Influence of Academic Status and Religion on Attitude of Parents Towards Birth Control Measures

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Influence of Academic Status and Religion on Attitude of Parents Towards Birth Control Measures

Over the years, an unplanned pregnancy have been a contending issues around the globe and Nigeria in particular. Reports in 1994 showed that half of all pregnancies were unplanned, and the uppermost percentage of such unplanned conception was among women of childbearing age. This is due to lack of orientation to our mothers.
The family is basically premised on marriage rather than on mating, it’s a dynamic societal institution which affects and is affected by several factors.

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Family is inevitably a product of the sociological order rather than the theological or biological order, certain functions are basic to all types of family, which include those of reproduction, socialization of the young, economic and emotional support to family members.

This is invariably linked to the contemporary issue of birth control, which is an organized effort essentially to ensure that couples who want to limit their family size or to space their children have access to contraceptive information and services needed (Isiugo-Abanihe, 1996). The impact of child spacing programmes on fertility vis-à-vis religions and political development of Nigeria has been contentious (Davis, 1967; Berelson, 1975; Planned Parenthood Federation of Nigeria (PPFN) 1988; Nagi, 1992; Isiugo-Abanihe, (1994).

Through, Man’s general perceptions towards sexuality and reproductive health have strong bearing on the female partner’s reproductive health. A number of surveys indicate that uneducated men do not want to regulate their fertility; they are not concerned about their partner’s contracting sexually transmitted diseases (STD). They always apportion blame on their wives infertility and perpetrate violence against them, they are not concerned about their well-bearing and raising of their family either by themselves or their educated partners, this depends on the man’s perception about the method and willingness to use it. Any attempt by the educated partner to influence men might bring about accusation of infidelity, physical abuse or even divorce. Some men were of the opinion that the use of condom reduces sexual pleasure; many of them think that condom is meant for professional sex workers not for their wives. While others think that vasectomy reduces sexual potency and has side effect.

Many women have given up their religions and accept certain conditions which they otherwise would have not accepted because of marriage. The main burden of reproductive ill-health falls on women, it is estimated that as a consequences of non use of contraceptive, 40-60 million women resort to pregnancy termination of which 50% are carried under unsafe conditions. An estimated 1,645 women dies everyday in the cause of pregnancy and child birth. Likewise, the contraceptive effect of prolonged nursing may be subordinate to a woman’s inclination to breast feeding. Moreover, practitioners of periodic abstinence and coitus interutus can see these actions as enhancing their own self-worth because of the scarifies they entails.

In 1978 the English economist Thomas Robert Malthus (1766 -1834) argued for the eventual scarcity of natural resources given the rate of population growth worldwide. This argument became the basis of the first organized efforts to limit population size in the west.  The fact that most of these efforts were directed at the poor, the ill and the criminal mind for an enduring link between birth control and eugenics, the belief that only the “fittest” human should reproduce. Among the methods touted for their effectiveness were condoms, which became increasingly popular after 1860 with the use of rubbers in the manufacturer, replacing animal intestine and silk sheathes.

Douching solution and vaginal pessaries also became more effective in the nineteenth century. Sterilization required development in medical antisepsis and anesthesia, which were only coming of age in the 1870s.
Opponents to organized birth control emerged in the 1870; they include Anthony Comstock (1844. 1915) founder of the New York society for the suppressing of Vice and the Catholic Church. To them birth control was bound to a deep moral crisis in the society. Yet the number of users of birth control birth grew, and ideas about family size and women’s roles in society changed. Activist like Margaret Sanger coined the term birth control in 1913 to replace the label of Neo-Malthusianism.

As the birth control movement became more popular, it attracted allies that began to reframe birth control as more than just fertility limitation. This is how the notion of birth control became associated with that of family planning by the 1930s. birth control acquired an additional political meaning in the 1950s with the cold war. While population growth stabilized in Europe and North America, it accelerated in the so-called third world. The contraceptive pill emerged in this context and was promoted not only as a convenient contraceptive but also as a tool to lower population growth rate. Devised by the biologist Gregory Pincus (1903 – 1967) with funds from philanthropist Katharine McCormick (1875 – 1967) and Sanger’s support and marketed by G.D. Searle, the pills became the most popular form of birth control by 1965 in the United States.

