Someone asked us:

Hi, I haven’t had my period for about two months so I’m going to get a test either today or tomorrow - if I am pregnant, I would want to get an abortion. I heard about the option of taking an abortion pill. Is there a certain number of weeks you must be under in order to be able to take the pill? I heard you have to be under 11 weeks but I thought I would just ask you guys to make sure.

You’re right that the abortion pill can only be used very early in pregnancy. The cut-off is only 63 days, or nine weeks, after the first day of your last period, so it sounds like you might be right around the limit. To know for sure you can ask your health care provider or go to your local Planned Parenthood. If you need an abortion and are more than nine weeks pregnant, you can still have an in-clinic abortion.

An in-clinic abortion is performed in a clinic by a health care provider and can be performed later on in pregnancy. There are a couple different kinds of in-clinic abortions, which you can learn more about on our website.

Both medication abortions and in-clinic abortions are safe and effective ways to end a pregnancy. If you’re pregnant and you want to get an abortion, you and your health care provider can talk about which abortion method would be right for you.

- Nina at Planned Parenthood






shoot me in the face

Yeah, the Sanctity of Life Act was really messed up. Guess who fought for the bill’s absolute restriction on abortion after conception or CLONING? The King of Freedom: Ron Paul. Poor decisions by Pauls all around.


For “Ron Paul is against government involvement!” sayers.

(Source: whatiremembered)

» TODAY: Michigan Call to Action


Tomorrow, the GOP-led Michigan Senate will vote on the nation’s cruelest anti-choice bill, HB 5711. If signed by Republican governor Rick Snyder, this bill would force people who have abortions to pay for the burial, cremation, or internment of any fetus 10 weeks or older. For fetuses at 20 weeks gestation, a death certificate would be required, which could expose the patient to the public.

Additionally, the bill bans abortions via telemedicine, limiting access to safe, legal abortion for people living hours from their nearest clinic. It also requires physicians to purchase $1 million in liability insurance if they perform six or more abortions per month, and for clinics to have a full surgical suite, even if the clinic doesn’t offer surgical abortion.

What can you do to stop this bill? If you’re outside Michigan, you can sign this petition demanding the senators vote no on HB 5711. For those in Michigan, you can call your senator today and tell them the same.

If this bill is passed tomorrow, clinics in Michigan could be regulated out of existence - the financial burden placed by anti-choicers could simply be too much to bear. If this happens, people in Michigan will need your help accessing safe, legal abortion. The Abortion Assistance Blog has already had three offers of transportation, two for lodging, and one for child care in Michigan, but we will always need more. If you or someone you know can help the people of Michigan, contact AAB through the Ask or Submit boxes, email ( or Twitter (@prochoicehelp).

» Birth Control and Weight Gain


You might need to sit down for this one. It kinda goes against everything you’ve ever heard or learned or maybe even experienced. But it just so happens to be true. Are you ready?

There is no evidence that taking birth control pills causes you to gain weight. 

I know, I know. Your cousin. Your best friend. Your dental hygienist. They’ve all complained about gaining weight while taking the pill. And maybe they did. But it wasn’t because of the pill.

Like most myths, it’s hard to figure out where this pill-slander originated. But the idea that the birth control pill makes you gain weight is everywhere—it’s among the most common reasons people choose not to use the pill. So where did this convincing urban legend originate?

Slate has some ideas, including the good ol’ “blame it on the hormones” excuse. But what we do know for certain is there’s no convincing scientific evidence that birth control pills make you gain weight. That’s right, none. Shout it from the rooftops! 

-Nathan at PPFA


“This is My Abortion.” One woman documents her abortion with cell phone pictures, for the purpose of demystifying the sensationalist images propagated by the religious and political right on the matter.

Lining the street in front of the clinic were a dozen or so protesters. They held up large banners with anti-abortion slogans, religious iconography, and images of dead babies.

Just past the bulletproof security doors, the graphic nature of that imagery haunted me in the waiting room. What would my abortion look like? I decided to secretly document my abortion with my cell phone.

My intention in documenting and sharing my abortion is to demystify the sensationalist images propagated by the religious and political right on this matter. The perverse use of lifeless fetus photographs are a propaganda tool in the prolife/prochoice debate in which women and their bodies are used as pawns to push a cultural, political, and religious agenda in the United States.

