What We Missed

Dana Millbank suggests that Hillary drink “Mad Bitch Beer.” Nice one asshat.
Over at Slate there is an article by Kate Klonick about why more young women should consider the IUD as birth control.
Some sketchiness in Orange County California, with a Planned Parenthood whose standing nine year county grant was lost, possibly because of anti-choice involvement.
A story from US News and World Report about the Veteran’s Administration trying to adjust to providing health care to female vets.
The census will officially report married same-sex couples in the 2010 census.
Feel free to add links in comments!

Join the Conversation

  • Lilia

    Great article from The Nation on Gates (I know there have been millions but I swear this one is really good).

  • hollinglotte

    I just got my IUD in today! Here’s to no hormones and no worries until 2021!

  • ElleStar

    Thanks for including the link about IUDs.
    I’m personally in love with mine. I don’t have that cold feeling of forgetting something, realizing it’s my pill, then doing the math and hurrying to the pharmacy for super-expensive Plan B.
    My Mirena is no muss, no fuss and my periods have disappeared! Plus they’re more cost effective (to me) than are monthly HBC.
    Like other birth control, IUDs aren’t for everyone, but I would fully encourage women to strongly consider them and not be swayed by the myths out there about them. Some doctors and other medical professionals even believe them.
    No, you don’t need to have been pregnant. They aren’t the Dalkon Shield with all of its problems. I’m glad to see this article here.

  • RMJ

    Today I wrote (hope this is appropriate):
    “Beer summit”: Why was Biden there? : on the implications of including Biden in the recent discussion of the Gates incident at the White House
    UPDATE: Antonio Love’s police assailant put on administrative leave: an update on the Antonio Love situation that I blogged about on Tuesday
    50 Books for Problematic Times begins Monday, and I’m still accepting submissions!

  • ak33yu

    You know, I seriously love my IUD (I’d kiss it if I could reach), but its affordability is somewhat questionable.
    Mine did a magical little flip a few months back, pulling the strings up after it rather like a kid pulling the rope ladder up into a tree house. This necessitated two doctor’s visits, an urgent series of xrays and a fairly long ultrasound to confirm that it hadn’t perforated my uterus and gone off spelunking into, say, the spleen.
    It hadn’t. It’s still happily hanging around in my treehouse, but I have been advised that it will be a real bitch to get out later.
    This is NOT to say that I recommend against IUDs. I don’t. I still passionately love mine, and DO recommend it to others, with the caveat that it is super wicked awesome IF you have health insurance that will cover doctor’s appointments, radiology exams, and difficult extraction.

  • ak33yu

    …and yes, I know that the backflip/tree house issue is not typical, but I also know that without insurance, it probably would have cost me between $1000 and $2000 just to verify that everything was still cool, to say nothing of the potential cost (and pain) of extraction later.
    In the Still Pro-IUD column, it should speak highly of the Mirena’s comfort and lack of (other) side effects that after we verified that it was still in the right place, my first question is “You don’t have to take it out, right? I can still keep it, right? Because I really really really like it.”

  • Seal

    No one’s mentioned how intrusive the IUD is, though. I prefer not to have plastic and/or copper inserted into my uterus without some serious pain killers first. So far I spend may 20 bucks a year on condoms (I take a handful of free ones from the clinic every week), and eschew any kind of hormonal drugs. I’d like to know it’s efficacy rate, as well. So far, my two friends (older teens and twenty somethings) who have tried to get the IUD had to have it removed/ couldn’t get it implanted because it was so painful or reacted horribly. Add in the reports of heavier, crampier periods, and it sounds like a real winner.
    Thanks, but I’ll pass until they come up with an ouchless period eliminating version without hormones. (In my dreams, I know. But a girl can dream.)

  • Seal

    Oops, reread the article. 99% effectiveness is a sweet deal, but not sweet enough to convince me.

  • ElleStar

    Most of the intense cramping is only in the first 12 hours or so. It tapers off for most women. I had heavy cramps the first day, then twinges and spotting for 2 weeks. After that, only the most random of twinges. I’d be having much worse off of the IUD and HBC, but I do much better ON hormones than off.
    The non-hormonal Paraguard is a good option for lots of women who already have light periods and cramping. From what I’ve read, most women return to their “normal” periods after 6 or 12 months. Again, I have the hormonal Mirena, so absolutely no more periods for me.
    There are also ways of being medicated against the pain of insertion, like a cervical block. It was tough for me, and I have a low pain tolerance, but nothing I couldn’t handle. Everyone has a different experience with it. Even though the two people you know didn’t have it work out, many others, the majority, still do.

  • preppy

    I wish I had a good I.u.d. story… but my sister had mirena, and soon after my close friend. It’s been 19 months for my sister and she’s having it removed because of cramping and bleeding like she never had before. It’s been 5 months for my friend and same thing, totally erratic periods that last a long time. I wonder why their experiences have been so bad? (Both have children by the way). Now I’m too afraid to use one because I already have health problems, but luckily my periods are pretty chill :(

  • ElleStar

    It’s like everything else. Some forms of birth control work for women, while others are a disaster. It also happens that people are more likely to share the horror stories than they are to talk about things going exactly according to plan.
    I’ve been with my Mirena five months and have never been happier with my birth control choice.
    Here is one of my favorite message boards with tons of information about IUDs:

  • bifemmefatale

    I’ve heard many horror stories of docs who refuse to give young women IUDs. They still believe you have to have had a kid first.

  • justkate

    Re: latest BS from CA
    Can we pleeeeeeeaaaaase organize a boycott on all goods from California now? Harvey Milk would do it.

  • 777red

    “Ashton Kutcher and hot girls in exclusive Spread pics”
    Ya know, cause, while Ashton Kutcher is a human and an actor, those ‘hot girls’ are commodities

  • marissafromboston

    not everyone has pain with iud insertion. i had no painkillers or anything, and i had my iud put in with almost zero pain. i felt a little pinch for half a second, and that was it. i drove myself home after, and went for a walk later that day.
    i think the level of pain with one’s inserion has to do with the inserter’s level of skill. as for invasiveness, i didnt find it any more invasive than a pap smear.
    and it was super cheap, too! my insurance covered everything except 50 bucks. not a bad price for 5 years of worry-free protection.

  • ElanaFulana

    While I would love for the census to count same-sex couples, I have my doubts that this will actually happen.
    My understanding is that the Defense of Marriage Act makes it illegal, and I expect homophobic groups will sue.
    And I’m not counting on the DOMA being repealed any time soon.

  • A male

    Today in the news: the death of former Philippine President Corazon Aquino, first female Philippine President and first female president in Asia; of colon cancer.
    This self proclaimed “plain housewife” (though actually educated and from a wealthy family) entered politics and won the hearts of the people after the public assassination of her husband, former governor and Senator Benigno Aquino, a critic of the Marcos regime.
    Aquino was a heroine of mine, though my grandmother supported former President Marcos, who came from the same immediate area in the countryside.

  • lyndorr

    I am tempted to consider a Mirena IUD now. I was for some reason under the impression that you actually couldn’t have kids for five years. I guess no one ever specified that as soon as it’s taken out you can have kids. I am at least 95% sure I don’t want kids in the next five years.
    However, I’ve been using NuvaRing for a few months now and my period is about two days and light which is so nice. And I hope I’ve grown out of acne but birth control might still be helping that. It’s nice to have options though.

  • mugsandpugs

    Short piece from Fresh Air on NPR about Hollywood’s portrayal of “career women:”

  • tabitha

    “Disolving Bikini is the Ultimate Revenge Gift”

  • voluptuouspanic

    Thanks for posting the IUD article! I’ve had the Paragard and currently have the Mirena. I liked the Paragard at first, but now I absolutely love my Mirena. IUDs aren’t for everyone, but are a good option. You don’t need to be monogamous or have had kids. There are often grants for women who don’t have insurance coverage. That’s how I was able to get the Mirena.

  • leshachikha

    It’s true that the intrusiveness is nothing to sneeze at. I have a Paragard and it was definitely not fun to get it inserted in my un-expanded-by-childbirth cervix. I have a pretty high pain tolerance, especially when it comes to medical procedures, but this was really painful! Like the worst menstrual cramps ever, multiplied by ten.
    My periods did get heavier for the first few months. For most women, if I understand correctly, that effect is temporary. I’ve had my IUD for 8 or 9 months now and, at this point, my flow has gone back to pre-IUD levels.
    The bottom line for me is this: A day or two of downing handfuls of Advil and maybe 3 or 4 unpleasant menstruation is nothing compared to ten years of protection without hormones. I’m 20 years old. I’m going to be on some form of birth control for at least another twenty years and there’s a history of blood clots in my family. I don’t want to toy with my body’s chemistry for a good chunk of my life by taking hormonal birth control.
    Condoms are great and do their job, but they aren’t as effective. And they inexplicably give me UTIs if I use them regularly. So I love my Paragard!