During the late 1960s, the prospect of misery, anarchy, and socialist advances in the third world war which led to international development policies like the U.S. alliance for progress and the involvement of philanthropies like the Rockefeller foundation in population control programs. The latter were tied to some of which applied policies throughout the world, some of which applied policies throughout the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s to quickly lower population growth rates to match objectives set by medical social science experts in industrialized nations. As was evident following the United Nation World population conference of 1974 in Bucharest, however, third world nations often suspected that population control programs were implemented only for the benefit of developed nations, while hurting the interests of the third and failing to address the root causes of poverty and inequality. Third world nations also claimed often that population control programs sometimes conflicted with local and personal beliefs about the worth of individual births.

Today, with the exception of china’s “one-child policy” instituted in 1978, birth control programs in most countries have retreated from the aggressive promotions of some methods in favour of voluntarism, informed choice of contraceptives, sex education, and the insertion of birth control provision within broader systems for health care delivery, particularly material and infant health. This trend began as early as the mid-1960s, yet, even now, as in the eighteenth century, the free choices and additional services implied in family planning are part of a complex process involving individual decisions, social values, and material constraints.

Studies have shown that well educated men and those with higher status express greater approval of family planning and feel concerned about the reproductive health of their partner and well-being of the entire family.
If the reproductive life and quality of life of women are to be improved, men must be involved in the spectrum of reproductive health and on the use of birth control measures, men can play a crucial role in their wives reproductive lives, that is to say, birth control should not be women oriented alone, but also men and women oriented. Also, both men and women have responsibilities and rights to information and access to appropriate health care.

The importance of men in reproductive health has gained attention since 1994 when the program of action globally endorsed at the international conference on population and development (ICPD), stressed into wild range of reproductive health services and birth control measures as equal partners and as clients in their own right, better health outcome result among both men and women.

Based on the above observation, it becomes pertinent to know whether academic status and religion influence the attitude of parents towards birth control measures..
New research debunks the assumption that a woman’s religion predicts her views on policies affecting reproductive health care such as insurance coverage for birth control.

Even when it comes to policies that have sometimes been characterized as going against Christian views – such as the affordable care Act mandate for employer-provided contraception coverage-religious women’s opinions are mixed, finds the nationally representative study by the university of Michigan protestants and Catholics were most likely to agree that employer health plans should cover contraception (66% and 63% respectively) – even ahead of non-religious women (59% and women of non-Christian religious affiliation (59%) according to the study. Least likely to support ACA requirement were Baptists (48%) and other Christians (45%). Fifty – six percent of women overall supported mandated health coverage of contraceptives and less than a fourth believed employers should be exempt from the law due to religion.

The findings appear online ahead of print this month in international reproductive health journal contraception.  “we wanted to examine the relationship between religious affiliation and a woman’s views on reproductive health care policy and what we found was that one didn’t necessarily predict the other”, says lead author Elizabeth pattern, M.D., M. Phil, M. Sc an obstetrician – gynecologist at the university of Michigan Health System and researcher with the VA Center for Clinical Management Research. “Debates surrounding reproductive health care have often been framed as religious versus non-religious but that’s not a accurate native our funding show that religious women’s attitudes toward policies affecting reproductive health care are much more complex than the are often portrayed. The differences in opinions about these policies between religious women and non religious women are not always as striking as some may believe”.

The affordable care Act’s contraceptive coverage mandate was challenged last year by the owners of Hobby and Conestoga Wood who said providing contraceptives to female employees went against their religious beliefs. The Supreme Court sided with them, ruling that corporation with religious owners cannot be required to pay for insurance coverage of contraception under the ACA. Just this week, the Supreme Court asked a lower court to reconsider its decision that barred Notre Dame – a Catholic University – from refusing to provide contraceptive coverage to employees on religious grounds.

The U – M study found that just 23 percent of women believed religious hospitals and colleges should be excluded from contraceptive coverage requirements. The majority of women however disagreed with insurance coverage for abortion, with just 23 percent supporting abortion coverage in health plans. When controlling for factors such as income, education, ethnicity and political party, women who attended services most frequently (weekly or more, regardless of religious affiliation) were less likely to support employers sponsored insurance coverage of contraception and abortion care, but more likely to support the exclusion of religious hospitals and colleges from contraceptive coverage requirements.

Researchers analyzed data from women’s Health care. Experiences and preferences survey, which was conducted by the program on Women’s Health Care Effectiveness Research of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Michigan and includes a nationally- representative sample of 1,078 women in the U.S. age 18 – 55. The study examined associations between religious association (based on self-reported religious affiliation and frequency of attending religious services) and attitudes towards employer-provided insurance coverage of contraception and abortion services. “when religion enters political discussions, we tend to hear from politicians, business leaders or church leaders who are often the most vocal, but these voices don’t represent the religious community as a whole”, says pattern, who is also a Robert Wood Johnson clinical scholar and member of the U-M institute for Health Care policy and innovation.

