The Luv Doc: Big Enough Balls
You can't take away something's purpose without some reflexive pushback
Dear Luv Doc,
I am 34 years old and the loving mother of two beautiful children, one boy and one girl. Both are now in school – preschool and second grade, respectively – and we have no plans to have any additional children. Even still, my husband, who is 40 and has no business having any more children himself, refuses to get a vasectomy. It really angers me that after birthing two of his children the burden of birth control still falls on me. He knows that birth control pills make me a hormonal wreck, and IUDs haven't been much better. All I am asking him to do is get a simple outpatient procedure. He says he is worried that it might be painful because one of his friends told him it felt like being kicked in the balls. I don't know what being kicked in the balls feels like, but I am pretty sure it isn't more painful than birthing two babies. Everything I have read online says it's a relatively easy procedure and that you can even be back to having sex in a week! A few weeks ago I told him that we are going to have to use condoms from now on, but it didn't make a difference. Today I told him we are not having sex again until he gets a vasectomy. Am I being unreasonable?
– Feeling Extra Snippy
I have been kicked in the balls on several occasions, some of which were unintentional, and a few others well-deserved, but having witnessed the "miracle" of childbirth at close range and in living color, I would not put a kick in the balls in the same universe, painwise. Over the course of my life I have discussed getting kicked in the nuts with a lot of dudes and never once in any of those conversations has someone said to me, "I got kicked in the sack so hard it tore a three inch gash in my taint." Seriously. Not even once. However, if you go during post-drop-off margs with some PTA moms and the subject rolls around to childbirth, buckle up, big guy, because taint tears are definitely going to be on the menu. Yes, a hard kick in the groin can be exceedingly painful and debilitating – a fact that my best friend in high school learned the hard way, which is why I sometimes called him "Lefty" when I was trying to get his goat – but it ain't childbirth, not by a big stretch. Even Lefty would agree with that.
Also, I have had a vasectomy, and I can safely say that the most uncomfortable thing about it was watching Hector, the prep nurse, shave my junk. My discomfort was entirely unfounded however, because it became quickly apparent that Hector was a dedicated professional with an inspirational enthusiasm for his work. As for the operation itself, I was quite conscious through the whole procedure – enough so that I was even offered the option to "look away" on occasion, which I did, because, truth be told, I am not sure the surgeon shared Hector's enthusiasm for his work. Nonetheless, I made it out of there with two fully severed and stapled vasa deferentia, and a swag bag of ice to chill my boys and keep the swelling down. The whole deal couldn't have taken more than a couple of hours and, unlike the childbirths I have witnessed, the operating room wasn't awash in blood and entrails.
So, as I lay comfortably reclined in my post-op waterbed eating bon bons and watching bowl games for three days (hell yeah I milked that shit), I did occasionally ponder how much worse it could have been. Truth be told, I only felt a fairly mild pain in my balls. That's understandable. You can't take away something's purpose without some reflexive pushback, and it wouldn't have felt right if there was no pain at all. I might not have been convinced of the operation's efficacy. For all I know, the doctor might have drizzled some monkey blood in there for good measure, just to let me know the work had been done.
I know all the preceding may seem like the unhinged ramblings of a sterile old man, but what I am really trying to say here is that you are being completely reasonable – maybe even more than reasonable. So, tell your husband that the Luv Doc says to man the fuck up and prove he has big enough balls to get snipped. And, if for some ungodly reason either of you change your minds in the next 10 years, it's completely reversible with a high success rate and an equally easy out-patient surgery. Remember: You're right, you're reasonable, and you're worth it.