Former Prez of Am.Congress of Obstetricians on NFP 'A 20% failure rate is unacceptable'


NFP for fornicators? Saw this on one of National Catholic Register’s blogs. It’s interesting, at least towards the end - I just wish they would’ve made a different title for the entry. It starts as kind of the same old same old, with anti-life folk slamming NFP while soft pedaling the fatal flaws of Artificial Birth Control. But then near the end, they talk about how some in the mainstream are starting to actually use NFP as a real alternative to birth control. Not actually in a moral way, but … could it be a start towards something … well, if not good, better?

"The anchor seems about ready to wrap things up, but then begins an interview with Olga Khazan, the author of “Return of the Rhythm Method,” a 2014 article published in The Atlantic. I was surprised by Khazan’s straightforward reporting of this new trend and found her article online.

“Tired of condoms and the Pill, many women are turning to new apps that help them practice one of the oldest forms of contraception,” the article explains.

"Becca began using Daysy in June after stints on the Pill and on Nuvaring, the hormonal vaginal ring. (All of the women in this story asked me to use only their first names.) Both methods caused mood changes that she found unsettling, such as bouts of unexplained crying, and the Pill made her nauseous nearly every morning. She and her boyfriend had been together for a while, so although he was wary of “natural” contraception at first, the Pill’s nasty effects on Becca persuaded him to give it a try.

“Becca has about 10 ‘green’ days a month, and at other times, the couple uses condoms,” Khazan reports, as she describes some of the new apps that techies have developed for charting a woman’s cycle.

"Okay. So Becca isn’t exactly on the same page as Archbishop Cruz or Pope St. John Paul II. But couples that practice NFP know that the process can shift the spouses’ thinking about the whole context of their relationship.

“Maybe Becca’s life is about to be upended. Maybe we need to find a way to present an holistic vision of life to young women like her.”…congress-of-obstetricians-slams-nfp-a-20-failure-rate


Actually, that’s pretty much exactly what happened to me to accept Church teaching on sexuality. Grew up non-Catholic and had solidly secular values, was on the Pill, had horrible side effects, gynecologist didn’t believe me about side effects, decided to go off the Pill, found NFP on a “natural living” forum (it’s called “fertility awareness method” in some secular circles) and then I had an “a-ha!” moment where I thought, “Hm, maybe those old celibate guys are onto something, after all…”

Of course, that sums up about eight years of my thought process and spiritual development, so it took a while to get there, but when people can appreciate that women’s fertility is something to work with instead of thwart, that opens them up to accepting and acknowledging the beauty of God’s design.


NFP it seems to me, is recommended for committed, married couples. For unmarried persons, the recommendation is abstinence from sex until marriage.


No question you are right, and I didn’t mean to suggest otherwise. Sorry rereading the post I made now it is too long and too unclear. I just thought it was an interesting angle … like what pensmama87 said could happen if NFP (or FAM or whatever they wish to call it) was more out there as an option for secular people. Not that Catholics could actually advocate it, since it would still be fornication, but … it’s too complicated for my mind to completely explain, I just think that maybe there is a tiny opportunity there for God to get into people’s heads.


Oh, I wasn’t disagreeing with you or the others. I just wanted to point out that NFP was really designed for married couples. And now it occurs to me as well, that is not a method of contraception, but of fertility awareness. It can be used to try to attain pregnancy as well as to avoid it.

I am convinced that the widespread acceptance of artificial contraception led to a host of other social problems from fornication to divorce to abortion all the way to same sex marriage.


Yes. At least some people are starting to see that, and from various different angles.


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