What To Know About Getting Your Tubes Tied And The Barriers You May Come Across

Although everyone should have complete bodily autonomy, this continues not to be the case for many people. One of those groups whose fight for it is a never-ending uphill battle is people with a uterus. Not only is securing an abortion impossible in some parts of the U.S. thanks to the overturning of Roe v. Wade but even getting your tubes tied is far from easy (via Today).

Having your tubes tied, also known as tubal litigation, is a procedure in which the fallopian tubes are either clipped or removed to prevent fertilization of an egg (via the Mayo Clinic). It is, for some, a preferred measure of birth control because it's permanent. It's sterilization and can't be undone in most cases. But despite the fact that people who either know they never want kids or have had enough kids request this procedure, trying to get a gynecologist to agree to it — even in light of Roe being overturned — isn't easy. If you're hoping to get your tubes tied, here's what you're likely to find yourself up against.

You may regret it later

One of the typical responses that people who seek to have their tubes tied get is that they'll regret it later. This is especially the case for people in their 20s and early 30s who want the procedure. But the issue with this statement, on the part of doctors who say it, is that it's coming from a place of their own concerns about being sued later, should someone change their mind. Despite the fact that each patient must sign a consent form as part of the process of obtaining tubal litigation, and that form would make it near-impossible for a claimant to win a lawsuit in court, doctors still revert back to this "reason" for not doing the procedure (via Slate). It doesn't matter how adamant someone is about not wanting to have kids — or not wanting more kids.

"People have so many opinions about women choosing to reproduce or not, and I think physicians in the position to make that decision are hesitant because they think a woman might regret it later," health law attorney Ariel Tazkargy tells Vice. "And that comes down to: We don't trust women. We don't trust women to make choices for themselves." Further proof that the belief that people who have a uterus can't make choices for themselves is that some are even told by their doctors they won't perform it because they're not married, as if knowing what you want to do with your body is somehow changed by marriage.

Ignorance on the part of the medical community

Even if you can find a doctor who will perform the procedure, it's not as though you can roll into the office and get one as easily as you can get a nose job or any other elective surgery. Instead, they put you through the wringer with counseling. Some doctors require more counseling than others. "This process of counseling does not need to take years or months," Dr. Jen Gunter, an OB/GYN, women's health advocate, and author of "The Vagina Bible," tells Bustle. "While I don't do tubal ligations anymore, I used to ask women of all ages to give my counseling about other methods a few days' consideration before booking the surgery." But even though the medical community may not be willing to tie someone's tubes, most insurance plans will cover tubal litigation thanks to the Affordable Care Act (via Planned Parenthood).

While it definitely seems absurd that any health care professional would deny someone the right to make a decision about their reproductive system — since that's usually the job of Republicans — that's where we are as a society. Although the overturning of Roe leads to more people seeking tubal litigation — as well as vasectomies, but these people are rarely turned away) — the difficulty of getting one remains (via NPR). Because of this, should you decide that tubal litigation is for you, prepare yourself for a lot of excuses from doctors, judgment about your ability to make decisions for yourself and your body, and the chance that you'll have to go through several medical professionals before you get someone to agree to it. In other words, you'll have your work cut out for you.