Home Episode How is Babby (Not) Made

How is Babby (Not) Made

November 3, 2016

Hello! And welcome to SEASON THREE of Flash Forward! I know I’ve been away for a bit, but I’m really excited for this season, I have some really fun futures planned for you. And some scary ones. But also fun ones! I promise, it’s a good mix.

This episode we’re talking birth control: what happens when everybody has 100% control over when they do or don’t have babies?

To find out I called up a bunch of people who know all about the past, present and future of baby making. 

Aaron Hamlin explains why male birth control has been so elusive. Haylin Belay explains what is keeping women from gaining access to birth control today. Alexis Madrigal talks about a future in which conception is perfected in the lab. And Elaine Tyler May talks about what we can learn about this future from the history of the birth control pill in America.

Flash Forward is produced by me, Rose Eveleth, and is part of the Boing Boing podcast family. The intro music is by Asura and the outtro music is by Hussalonia. Special thanks to Brent Rose. The episode art is by Matt Lubchansky.

If you want to suggest a future we should take on, send us a note on Twitter, Facebook or by email at info@flashforwardpod.com. We love hearing your ideas! And if you think you’ve spotted one of the little references I’ve hidden in the episode, email us there too. If you’re right, I’ll send you something cool.

And if you want to support the show, there are a few ways you can do that too! We have a Patreon page, where you can donate to the show. But if that’s not in the cards for you, you can head to iTunes and leave us a nice review or just tell your friends about us. Those things really do help.

That’s all for this future, come back next week and we’ll travel to a new one.

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Media Mining Digest 261 – Nov 11, 2016: AI Possibilities, Alzheimers Caregiver, American Apparel T-shirts, Antibiotic Resistance Future, Astronaut Story, Bad Science, Bank Loan History, Barbara Boxer Biography, Big Thing Production, Birth Control, Brain November 11, 2016 at 5:35 pm

[…] Birth Control 41 mins – “This episode we’re talking birth control: what happens when everybody has 100% control over when they do or don’t have babies? To find out I called up a bunch of people who know all about the past, present and future of baby making. Aaron Hamlin explains why male birth control has been so elusive. Haylin Belay explains what is keeping women from gaining access to birth control today. Alexis Madrigal talks about a future in which conception is perfected in the lab. And Elaine Tyler May talks about what we can learn about this future from the history of the birth control pill in America.” At the link right-click “Download” and select “Save Link As” from the pop-up menu. […]

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caryatis November 17, 2016 at 12:34 am

Rose, I wish you had mentioned non-hormonal IUDs in the episode. They exist! As far as I’m concerned the birth control utopia is already here, with 99% effectiveness and few side effects. More people should use them–no woman needs to deal with the depression or weight gain that too often comes with the pill. But from listening to the episode, you would think your only options are barrier methods or hormonal.

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Rose December 12, 2016 at 8:20 am

Ah I thought Haylin had mentioned it when she was running through the list of options. I know personally the copper IUD did *not* work for my body and the hormonal one has been a dream, so as always it’s highly variable based on a whole bunch of stuff! Thanks for pointing out the missing piece!

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Stephanie Moore-Fuller January 9, 2017 at 3:46 pm

I was hoping for more information and speculation on what *effects* this would have on the world. For example, no more adoptions, maybe even no more foster care? (if every kid is wanted, they’d be less likely to be taken away to be fostered?) maybe more births in America and Europe (because fertility treatments work perfectly), fewer births in places like India, etc.

Thanks for the podcast!

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