Birth control in certain circumstances?


#1

My husband and I practice NFP and have done so since we were married 2.5 years ago. We have a 5 month old, and believe that God is calling us to wait to have another baby until we see where our finances will go (there is a strong possibility I will be laid off in the next 6 months). Without getting too deep into detail, my doctor would like me to take a medication that is known to cause birth defects. He is strongly urging me to go on birth control because of the high risks. Would this be ok if my husband and I still did NFP and avoided relations around my fertile time?


#2

What your physician wants you to do is contracept. That is an intrinsically evil act and a grave sin against the Sixth Commandment.

No, it is not OK to contracept in **any **circumstance.

You can continue to use natural family planning to avoid pregnancy while taking other medication. Use conservative, post ovulatory time for intimacy. Perhaps even add a fertility monitor, such as is used in the Marquette Model of NFP.


#3

I see.... You are looking for back up. You want to keep doing what you have been doing, but want added insurance against an unwanted pregnancy which has a higher risk of birth defect.

The stakes are high. I suspect that this a time when one must have very strong faith.


#4

[quote="MtnDwellar, post:3, topic:192703"]
I see.... You are looking for back up. You want to keep doing what you have been doing, but want added insurance against an unwanted pregnancy which has a higher risk of birth defect.

The stakes are high. I suspect that this a time when one must have very strong faith.

[/quote]

Yes, the stakes are quite high. The couple should also consider the most prudent course of action-- abstaining while the wife is on this medication.


#5

[quote="ktpatterson22, post:1, topic:192703"]
My husband and I practice NFP and have done so since we were married 2.5 years ago. We have a 5 month old, and believe that God is calling us to wait to have another baby until we see where our finances will go (there is a strong possibility I will be laid off in the next 6 months). Without getting too deep into detail, my doctor would like me to take a medication that is known to cause birth defects. He is strongly urging me to go on birth control because of the high risks. Would this be ok if my husband and I still did NFP and avoided relations around my fertile time?

[/quote]

You won't find what you're looking for on this forum. People will not tell you it's okay to use birth control.

[quote="1ke, post:4, topic:192703"]
Yes, the stakes are quite high. The couple should also consider the most prudent course of action-- abstaining while the wife is on this medication.

[/quote]

How is it a prudent course of action to abstain from sex for half a year? That kind of thing destroys marriages.


#6

or makes them extremely stronger, depending on the attitude of those needing to do it. Some look at it as a huge sacrifice of love for the sake of the other. The other option being having a child with birth defects.

or intentionally sterilizing the loving marital act which actually destroys more marriages.


#7

The time period for the medication was not mentioned by the OP.

Abstinence for a long period of time does not seem like a reasonable answer.


#8

Personally I would doubt that contraception is more damaging to a marriage than no sex. Sex is what keeps the bond between husband and wife going.

If NFP works for this couple, the risk of having a child with birth defects is pretty small.


#9

[quote="flyingfish, post:5, topic:192703"]

How is it a prudent course of action to abstain from sex for half a year? That kind of thing destroys marriages.

[/quote]

That's such a broad, horrible statement. My husband and I had to abstain for four months very early in our marriage because of (my) medical problems. It was difficult, but we have a very happy, loving, and intimate marriage. Abstaining out of fear, lack of interest, or loss of intimacy is what can destroy a marriage. Abstaining out of love and respect for one another as persons can bring couples closer together.


#10

how sad if its “sex that keeps the bond between husband and wife going”. There are many couples who cannot continue relations because of a disability and they can be bonded well.

Intentionaly sterilizing the loving embrace is doing just that …sterilizing the love. There is no bond when its sterilized. Sex is like glue- when its neutralized, it no longer has the bonding power, and then it just becomes icky and pointless.


#11

Yes, the Church allows you to take birth control, but ONLY for medical reasons (such as fibroids, ovarian cysts, unmanageable pain or bleeding during periods, irratic periods, etc.), NEVER to avoid becoming pregnant.

Whatever you decide to do, know that the Church does not forbid you from having sex with your husband during the time that you’re taking this medication, but it would be prudent to do so otherwise you’ll have to deal with bigger issues if you do become pregnant and the result is birth defects.

Personally, I agree with Flyingfish. I would discuss it with your husband and come to a decision with your husband. What goes on in the marraige bed is between you and him. Consult your priest if you have to. But it’s more important IMOHO to keep your marriage healthy. It’s one thing to take medications that cause birth defects for a few months. But I’m sure one realizes the implications on a marriage if one takes the medications for 18 or so months and can’t fulfill each other’s marital rights. It’s not rocket science. And of course, it’s only MOHO.

Good luck :slight_smile: I pray that your medical outcome is positive and that your marriage stays just as healthy :hug1:


#12

[quote="flyingfish, post:8, topic:192703"]
Personally I would doubt that contraception is more damaging to a marriage than no sex. Sex is what keeps the bond between husband and wife going.

If NFP works for this couple, the risk of having a child with birth defects is pretty small.