“Political debates in the U.S. about reproductive health and religion continue”. These policies primarily affect women…the vast majority of whom identify with a religion – and we need to ensure their view points are heard so that misconceptions aren’t perpetuated in these conversations.
“We need to be aware of the complexity of how religion affects women’s views so we can design reproductive health policies that truly reflect the beliefs and desires of most women in our country”.

Statement of the Problems

Despite the benefits accrued to birth control measure, there are still series of obstacles or hindrances in the attitude of parents towards birth control measures. Birth control today is facing the problem of lack of education towards family planning at the early stage of marriage, problem of poverty which limits parents from adopting of birth control, lack of self-esteem and confidence in the use of birth control among parents, the problem of illiteracy among parents and ignorance over birth control which results from inappropriate or lack of orientation and sensitization over birth control, the problem of fear of negative side effect of  birth control on mothers; and the fear of causing impotence on the men etc.

Objectives of the Study

To educate parents on birth control through birth control programs.
To determine the efficacy and effectiveness of birth control measure in the country.
To determine the usefulness of birth control both among the educated and uneducated parents and among religions.
To determine the challenges associated with attitudes of parents towards birth control measure.

Relevance of the Study

The findings of this study will help to bring positive behavioral change in people of diverse social background.
It will help to sensitize policy making and service providers by forgoing new partnership between Non Governmental Organization (NGOs), Government institutions and end users.
The outcome of this study will serve as a useful contribution to the present body of knowledge in the area of birth control measures, also provide current literature on birth controls measures in Nigeria and diasporas.

Operational Definition of Terms

Academic Status: This is the educational level of an individual which is high or low, educated or uneducated.
Religion: The belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods.
Attitude:  An attitude is an evaluation of an attitude object, roughing from extremely negative to extremely positive.
Birth Control: A method or device used to limit or space human fertility.

 

CHAPTER TWO
LITERATURE REVIEW
Theoretical Review
For the theoretical background of this study, birth control, black community, Malthus theory of population growth rate and types of birth control will be adopted and reviewed.

Birth control in 1960s became a hotly debated focal point in the public discuss on sexuality. Although much of the dialogue centrered around catholic opposition to so-called state sponsored immorality, a new dimension to the controversy emerged when some black spokes-person accused birth control advocates of promoting nothing less than “black genocide” Government finding of contraception by the mid 1960 brought the debate to new height. A strange colliance developed between black power advocates and cultural conservatives represented by the Roman Catholic Church simultaneously, a rift occurred between male genocide theorists and black woman and their supporters. The case of Pittsburgh minors, these natural developments, two black men in Pittsburgh, Dr. Charles Green lee, national spokes-man for the genocide theory, and  William “Boule” Haden, a militant leader of the united movement for progress, allied with F.R. Charles Owen Rice, a white Catholic Priest at Holy Rosemary Parish, to lead an anti-birth control campaign between 1966 and 1969.

Their combined efforts bed Pittsburgh to reject federal funds for birth control clinics, making it the only major city to turn down such resources for this purpose. The ensuring battle revealed a significant polarization between black women over-powered genocide theorists and forced the city to reverse it position and accept federal fund for clinic in depressed neighborhoods. While suspicious among black power males of white attempts to control black sexuality may have been warranted, black women were convinced they could use birth control to suit their own purpose. They argued that the decision regarding it and when to have children must be left to individual women not men seeking an issue from which to lunch a political battle.

Certain segments of the black community mistrusted the underlying intention of both private and government efforts with respect to contraception. Some black in particular became skeptical of the increasing push for contraceptive dispersal in poor urban neighborhood, accusing contraceptive proponents of promoting nothing less than “black genocide”. Although the black community had generally supported birth control since 1930s, some members rejected it as a white plot to decimate the black race.

The fear of genocide heightened as publicly-funded clinics appeared in the in area dominated by “poor and prolific black families”. Also, much of this fear of genocide was rooted in the centuries abuse by white or blacks. Black sexuality had been defiled since the 1990s; the prevalence of rape, castration and slave breeding aid a foundation for distrust of any programme dealing with black sexuality. Although most black especially black women rejected the notion of birth control as genocide, black suspicious were not without basis. Opposition to birth control among blacks escalated during the second half of 1960s. most objections came from traditional young parents rather than the Christians which generally accepted family planning and effectively employed contraceptive to increase their mobility and life changes. The two groups mostly associated with genocide arguments were the black partners and the black Muslims.