  • feministnc

    In the (bad) news as well; in reaction to the recent approval in Italy of the day after pill, the Vatican declares that “women who took the pill would be excommunicating themselves, as would doctors who prescribed it and nurses who administered it.” The article (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jul/31/italy-abortion-pill-catholic)claims that given the high percentage of conscientious objectors in the Italian health service (around 70%) “it is likely that use of the pill will be circumscribed.”

  • becca
  • earwicga

    RE: Female veteran healthcare: http://www.servicewomen.org/ Please educate yourself regarding MST – Military Sexual Trauma, which vets are NOT being treated for as yet.
    Also see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrLGrJFMDic&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fearwicga%2Ewordpress%2Ecom%2F2009%2F08%2F01%2Fswan%2F&feature=player_embedded
    RE: birth control – I use the cap and it is a fantastic method of birth control. Used with spermicide it is very effective, and used with condoms is even moreso.

  • earwicga

    btw, by cap I mean diaphragm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diaphragm_(contraceptive) You have to be comfortable with your body to insert it properly.

  • eleanargh

    I don’t think I’ve seen this posted here yet – a woman in Sudan is hoping to fight ‘indecent dress’ laws after being arrested for wearing trousers: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/aug/02/sudan-women-dress-code.

  • earwicga
  • Mina

    Here are two more, ranging from human trafficking to dress codes:
    “Tracking Africa’s people smugglers” By Brian Hungwe, Harare, BBC, Page last updated at 01:32 GMT, Saturday, 1 August 2009 02:32 UK,
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/8178587.stm :
    “…Six years later, Salma’s journey is still vivid for her, as she recounts how she was terrified of lions and snakes as she trudged through the bush…
    “…’Sometimes [smugglers], they ask the women to sleep with them,’ Salma remembers.
    “‘You sleep with them, otherwise they leave you behind… they do that.’
    “The IOM’s [International Organization for Migration's] Tal Raviv confirmed that almost all smuggled women get raped, and her organisation has also received reports of the same thing happening to men…”
    “Breast practice on the riviera” by Regan Kramer, Paris, BBC, Page last updated at 06:47 GMT, Saturday, 1 August 2009 07:47 UK, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8178818.stm :
    [intro written by someone else] “There was a time when French beaches were full of topless women – but no longer. As cities empty, and France makes its annual migration to the coast, Paris-based journalist Regan Kramer – a member of the feminist Les Chiennes de Garde group – asks why the breast is now back in the bikini…”

  • earwicga

    I’ve also written on the racism and sexism used in this article Mina.

  • jellyleelips

    How long did it take for your periods to disappear? I’m on Loestrin 24 Fe, and mine went away completely after four packs or so. I have been considering Mirena after reading more about it. What other side effects did you have because of Mirena? The only ones I had on Loestrin are bigger boobs and no periods (pretty good side effects, if you ask me) and I’d like it to stay that way. Of course, Mirena effects everyone differently but I’d like to hear more about it.

  • jellyleelips

    Ha! Treehouse is the best euphemism for a part of the female reproductive system, ever.

  • ElleStar

    I had my first period on Mirena two weeks after insertion. I haven’t had a period since.
    Side effects were random spotting for the first couple of months. Cramping the first couple of months. My skin has gotten oilier, but I think that’s more a side effect of me going off of HBC than it is because I GOT the Mirena.
    While I actually really LOVED being on the pill (I’ve been told I have low estrogen, so I think the pill evens me out to where I should be), I would freak out any time I forgot to take it on time. The Mirena is fool-proof on behalf of the user. Which is GREAT. Below, I linked an IUD community. You should check it out if you’re considering an IUD. The ladies there are pretty honest about their experiences, both good and bad.

  • liv79

    Side-effects of Loestrin? My nine-year old son.

  • liv79

    I got a Paraguard about a month ago, and I’ve had a vaginal birth and it was still more painful than I imagined. However, I’ve never had any luck with hormonal birth control due to a liver condition, so the IUD is just about the best thing that’s ever happened to me. Like someone else said- 450 bucks and half a bottle of Advil for a week is NOTHING compared to dumping hormones into my body, into the water table, worrying about partial efficacy or the cost of an abortion. I do however wonder about the cost- who can come up with that kind of money without some serious planning if you have no health insurance?

  • liv79

    Acutally, you have a higher risk of PID if you have multiple partners.