Plan B Saved My Life – Or At Least My Sanity

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plan b morning after pillI am outraged over Plan B.

For those who don’t know, the emergency contraception – two pills you take with water – came very close to being offered in drugstores without a prescription thanks to the FDA’s approval. It was pretty much a done deal, actually, until Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius overturned the ruling, claiming that girls under 17 won’t understand how to use it properly (because, you know, swallowing pills is complicated business). That means that if you’re under 17 and, say, your condom broke – well, you’re out of luck.

This all brings me back to the time I took the morning-after pill (not sure if was called Plan B back then, but it was the same deal).

It all started back in ’96, when I met a guy – we’ll call him “Steve” – while backpacking through Southeast Asia. Steve was charming and kind. His British accent didn’t hurt matters, either. He made me laugh like no other and, in typical 20-something fashion, we had a short-lived but totally passionate affair that included the usual travel adventures topped off with non-stop sex.

We were always safe – I was on the birth control pill, he wore a condom – and always respectful.

A few years later we decided to reunite in London, his hometown, and then drive together through the countryside. We were both single and starting out in our respective careers. I was hoping to one day get married, have kids – but that was a plan for the distant future. In that moment, I was loving the single life and the freedom it entailed.

Don’t get me wrong: Steve and I shared a deep connection and crazy chemistry, and we were mad about each other. But he wasn’t exactly husband material, which is why I was enjoying our relationship for exactly what it was – fun, casual and filled with intense passion.

One night, we headed into a remote town for dinner and drinks. And more drinks. Then live music. Dancing. Hilarious encounters with random strangers. We made our way back to the B&B and the fun continued. At this point, I was off the pill but condoms were my trusty contraceptive of choice. Or so I thought.

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