Contraception and cooperation with sin


I am going through a dilemma due to my college age daughter who has ceased practicing and does not go to Church any longer, claiming she no longer believes in the faith. She has been living at home due to the proximity of the college she attends and has been dating a young man who does not share the Catholic faith and I believe she has been engaging in sexual activity with him when she is with him outside our home. Recently I saw that our insurance was used to pay for birth control and that confirms my suspicions however I don’t know what to do about it. Ultimately it’s up to her and I can’t stop her from doing anything, but is her using the insurance we pay for to obtain contraception mean we are cooperating in sin? Any other suggestions? She knows what we believe and had a good solid moral foundation. I don’t know if there is anything I can do to help her understand

Birth control can also be used to treat medical conditions. This is one to ask a priest, but it looks like it is indirect and involuntary, if it is for contraception, but is there a responsibility to hinder?

Catechism of the Catholic Church

1868 Sin is a personal act. Moreover, we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them :
- by participating directly and voluntarily in them;
- by ordering, advising, praising, or approving them;
- by not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so;
- by protecting evil-doers.

I’m pretty sure this is a big honking HIPPA violation. I’d be contacting the company because if they are loosey goosey with private information in one instance, they could be violating HIPPA in other ways.

You can love her, be there when she wants to talk.

1 Like

No. You are not covering her specifically for that, you cover her for basic health and emergencies.

The plans are required to include contraception and you cannot really stop her from using that benefit except on the honor system of telling her you don’t like it and don’t want her using the insurance that way.

I’d suggest not making a big deal of the insurance. This is what drives girls to planned paerenthood— fear of parents finding out they got contraception when they see the insurance claim. Instead they go in and PP signs them up as if they are poor/indigent and gets paid through Medicaid and other government funding and gives the contraception free or low cost.

Or the girls make even worse choices, all in the name of parents not finding out. It’s better to have frank conversations that you don’t like it, think it’s wrong, but as an adult she is responsible for herself and you won’t be punitive and she can always come to you.

You could require her to purchase her own insurance on the health care market. I personally wouldn’t go that route.

You could also require her to reimburse you for her premium or partially reimburse you, and treat the insurance you provide as if it were her own policy. Having her put skin in the game regarding the premiums may open her eyes that it’s not a free ride.

1 Like

No it isn’t.

If you are the primary insured, you have full responsibility for all claims on your policy and receive all claims.

All people on your policy, by using it, consent to the policy conditions.



Then I would advise our OP to let his adult daughter know this.

“By the way, Sally, by using our insurance know that I get copies of all your medical information, including you prescriptions.”

1 Like

Focusing on the birth control problem only treats the symptoms, not the cause. If she stops using birth control but does nothing else, will her standing before God really improve? Especially given the premarital sexual relationship you suggest and stating she no longer believes in the faith? I would focus on working to convert her back to the faith. When/if she comes back to God, matters like these will likely self-correct because she will have internal motivation to change rather than external. I’m sure you’re already doing it, but daily prayer specifically for her is advisable.

Most colleges and universities have student health service centers that provide birth control at no to very little cost to students. It is covered by the student health services fee. Ask her to use that option, instead of your health plan, if it will make you feel better.

I agree with others to let her know how you feel about it, and then let it go. Better she doesn’t come home with an unplanned pregnancy, though.

What outcome do you most fear from her contraception use?

If it’s the pill; cancer
Contraception generally speaking encourages irresponsibility. It contributes to all the flotsam and jetsam the sexual revolution has sent down the river.
Broken homes
Objectification of women (including domestic violence, including beat up children who must live in the same home as uncommitted sexually active males)
Sexual license masquerading as “freedom”

Pope Paul’s Humanae Vitae was prophetic.

There is probably a way you two can talk lovingly and frankly, and make it plain that you are not going to pay for contraception. That allows her all the freedom she desires really.

She is free to contracept, she is also free to pay for for her own stuff. Let’s be truly free.


Those are possible societal consequences if contraception is commonplace, but I was mainly interested in the feared consequence for the daughter specifically.

This isn’t accurate.

While student health centers prescribe and fill prescriptions, students must have insurance or qualify for government aid to get free/reduced cost prescriptions.

For example, at UC Berkeley a student with optional student insurance plan ($1600 per semester) pays $0 and those without pay full price (unless they have another insurance policy the pharmacy takes).

The pricing and details vary from school to school but it’s not free and not included in standard school fees.

1 Like

The answer to this question is objectively yes, because you are providing the means for her to obtain birth control.The only question is whether you are culpable of cooperating in her sin, and according to this nice flowchart, you might not be:

I think the worst thing you could possibly do is tell her you found out and you disapprove, but then you don’t do anything about it. That will be a signal to her that you don’t really believe what you are telling her strongly enough, and would basically be a green light to keep going. Either don’t bring it up to her at all, or (my recommendation) tell her you found out you used the insurance for birth control, give her a chance to stop, and if she persists, drop her from the plan. If she’s “adult enough” to make those decisions, she’s adult enough to get her own insurance.

This topic was automatically closed 14 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit