Good news, ladies! Soon, the
responsibility of birth control is no longer to rest entirely on your
New research into the safety and
efficacy of male birth control has been released with promising results.
The injection, given to male participants every eight weeks, was found to be 96
percent effective at preventing pregnancy. That’s not quite as effective as
female birth control, which has a 99.9 percent success rate when used
correctly, but still … it beats condoms, which have an 18 percent
There’s just one problem: The
study was cut short because 20 participants dropped out, citing side effects.
Those side effects included mood swings, changes to their libido and acne.
So … pretty much the exact same
"side effects" women on (or off!) the pill have always had to endure. Are any of us surprised that
men couldn’t handle it?
But wait, it gets better! The
hormone responsible for wreaking all this havoc within the bodies of our big,
tough, strong men? Progesterone. The same hormone your body naturally pumps you full of between ovulation and your period, and pretty much overloads you with
during the first trimester of pregnancy.
We all know
progesterone’s no fun—hello PMS—but it’s kind of just part of being a woman.
And we deal with it (even if it means we're simultaneously downing chocolate and lamenting that breakout that appeared out of nowhere). Of course, men are quick to give us a hard
time for being overly sensitive that time of the month, but … at least we can deal with it.
And we now have
definitive proof that they can’t.
So what does all this mean for the
future of male birth control? Well, I don’t know about you, but I never held
out much hope that men would be all that up for this anyway. I spent nearly 10
years on hormonal birth control and I know the side effects are no fun. I’ve spoken to countless women who have experienced far worse side effects
than I ever did; everything from increasing bouts of depression to 40-pound
weight gains. There is an entire subset of men that refuses to wear condoms
because they don’t like how they feel. In what universe would we ever expect
them to be up for enduring the hell that is progesterone for any extended
period of time?
Now, to be fair, there were
originally 320 men in the study. So 20 dropping out (that's just more than 6 percent) probably shouldn’t be seen
as an automatic sign of weakness in all men. But then again, have you ever
been around a man with a cold?
All kidding aside, maybe
there will be some who handle male birth control just fine, without any side
effects at all. After all, there are plenty of women who don’t seem to struggle
at all on the pill. And maybe this will ultimately lead to another option for
couples who want to work together in an effort to prevent pregnancy.
very least, it makes it harder for men to claim they’ve been “trapped” by
women. If you’re that worried about it, bro, there’s soon to be an injection
for that. And hey, you can always still
wrap it up.
There’s no word on when, or if,
this method of birth control will actually be available to the general public.
Considering this study had to be cut short, it’s safe to assume there's plenty
of further research to be done. But should male birth control ever become a
viable option, don’t worry, guys—I’m willing to bet you have a few women in your
life who can give you tips on how to deal with the side effects.