Complete Without Kids

Exploring all facets of childfree living.

New Fertility App Aids Family Planning

Is a calendar-based method of birth control the one for you?

Today, 20 percent of women in the United States pass their childbearing years without becoming mothers. Like many, I did so not because of careful planning but somewhat by default. As I describe in my book, Complete without Kids, I was busy working, traveling, going to school, and focusing on friendships. The right time to become a mom never came up.

The sad fact is that many mothers didn’t plan to have kids either. Even with the advances in birth control over  the 50 years since the advent of the pill, and much greater access to affordable birth control, over 50 percent of pregnancies in our country are still unplanned!

I just read about a new app that may, in the future, help reverse this statistic. The cleverly named Glow Gadget ( tells a woman when she is most fertile and, accordingly, when she is most likely to get pregnant. The app helps a woman track data such as body temperature that is associated with fertility.

This kind of app may also help women who can’t or don’t want to use contraception, or who have a partner who refuses to wear a condom. Even with so many great kinds of birth control available, many women and couples still rely on calendar-based methods. Fertility apps such as Glow Gadget are simply another way for a woman to have greater control over her body and her reproductive choices. This in turn will hopefully mean fewer unplanned pregnancies, fewer unnecessary abortions, and fewer women having children by accident. 

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Would you choose to use a fertility device for pregnancy-prevention over more traditional birth control methods? What future advances in this area do you predict?





Ellen Walker, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist and the author of Complete Without Kids: An Insider's Guide to Childfree Living By Choice Or By Chance.


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