have been wanting to get access to since I was 14. Even though I didn’t start having serious relationships until I was 16-years-old, it was a conversation I knew I wanted to have with my partners and my parents.

As soon as I entered college, it was among the top things I had to do. 

The primary reason of why I’m taking birth control is for my period. Since I had my first period when I was twelve-years-old, I was burdened with a heavy flow and heavy cramps – a curse that lasted eight days. Every month, I have to rely on Aleve, heating pads, and Netflix to help alleviate the cramps. At times, I had to pretend I was sick from high school, because the cramps I had were extremely horrible that I couldn’t even focus in my classes at school. Since tuition is expensive, I knew that this wasn’t something I wanted to deal with in college.

Although the process of getting birth control may seem daunting to others, it was relatively easy. I had a 20 minute phone call with a receptionist at SFSU’s Health Center about birth control. We scheduled an appointment for that day and within a couple of hours, I was sitting on top of the examination table, going over my different options. She answered all of the questions I had, about birth control and the possible side-effects it might have on my body.

Another thing I registered for that day was the Family PACT. The Family PACT is a program run by the state of California that allows women and men to have access to a variety of different sources, like birth control, condoms, and tests related to sexual health. With this program, I was able to get my birth control for free.

The nurse practitioner I met with at SFSU recommended that I take a combination pill. The pill I’m currently on not only helps with reducing a heavy flow, cramps, and acne, but it also reduces the chances of having breast and cervical cancer.

Within an hour, I was able to walk out of the Health Center with birth control and a sense of relief, knowing that I’m being proactive about my health.

If you are a woman in college, I highly recommend that you get access to birth control. Let alone, if you are just a woman who is sexually active or just wanting to take birth control for other health reasons, just do it. It’s a conversation that shouldn’t be taboo and to me, if you have access to birth control, I highly recommend that you take advantage of it.

Tune in next week to check out my first vlog about my experience with birth control! I’ll also be weighing in the pros and cons of taking birth control, rank the other methods of birth control, amongst other things. 

 

Celine is a junior studying Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts, Journalism, and Marketing at San Francisco State University. At Her Campus, Celine is a Campus Correspondent at Her Campus, a HSA Advisor, and HC Trendsetter. She is also a PINK Campus Rep and the Panhellenic Delegate for her sorority, Phi Sigma Sigma. When Celine isn't writing for Her Campus, she is most likely shopping, drinking a chai latte, or running around Disneyland.
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