Sarah Nicole Landry, known as The Birds Papaya, received an onslaught of negativity after posting a cheeky video thanking her husband for getting a vasectomy. See how she gets the last laugh.
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Sarah Landry and Shane share vastecomy
Credit: Sarah Landry

One of the best things about the internet is that it can be a beautiful space full of found families, community, support, and that peculiar joy of encountering people who are weird in exactly the same way you are. Of course, people are also the worst thing about the internet. 

We all know this, and yet it's always still such a shock when a seemingly benign post blows up (in this case on TikTok) and folks show themselves to be the mean, hypocritical, vile people they can be when a person with a uterus dares to do anything whatsoever at all.

Shamed for Birth Control Choice

With her husband's, Shane, permission, Sarah Nicole Landry, a digital creator and mom, shared a picture of a cake that had "Sorry about your balls" written in icing along with a picture of scissors and one single sperm in a "No" symbol. She was quickly shamed and harrassed for her—and her husband's—choice.

"Honestly, I love a good joke! I love spinning things to be positive and light and didn't even second guess posting a cake due to its light humor!" Landry tells Parents. "It has been second nature for me to share our lives over the last 13 years, so this was no different. It also felt like a great time to discuss something I rarely saw on social media—male contraception options!" 

Comments poured in. 

Landry told us that the same post on Instagram garnered an overwhelmingly positive response. "So many were grateful that we were sharing this experience and how we made the decision, what necessary things to buy and use and of course—the absolute hilarity of all the jokes we could tell," she says.

But on TikTok, where Landry simply shared the cake she got Shane, people were vile. People questioned their choice of birth control, alternately accused Shane of adultery while simultaneously warning him away from his wife, casting aspersions on Landry's character in general. 

"Many [were] from men being accusatory and even spreading misinformation about what a vasectomy is or can cause. I was shocked," explains Landry. "Especially the ones that said to lock me up. The last time I checked, my husband opted for a vasectomy, I agreed, and bought him a cake."

Why Don't Cisgender Men Bear More Responsibility for Birth Control?

It's awfully hypocritical (and just plain awful) when people have very strong opinions about what people with uteruses should or should not get to do with their body but then don't expect cisgender men to do anything about their ability to get said people pregnant. (Don't even get me started on how reproductive rights and abortion bans are making it even more difficult to make pregnancy decisions.)

Contraception is not just a health issue for cisgender women and people with menstrual cycles, and yet the lion's share of its applications are shunted onto them. Ensuring safe, consensual sex to prevent unplanned pregnancies or sexually transmitted infections (STIs) is the responsibility of every party involved in a relationship—committed, monogamous, or otherwise. 

Shane and Sarah hugging
Credit: Sarah Landry

"This was a decision we made together as a couple for birth control. Why is there so much on a woman's shoulders when it comes to this and when a man supports in a way he can, it's MY BAD? Or he's cheating? Or I should be the one [to get a procedure]?" added Landry on Instagram

Of course, we all know why. Patriarchy is a helluva drug and cisgender men can only uphold it with the aiding and abetting of cisgender women. 

The More Birth Control Options Available, the Better for Everyone

When it comes to contraception, there are a lot available for folks who can get pregnant. But when you look at the prophylactic options for people with penises, the choices are much fewer. Currently, they can pull out, use a condom, get a vasectomy (which is minimally invasive unlike getting your tubes tied), or abstain. 

Why is that?

Especially when you consider that one 2016 study revealed an injectable contraception for cisgender males was both effective and reversible. However, too many men dropped out, and the supervising medical board became unduly concerned about the injection side effects. The side effects the board was so worried about? Acne, mood swings, increased libido, and pain at the injection site. 

No. I am not joking. 

Incidentally, the side effects of hormonal birth control for people who can get pregnant can include acne, mood swings, depression, breast pain, bloating, weight gain, headaches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, abdominal pain, fatigue, spotting, vaginal infections, and sometimes, more serious conditions such as blood clots and increased risk for certain cancers. 

But you know, that pain at the injection site, am I right?

Ultimately, the more choices we have to prevent unwanted pregnancies—which is the responsibility of every person involved—the more we can encourage everyone to avail themselves of said choices. 

"I really felt the support of my community in this. I also shared the backlash because I found it was important for others to be aware of some of the misogynistic opinions out there, and the misconceptions about a vasectomy," says Landry.

The hypocrites who place all the onus of pregnancy prevention on the person who can get pregnant yet won't allow these same people to control their bodies want to have their cake and eat it too. 

To those angry people in her comments, Landry had the last word. "I'm so sorry they missed the joke and a good slice of cake."