Just read an article in our local weekly paper about the dilemma some families are facing as the economic conditions intensify: having to choose between buying food or birth control. Talk about a terrible double bind! How sad and ironic to decide that you must risk creating more mouths to feed in order to take care of the children you already have.
I dunno why every single high school health class isn't teaching this most basic and empowering health information: women are only fertile during a few days of their monthly cycles.
There are reliable and simple ways to assess your own fertility signals, and you can use the information to help you avoid pregnancy, even if your cycle is irregular. It also helps you know when you have the best chance of conceiving, if that's what you want.
Using it to prevent pregnancy does require abstinence during fertile days, and is therefore not as convenient or practical as, for example, an IUD, but it is free and available to every woman.
And although it does nothing to prevent STD's, and it's not 100% foolproof (no method is ...), basic fertility awareness education could greatly reduce the odds of an unplanned pregnancy. So I'm doing my part to spread the good word.
Here's a site I like with info about The Two Day Method:
I also recommend the book Your Fertility Signals by Merryl Winstein.