As salaam alaikum,
I got to thinking earlier this morning after working the night shift about freedom. Specifically, the freedom that my mentors and preceptors cite that women on birth control feel. Especially those forms of birth control in which you don't have to menstruate every month. How freeing, a woman in control of her body.
But for someone whose past relationships were contingent on whether or not sex was available...birth control methods were not the lowest common denominator of freedom.
Because I don't care if I bleed every month and it hurts. I don't care if my mood does swing and I may lash out. I don't care if I'm trying to intubate a patient just in time to have that sneaking feeling that I should have left the tampon in a day longer. I care more that I'm with someone who respects me, respects the choices I've made for my life, including my body, instead of disregarding it.
It is always up to me, but I value a partnership where it is not only up to me.
Because if I'm in a partnership and the burden falls squarely, primarily and only on me...that is not freedom, my friend.
Freedom for me starts with mutual protection of interests in a relationship, including those having to do with life, body and reproduction. This is my lowest common denominator.
The rest is all synergy.