'I just don't want children': Some American men are turning to vasectomies after the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe

·4 min read
Left: Thomas Figueroa; right: A man holding a giant pair of scissors
Left: Thomas Figueroa; right: A man holding a giant pair of scissors in Brazil.Left: Courtesy of Thomas Figueroa; right: AP Photo/Eraldo Peres
  • Men across the US have been seeking out vasectomies after the overturn of Roe v. Wade.

  • Iain Little and Thomas Figueroa told Insider they've known they didn't want kids for a while.

  • But the Supreme Court decision galvanized them to act on scheduling the medical procedure.

Thomas Figueroa was at the Electric Forest Music Festival in Michigan when he suddenly heard commotion.

Instead of people singing along to live music or laughing with their friends, there was hasty talking and yelling, he said.

There wasn't an immediate threat, but sudden news that the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade trickled through to only some phones as WiFi and cell service were limited, Figueroa said.

The few individuals who did get a news or Twitter notification through their phones started to alert others around them. In no time, it seemed like the whole campground was abuzz with the news.

"A lot of people around us that were camping with us started talking about it," Figueroa, 27, told Insider. "Literally everyone. The entire day, that was the main topic. That's all we heard. And there was just so much destruction with this that many people didn't really get to enjoy the festival as much as usual."

On the drive back home to Florida, Figueroa made up his mind — he would get a vasectomy as soon as possible.

"Once I hit the road, I got Internet connection again," he said. "I went on Google. I looked for doctors near my area. And then I found my doctor. And from there, I looked at the reviews and I was actually very excited about how nice those reviews were."

He's been considering getting one for a while, Figueroa told Insider. But the news of the reversal of abortion rights finally propelled him to make the call.

Figueroa is one of the droves of American men who are suddenly reaching out to and seeking doctors who'll perform the medical procedure for them.

"I just don't want children," he said. "And that's the decision I made right now and that's what I'm going to keep on with me for the rest of my life."

Figueroa finally recieved his vasectomy in July.

There is scant hard data on the number of men who have gotten the procedure as a result of overturning Roe v. Wade, but urologists all over the country have documented a spike in the number of vasectomy requests following the decision.

In July, an analysis conducted by health site BodyNutrition.org also identified more than 300,000 Twitter searches and mentions of vasectomies in the 30 days following the reversal of Roe v Wade. The most searches and mentions came from internet users located in several states across the western and southern US, the data shows.

A map of vasectomy searches nationwide after the overturn of Roe v. Wade
A map of vasectomy searches nationwide after the overturn of Roe v. Wade.BodyNutrition.org

The news of the decision also pushed Iain Little, 40, to get a vasectomy. He had considered the procedure in the past but told Insider he was "incredibly disappointed" by the news, which galvanized him to finally schedule an appointment.

He said he was also concerned about the attack on reproductive rights expanding.

"There's a very real chance that they will come after men's sexual health as a right to choose as well," Little told Insider. "I mean, obviously control of women's bodies has always been the big ticket. But if they're really leaning into conservative, religious justification, that there's certainly a chance that they will come for things like condoms, vasectomies, things like that in the near, near future."

Little is scheduled to get his vasectomy later this year.

The shockwaves extended to men outside the US, as well. Olivier Charbonneau, a 27-year-old man from Montreal, told Insider he had started to speak out about his vasectomy right after the Supreme Court decision.

"You are not dancing tango alone, so we have to share the responsibility," he said.

Since scheduling or getting their vasectomies, all three men have talked to their male friends about the process. Some of their friends have even asked for guidance in choosing a doctor to perform the procedure, Little and Figueroa said.

The act of getting a vasectomy is a personal decision, just as much as a political one, Little said.

But Little doesn't think of himself as an activist.

"Protest and change doesn't always happen on a big, grandiose scale," he said. "Regular people, who go to regular jobs 9 to 5 and do stuff, we can do this little part, right?"

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