At 6 weeks of pregnancy, my abortion looked very different than the images I saw when I entered the clinic that day.

More at the link above, the author of this post encourages everyone to share these photos.

» Are we supposed to buy special products for our vagina’s pH level?


Ever worry that you’re not sufficiently concerned about your “feminine pH”? It’s a scary medical-sounding term that you’ve probably seen pop up in ads for everything from tampons to body wash. (And it makes me think of those little orange pH testing strips we used to use in high school chemistry, which I would prefer to keep out of my vagina.) One ad warns that “sex, your period, or even soap” could disrupt your vagina’s pH balance.

Wait a second…aren’t sex and periods (and soap, too!) pretty normal pieces of the whole vagina-having experience? Do we really need to buy special pH-regulating products to accommodate our fickle vaginas?

It turns out that while these ads are misleading, they’re not entirely wrong. Your vagina does have a normal pH level — around 4.5. This helps keep a healthy balance of yeast and bacteria. And if the pH level in your vagina gets too high, it can cause irritation or vaginitis. But the idea that sex and your period are inherently unhealthy or bad for the natural order of your vagina is totally false. The vagina has a pretty impressive self-regulating feature, and as long as you’re keeping things hygienic down there — that means washing your vulva with water or mild soap, changing pads or tampons frequently when you have your period, and avoiding douching — then chances are your pH level won’t be a problem.

And if you ever do suspect that something strange is going on with your vagina — like if it itches or burns, or you have unusual or bad smelling discharge — then you should see a health care provider right away. It might be a yeast infection or vaginitis, both of which are common and usually easily treatable.

-Alex at Planned Parenthood


Safe Sex Moment: A Condom DO and DON’T

Because I’ll always be a sex educator and I can’t resist real-life teaching moments, I wanted to remind everyone about the first step of condom use: check the package!!

The ones on the left have been living in a pocket, or a car, or someplace that has clearly compromised the package…which means it is likely the latex is compromised as well.  Body heat or extreme temperatures required to break down this packaging so much (the label is literally falling off the foil) would also weaken the latex, and thereby the efficacy of the condom.  

The one on the right has just come out of the box. There is a good bubble of air inside the packet, meaning neither the package nor the condom has been punctured. There is also a clear expiration date, which doesn’t arrive for several more years.

While even a degraded one may be better than none at all, if at all possible DON’T use the old crusty condoms! They are more prone to breakage, which means you are NOT protected from STDs, HIV, pregnancy, etc.


Two anti-abortion extremist groups – Operation Rescue and Operation Rescue/Operation Save America – are mobilizing supporters across the country against women’s health centers in Charlotte, North Carolina and in preparation for the Democratic National Convention, which will also be held in Charlotte.

We need your help to keep these courageous women’s health care providers open and safe!

OR/OSA is mobilizing supporters nationwide for their event, called “The King is Coming to the Queen City” in Charlotte, North Carolina, from July 21-28. This means harassment and more threats for local abortion providers. This is the same group that has threatened doctors with WANTED-style posters and has even harassed the doctors in Charlotte at their homes.

Flip Benham, leader of OR/OSA was convicted in a jury trial of criminal stalking of one of the Charlotte doctors. Even with this conviction, Benham remains defiant and has appealed the jury’s decision. He has also violated a court order by printing and distributing WANTED posters featuring the doctor he was convicted of stalking.

Our legal coordinator is working, with the help of local attorneys, to secure safety buffer zones around all the clinics in Charlotte and to prevent the harassment of doctors, clinic staff, and patients – but we need your help! Please make a tax-deductible contribution today!

What’s more, the event in Charlotte next week is just a test run for the Democratic National Convention in September. We are determined to protect the brave doctors and clinic staff in Charlotte and to keep the clinics safe and accessible to women seeking abortion services.

Please help the Feminist Majority Foundation do everything we can to help embattled clinics, healthcare workers and doctors this summer. With your help, we’ll provide on-the-ground support and organizers during the anticipated anti-abortion actions in Charlotte – both next week and at the Democratic National Convention.

Please make a tax-deductible contribution today to support our National Clinic Access Project.

