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Birth Control Bingo: Behavioural Methods & Spermicides

Part of Scarleteen's Birth Control Bingo. Need to go back a question? Or start over?

On the previous page, you said that your religion or belief system does not support the use of any method which directly interferes with conception, but only those which avoid conception through behavior or timing OR you can only use a method which no one else may discover or know you participated in OR either you or your partner are just uncomfortable with barrier methods, and would prefer a behavioral method AND you are comfortable with and prepared for a greater possibility that you may become pregnant than you would likely have with other methods of contraception.

Because our readers are teens and young adults, and because if you're reading this at this point you have expressed that you are looking to prevent pregnancy, before I move forward with the behavioral methods, I just want to check in and be sure that you're aware that, particularly with young people, these methods tend to be much less effective than other methods. In other words, your risk of pregnancy from any of the following methods is probably going to be substantial, especially if you are using any of these methods alone. So, check in with yourself, and with your partner, to be sure before using any of these by themselves that both of you really are prepared to deal with a pregnancy, no matter what reproductive choice you'd make with it, financially, emotionally and interpersonally. If you really do not want to be pregnant, but only want these methods, I'd encourage you to either be sure you're using more than one of these methods at a time, that you combine one of these with a more reliable method, or that you reconsider more reliable methods if you're going to be sexually active and do not wish to become pregnant.

And that's the end of my lecture. Just bear in mind that with methods that are ONLY behavioral, your partner is going to have to sign on to practicing them just as much as you are, so you'll want to have a big chat with them about any of these methods, too. Moving forward...

First things first: are you of a religion, culture or belief system in which NO method of contraception which is anything BUT behavioral is acceptable, or where you or a partner only will consider behavioral methods?

  • If that is true for you, and you have had periods on a pretty regular schedule for at least a few years, click here to find out about Fertility Awareness Methods, or here to find out about other behaviours which can prevent pregnancy.
  • If that is true for you but you have NOT had regular periods for at least a few years, click here to find out about Withdrawal, or here to find out about other behaviours which can prevent pregnancy.

If you are Catholic or of an orthodox or strict biblical religion, FAM or periodic abstinence may be the only option you want to consider as withdrawal technically falls under Onanism.

If that's not true for you, keep reading.


If your religion, culture or belief system does not prohibit everything but behavioural methods, which of the following sounds most true for you:

I have had periods on a regular schedule for at least a few years
AND
I can commit to evaluating my genitals and body daily, as well as committing to keeping accurate records every single day
AND
My partner can and will commit to abstaining from genital intercourse on a schedule determined by me and my body for a period of time every month

If this statement is most true for you, click here to find out about Fertility Awareness Methods.

I have not had periods on a regular schedule for at least a few years
AND
I cannot commit to evaluating my genitals and body daily, as well as committing to keeping accurate records every single day
AND
My partner will not commit to abstaining from genital intercourse, but can and will commit to behaving in a certain way during any intercourse which may be difficult and which he may find frustrating
AND
I am comfortable putting whether or not I become pregnant completely in a partner's hands, with no real control of my own
AND
I am also not in an abusive partnership where it might be more likely a partner would not use that method or use it correctly out of a need to punish or control me

If this statement is most true for you, click here to find out about Withdrawal.

I have not had periods on a regular schedule for at least a few years
AND
I cannot commit to evaluating my genitals and body daily, as well as committing to keeping accurate records every single day
AND
My partner will not commit to abstaining from genital intercourse, AND will not commit to behaving in a certain way during any intercourse which may be difficult and which he may find frustrating
AND
I am NOT comfortable putting whether or not I become pregnant completely in a partner's hands, with no real control of my own
AND
I am not sensitive or allergic to spermicides
AND
I am comfortable touching my own genitals and dealing with some level of mess
AND
I can accept that it's possible I'm using a method which, used alone, is the least effective of all methods, even with perfect use

If this statement is most true for you, click here to find out about Spermicide


If none of the options above seem to fit you or your needs, then you may want to consider a non-hormonal method which is more effective or not behavioural, or a hormonal method. You may also simply want to reconsider being sexually active right now if your religion or belief system does not allow you to use any other methods than these, you wish to follow those edicts, but also are not prepared to become pregnant. Or, you may want to find a way to combine any of these methods.

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