Contraception is not for pussies (Baas in eigen zak)

Imagine: Screaming children, sleepless nights and no more spontaneous nights out with your friends; for most men, unplanned parenthood sounds like the ultimate nightmare. Gone are the days of not worrying about anything. Gone are the times of being playful, young, and building a future.

However, when it comes to sex, men seem to experience a position of privilege, getting the pleasures without taking any of the responsibilities. Many of them put complete trust in their partner to be in charge of birth control, putting these men in a dangerously dependent position. Because can you really trust your one-night stand? Do men have any autonomy over their own sperm? Are condoms or a vasectomy really the only two options for them?

Isn’t it about time that men take charge of their own fertility? In this short, fragmental documentary we’ll accompany young men, confronted with their own reproductive responsibilities and the male-female relations that define our current day society.

  • Lynn Deen
  • Lynn Deen
  • Sterre de Jong
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    Baas in eigen zak
  • Genres:
  • Runtime:
    23 minutes 15 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    September 25, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    60,000 EUR
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital 4K
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Netherlands Film Festival
Director Biography - Lynn Deen

Re:Action (2021)
Baas in Eigen Zak (2021)
Art Dep. (2019)
Het Gesprek (2017)

In 2017 studeerde Lynn Deen af aan de Hogeschool voor de Kunsten in Utrecht met een korte documentaire genaamd Het Gesprek, over de band tussen vaders en dochters. Na haar opleiding ging ze als regisseur aan de slag bij het NTR kunstprogramma Art Dept. (2019) en regisseerde ze items voor de speciaal onderwijs organisatie Orion.
Hierna maakte Deen de VPRO documentaire Baas in Eigen Zak (2021), over mannen en anticonceptie, dit in het kader van Teledoc Campus. In datzelfde jaar regisseerde ze de korte documentaire Re:Action, over steekincidenten tussen jongeren in Den Helder.
De documentaires die Deen maakt zijn altijd human-interest en thema’s als gender, intersectionaliteit en machtsverhoudingen staan vaak centraal. Momenteel werkt zij bij de Balie, als programma ontwikkelaar, en werkt zij aan nieuwe filmprojecten.

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Director Statement

Sex is an intimate thing, to be shared and discovered together. But the responsibility to prohibit a pregnancy is often not carried by both. After all, most men rely on their partners to take care of birth control on their own. .

Especially when you’re young, at an age where playfulness, exploration and building a life are your main concerns, an unexpected pregnancy would be considered one’s worst nightmare. During this time of your life, becoming a parent would mean closing an important chapter of your life. A time when you are still in the midst of self-discovery and laying the foundations of your adult life. This is what is at stake when a man a woman have sex. And the only thing that prohibits us from getting through this phase unscathed, is by using contraceptives. Basically, birth control buys you the time to be young and free.

So when I first started researching the topic for this documentary, I was frustrated. Why should I, a woman, carry the sole responsibility and burden when it comes to desire and lust? I can’t forget the pill for even one day, have to pay for an expensive IUD and above all: deal with all the side effects. Not to forget, the list of possible forms of birth control is extensive and each choice comes with its own list of side effects and reliability scores.

During the research however, I have come to a different perspective. What I first saw as a luxury position for men, also puts them in a dangerous position of having to rely on someone else. In essence, men only have two options of being in control: condoms, or a vasectomy.
Condoms that are not always reliable if not used in the correct way, and let’s be real for a moment: nobody really likes the hassle that comes with them. The other solution though, a vasectomy, is very definitive, and therefore not fitting for every age and lifestyle. So when a couple chooses to not use a condom, a man basically puts all the responsibility and the possible results in the hands of the woman. And by then, the men do not have any control left when it comes to both the prevention, or the possible termination of a pregnancy. This is why they should become more involved in birth control. Not just for me, but for themselves. They need to realize the risk they are facing.

In the 60’s, women became liberated and outspoken on their rights to abortion and birth control. Now it’s 2021 and we’re in a need of a shift in perspective. During a time when we are not afraid to look critically at our position in society, and discuss topics such as gender neutrality, public bathrooms for women and the orgasm cap, we also need to talk about the lack of autonomy for men during sex. It is time for men to become the rulers of their own seed. Because contraception is not (just) for pussies.