Yay or Nay: Your 9-year-old buying emergency contraception without you

The "morning-after" pill will now be available without prescription to girls of all ages thanks to a ruling by a federal judge in New York. Before we get all "THE CHILDRENZ!!!" let's think practically. How often is a girl as young as nine or eleven going to need the morning-after pill anyway and b) if they do need it, my God, why create any barriers? The most likely outcome of this ruling is high schoolers will now safely access this medication. (The ruling overturned the previous age to buy the morning-after pill without a prescription at 17.)

On the other hand, a grown adult has to practically show a passport and college transcript to get her hands on cold medicine, yet any kid old enough to see over a drug store counter can now waltz out with Plan B. Hm. This reminds me of the conundrum of 18-year-olds deemed fit for giving their lives on the front line in the military, yet they have to wait three years to enjoy a beer. The American timeline. So screwy.

Some argue lady babies having access to emergency birth control "gives permission" for younger girls to behave in sexually promiscuous ways. Logic fail! It's not like the nation's 4th graders are only held back from wild sexual abandon because they don't have access to morning-after pills. The floodgates to 70's-level casual sex is not going to open for grade school kids just because of a new ruling. Please. What kept me from having sex at age 9 wasn't fear of not getting a Plan B pill. It was, you know, being nine.

The judge's new ruling on the FDA serves to remove the age-barrier for people who already need emergency contraception, a ruling I find refreshing in theory (liberal heart!) and terrifying in practice (mom of two girls!) It scares me to think my kids would be in such a predicament and I wouldn't know about it. Then again, if I died or went on vacation or something when they were closer to graduating high school and they didn't feel comfortable asking their dad or going though the time-consuming process of getting a script (time is of the essence here), I'd rather them have access to Plan B than not.

Any parents of tweens want to jump in here? I'm conflicted. Also, can my kids just stay in preschool, please?

Students in a classroom
Enjoy this stock photo of a school-aged girl whose parents will no doubt enjoy seeing their kid in this context.


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