I just want to get this off my chest.
I have seen in more than one thread, posters pointing out that Catholics MUST be using ABC, due to the fact that they only have 1 or 2 children. Or, that they are using NFP as birth control for reasons that aren’t truly “legitimate.”
This really annoys me. How in the world can you know by looking at someone what their fertility situation is, or what their sex life is like???
I am just one person, but I know MANY women who are not using ABC, but have only 1 or 2 children. I know MANY people who have struggled with infertility. The one or two children that do have are a blessing and a miracle. For example:
I know a couple who were married for 13 years and NEVER used ABC, and never got pregnant. They thought they were infertile, and accepted that. Miraculously, the wife became pregnant for the first time at the age of 41.
A friend of mine got married at 33, and then had a lot of difficulty conceiving, but finally did at age 35. When trying to conceive a second child with no luck for several years, they sought out a specialist who told her she was in the late stages of menopause! At 37 years old!!! They said that’s why they had trouble conceiving the first child – she was already going through the change even then! They told her her chances of conceiving another child are pretty much nil, she has almost no eggs anymore.
Another friend has 2 kids - she had to take medication to force ovulation in order to conceive them. She and her husband use no BC, but probably will never conceive another child.
My best friend has 2 children and wanted more, but doctors advised against it, because she has a heart defect that they discovered after her 2nd was born. She looks totally fine, healthy and fit. She & her husband have used NFP and have not conceived again, for 10+ years. You would NEVER know by looking at her that she is ill in any way.
My cousin is totally infertile due to a childhood illness. You would never know by looking at her.
Another friend has two kids, but has had FIVE miscarriages.
Family size is a totally ridiculous way to gauge what individual Catholics are doing. I wish people would stop looking at other people in the pews, and making judgments based on the number of kids. Not everyone is being selfish or defying the church just because they don’t have 6 or 7 kids!!!
Oh, and one last thing – in prior generations, people got married a lot younger, and therefore had-- let’s see-- probably 10 more years of high fertility in their marriages! A lot easier to have 6 or 7 kids if you start at 21 than if you start at 31!!!