The black partners party considered contraception only one party of a large government scheme of generative –Drugs, veneral diseases, prostitution coercive sterilization pills, restrictive welfare legislation, in human living condition, “police murders”, rat bites, malnutrition, lead poisoning, frequent fires and accidents in run-down houses and black over-representation in vietrain combact forces all contributed to the malicious plan to annihilate the black race. The partners also vehemently criticized the government for its failure to develop a comprehensive programme of diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of sickle cell anemia. The partners therefore, concluded that contraception was only part of wide design to decimate the black race.
The black Muslims also staunchly opposed contraceptive of basic reasons.

First the Koran condemns contraception. Second, the Muslim ethics proclaimed men the unquestioned leaders and decision makers. Mohammad stated; “The woman is man’s field to produce his nation”, thirdly contraceptives amounted is a genocidal plot devised by the “white devils” Muhammad warned against the “disgraceful birth control laws no aimed exclusively at poor, helpless black people who have no one to rely on”.

He postulated that the white motive was not to improve the situation of black families, but is decimate future generations. He compared the contraceptive campaign to the attempt of pharaoh to destroy Israel by murdering the first born male children. Malcdmx also suspected genocide motives behind population-control advocacy. “it’s easy to see the fear in their mind”. He declared, “that the masses of the black people will continue to increase and multiply and grow until they eventually over run (other people) like a human sea, a human tide, a human flood. Muhammad speaks, the widely read Muslims weekly. Publish numerous stories on the “deadly” and “diabolic” nature of birth control.

Hence, Planned Parenthood reported, that nationwide black men rather than black women mostly often opposed contraception. Why? Some of the male opposition seemed to stem from black “machismo”, one planned parenthood official stated: “negro men often view the scene of a child as a proof of manhood” social worker agrees” “the black man’s opposition has a lot to do with his vivility hang up”. They like to brag about the number of kids they have, they also think it is their ultimate proof of their manhood.”(17)” Black power argue that contraceptive drives among the traditional/poor were merely attempts to keep the black man done apparently had some impacts as well mostly on northern, urban young men, not women.

A study conducted in 973 founded that younger blacks are more educated and poor more than the rich, the study concluded that despite obvious fears of genocide among uneducated parents are more positively inclined towards family planning than white parents.

Thomas Robert Malthus theory of population growth rate. In 1798 the English economist Thomas Robert Malthus (1766 – 1864) argued for the eventual scarcity of natural resources given the rate of population growth worldwide. This argument became the basis of the first organized efforts to limit population sizes in the west. The fact that most of these efforts were directed at the poor, the ill, and the criminal mind for an enduring link between birth control and eugenics, the belief that only the “fittest” humans should reproduce. Among the methods thought for their effectiveness were condom, which became increasingly popular after 1860 with the use of rubber in their manufacture, replacing animal intestine and silk sheaths. Douching solutions and vaginal presales also became more effective in the nineteenth century.

Sterilization required developments in medical anticisepsis and anesthesis, which were only coming of age in the 1870s. While the growth of the food supply was expected to be arithmetical, Malthus believed there were too types of “Checks” that could then reduce the population, returning it to a more sustainable level. He believed there were “preventive” checks such as moral restraints (abstinence, delayed marriages until finances becomes balanced), and restricting marriage against religion and defects. Malthus believed in “positive checks” which lead to premature death: disease, starvation, war, resulting to what is called a Malthusian catastrophe. The catastrophe would return population to a lower, more, sustainable”, level. The term has been applied in different ways over the last two hundred years, and has been linked to a variety of other political and social movements, but almost always refers to advocate of population control.

Opponents to organized birth control emerged in the 1870s, they include Anthony Comstock (1844, 1915) founder of the New York society for the supersession of vice, and the Catholic Church. To them, birth control grew, and ideas about family size and women’s roles in the society changed. Activist like Margaret Sanger (1883 – 1966) aid in the popularization of birth control, linking it to greater freedom from women. Sanger coined the term birth control in 1913 to replace the label of neo-Malthusianism. As the birth control movement became more popular, it attracted allies that began to reframe birth control as more than just fertility limitation. This is how the notion of birth control became associated with that of family planning by the 1930s.

Birth control acquire an additional political meaning in the 1950s with the cold war. While population growth stabilized in Europe and North America, it accelerated in the so-called their world war. The contraceptive pill emerged in this context and was promoted not only as a continent contraceptive; but also as a tool to lower population growth rates.

