20 August 2004

Will four do?

Four is the operational word here. SEASONALE®, the newest contraceptive pill on the block, offers women the freedom of choosing to have just four periods a year!? You have to take an ‘active’ pill every day for 84 days followed by 7 days of inactive pills. You will get your period in these seven days.

As simple as that. Well… that’s what the company says, at least. I haven’t found out how it is priced and I don’t think it is available in India yet.

But wait woman, you’ve got more ‘freedom’ than that. If you wish, you may choose not to have a single period. Yes, that’s right. But that pill will take some more time to hit the market.

Ok, so how many of us would opt for such ‘freedom?’ I surely wouldn’t, because (a) there’s no telling what will be the long-term effects and (b) am comfortable with my body as it is and would rather let it be, than meddle with it.

But I must say that I have thought a thousand times or more about a tampon-free napkin-free world. I have often wondered just how did men qualify for such luck of having neither periods nor pregnancies, damn!! Women know how cursed periods can make them feel. The option that this new pill brings is just what we dreamed of but then gave the idea up as impossible.

Yet, as I am keying this, I am shaking my head and asking myself do we really need to control everything? I know how sick periods can make you feel, but there are ways to get over it. And the regular contraceptive pill takes care of pregnancy. So why are we so reluctant to bear even some amount of predictable pain?

My argument is just this: in spite of all my complaints, I believe that the power of reproduction makes woman a much more special being than man. Periods are but incidental to such power. The menstrual cycle is integrated with the woman’s system in many complex ways. Before playing with it, before making it a medium of commerce or a tool for ‘scientific’ experiments, we should at least know what we are in for. And we have no way of knowing that for sure, unless we try it, of course.

So, now tell me what d’ya think?


Anonymous said...

Will women opt for this "wonder" drug? YES..this very same arguement was held over the oral contraceptive over a decade ago. and now millions of women around the world use it.
Why would they want to meddle with their body system? For comfort...when they have the option, why shouldnt they?!? again the example of the oral contraceptive pill...its not natural, but hey, it works wonderfully well.so why do women have to bear even that predictable pain when they have the option not to?
Why do we need to control everything? because its the distinctive characteristic of mankind...to conquer and control everything that affects him..even his own body.

Vijayalaxmi said...

I know there's a point in what you say. But a woman's gut feeling tells me that there will not be many takers for this pill. Monthly periods are one way for the woman to know her body's rhythm. Also, health professionals have watrned that there can be breakthrough bleeding even when you are on Seasonale. Such breakthrough bleeding can catch the woman unawares. And, believe me, that does not at all sound great.