If you still need proof that the war on contraception in Washington is officially out of control, you may not have heard Rick Santorum's Republican backer Foster Freiss talking about his take on birth control. He told MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell: "You know, back in my days, they used Bayer Aspirin for contraception. The gals put it between their knees, and it wasn’t that costly." Jaw-dropping ... to say the least.
Freiss has since apologized, remarking that not even his wife was happy with the remark, but the damage has been done. The completely out-to-lunch comment typified the right's blase, dismissive attitude toward birth control. It's enough to make you wonder: What other pre-1960 birth control old wives' tales "methods" would they prefer women use? A few ideas ...
- Pass gas, pass on pregnancy! Believe it or not, for years, rumor had it that if you went to the bathroom immediately after sex and passed gas or went #2, you wouldn't have to worry about your man's semen making it to the end zone. Rrrright.
- Urinating right after sex. The thought that urination prevents pregnancy has withstood the test of time, but it's a major myth!
- Have sex in the bath/pool/lake. Contrary to popular (teen) belief, doing it underwater won't inhibit sperm from journeying to the fallopian tubes!
- Douche with soda. Ouch! If anything, squirting high fructose corn syrup or aspartame up there just sounds like a recipe for a terrible infection. And even regular douches are of no help, as after ejaculation, the sperm enter the cervix and are out of reach of any douching solution.
- Have sex during your period. As all teens should be told in their basic sex ed courses, you can start ovulating by the end of your period if you have a short cycle. Plus, sperm can survive up to five or six days after sex, so ... getting it on while surfing the crimson wave has never been an insurance that you won't conceive.
- Jump up and down after sex. This may help you burn some extra calories, but it won't work as birth control.
- Practicing the Birth Control Kama Sutra. Sorry, but while having sex in the standing up or "woman on top" positions may be fun, it's no safeguard for fertilization!
- Avoid climax, avoid conception. This one seems like the cruelest of all old wives' tales ... created by some selfish guy! 1. Who in their right mind would want to have sex only to pass on having an orgasm? 2. A basic biology lesson is all you need to know that this is a kooky lie.
Clearly, we need better access to real contraception, so that we never ever return to a time when women were encourage to buy into myths like the above or Freiss's "aspirin trick."
What's the craziest old wives' tale to prevent pregnancy you've ever heard?