- Due to, most probably, a lack of proper sex education from parents and teachers, many people aren’t entirely on the money when it comes to understanding how women can get pregnant.
- And whilst some of the crazy stories that floated around when you were in high school, like the girl who got knocked up from a swimming pool, are completely fake, some of the others are true.
One thing not many people realise is that you don’t necessarily need penetration to conceive.
Potentially, most worrying for frisky teens: women can get pregnant from ‘dry humping,’ when a man and woman grind against each other without penetration, even if they’re wearing underwear.
It’s not common, but possible.
If semen gets around the entrance of the vagina then it can result in conception even if there has been no intercourse.
“If semen came into contact with your vagina then there is a risk of pregnancy,” explains Family Planning NSW, Australia’s national reproductive and sexual health services provider.
Semen can even soak through underwear and you can, although it is rare, get pregnant from that too.
Another common misconception is that breastfeeding can act as a natural contraceptive and prevent pregnancy, but there is no evidence that this is the case.
Although breastfeeding up to six months after birth can decrease the chances of conceiving, it’s by no means 100 per cent effective. And then there’s the ‘pull out’ method.
Some people believe that if a man does not ejaculate, then it’s not possible to get pregnant, but this is untrue.
“Pregnancy can happen even if the penis is pulled out before ejaculation as the small amount of semen in pre-ejaculation fluid can come into contact with the vagina,” NSW Heath explains.
Another way people try and prevent pregnancy, but often fail, is by using the rhythm method.
The rhythm, or calendar method, consists of couples abstaining from sex when the woman is in the ‘fertile’ part of her cycle where she is more likely to get pregnant.
However, women can get pregnant at any time during their monthly cycle, including during their periods.
You can’t get pregnant from anal or oral sex, or if semen does not get into contact with your vagina.
You can also not get pregnant if you’ve gone through menopause and are no longer fertile – despite what Kris Jenner’s apparent ‘scare’ a while back on an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians.
It’s important to remember that no contraception method is foolproof, and it’s best to be careful if you don’t intend on getting pregnant.