Saturday, January 22, 2011

Mmmm Carcinogens...

So you may have heard about this already but I would be remis if I didn't share my thoughts.  The World Health Organization has declared hormornal contraceptives (like the birth control pill) a Group 1 carcinogen.  A carcinogen is a agent directly known to cause cancer.  You may be familiar with other carcinogens such as Asbestos, Plutonium, X-Rays, or Mustard Gas to name a few. 

I have believed for sometime that the Pill is almost solely responsible for the dramatic rise in breast cancer over the years.  Now finally some doctors are brave enough to speak out against this magic Pill which has *insert sarcasm* liberated women from the chains of fertility and the bonds of domestication.  Actually this pill has been a 20th century plague devouring lives and marriages.  It boggles my mind that more people aren't talking about this, especially with the raging war against the tobacco industry.  I don't see how this is different, except for the fact that doctors are actually telling women to take it and that it is perfectly safe. Women are buying organic food, chemical free cleaners, and having natural childbirths because they are worried about all the toxins being put into their bodies, yet the same people are popping the Pill and not thinking anything of it. Anyway, if you want to read more about this, you can do so here otherwise let me take a second to share with you my experience with NOT using the birth control pill.

I have the most amazing husband in the world. He asked me to the Homecoming Dance my freshman year of highschool and we have been together ever since. We waited until marriage to be intimate, so the birth control pill was never something that I had to worry about or was pressured into in my younger days. While preparing for marriage I heard about Natural Family Planning on the Relevant Radio 930 AM and decided to look more into it. Being that it was what the Church recommended, I knew that spritually it was something we would have to learn but I had no idea how rooted in science and practicality it would be. A women's body works a certain way, whereas the birth control pill manipulates the proccess, NFP simply teaches you how to observe and work with your body. I was suprised how easy it was and how in tune with myself it brought me. It is free after the initial costs of learning (I think it was $75 for us) and it is obviously natural. Whether trying to avoid a pregnancy for serious reasons or trying to acheive it has been 100% effective for us. I could go on and on about the wonders it has done for our relationship and how amazed I am at how perfect God designed our bodies to work in accord with His plan, but for now I will just say that I can rest easy knowing that my body is safe from the carcinogen of contraceptives.

The pill just celebrated 50 yrs. I pray we will look back on those 50 yrs and say "what were we thinking?"


  1. agree, agree! moral issues aside, i just don't know how people can put all those hormones into their body every day--it totally freaks me out. plus, hormones affect so much more than *just* fertility.

  2. One difference between breast cancer and lung cancer is the level of impact. The link notes the estimate that 40k women will die of breast cancer in 2010. (It omits any estimate of how many of those cases will be caused by contraceptive pills.) Compare that to about 70k for lung cancer (about 80% of which are caused by smoking), or over twice that including men. source

    Another factor is the age of the information. Doctors do not bravely fight secular conspiracies so much as they report their research and sign occasional book deals (using more or less hysterics, depending on their dispositions). Evidence about the risks of smoking started to accumulate even before the pill was invented, and consequently had more time to verify and socialize. You are doing your part to socialize now, but as for whether the medical community deems the pill "perfectly safe," I will quote from your source: "Many of the dangers of the pill are listed on the package insert."

    A third difference is that smoking (similar to, say, automobile exhaust) imposes external risks. That is morally relevant, and given your apparent preemption of the doctors, the objection seems more moral than scientific. You mentioned "devouring plagues," but smoking also has secondary effects (addiction, moodiness, etc.) which are equally cause for social stigma. In either case the secondary effects are difficult if not impossible to quantify.

    Still I did learn something, and following the reference links lead me to more fascinating research. Thanks.

  3. Thanks for the info Chad, glad you are looking more into the topic, I would love to hear what you find.

    My objection is certainly moral foremost, you are right. But I should clarify one thing, I wasn't supporting the tobaco industries, and obviously smoking and taking the Pill aren't exactly the same thing. I was just trying to point out that there are similarities in many ways. For instance, the industry (not just docs but pill manufactuers and companies like Planned Parenthood) push the Pill on women and never even mention the natural, safe alternative. Also they are both taken for social reasons. Smoking to "look cool" or because their parent's smoke, and the pill so they can have sex with whomever they want whenever. It is more similar to smoking in the 50's cause everyone smoked and thought it was fine even though I'm sure there were warnings and whistle blowers about it. I think as the years go by, we will see more negative effects from yrs of using the pill, like infertility in addition to cancers. I would also argue that the terrible secondary effects of taking the Pill is divorce/broken families, and sexual promiscuity but this is certainly harder to prove.

    I can see that I'm rambling, I hope that all makes sense.