[/quote]

I don't like to take a moral high ground when I am not in another person's shoes. The Church's teachings are very clear about contraception. Contraception is a grave sin. Sex does not form a bond between a married couple. Union forms the bond. The union cannot be separated from the means of procreation. Using birth control pills is a form of self mutilation. The pill chemically alters a woman's reproductive system.

Immoral birth control is a great sin of pride. It means that the person engaging in birth control believes that they know more than God's prudence. God has all of the knowledge needed to make decisions about pregnancy. Hence, my earlier post.

Bringing mortal sin into a marriage is not a way to strengthen a bond. Not only is it not good for a marriage, but it may also have the cost of eternal damnation.


#13

If you take the BCP, there is no fertility to track--you can't use NFP.

If this medication is needed for a short time, I would have a serious conversation with dh about abstaining.

If this medication is needed forever, then I would have a serious conversation with dh about using the MOST CONSERVATIVE NFP rules there are.

BCP can only be licitly used for "controling" symptoms/diseases of the reproductive system such as excess bleeding and endometriosis, not for contraception.


#14

What goes on in the marriage bed is bettween husband, wife and God. Marriage is a sacrament, when you kick God out of the bedroom, you are treading down a dangerous road.

Relativism says that sex is more important than your immortal soul, of course the Church in her wisdom knows that is a lie.

Please, don’t advise someone to disobey the Church and to sin.


#15

What goes on in the marraige bed is between you and him.

No. What goes on in the marriage bed is between you and him and the God Who Created You Both.

The Author of Life.

You might bamboozle a priest to say what you want to hear, or rationalize sin in your own heads. But God is still there.

And sex isn’t the only thing that keeps a marriage together. Many couples must abstain for a year or longer due to work deployments, military deployments and other travel issues. Someone going through chemo may not be able to be intimate for long periods.

This is about a couple proving their love is MORE than just genital union.

If a marriage breaks up because two people can’t have intercourse for several months, there was a bigger problem going on than the sex.

They’ve been married 2.5 years. Something tells me they’re about to find out a whole lot about each other they might not have known before they got married. But if one finds out the other has no self control, or wants to use them even at the risk of health issues, or deep down is NOT mentally obedient to God’s unchangeable law or their faith is really very surface and only operational when the going is smooth and easy, there will be problems. And immature people will blame those problems on NFP or abstinence. As another post said, it’s the canary in the well. It dies and everyone blames the canary.

This couple has been handed a test. Whether they pass it or not will draw them closer to God and each other, or further from God and further from each other.

And by the way, once you bring ABC into the picture, then once the meds are no longer being taken, you might find “reasons” to justify continuing the sin. It’s the camel’s nose in the tent.

You’re about to find out how truly well you know each other. You think you do because you’ve been married a while and have a baby. No, real marriage is a continuous process of mutual discovery. And sometimes you find out the most about your spouse OUTSIDE the marriage bed. You can use this time to unite in other deeper ways and really get to know each other.

Good luck.


#16

I gave the rules of the Church appropriately, and anything more is, as I said, my opinion. I am entitled to it, just as you are entitled to yours. :slight_smile:

I’m sure it is not the intention of any Catholic to “bamboozle a priest” because the fact is, if one doesn’t want to follow the rules, one won’t. No need to bamboozle anyone. It’s a free country, we each have individual rights in this free country and contracpetion is legal and available. Therefore I would assume that someone asking for counsel is doing so with a clear conscience and an open heart.

Someone going to a priest for counsel will do just that: go to their priest, with their circumstances, and get counsel pertaining to them and their situtation.

It’s inappropriate for someone outside the situation to contradict a priest’s counsel given to an individual couple. They may or may not get dispensation, but that’s up to the priest and no one else.

I’m not here to argue or participate in a tug-of-war. I encourange the couple to talk to their priest.


#17

There is no such thing as a dispensation to sin…


#18

[quote="Jennifer_J, post:17, topic:192703"]
There is no such thing as a dispensation to sin.....

[/quote]

It's a sin to miss Mass, but you can get dispensation for doing so. That way, it's not a sin.


#19

I pray that this is true, as the act of taking birth control is intrinsically evil.

On the contrary. Abstinence, is a true act of charity and done with Love, builds marriages. There are many saints who lived chaste marriages and this act of true love for eachother is well-rewarded. Simple look to the statistics. Couple who marry currently have a 50% success rate. Those who practice NFP and attend Mass faithfully have a 95-99% success ratem depending on the poll. :shrug:

-from Catholiceducation.org: "while the divorce rate in the United States hovers around 50 percent during the first five years of marriage, those who use Natural Family Planning have a divorce rate of about 0.6 percent according to the Couple to Couple League, and 2-5 percent according to research conducted by California State University, attesting to the strong covenant love shared by these couples.


#20

[quote="Rence, post:18, topic:192703"]
It's a sin to miss Mass, but you can get dispensation for doing so. That way, it's not a sin.

[/quote]

Missing mass is not an intrinsic evil. Artificial Birth Control is.


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