August 26th, 2021


vaccines and baby having

cw: infertility

this headline is making the rounds in my feed: COVID Vaccines Show No Signs of Harming Fertility or Sexual Function [Scientific American]

I know infertility is a serious issue for many so I don't want to make light of it. I'm glad there is more data and scientist publishing more studies to reassure people that you can have the vaccine and babies and all is well.

BUT I also had to laugh at the headline because earlier this year, when vaccines were merely a dream, a young person I work with told me that he'd read the vaccines cause infertility.

immediately half the guys in the office looked up and said "BONUS POINTS!" and we had to explain to this poor kid that a one shot birth control would be the ONLY thing we could possibly imagine being more popular than a COVID-19 vaccine! he clearly had no idea what people go through, as the years of life go on, to NOT have babies!

I have had children. I love them. I do not want more. I'm not too bothered by having to get a mirena IUD re-inserted every five years, it's worth it. but it's not a fun doctor visit. it's quite a bit more involved than a shot in the arm.

I realize I don't represent the entire population but I think there's a pretty strong majority with this affliction! People who have heterosexual sex, but we don't want ALL THE BABIES? It's so common that contraceptives have been a revolution and people are willing to do all kinds of things to not have babies! Pills, routine shots, implants, surgeries... science. All with side effects, all complicated.

So for some conspiracy theorist to think "oh big pharma has been holding out on the quick easy solution until 2021!" was very puzzling to me.

I've only met like 2-3 heterosexual couples who were fine having all the babies. They seem very happy with their 6 or 8 or 12 kids but they are VERY rare. I know a lot more people who do not want ANY babies. The popularity of that option is telling!

When I was a similarly young person in my early 20s with sporadic boyfriends, I also didn't really get it. Of course I always supported contraceptive access for everyone. But I remember being in my church full of hippies one day and the topic came up. "There are some denominations who think birth control is wrong, because sex is only for making babies," said a member of my sunday school class. From the back row, the oldest lady in the room looked up from behind her walker and yelled "well that's a load of crap!"

I just hadn't experienced the decades of adult relationship-ness ahead of me, hadn't thought about it, didn't appreciate the post-contraceptive world we live in now. I'd also never had babies so I didn't fully understand the earthquake that occurs in your life when a baby is born. now I know. so the second I heard "this shot means no babies" I was like OMG THEY DID IT but then realized it was a conspiracy made up hoax, went right back to checking my HSA to see if we've saved up enough for that vasectomy we keep talking about.