You’ve probably heard the slogan, “You can’t be opposed to both abortion and contraception.” Or, alternatively, the accusation, “If you opposed abortion, why don’t you support greater access to contraception?” The idea, of course, being that if everyone was on the Pill, we wouldn’t have abortions anymore. Well, a new study by Britain’s most prominent abortion provider, British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), shows just how wrong that is.
It turns out that over half of women (51%) who procure abortions do so because of the failure of their contraceptive method. In fact, the study of over 60,000 women, found that contraceptive use contributes to a greater likelihood that women will have later term abortions (20 weeks and later) because they assume they can’t get pregnant using contraception and miss early pregnancy signs as a result. Late-term abortions are not only more morally objectionable to the general public, they also carry higher health risks for the mother.
In response the study, Anna Furedi, BPAS chief executive said, “Our data shows women cannot control their fertility through contraception alone, even when they are using some of the most effective methods. Family planning is contraception and abortion. Abortion is birth control that women need when their regular method lets them down.”
This finding comes on the heels of an earlier study that found that when the UK decreased funding for contraceptive services, unintended pregnancy rates actually decreased as well–in direct contradiction to dire predictions by family planning agencies.
And again, the reason for this is that the efficacy of artificial means of family planning are oversold. Women are led to believe that as long as they are “practicing safe sex” and using one form of artificial contraception or another, they cannot get pregnant. But because of both the built-in risk of method failure and life circumstances that prevent perfect use of contraceptives in the real world–many women using artificial means of contraception can find themselves pregnant and scared. They are, in essence, being set up to feel that they need abortion by the very agencies that promote contraception and abortion services.
Again, Ms. Furedi says, “When you encourage women to use contraception, you give them the sense that they can control their fertility – but if you do not provide safe abortion services when that contraception fails you are doing them a great disservice.”
The research is clear. Artificial contraception use increases the likelihood of both unintended pregnancy and abortion and, in fact, increases the potential that a woman will choose a higher-risk, later-term abortion because of her misplaced confidence in her method of artificial contraception.
Despite what the anti-science left would have you believe, the only way to be truly opposed to abortion is to oppose artificial contraception and promote life-affirming, relationship-building methods of family planning, like Natural Family Planning and Fertility Awareness Methods. To learn more about you can experience a healthier, happier, and more graceful sexual life, check out Holy Sex! The Catholic Guide To Mind-Blowing, Toe-Curling, Infallible Loving.