Hannah Hawkins Speaks Out: Endometriosis and Birth Control Pills


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The #OrganycUSAuthentic series shares stories of motivated, ambitious women throughout the USA, who overcome obstacles to then give back to the community.

The Trump administration recently announced that employers will now be allowed to deny birth control coverage to their workers for “moral” reasons as well as religious ones. The Department of Health and Human Services released the new contraception policy guidelines that will reduce American women’s access to birth control:

  • The draft rule authorizes any employer to deny its employees contraceptive coverage if it has a religious or moral objection – not only religiously affiliated employers. It also allows universities to deny this coverage to their students.
  • The draft rule suggests women won’t suffer because they can still access contraception through safety-net programs like Title X and Medicaid – two programs that are currently under attack from Congress and the White House.
  • Language justifying the rule reveals the administration’s belief that even if contraception coverage furthers gender equality, that’s not a good enough reason to ensure that women get it.

One of the many problems with this policy is that birth control is not only used as a contraceptive.

Hannah Hawkins lives with Endometriosis. Endometriosis is often a painful disease where the tissue that is normally located inside the uterus – the endometrium – grows outside the uterus. Endometriosis most commonly involves the ovaries, the intestines or the tissue surrounding the pelvis. Rarely the endometrial tissue can extend beyond the pelvic region.

Hannah took her plea to Social Media in response to the new policy authorizing employers to deny birth control coverage:

“For over half my life now, I’ve suffered every single day – mostly in silence – with a chronic, incurable disease, made only the SLIGHTEST more manageable with birth control pills to help with debilitating symptoms, hormone regulation, and often excruciating pain. Birth control pills represent the ONLY affordable option to manage my illness. After spending thousands of dollars on various treatments, therapies, five operations, and being put into medically induced menopause at age 28, I can assure you I’m not taking birth control for the hell of it. I’m taking birth control pills because they are the only cost effective option I have that will not add to the medical debt I have amassed before age 30 in order to pay for the management of a disease in which I have no control over. While I respect that some people do not support the use of contraception, I encourage them to simply not use it and to look outside themselves at the people who truly need it and need to be able to afford it. The well being of my reproductive organs should be in no one’s hands but my own and my doctors.’ Putting birth control at the discretion of an employer, and the rollback in general, marks a truly a sad day for the Endometriosis community and for all women in general whose treatment of various gynecological issues are at the hands of men in government who can LITERALLY never experience their pain and suffering but are so quick to prevent and/or limit their treatment of them.”

Hannah along with many other women are raising a collective voice in opposition to the government’s new policy.

Should you and your uterus feel similarly, please have a look at the following petition.

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Further Reading:

Proven Fact: Using 100% Cotton Pads Will Reduce Vaginal Irritation and Discomfort

A Footlong Sub or a Box of Tampons: The Dilemma Facing Many High School Students

Diamond Encrusted Tampons: A Bloody Luxury

 

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