For as long as they’ve known that sex causes babies, people have been trying to separate the two. While the birth control pill is ubiquitous today, women shouldn’t take the medicine for granted — it is a miracle compared to the methods of yore.

Among the strange concoctions our ancestors used to prevent pregnancy, Alltime 10s lists teas made of powdered beaver testicles and moonshine; crocodile dung mixed with honey and inserted into the vagina; and Lysol douches. They may sound crazy, but it’s possible the beaver testicles increased male hormone levels in women to block pregnancy and the acidity of the crocodile dung killed sperm. The Lysol method was not as gray: Time notes that although in the Roaring ‘20s the household cleaner “was advertised as a product that could ‘protect your married happiness’ with a series of terrifying ads,” it was actually harmful to the women who used it.

Giacomo Casanova, the man famous purely for the number of women he bedded in the late 1700s, would shove half a lemon into his latest lover ahead of his penis. Then there was a Coca Cola jet up the vagina, a stew of 16 tadpoles fried in mercury, lead-contaminated water, vaginal fumigation using hot stones, squeezing the testicles to stop ejaculation, and “reusable” condoms made of pig intestines (tied onto the penis with a pretty ribbon). That last one sounds gross but condoms have been around long before rubber. Time notes that the first known illustration of a man using a condom is a 15,000-year-old cave painting in France.

A lot of the wackiest birth control methods were based on a lack of understanding of how the female body worked. According to Time, in year 200 Greek gynecologist Soranus thought women should hold their breath during sex and then sneeze afterward, while 10th century Persian women would jump backward to dislodge sperm. And one of the longest running ineffective birth control methods is “pulling out,” which appears in the Old Testament and is still used today, for better or worse.

Thankfully, society is moving forward. In addition to the standard birth control pill, researchers have been developing a male equivalent, though men have complained of side effects.