(NEW YORK) — A leading group of physicians is speaking out against “birth control sabotage,” in which a partner deliberately tries to control a woman’s reproductive choices.
In a statement released Wednesday, Dr. Eve Espey of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said that doctors should be more aware of this practice, which can result in women having unprotected sex at the whim of a partner, exposing them to pregnancy or a sexually-transmitted disease.
Espey acknowledged that “Most ob/gyns are probably unfamiliar with sexual and reproductive coercion as an entity and probably don’t ask about it.”
Birth control sabotage can include throwing away contraceptive pills, taking off a condom during sex and even coercing a woman through threats to carry out an unwanted pregnancy.
While research on the matter is not yet comprehensive, Espey pointed to at least one study of teenage girls on public assistance. Of those who alleged domestic violence, two-thirds mentioned their partner sabotaged their birth control.
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