Learning to Love “Plan B”

The Thrill is proud to feature personal narratives. Tonight’s is authored by an anonymous student.


So, there was a mishap. Maybe your condom slipped, maybe you never bothered with one. Ours broke.

It happened to me on a Friday night. The first question we asked each other was whether or not the boy in question was obligated to come with me to the pharmacy in the morning. During the week, I could have gone to the Health Center, but since it was the weekend, that option was closed to me. Initially we decided he would drive me to town. I don’t know how to drive, and he doesn’t have a car, so I still had to find someone whose ride we could borrow.
“It’s fine if you don’t come,” I told him. “It’s probably better. You don’t want to have to sit in the backseat of my friend’s car, it’s going to be such an awkward drive.” He admitted to never having wanted to take me at all, and I admitted that made me feel relieved. I guess this is a personal preference, but it didn’t make sense to me to make him tag along.
The friend who drove me to town joked with me the whole way, and it helped put me at ease. I was nervous, though I couldn’t really say why. When we got to the drug store, my friend wandered down the aisles, leaving me to face the pharmacy counter alone. I cannot describe the feeling of relief that washed over me when I discovered two young female pharmacists were behind the counter that morning. For the entire drive, I had been convincing myself that the pharmacist would be an older man who would look down at me over the counter with a disapproving glare. For being irresponsible. For being sexually active. Even as I saw this wasn’t going to be the case, I felt embarrassed approaching the pharmacy counter in a way I haven’t since I bought condoms for the first time, when I was 15. Still, I took a breath, walked up, and quietly told one of the pharmacists, “Hi… I need Plan B.”
A prescription is needed to get emergency contraceptives for girls under 17, so they asked for my ID. The whole transaction was painless, and only took a moment. The pharmacist was very sweet. Name-brand Plan B is $50, but I’m cheap, so I got the generic store brand and saved ten dollars. Which brings rise to another question that is bound to come up in this situation – who’s paying? I’ve heard a lot of arguments for splitting the cost, and some people told me they believe the guy should be paying for the entire thing. I decided to ask him to pay only half. It was nobody’s fault. It didn’t seem fair that I shouldn’t pay for some of it, too.
When my ride dropped me back off at my dorm (and was solemnly sworn to secrecy), I went upstairs, took a breath, and called my mother. My mother and I aren’t very close, but I felt at that moment that I needed to hear her voice. I’m so thankful that I was raised by such loving and accepting parents. My mother told me on the phone that she was proud of me for taking responsiblity, taking immediate action and making the mature choice. She told me she loves me and that she was sorry I had to go through all of that. I know that I worried her, but I’m glad that I told her. I think it was the right choice. I found this when I woke up the next day:
So, I took emergency contraceptives. That’s okay. Knowing now there’s nothing to worry about, I’m glad I did it. Better safe than sorry, right?

6 responses

  1. Thank you so much for writing this! I’ve been in the same situation and it’s really difficult when this happens on the weekend. Again, thank you so much for being brave and taking responsibility. Nothing is worse than lying awake all night thinking about the possibilities because the condom broke.

  2. You can also find coupons for Plan B online which make it a little more affordable: http://www.planbonestep.com/coupon.aspx

    Also–the fireplace mantle in Crozier always has condoms as well as information about sexual health including birth control and a flyer from the SMAs about how to access emergency contraception. Be safe & healthy, Kenyon!

  3. I too have taken Plan B while at Kenyon and I want to thank you for writing this post. It’s unfortunate that emergency contraceptives have such a stigma attached to them. A condom breaking or slipping isn’t something you can control, and forgetting to use one doesn’t make you a bad person. Thank you for your bravery in addressing such a delicate subject!

    P.S. Wish I had known about the coupon!

  4. Front page news in today’s (online) NY Times: Judge Orders FDA to Make Morning After Pill Available OTC For All Ages

  5. Pingback: Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Plan B (But Were Afraid To Ask) | The Thrill

Share your thoughts on this post.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: