An anonymous student writes for the University of St Andrew’s The Stand on the social stigma surrounding the emergency contraceptive pill:
It seems that one of the greatest contraceptive creations of the 20th century, the Morning After Pill, is struggling to become an accepted part of our society. I was shocked at the way I was treated when seeking this commonly used emergency contraception, and felt the plunging feelings of mortification, embarrassment and a touch of shame to top it off whilst doing so. And why did I feel this way? Should it not be regarded as a sensible solution, rather than the branding of a mishap from the night before?
The Morning After Pill was brought into British society in 1984. It was originally used for victims of sexual assault in the later 60s and throughout the 70s and the decision to release this emergency contraception into the general population, rather unsurprisingly, received criticism from conservative and religious groups at the time. Twenty eight years on, in 2011, a fifth of the female population had used the Morning After Pill to protect themselves from unplanned pregnancy.
This is where my experience comes in: having made the mistake of getting carried away the night before, I knew the next morning the responsible, mature and downright rational thing to do would be to visit a pharmacy, take emergency contraception, and be secure in the knowledge that I had reduced my chances of being pregnant. But as I walked to the local pharmacy, the decision I had made and reactions of the people around me left me shocked at our “modern” society…
Full article here.