It's no secret that getting an IUD has become way more popular since Trump was elected, and it may have reached its high point last week. A nurse tweeted that one of her patients screamed, "F*CK YOU PAUL RYAN!" while getting IUD. And yeah, it sounds hilarious and now I have a massive friend crush on whoever that was. But it's also really, really important.
Why has there been a spike in IUDs — including a 900 percent increase in requests at Planned Parenthood? Basically, as soon Republicans started announcing plans to defund Planned Parenthood, repeal Obamacare, people realized there might be some serious setbacks for women's health care. including the cost of birth control. But an IUD, among other forms of birth control, is free under Obamacare and it's long-lasting, has hormonal and non-hormonal options, and could basically see you through a Trump presidency. Oh, and they're effective AF.
"Even before the Trump disaster, an IUD has been for many women the best method of contraception in terms of safety, reversibility, and efficacy," Dr. Lauren F. Streicher, MD, Clinical Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, tells Bustle. "With possible repeal of Affordable Care Act, many women will not have insurance and/or will not have contraception coverage. By getting an IUD now, they will be protected for 3-10 years depending on which one they choose." So it's easy to see why so many women are turning to IUDs — and especially since the American Health Care Act, the Obamacare replacement, would have a great effect on birth control and women's health care.
"The prudent woman who is empowered and wants to self-direct her reproductive choices should certainly see her health care professional — NOW," Dr. Michael Krychman, Executive Director of the Southern California Center for Sexual Health and Survivorship Medicine and co-author of The Sexual Spark: 20 Essential Exercises to Reignite the Passion, tells Bustle. "Run, don't walk. Be prepared, be empowered, and be in control of your reproductive choices. Make an appointment TODAY. Do not hesitate. Get your IUD and a refill for your oral contraceptives NOW. You may not have another opportunity."
An Act Of Resistance And A Forced Hand
And that brings us to "F*CK YOU PAUL RYAN!" The post was from @TheDreamGhoul who, according to Allure, works as a nurse at a women’s clinic in the Midwest. And she acknowledged that it was hilarious. But there's also a lot of meaning behind it.
Firstly, why Paul Ryan? He's the Speaker of the House and also the architect of the AHCA, which would put so many young women at risk by making birth control less accessible and less affordable, as well as adding more restrictions on abortion coverage. In response to the possible repeal of Obamacare, getting an IUD has become an act of resistance to take reproductive rights into our own hands and regain control. So it's easy to see how the eff you to Paul Ryan is a natural, irreverent extension of that.
But Some Women Feel Like They Have No Choice
But @TheDreamGhoul also emphasizes that the message behind it is very, very real. In her tweets, she points out that, because of the potential changes to health care access, women are choosing IUDs and long-term options, whether or not those are the right options for them. She told Allure, "For many women, the pill or the birth control shot is a better choice, but with methods [like] that you have to rely on your clinics for your supply, [and] it is seeming that women are rapidly losing faith that this will be an option in the future." And suddenly, it's not so funny anymore.
So yes, while it can be an act of resistance, it also may be something some women feel forced into because they feel hopeless about the future of their health care. The truth is, no one birth control method is right for everyone. I had an IUD that kept coming out of my vagina like something from exorcist. So though I don't regret having one — and it served me well for a couple of years — it all comes down to you.
“Some women find the idea of a procedure to insert a method unacceptable, preferring methods that are shorter-term or within their control,” Kelly Culwell MD, MPH, and Chief Medical Officer at WomanCare Global, tells Bustle. “Others prefer to avoid hormonal contraception option (like pills, patches and rings) because of health concerns or side effects.”
But it's easy to see why, with the current administration, women are tempted to go for something long-lasting even if they normally wouldn't. And people are getting them fast, with some estimates saying that they could cost up to $1,000 without the ACA.
So this woman yelling at Paul Ryan is so important, because women are making the choice to get an IUD an act of resistance but also because they feel they have no other choice. And either way, it's not OK. So whether you did it as a political act or just to make sure you're covered for Trump's presidency, we can all agree on one thing: F*ck. You. Paul. Ryan.