Friday, January 6, 2017

Daily Action: Buy Plan B

When I was 21, I had a pregnancy scare.

I had been offered a job that summer to work as a costumer for an outdoor production company after I graduated college, and before I started my Masters program. I was incredibly excited about the opportunity, but I ended up not taking the position, as I felt I needed to be home with my family after my brother passed away. 

I was living with my parents, driving a pickup truck that cost almost my entire paycheck to fill, and working at a school uniform store part time. I also met and started dating a man twelve years older than myself. 

The first time we had sex, I wasn't too concerned going into it, as I'd been on the pill and I had asked him to pull out when he was close to completion. Things got completed a little sooner than I think he or I anticipated on his end, and I was suddenly panicking. Had I let my birth control lapse? Was it going to be effective enough? Did I have enough left over in my system to prevent a pregnancy? I'd used condoms with every other partner, and was completely out of my league on this one.

The next day, I went to the pharmacy and asked the pharmacist in my parents' hometown for the morning after pill. I had heard that it existed, and I thought it would be my best chance to avoid a pregnancy. The man scowled at me and said I needed a prescription. Oh man, now the real panic set in. I didn't have a doctor in the area - I couldn't get a prescription. I went home, found my birth control prescription, and took as many as I could. Was 6 enough? 8? 10? What will this do to my body? Will this poison me? Will it be effective in preventing a pregnancy? I read the instructions that came with the birth control from back to front, and over again. 

I think I ended up taking 8 pills, drank lots of water, and went to bed.

I ended up getting my period on June 6, 2006 while watching the Omen. I remember crying huge tears of relief in a bathroom stall at the movie theater. 

I would never wish those five days of panic on anyone. 

Last night, I went out and purchased Plan B. It's safe, legal, and there is only one tablet to take. It's also over the counter and has a shelf life of up to four years. I'm currently not pregnant (with no plans to be), and am on birth control, but I'm also afraid for how the next administration is planning on handling health care issues, specifically as they relate to women. I want to be able to ease the minds of my friends, if they are ever in a position where they need Plan B, and it's either no longer offered or the pharmacist will not sell it for moral reasons.  

If you're concerned about women's health care, as well as reproductive rights, I encourage you to go out and buy Plan B to have on hand. Maybe for you, maybe for someone you love, maybe for a someone your friends or family knows, maybe for someone who needs it and cannot afford it. The cost is $52 without insurance, and there is a coupon floating around the interwebs for $10 off. 

As always, thank you for reading. I have not shared this story before, but in light of the current political climate, I wanted to add my voice to the fight for reproductive rights. 



  1. I shouldn't be but I am constantly awed by your bravery and your willingness to talk about the hard stuff. Perhaps you've found your second calling.

  2. I often wonder about dickwads like Jeff Hoover who think that conception is something that women do on purpose. That we are some kind of icky, mysterious creatures that should just stop bothering the important menz with our nasty body stuff and just do whatever it is that women do to take care of it.....shesh.....ladies, ammiright? This is the kind of thing we do: scramble around and risk our health when medically safe options should be available.

    I recently read a Savage Love column about Canadian women offering to buy BCPills and ship them to American women who may need them under the new administration. Dan (as always) was the voice of reason and claimed that it would be too difficult and could be dangerous for the women involved, and suggested offering Plan B instead. Any idea about this initiative? I can't do as much directly as you can, being in another country, but this is one thing I could do.

  3. I can totally relate to this story of yours Meg. I feel like many of us had had "close calls" (myself included).

    At first I was thinking - I'm all good! I just got my IUD replaced that lasts 10 years.

    But I never thought about having it on hand for someone else, just in case. This is a lovely idea to have on hand for others. I know many a young girl that are too young now but in 4 years... who knows.

    Thanks for keepin' it real at Meg the Grand. :D

  4. Thank God we women have you as an advocate. I hope you are still planning to come back to Canada this spring. I want to hug you for being such an honest voice.

  5. I recently had an experience where Plan B saved the day. Started dating a new fella and the very first time we took the plunge in the sheets, it ended with a broken condom. Nice guy, but definitely not prepared to start a family with the guy!!!

    Such a smart idea to stock up just in case. I have a lot of friends who are also making appointments to get IUD's while they know they still are covered. Not sure I'm ready to fully go that route but I'm putting a lot of thought into it.

    Thank you so much for sharing!

  6. That you should even need to post this in 2016 is mind boggling, but you are right. Due to a post by Carolyn I made a donation to Planned Parenthood and in support of women in the UK I also supported a scheme in Northern Ireland. I thought we had finished these conversations in the 1970s and 80s.
    I will be marching in London with the Women's March, you have re-lighted my fire!

  7. Longtime lurker and fan. I'm impressed with your daily action and wanted to share my New Year's resolution--to call my elected officials every week. So, I just called (I've been told calling is more effective than emailing) my GOP's office here in VA to tell them I do not want them to repeal Planned Parenthood. I also got a few other things off my chest while I was at it. As a young adult and grad student, PP was my affordable source of contraception and general health care. This is going to be a tough year, but I'm not going to go down without a fight. Calling takes no time at all, and if we all start calling and keep calling, perhaps we can make a difference. Keep up the good work.