Sex Ed: Real men have vasectomies


The only permanent form of birth control is sterilization. When and if you are certain — beyond a shadow of a doubt! — that you do not ever want to have more babies, think about it.

Considering a vasectomy if you are a man (“getting clipped”), or a tubal ligation if you are a woman (“getting your tubes tied”) is appropriate.

For men, vasectomy is a short, simple operation done under local aneasthesia. It is done through a small incision in the scrotum (the bag) not the penis. You go home an hour later.

After you have two semen (jiz, cum or whatever other term of endearment you use) samples that show no sperm, you can have sex and not worry about your partner getting pregnant. The failure rate is about 1 in a 1,000.

For women, having a tubal ligation is a safe, frequently done operation — but simple it is not. It takes longer, requires a general anaesthetic, and there is a greater chance of complications such as infection or bleeding. And, the failure rate is five times higher (depending on the technique used), so 1 in 200 women will become pregnant accidentally over one year.

As you all know, getting “clipped” or “tied” does not protect you against sexually transmitted diseases, so you still need to use a condom.

Studies show that when married couples decide they have had enough kids, it is still more often the woman who goes for a tubal ligation. As is usually the case in reproductive health issues, the responsibility and the consequences of decisions often fall into women’s hands.

It takes two to tango. Permanent birth control through sterilization is a perfect opportunity for making decisions together. For men, the procedure is safer and more effective and thus, I suggest to loving male partners: real men have vasectomies.

I hope 2002 has been good to you all so far.

I’m back and writing again… As with all of these columns, this is an overview of the subject— speak to a nurse or doctor if you would like more information about birth control choices.

Questions, comments? Write to nu[email protected] or send a letter to the Iqaluit office.

Next week: A Contraception Summary

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