Devised by the biologist Gregory Pincus (1903 – 1967) with fund from philanthropist Katharine McCormick (1875 – 1967) and Sanger’s support, and marketed by G.D. Searle, the pill became the most popular form of birth control by 1965 in the United States.
During the late 1960s, the prospect of misery anarchy, and socialist advances in the third word led to international development policies like the US Alliances for progress and the involvement of philanthropies like the Rockefeller foundation in population control programmes.

The latter were tied to the intervention of governments in developing world, some of which applied polices throughout the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s to quickly lower population growth rates to match objectives set by medical and social science experts in industrialized nations. As was evident following the united nations world population conference of 1974 in Bucharest, however, third world nations often suspected that population control programs were implemented only for the benefit of developed nations, while butting the interest of the third world and failing to address the root cause of poverty and inequality.

The third world nations also claimed often that population control programs sometimes conflicted with local and personal beliefs about the work of individual births. Today, with the exception of China’s “one-child policy”, instituted in 1978, birth control programs in most countries have retreated from aggressive promotion of some methods in favour of voluntarism, informed choice of contraceptives, sex education, and the insertion of birth control provisions within broader systems for health care delivery, particularly maternal and infant health. This trend began as early as the mid 1960s. yet even now, as in the eighteenth century, the free choices and additional services implied in family planning are part of a complex process, involving individual decisions, social values, and material constraints.

Typology of Birth Control Measures

The types of birth control (or “contraceptive”) you choice is dependent on your needs. Some people only need to prevent pregnancy; other people may want to protect themselves or their partners from diseases that can be passed by having sex some forms of birth control are more effective at preventing pregnancy than others. Barrier methods are not as effective as hormone method or sterilization. Natural family planning can be more effective if it is practiced with great care and commitment. However, the only way to make sure you do not get pregnant or get someone pregnant is not to have sex, (Abstinence).

1.    Barrier Method:

Barrier methods includes condoms, the diaphragm, the sponge, and the cervical cap. these methods prevent pregnancy by blocking sperm from getting into the uterus and fertilizing and egg. You have to remember to use barrier method every time you have sex, and you have to use them the right way every time for them to be effective. Barrier methods can be even more effective by putting spermicidal on them. Spermicidal comes as foam, jelly, or cream and kills perm. Some barrier methods are packaged with spermicidal already in them. Condoms are good especially if you or your partner have sex with other people or if either of you has sex with other people in the past.

2.    Birth Control Pills:

Birth control pills work mostly by preventing ovulation (the release of an egg by the ovaries). Most pills include two hormones called estrogen and progestin. Birth control pills can cause some side effects such as nauseas, headache, breast swellings, water retention, weight gain, and depression. For the pills to work you have take if every day. The pills may reduce creaming and shorter the number of days of bleeding during the menstrual period.

3.     Hormone Implants Patches and Shots

Hormone implants, patches and shots work much like the pills. They may have some side effects such as headache, and changes in periods moods and weight. With the implants and shots, you do not have to think about birth control every day. The implants prevent pregnancy for five years. (you can have them removed at any time). The shots prevents pregnancy for three months, with the patch, you have to remember to put a new patch on your body every week. The patch is also called by its brand name other Era, it is worn on the lower abdomen, buttocks, outer arm, or upper body. It releases the hormones progestin and estrogen into the bloodstream to stop the ovaries from releasing eggs in most women. It also thickens the cervical mucus, which keeps the sperm from joining with the egg. Women should wait three weeks after giving birth to begin using birth control that contains estrogen and progestin.

4.     Intrauterine Devices:

An intrauterine device or IUD is made of flexible plastic. It seems to stop sperm from reaching the egg or prevent the fertilized egg from attaching to the uterus. Some IUDs used in the post were related to serious health problems. Today, IUDs are safer, but they still have some risks most doctors prefer to reserve IUD’s for women who have already had a baby. The most common side effects of IUD’s include heavier bleeding and strongest cramps during periods.

5.     Sterilization Implant (essure):

Sterilization is an operation to permanently prevent pregnancy. If you are sure that you do not want to have children or do not want more children, sterilization can be a good choice.
Tubal ligation involves closing off the fallopian tubes in a woman so that the eggs cannot reach the uterus. The fallopian tubes are what the eggs cannot reach. The fallopian tubes are what the eggs travel through to reach the uterus.
Men are sterilized with vasectomy. The man’s vas defers (sperm ducts) are closed off so that sperm can’t get enough.

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