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Men, family planning, equity and equality

Men, family planning, equity and equality

The woman’s “pill” has contributed, according to sociologists, more than anything else to transformation of the society. The use of man’s contraception methods has been declining worldwide. There is no reliable, safe and reversible contraception for men so far. Its development was almost stopped, allegedly because of absence of an interest group that would enforce the development. How do men plan their parenthood in the Czech Republic, a country where the woman’s pill is easily accessible?

Quality contents analysis (Grounded Theory) of semi-structured interviews made with 49 men and 92 women about family planning. Further, analysis of 2791 answers to the survey mapping the interest in man’s pill.
Outright majority of men (46) consider parenthood an important part of life and family planning constitutes result of partner negotiation for them. In spite of declared participation in negotiation about parenthood, both men and women perceive contraception rather as a matter of the women. Men are aware of the risks this situation brings to them, but they seem to have resigned from them. They realize that their right to decide whether, when and with whom to have the child is limited, but they justify their lower powers in decision-making by the woman’s higher investment into pregnancy and motherhood.
Negotiating about parenthood is extremely difficult in countries where “pill” is easily accessible. There should be programs to teach equivalent negotiation, focused particularly on men.

Speakers: Hana Konečná
Conference: WAS Goteberg 2009
Areas of Interest / Categories: WAS 2009

WAS 2009

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About 10-15 % of adults have the experience of not getting pregnant, when they have a wish to have a child. For some, this life situation is resolved spontaneously. Some undergo investigation, followed by varying treatments, resulting in a child, some adopt, and for others this situation is permanent, and without a solution. When this is the case, existential questions often arise. Earlier studies show that couples who become parent after IVF-treatment are just as content, or more, with their relationships and sexuality compared to parent who conceived spontaneously. Little is known about the couples who continue their relation without a child. Clinical experiences are that many women and men struggle with questions concerning the meaning of sexuality.

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