Here's How To Protect Your Reproductive Rights In Trump's America
by Sarah Fielding
Hannah Burton/Bustle

For me, the invention of birth control is right up there with the lightbulb. Before I went on birth control I struggled with pain so bad it was all but guaranteed I'd miss school at least once during my period. I thought I was going to have to cope with period pain for one week every month for the next 30 plus years of my life. Then, when I was 16 I went on birth control and everything changed. Suddenly I wasn't lying in bed curled over in pain as I wrapped a heating pad around my stomach. For the first time since I started getting my period, it no longer controlled me or inhibited my ability to simply live my life.

Period pain is just one of an infinite number of reasons why, according to the Guttmacher Institute, nine in 10 women choose to use birth control in their life. In its variety of forms, birth control allows women to control their bodies and their future in a way they never could.

November 15, 2017 marks the The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy's fifth annual Thanks, Birth Control Day, a day that celebrates how birth control has made so many women's lives better, With a government that is fighting to limit access to birth control, this day is more important than ever.

In honor of Thanks, Birth Control Day, The National Campaign released a new poll highlighting how birth control and access is viewed across the country. While birth control may be treated as a controversial item, an overwhelming majority of Americans actually support birth control. According to the poll of over 2,000 adults, 85 percent of Americans believe that birth control should be treated as an essential aspect of health care.

Not only is it supported, but it's being used a lot. “Birth control is a vital part of women’s health care and a vital part of women’s ability to decide their futures," Ginny Ehrlich, CEO of The National Campaign, said in a press release. "And it is popular: virtually all women who have sex with men — 99 percent in fact — have used birth control at some point in their lives. That is why almost everybody loves birth control."

It's important to remind our government and naysayers how many people support — and depend on — birth control across the country. If, as the poll states, 83 percent of adults advocate for a complete and total access to birth control for everyone in the United States, then there is absolutely no reason why our administration should be working to take it away.

If you believe birth control access is a right that needs to be protected, then it's important to follow up those feelings with action. On Thanks, Birth Control Day, The National Campaign, encourages you to share why you're thankful for birth control by using #ThxBirthControl on social media. Sharing your birth control story can help show others how crucial it is to women's health.

Want to keep fighting for birth control? Here are more ways fight for birth control access in Trump's America.


Be Vocal About Its Benefits

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While birth control can be used for everything from helping manage PCOS to clearing acne, many people only view it as a way to prevent pregnancy. Not that pregnancy prevention isn't a completely valid reason to use birth control, but making others aware of its range of health benefits allows them to even better understand its importance and necessity for so many women. Not sure what to say? See what people are tweeting.


Call Your Representatives

As we've seen this entire year, flooding the phones in Washington can make a real difference when it comes to policy. Make sure your representatives know that birth control is a key issue for you and if they don't support it, you'll find a new candidate who does.


Donate To Reproductive Rights Organizations

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Planned Parenthood is consistently facing the threat of being defunded, meaning countless Americans would lose access to birth control, along with many other services. Every donation you make to these groups can make a huge difference in the fight for continued birth control.

Birth control has changed the lives of countless women across America and the world. It has given us control over our body and helped alleviate our pain. So I mean it from the bottom of my heart when I say, thanks, birth control.