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Hey guys!

First of all, thank you for your feedback! Wow, I am so grateful to everyone who voiced a favorite recipe, and really touched to see how many of you have tried my little creations. (If you missed it, please scroll back to the comments of my last post to pipe in about your favorite Choosing Raw recipe). Looks like the cashew alfredo and zucchini marinara are slightly in the lead. Viva la veggie pasta.

Also, I’m so happy that the root vegetable medley looks pleasing! I really love the recipe (and the dressing) and hope you guys will give it a try.

I’m here with a question I’ve gotten from several readers, most recently Alejandra:

Hi Gena,

I recently came across your blog and was very interested in your approach to all things vegan and raw. You mention in that post that you are not on a contraceptive. I have been on mine for 12 years now. Never comfortable with taking hormones everyday but I was never offered any alternative that sounded less invasive and reliable enough.

I was wondering if you have found a contraception that doesn’t involve taking hormones or polluting the earth (condoms), I would be very interested.

Thanks for reading my email, I look forward to hearing back from you.

Alex

The truth of the matter, Alex, is that this is a question I have yet to come to terms with myself. I wish that there were a birth control method that was totally natural, totally reliable, and totally convenient. Alas, it’s just not so. We’re meant to reproduce, and trying to shut that biological imperative down is not likely to be an easy project. So women are left with a series of imperfect options instead. Many women have negative responses to the pill, and I was one of them the first time I took it. I’ve also never been comfortable with the idea of birth control, in spite of the fact that there is little solid clinical evidence to suggest that there is any downright harm attached. So I totally understand why it seems to make you uncomfortable, too.

In the end, I appreciate birth control as an option for couples who are in long-term, monogamous relationships. From a philosophical and political standpoint, too, I am deeply grateful for the pill: its advent was the single most decisive step in liberating women from what was once the tyranny of being susceptible to pregnancies. I’ll never feel entirely positive about it, but I think it’s a perfectly valid option for those of you who think it’s best for your situation in life at the moment.

I also support alternative options, including copper IUDs and condoms and diaphragms. Many women are pressured into taking the pill by boyfriends and by gynecologists, and that isn’t right: going on birth control is a big decision, and no one should be pressured into it, or told that it’s a no brainer.  The choice to take hormones is a personal one—as personal as any other choice you make about your reproductive health—and no one, not even your lover or life partner, should make you feel as though you have to do it.

Naturally, if you suffer from some sort of medical condition that necessitates the pill or other hormone treatment, or if you’re taking the pill to regulate your cycle, or if there’s any other reason why a trusted medical professional has recommended you take it, you should of course take that advice to heart.

I hate to leave a question of the week so ambiguously answered, Alex, but there it is. I really welcome my readers to chime in on this topic if you’re so inclined. I’m clearly no expert here, and so it would be great to hear some alternate perspectives. In the meantime, Alex, I hope you listen to your intuition and do what’s right for you—all the while knowing that whatever you choose, no one should fault you, and you shouldn’t fault yourself. Reproductive health is a minefield of imperfect solutions and scenarios, and all we can do is our very best to navigate options intelligently.

I’ll be back this week with a less somber topic. And on Thursday, I’ll be off to New Orleans for five days to visit my Chloe, which means three very awesome guest posts for you guys!

xo