On last month's BC/EC post, Mächtige Maus and I started a discussion in the comments about how young is too young to have access to emergency contraception or birth control in general. In one of my comments, I brought up the issue of medication still being a drug. I wanted to elaborate on that a bit and stress the importance of testing and education about how birth control and EC affect women at different ages. If there is a big difference in the effects of these drugs in a 16-year-old versus an 18-year-old, then it stands to reason that more control should be placed on how the 16-year-old can access it. Does anybody know if this research is out there and, if so, what they've found?
Ultimately, it is hard to give an arbitrary age to something like this, especially given all the variables involved. Consider the fact that the average age of these occurrences are probably quite different:
- menarche (the first period) - around 12
- first instance of real sex education (not the abstinence-only kind) - this can vary tons depending on state and quality of education, but let's guess 13-15
- first sexual experience - around 17
- when society wishes the first sexual experience was - I'll just throw out 18-21