52% Of Men Said Birth Control Doesn't Benefit Them And Twitter Said, 'Oh Really?'

by Meredith Bland
Originally Published: 

Survey found the majority of men really don’t understand birth control

In this country, we place responsibility for most things child-related squarely on women’s shoulders — that includes the decision of whether not those children get created in the first place. Most of us are well aware of the fact that women can’t make babies without, at a minimum, male sperm (and if you weren’t aware of that, we’re sorry to drop that bomb on on Friday afternoon). It would, therefore, make sense for birth control to be an issue that both men and women take more than a passing interest in.

In a recent survey, however, most men said, “Birth control? Pssh. That’s chick stuff.”

The results of this nonpartisan study by polling firm PerryUndem gained notice yesterday after Think Progress posted a tweet about the survey that said: “52 percent of men say they haven’t benefited from women having affordable birth control.”

The feminists of Twitter took one look at that tweet, played “Formation” on the feminist conch shell to sound the alarm, and joined together to offer their thoughts on these result. Here is a sample of some of them:

Men who think that they don’t benefit from women having access to affordable birth control are men who never worry past the tip of their penis. If we are going to move forward with that line of thinking, then women shouldn’t have to pay for men to have access to Viagra because we never have a problem getting hard.

Speaking of having trouble getting hard, the men most likely to say they didn’t benefit were men ages 60 and over — 70% of them apparently felt that since they personally were unlikely to get anyone pregnant, it didn’t matter whether women in general could access birth control. Thanks, Grandpa! The baby will come live with you and Grandma half the time!

The survey also found that only 56% of male respondents “want to keep the ACA provision that requires insurance plans to cover birth control without a co-pay.” And, only 83% of men and 90% of women wanted to keep the part of ACA that bars health insurers from charging women more for insurance than men because of their gender. Shouldn’t that be 100-freaking-dang-dog-diggity-percent?!

(Deep breaths punch a pillow deep breaths strangle a towel deep breaths)

So what would losing birth control coverage mean for women? Well, 33% of female respondents said they could only afford to pay $10 or less if they had to buy birth control today, and 14% of those women “could not afford to pay anything out of pocket.” It seems that some of the male respondents didn’t quite get that part — you know, the part about how not having coverage for birth control would mean that it would be more expensive — because from the 56% of men who want to keep the coverage, that number “jumps to 64% after hearing that out-of-pocket costs for birth control would likely increase and the cost savings for the average user now are about $250/year.” We worry about that 8%. God knows what they’re going to do when they learn about tampons. Those numbers also, by the way, mean that 36% of men still said “Eh. So what?” Frankly, we’re more worried about them.

It appears that part of the problem is that some men need to be more educated about female birth control — what it is, what it does, and how much it costs. The fact that there are men who are able to go blithely through their lives without having what we would consider a basic understanding of women’s birth control choices says quite a lot about the value we place on women’s health and the ability of women to be full and active participants in our society. Because even when it comes to women’s birth control, it’s still every man for himself.

(h/t Huffington Post)

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