Sound off: Should birth control be offered on campus?
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Kelly Nurge, Opinion Editor
Caitlin Hale, Editor-In-Chief
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With this rampant cough going around, I found myself excruciatingly conscientious of the breaths I inhaled as I sat in the lobby of the Student Health Center. Petrified of my pending diagnosis, I contemplated the assured aggravation of my condition from all the sneezes, coughs and airborne pathogens that are overtly fornicating in the overwhelmingly packed waiting room.
The simple fact of the matter is that people go to the doctor when they’re sick. However, if you’re a girl, sometimes you go to the doctor to get Pabst beer, or a pap smear, or something like that. What I find to be horrendously incongruous, however, is the fact that, all other health concerns aside, you shifty females would brave this contagious gauntlet for a meager prescription’s worth of birth control.
What girl have you ever heard of that goes to a doc-in-the-box or walk-in clinic for birth control? None of them. They go to their “gyno.” It’s a matter of efficiency, as well as personal safety. If you have a lung problem, you see a pulmonologist. If you have a heart problem, you see a cardiologist. If you have a lady problem, you see pest control or a gynecologist. Women, or rather all students, should seek help from specified professionals.
Many women still feel stigmatized by getting birth control. They feel that people judge them and automatically think they are having copious amounts of sex. Rather than run the gauntlet of premature assumptions at Student Health, many women prefer the safe confines of an OB-GYN.
As a male, I have never really been aware of this predicament until recently. As soon as I became aware of this problem, I couldn’t empathize at all because I had already made the connection to how I am inconvenienced by it.
Case in point: I’m sitting in the Student Health Center the other day, sneezing my eyes out and coughing up green oysters, wondering what in the name of great Zeus’s beard is taking so long. I’m just trying to get seen and have this mucus-extricated from my hacking body.
Half an hour later, I finally see some movement stirring from across the waiting room. A nurse exits with about half a dozen girls. In their hands, they carried what seemed like a solid 36-month’s worth of birth control.
First of all, not even porn stars need that much birth control. Second of all, do you mean to seriously tell me that I’ve been sitting here in misery for the last half an hour just so this gaggle of girls can get a regulated period and avoid babies?
Go read your Redbook in the lobby of a specialist as you wait to get your lady-bits inspected. Leave Student Health for those of us that are in actual need of medical attention.
Greenville has plenty of places to fill prescriptions. Hell, there’s a Rite Aid on every corner of this town. The entire west side of Greenville is filled with specialized doctor’s offices. No need to clog up the Student Health Center just for birth control.
In college, there are many phrases a girl just does not want to hear. The “we should just be friends” phrase will hit you hard, along with the ever painful “the final will be cumulative.” But absolutely nothing scares a girl quite like the gut-punching line of “you’re pregnant.”
To keep that line from ever being uttered from a doctor’s mouth, the smart young ladies in college choose to be on a very handy prescription medication called “birth control.” Birth control is something that girls not only can get on to free themselves of the fearful “baby” word, but also for a variety of other reasons like regulating their menstrual cycle and toning down those pesky cramps when it’s that time of the month.
Due to the high demand, you would not only expect birth control on campus, but you would expect to find it in mass quantities. However, this is not the case. As of recently, Student Health was sold out of a popular brand, causing people to have to pay $50 for a single month’s supply.
With more than 28,000 students enrolled on campus and about 60 percent of them women, you would think this would be a very big concern for student health, a place where thousands of young women go to receive their birth control, to be properly stocked at all times.
Regardless of how one feels about the use or non-use of birth control, one thing is for certain — protection is important to us. With 34 percent of today’s young women becoming pregnant at least once before they reach the age of 20, which results in around 820,000 pregnancies a year, I would say that birth control is needed and should be easy for us to get when needed.
Maybe it is time for Student Health to step up their game and start actually understanding the student body’s needs and wants. We want to protect ourselves in college, and we would like to do it as cheaply and easily as possible. Not being stocked with the type of birth control that a women needs is completely irresponsible as a health center and they should be held accountable for not adequately providing for their students. That is, after all, why they are here.
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