Without clinics and dedicated doctors and health care workers, there simply is no choice.

» Vegan Contraception


With so many people making the lifestyle choice to go vegan, it seemed time to address contraceptive choices for those dedicated to it. With the realization of many dairy allergies and their interference with condom use, it has become critically important that there are alternatives out there. There are a growing number of options  for vegans and those with allergies to practice safer sex without compromising their lifestyles.  Below, you will find a list of vegan companies and brands listed by what kind of product their method.

Barrier Methods- Condoms & Dental Dams: Many people fail to realize that condoms are made with casein- a milk protein added to the latex. This can be a huge issue for those with dairy allergies. If you have a real allergy to dairy, it may not be the best idea to put it on your genitals. I am aware of some people who have allergic reactions to non-vegan condoms for this reason. If you are vegan, you would obviously want to skip casein-made condoms in order to side step the use of animal products. There are definitely other options out there, but these are some companies you can always trust to be diary-free and vegan friendly with ALL of their products:

  • Sir Richard’s Condoms:I am a big fan of this company and their wonderful line of vegan condoms that feature paraben-free and gylcerin free lube. On top of all this, for every condom you buy they will donate one to a country in a need (so far, these donations have all gone to Haiti). Who can’t support condoms with a conscious? You can pick up this brand in Extra Large, Ultra Thin, Pleasure Dots, and Classic Ribbed. 
  • Glyde Condoms and Dental Dams: This company has been pumping out vegan safer sex supplies all over the world since 1996! Check their “Where to Buy” section to find the website and order in your country. They have been certified by the Vegan Society and PEETA, so you can rest assured that these are trustworthy.  They also have fair-trade practices and do a lot of philanthropy work. A+ work, Glyde! You can buy their products in Ultra, Maxi, Slim-Fit, Flavored, and Dental Dams. 
  • Kimono: Kimono offers us another interesting vegan option. This brand is well known for creating very thin condoms to maximize sensitivity. You can try them in Thin, Microthin, Microthin Plus, Microthin Large, and Microthin with Ribs and Sensi-Dots. 

Oral Contraceptives: Birth control pills can be a tricky thing to find vegan since many brands contain lactose as an ingredient. According to the Vegan Society, Pfizer:  Femulen contains no animal-derived products. However, it is important to note that just because something is vegan in ingredients does not necessarily mean it has not been tested on animals.

The IUD: Although I can find no concrete website to confirm it, the general consensus seem to be that many IUDs are vegan. Since the copper IUD is primarily made from copper, it may be regarded as a vegan option.

The ShotAccording to The Vegan Society, The Depo-shot is vegan. However, I would caution anyone interested in it to look into it extensively and speak with your doctor about if it is a good option for you before choosing it. There are a lot of contraindications and side effects to the shot. 

The Patch: The Orthro Evra Patch is also named as a vegan option by the Vegan Society. 

Natural Family Planning: I recommend using natural family planning only as a method paired with another method, since it is often not effective enough to prevent pregnancy in many cases. It works by tracking your fertility/ovulation patterns and not having sex when you are most fertile. Doing so requires a lot of knowledge about the human body in general, as well as a familiarity with your own body. 

Did I reblog this before? I’ll reblog now just in case.


Two more men seem to have been cured of HIV through bone marrow transplants, according to news out of the International AIDS Conference. 

This is in addition to Timothy Brown, who earlier underwent similar treatment that seemed to have removed HIV from his body. Researchers are preparing to study other HIV-positive people who have undergone bone marrow transplants to look for similar results. 

The two men who were being treated at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston for cases of cancer at different times. One of the men is in his 20s and was infected at birth, while the other man is in his 50s, and has been infected with HIV since the early 1980s. After each receiving bone marrow transplants, the men also remained on their antiretroviral medication regimens, according to NBC News. 

Within eight months of their respective transplant surgeries, it was discovered that the patients’ cells were replaced by cells from the HIV-negative bone marrow donors. The men also now show no signs of HIV in their DNA or RNA. Levels of HIV antibodies have also decreased. 


YES! I am so glad this is happening. This will destroy so many stigmas and a lot of bullshit.

Although I feel bad that the glowing cats is now possibly a useless avenue.