Almost a third of Irish couples have used the 'withdrawal method' as contraception

Research from the Irish Family Planning Association shows that 30% of Irish couples rely on the ‘withdrawal method’ of contraception, or have in the past.

38% of Irish couples report using no method of contraception in their relationship.

The research, according to the IFPA, was conducted amongst a nationally representative sample of Irish adults, 72% of whom were in a committed relationship. Almost half (49%) were between the ages of 35 and 54 and 34% were aged 18 to 34.

The research showed that that 24% of all women surveyed reported experiencing an unplanned or crisis pregnancy in the past.

Among 18-34-year-olds, 16% reported experiencing unplanned pregnancy.

Unplanned or crisis pregnancy is defined by the IFPA as a pregnancy which is neither planned nor desired by the woman concerned and which represents a personal crisis for her.

The new research also showed that:

25% of adults in a relationship use a condom as their primary contraceptive method

19% of women in a relationship use an oral contraceptive pill

17% of all male respondents in a relationship stated that their female partner has experienced an unplanned pregnancy in the past

Reliance on condoms as a contraceptive method is highest amongst younger adults (18-34) at 41%

Across ages, reliance on ‘withdrawal’ as a method of contraception is highest amongst 18-34-year-olds and lowest for 55+ adults

Dr Caitriona Henchion, medical director of the IFPA, said that women of all reproductive ages in Ireland experienced pregnancies that were unplanned, unwanted or represent a crisis to them.

“If a pregnancy would be a crisis for a woman or couple, then it makes sense to use a contraceptive method they can rely on,”Henchion said.

But this recent research shows that almost 1 in 10 couples are using an unreliable method – withdrawal – rather than condoms or other reliable methods of contraception.

This is really concerning and shows that there is a need for more education and knowledge so that women are empowered to make the choice of contraceptive that’s best for them.

IFPA Chief Executive Niall Behan said that the perception that unintended pregnancy only happens to young women is “simply wrong”. He said an increasing number of women aged over 35 were attending pregnancy counselling services.

But there have never been more contraceptive options. These include hormonal methods, but also barrier methods, such as condoms and diaphragms.

IFPA doctors can discuss all these options with a woman and support her to decide on a method of contraception that suits her and that she and her partner can rely on to avoid unintended pregnancy.

The IFPA says that no extensive research has been conducted into unplanned pregnancy in Ireland since a major HSE study in 2012. It says its new survey, carried out in cooperation with Durex, presents a “snapshot of 2017 contraception and sexual health practices in Ireland”.

Founded in 1969, the Irish Family Planning Association is a registered charity and has clinics in Dublin and Tallaght. It also offers counselling services at eleven centres around the country.

Read more news on our site.
contraception Irishcouples
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
95 views in december
I recommend
No recommendations yet


Post your comment to communicate and discuss this article.

Anotorious Estonian hitman who travelled to Ireland to carry out a murder for the Kinahan Gang has been caged for six years. Imre Arakas, who was under garda surveillance, flew into Ireland on a murder mission to take out James “Mago” Gately. The Special Criminal Court was told that Arakas bought a wig in Dublin city and used an encrypted Blackberry phone to receive information about the movements and location of Mr Gately in Northern Ireland. The 60-year-...
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said he was "very satisfied" with the EU's position on the Irish backstop at last night's summit meeting. He said the European Union stands by the Withdrawal Agreement that was negotiated. EU leaders rejected British Prime Minister Theresa May's call for legally binding assurances on the Irish backstop and ruled out any changes to the Withdrawal Agreement. Speaking to reporters on day two of the summit in Brussels, Mr Varadkar sa...
Gardai are appealing for witnesses after a woman was allegedly sexually assaulted in a car in Dublin. The incident happened around Ballsbridge in the early hours of Sunday morning with investigators on the hunt for a man in his '20s or 30s' with short dark hair, a short beard, and glasses. A source told Dublin Live that one theory being explored is that the victim may have been in a taxi at the time. The source explained: "This woman was enjoying a night o...
Gardai have been gathering CCTV evidence at a hotel where an alleged rape involving a well-known sports star took place. Forensic experts and detectives visited the property in South Co Dublin on Tuesday night to hunt for clues. Initially it was believed the incident took place at a south inner-city hotel but after further inquiries it was determined it happened closer to the Dundrum area. A source said: “Detectives and scenes of crime gardai arrived at th...
The plans for the SDCC and Cluid housing social apartments were approved at Monday's full meeting of the council. On Monday, 81 social housing apartments for the elderly on a site beside Tallaght Stadium were approved by South Dublin County Council (SDCC) - writes This was despite a campaign calling on the council to save the land which houses a council depot at Watergate Sean Walsh Park. Local groups such as Tallaght Community Council and Ta...
Two people have been arrested following a stabbing incident in Dublin city centre. The incident happened on Essex Quay at around 4.40pm. A man aged in his late 20s was treated at the scene and taken to St James's Hospital with non-life threatening injuries following the incident. A man and woman, both aged in their 20s, were arrested at the scene and are being detained at Pearse Street Garda Station. Gardaí sealed off part of the south quays for several ho...
A kitchen went up in flames yesterday after some Christmas decorations were left on top of a microvwave. The Dublin Fire Brigade had to be called to quell the flames after tinsel caught fire having been left over a mircowave. Firefighters have warned others to be more careful with their decorating saying the tinsel was placed over the microwave's vent causing it to go up once the machine was turned on. They said: "Yesterday, Firefighters attended a kitchen...
A Dublin mother is extremely concerned for the welfare of her 15-year-old son after he never came home from the shop yesterday. Aleksejs Snitko went to the Tesco shop in Balbriggan yesterday, Saturday December 9 at around 4.30pm. His mother Iveta told Dublin Live that when her son left the home, he was wearing light grey basketball shoes, tight sport trousers and a warm navy jacket with a hoodie. He was also carrying a black and blue Puma school bag. The t...
A man and woman were arrested following a stabbing incident that left Dublin city centre on lockdown on Sunday evening. The pair were taken to Pearse st station after another man in his early 20s was hospitalised with 'non-fatal injuries'. It is believed a fight spilled out onto the road with one witness telling Dublin Live that she thought the man was going to be "throw him into the river". She said: "They stopped the traffic while they were fighting that...