Birth Control Bingo: What's the Right Non-Hormonal Method for Me?

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

On the previous page, you said you are NOT comfortable with a hormonal method, know you are unable to use a hormonal method for any given reason, and/or you do not wish to use a hormonal method or deal with hormonal side effects, period⁠ , so you want a NON-HORMONAL METHOD, and you ARE comfortable using, or prefer a method you and/or your partner⁠ have to remember to use only at or around the time sex⁠ occurs or will soon occur, or you can only use a method you can buy over-the-counter, without a prescription, or you sometimes have money for birth control⁠ , but sometimes you don’t.

All those things tend to make a non-hormonal method a better choice for you than a hormonal method. So, now we just need to help you figure out⁠ which non-hormonal method or methods would be the best choices for you. We're going to do this by screening you for the most effective, easy-to-use and available non-hormonal methods first.

Take a look at the following three groups of statements, and decide which most applies to you.

I am comfortable with or want a method which involves the fully mutual participation of my partner(s) and my partner(s) are willing and able to be an active and fully responsible part of birth control AND I am fine with a method which requires a brief interruption at the time of intercourse⁠ AND I and my partner are comfortable touching our genitals⁠ , and are not squeamish about inserting/removing a contraceptive device AND/OR I am not interested in having anything put surgically into my body, or in a risk of more painful cramps or heavier bleeding with my periods OR I am looking for an easy and effective backup method to use with an existing method AND/OR want or need STI⁠ /STD prevention as part of that method

If this statement is most true for you, click here to consider condoms.


I need or prefer a method that does NOT require the participation of my partner. OR Sexual spontaneity is very important to me. I do not want to have anything to put into place immediately before sex. AND I am comfortable touching my genitals, and am not squeamish about inserting/removing a contraceptive device.

If this statement is most true for you, click here.


I prefer a method that does require the participation of my partner and know and trust my partner will be fully cooperative and is very dedicated to helping me prevent a pregnancy⁠ . AND I want a method that does not cost anything. AND I and my partner are both totally okay with ending intercourse well before his orgasm⁠ / ejaculation⁠ . AND I am comfortable and feel assertive⁠ reminding my partner about his needed participation, if need be, during sex.

If this statement is most true for you, click here.


My religion does not support the use of any method which directly interferes with any part of fertilization or conception⁠ , but only those which prevent fertilization and/or conception through behavior OR Either myself or my partner are just uncomfortable with barrier methods, and would prefer a behavioral method AND I am comfortable with and prepared for a greater possibility that I may become pregnant than I would likely have with other methods of contraception⁠

If this statement is most true for you, click here.

If none of the options above seem to fit you, then you may want to consider a hormonal method. Or, you may want to start over from the top⁠ of this page to see if you can't strike a compromise somewhere, such as by only choosing partners who will share responsibility for birth control use, to work it out so a brief interruption in sexual⁠ activity is not a big whoop, or to learn to get comfy with touching your own genitals.

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  • Heather Corinna

We get asked about this a lot; about whether once you have a more effective method of contraception than condoms, like a hormonal method or IUD, if they're still needed to prevent pregnancy.

The only right answer to that question, no matter who asks it, is that it really depends on what you and your…