Birth Control users- Stigmatized as being easy
Girls and Women who menstruate- Taught that it is shameful and dirty
This is the reality for women in regards to topics like, contraceptives and menstrual cycle. Even now, these two subjects are considered taboo and many girls and women feel stigmatized; in a world where girls are often taught to quit sports because of menstruation and where states and countries restrict access to contraceptives; individuals, organizations, and groups are taking a stand to end the stigma and empower women from around the globe-One App and One Twitter Movement at a time.
Often times, the media shames women for having their period and deemed disgusting. Remember the 2015 empowering and solidarity driven #PeriodsAreNotAnInsult hashtag? The movement that started after Donald Trump infamous fight with Megyn Kelly where he made a statement about her being on her period and I quote, " "blood coming out of her whatever." #PeriodsAreNotAnInsult was used to educate, empower, and disarm the shaming of the menstrual cycle. Now, think of 2016 as a continuation of the cause. If 2015 was the year of the Period than 2016 is the year we uncuffed our uterus and went public. Movements like #MenstruationMatters are breaking the stigma of the period, even working on initiatives that send proper sanitary pads to places around the world where girls are often forced to stay home from school because they lack necessary menstrual and hygiene supplies needed to attend school during their cycle. Not to be outdone, this year Birth Control Apps like Nurx (is the fastest way to get oral contraceptives and Truvada for PrEP) have emerged in what some are calling the birth control revolution.
With states like Oregon and California making contraceptives more assessable without a prescription, having access to affordable or free contraceptive has never been easier. In Colorado, the pregnancy and abortion rates were reduced by 40%, in St. Louis, the teen pregnancy rate fell by 79%. These are stunning numbers, made all the more apparent when we realize that there are 3 common barriers to accessing birth control in the United States today:including, financial constraints and education. Contraceptive apps have not only made it easier for women to access contraceptives but has given women the ability to purchase contraceptives without going through the constraints of insurance coverage. Where there are supporters there will be groups who oppose, often believing free contraceptives leads to more sexual behavior and reduces fertility, but contraceptive apps like Natural Cycle( fertility tracker app via Sweden) and Nurx believe the app and their products help to break down barriers and reduce the stigma of women's reproductive health.
Why is this Important?
2016 has been an interesting year for women's health, from the abortion safety movement, pills on drones, athletes speaking up about Periods (because periods do happen) and now more than ever, access to birth control has become more attainable with or without a prescription. Movements and actions like these empower, educate, and break down the stigma of women's health. The Menstruation Movement isn't only about "period products" it's about having a safe space to be a woman, to be educated on hygiene, being able to go to school and not feel less than, just like the Birth Control movement, this allows women to educate themselves and take ownership of their bodies. Actions, movements, and organizations empower women and girls, not only because they're able to break taboos but because more women are speaking up, educating themselves and others, and are joining forces to break the stigma of what it means to be a woman today and taking control of their own health. As the old saying goes "Educate a girl, change the world."
Which Birth Control App or Website Should You Use?
Here’s What You Need to Know About Your Birth Control Access Post-Supreme Court Ruling
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