When a 36-year-old New York woman found an empty package of Plan B emergency contraception pills in her boyfriend's trash can, she immediately assumed that he was cheating on her. But when she realized that he had been using the pills on her without her knowledge, she decided to file a multi-million dollar lawsuit against him.
The woman, Hyosun Kim, said in the suit that she began dating 37-year-old John Ikechi Nwankwo, a neuroradiologist, in April 2016 and was shocked to find the box of pills in his trash one month later, according to the New York Daily News.
Plan B, an oral medication, is used to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sexual intercourse. It is only effective if taken within three days of sexual intercourse.
According to the court filing, Kim asked her boyfriend Nwankwo about the box, since she did not know who had used and discarded the pills. At that point, he allegedly admitted to her that he had been mixing the pills into her drinks, because he "did not want [her to get] pregnant" but was unable to get her to take oral contraception any other way.
The pair had been having sex regularly but were not using any form of contraception, as far as Kim knew.
Kim said that she broke up with Nwankwo immediately. She is seeking $5 million or more in damages for what the suit describes as "extreme emotional and mental distress, for which she sought medical treatment."
The woman's paperwork describes her ex-boyfriend's behavior as "so extreme and outrageous [that it] exceeded the bounds of human decency," notes the New York Post.
Though there are no known long-term fertility side effects to taking the morning after pill on a regular basis, experts do not recommend taking the high dose of hormones more than a few times a month at most, notes Medical Daily.
However, in the short term, the pill can disrupt menstrual cycles and cause bleeding, cramping, headaches, nausea and painful periods.
Nwankwo "is a licensed medical doctor in the state of New York making his conduct all the more egregious, as any doctor … knows … that an individual cannot be forced to ingest medication without his or her consent," Kim said in the lawsuit, according to the Post.
Kim's attorney, Christine Bae, further explained her client's case, saying that the issue isn't "whether she wanted to get pregnant or didn’t want to get pregnant. He took that choice away from her. To me it’s almost like he performed an abortion without her knowing."