Although couples are both responsible for protecting themselves (and each other) from sexually transmitted disease and unwanted pregnancy, will the new male pill lift the pressure off women who are struggling with the side effects of hormonal treatments?
These are the sort of questions that the general public has been asking since news broke that scientists have discovered a protein that blocks sperm.
Now they are finding a way to restrict the millions of sperm in one ejaculation, while preventing long term infertility and sexual dysfunction. Not an easy job.
But even though this development is years away, women are still starting to worry that men won't be reliable enough to ensure complete protection. Take a look at what's being said on Twitter...
A male birth control pill is in development but until the consequence of not taking it is men getting pregnant I won't trust men to take it.— Bez (@Bez) December 4, 2013
LOL @ "Male Birth Control"— CaribbeanAJ RumPunch (@caribbeanaj) October 27, 2013
Really ladies? You would trust a man to have taken his birth control pill?
Just sell it as a "Male Enhancement"
Male contraceptive pill breakthrough according to the mail online... Interesting. They'd never remember to take it though #sillyboys— HollyCarpenter (@Holly0910) December 2, 2013
Male contraceptive pill being developed, I doubt any lad will remember to take a pill every morning though #pointless— BryBry ♡ (@BryonyBateman) December 2, 2013
In a slightly more unusual twist, Guardian columnist Daisy Buchanan has called for men to be given a taste of the hormonal angst that women suffer using traditional oestrogen and progesterone-fuelled contraception.
She writes, "Contraception should be a shared responsibility, and it's obviously not the fault of men that women have wombs to regulate, and that the side-effects are often pretty grim. But it's exciting that science could be about to give men the opportunity to be more involved than ever in family planning.
"Hormonal contraception allows women to exercise autonomy over our own bodies, but we pay for the privilege in all sorts of ways. If men were to experience some of the side-effects too, it would ultimately lead to both sexes gaining a greater understanding and appreciation of each other."
Although 50/50 contraception sounds great in theory, in reality male contraception will probably end up like a sexual novelty with women shouldering the burden. After all, attitudes aren't easy to change, right?
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