The further down you scroll on Netflix, the weirder the movies are that you find. One day while searching for a movie I came across a movie called “The Pill.” The cover, shown on the right, has a couple in bed with the man holding out his hand with a small pill toward a women who seems unconvinced. As someone who is very interested in the increasing use of contraception and abortifacients, I was intrigued and had to look into this further.
The premise of this rom com is that Fred and Mindy meet and after some drinks end up in bed together. The next morning, Fred learns that Mindy is not on birth control and, since they did not use a condom, he goes out and buys the morning after pill. Mindy at first refuses to take it. He gets her to take the first pill but has to ensure that she takes the second one twelve hours later so that it will be effective. In order to do this, he fakes interest in her and spends the day with her but obviously this does not necessarily go according to his plan as he realizes that he might have actual feelings for Mindy.
Ultimately, the film romanticizes one night stands, contraception, and abortifacients stating that somewhere in between the pills it is possible to find love. This is certainly not the only film to do so, however, it is one of the more obvious ones. This is very reflective of many of the views of such topics in society. Many see birth control and abortion as means of allowing couples to engage romantically without having to “suffer the consequences.” Spontaneity is possible without worry about fertility cycles or thinking further than the next morning. This is considered to be romantic and ideal.
But at what point does this romanticism wear off? When one tires of dates and instead realizes that they want something more long term? When it comes time to “settle down?” When there isn’t much time left on the biological clock? In the waiting room of the abortion clinic? I don’t mean to be blunt, but there are certain down sides of this view of romance that need to be recognized.
Birth control and abortion are certainly hot topics and there is a lot more to be said about them than is demonstrated in much of the media. However, this film and others like it certainly draw attention to some of modern thought surrounding these topics. There are many, myself included, that reject this notion of romanticizing the pill. These films might make it seem as though the pill allows for the beginning of a great romance, this romance lasts for an hour and a half and the consequences that follow are not shown or recognized. These fictional characters don’t have to worry about the future but as modern people we do.
Abortion and contraception, though increasingly accepted and popular, have been around for centuries but, like pornography, are evolving into socially acceptable and even encouraged practices. How much do people who are taking the pill know about what the pill is doing to their bodies and their relationships? Is our society allowing us to be swept off our feet by the pill before we are able to really get to know it?