Having Unprotected Sex?
A frustrating amount of women think they won't get knocked up from unprotected sex because they think they're magical creatures.
New research from the Guttmacher Institute discovered that the leading cause of unintended pregnancy in the United States is not due failed contraception methods, but because many women believe they are immune to pregnancy.
According to the Guttmacher Institute's news release, titled "A Year of Magical Thinking Leads to...Unintended Pregnancy," researchers interviewed 49 women obtaining abortions in the US and found that most participants "perceived themselves to be at low risk of becoming pregnant at the time that it happened."
Researchers found that most women who had an unintentional pregnancy weren't using birth control at all, or (goodness) were using birth control but thought they wouldn't get pregnant when they engaged in unprotected sex.
One woman truly thought she wouldn't get pregnant because she "always had good luck." One-third of the participants thought they or their partners were sterile -- an idea not based on any medical proof but because they had unprotected sex before and didn't get pregnant.
One woman thought that skipping a few birth control pills did not put her at risk: "I just thought…they were like magic. If I missed it one day, it wouldn't really matter."
Significantly, the average couple who does not use contraception will have a huge, huge, huge -- 85 percent! -- risk of pregnancy over the course of a year. The study concludes that education is key.
The public needs to "better address misconceptions around pregnancy risk with the goal of preventing unintended pregnancy," the release states. Also, health care providers should also try to better understand patients' beliefs regarding their ability to get pregnant. They suggest that public health campaigns should "dispel myths, address magical thinking, and call attention to the general problem of low health literacy."
Are YOU having unprotected sex?