Having Children Not a Blessing?


#1

Certainly seems that way; I mean why do Catholics lie to the world saying children are a blessing, and that there open to whatever God gives them? Using NFP is essentially the same as Condoms; the end is purposely trying to not have a child the only difference is NFP is more along the lines of taking a greater risk. I fail to see the moral difference between couples who schedule it all to lead to no impregnation and a couple that uses hormones or condoms to do the same thing.

That and the fact is that if you have more than three kids it seems your some kind of freak. I mean my grandparents had nine children total, but nowadays it seems like its something unthinkable.


#2

[quote="Flavius_Aetius, post:1, topic:221410"]
Certainly seems that way; I mean why do Catholics lie to the world saying children are a blessing, and that there open to whatever God gives them? Using NFP is essentially the same as Condoms; the end is purposely trying to not have a child the only difference is NFP is more along the lines of taking a greater risk. I fail to see the moral difference between couples who schedule it all to lead to no impregnation and a couple that uses hormones or condoms to do the same thing.

That and the fact is that if you have more than three kids it seems your some kind of freak. I mean my grandparents had nine children total, but nowadays it seems like its something unthinkable.

[/quote]

The families are smaller. My grandmother had 14 children and died giving birth to the last two (that also died soon). She had them from age 15-38.

The end does not justify means. Natural family planning is not always morally justifiable, and the couple must be willing to accept a child that results from the conjugal act. The key is that there is no change made to the objective physical form of reproduction as with abortion, sterilization, poisons, chemicals, and barriers. We should respect God as the master of the sources of creation. See USCCB document:

usccb.org/loveandlife/MarriageFINAL.pdf


#3

ABC is telling God NO

NFP is asking him PLEASE


#4

[quote="Flavius_Aetius, post:1, topic:221410"]
Certainly seems that way; I mean why do Catholics lie to the world saying children are a blessing, and that there open to whatever God gives them? Using NFP is essentially the same as Condoms; the end is purposely trying to not have a child the only difference is NFP is more along the lines of taking a greater risk. I fail to see the moral difference between couples who schedule it all to lead to no impregnation and a couple that uses hormones or condoms to do the same thing.

That and the fact is that if you have more than three kids it seems your some kind of freak. I mean my grandparents had nine children total, but nowadays it seems like its something unthinkable.

[/quote]

Well, I suppose that the fact that someone would consider me a freak would not factor into any decision I might make.

But other than that, I understand your feeling that NFP is the same as artificial birth control if the goal is the same. NFP could be used selfishly, although it is not up to me to judge whether another couple is being selfish. I don't know what emotional, physical or financial stresses they are dealing with; they do.

That doesn't keep me from objectively stating that ABC is wrong. There is a difference in the two judgements! NFP works with the way God naturally designed the body. A woman is only fertile for a short period each month. A couple using NFP does not, as an earlier poster said, frustrate that fertile time with the use of barriers, chemicals or hormones that would prevent intercourse from naturally producing a child. However, having sex only during infertile periods is working with the body's design, not against it. This also calls for a level of unselfishness that is beneficial to marriage and to the raising of children.

As for children being a burden - I don't know. I know people who "can't afford" more kids, while they buy $400 hockey skates for the one or two children they do have. We buy $90 skates and pass them down from child to child. Who's got the more expensive family? I'm from a large family myself and would not trade my adult siblings for a fancy pair of childhood hockey skates. At the same time, I realize that my parents sacrificed a lot for us, and worried a lot about us. Having all of us certainly stretched their hearts, and there will be a crown of reward awaiting them in heaven.

For myself, one of the comments I heard that influenced me to be open to a large family is that family is one thing you CAN take with you to heaven - just not at the same time! It is also true that the size of your bank account or the fanciness of your latest car will not matter one bit at the end of your life. My parents will be surrounded by 9 children, 8 in-laws and over 40 grandchildren when they die, all of whom love them greatly. Talk about priceless.

Besides, burdens are really under-rated in our society. Jesus carried an enormous burden for us. We are so attached to our comfort that we run from the "burdens" that can make us better people and can even help win graces for others.

And one more thing - there is an enormous moral difference between using NFP and using birth control methods such as the pill that can allow conception but will then "back up" the contraceptive effect by making the uterus hostile to the developing baby. Huge moral difference.


#5

[quote="momof8, post:4, topic:221410"]
Well, I suppose that the fact that someone would consider me a freak would not factor into any decision I might make.

But other than that, I understand your feeling that NFP is the same as artificial birth control if the goal is the same. NFP could be used selfishly, although it is not up to me to judge whether another couple is being selfish. I don't know what emotional, physical or financial stresses they are dealing with; they do.

That doesn't keep me from objectively stating that ABC is wrong. There is a difference in the two judgements! NFP works with the way God naturally designed the body. A woman is only fertile for a short period each month. A couple using NFP does not, as an earlier poster said, frustrate that fertile time with the use of barriers, chemicals or hormones that would prevent intercourse from naturally producing a child. However, having sex only during infertile periods is working with the body's design, not against it. This also calls for a level of unselfishness that is beneficial to marriage and to the raising of children.

As for children being a burden - I don't know. I know people who "can't afford" more kids, while they buy $400 hockey skates for the one or two children they do have. We buy $90 skates and pass them down from child to child. Who's got the more expensive family? I'm from a large family myself and would not trade my adult siblings for a fancy pair of childhood hockey skates. At the same time, I realize that my parents sacrificed a lot for us, and worried a lot about us. Having all of us certainly stretched their hearts, and there will be a crown of reward awaiting them in heaven.

For myself, one of the comments I heard that influenced me to be open to a large family is that family is one thing you CAN take with you to heaven - just not at the same time! It is also true that the size of your bank account or the fanciness of your latest car will not matter one bit at the end of your life. My parents will be surrounded by 9 children, 8 in-laws and over 40 grandchildren when they die, all of whom love them greatly. Talk about priceless.

Besides, burdens are really under-rated in our society. Jesus carried an enormous burden for us. We are so attached to our comfort that we run from the "burdens" that can make us better people and can even help win graces for others.

And one more thing - there is an enormous moral difference between using NFP and using birth control methods such as the pill that can allow conception but will then "back up" the contraceptive effect by making the uterus hostile to the developing baby. Huge moral difference.

[/quote]

I, too, am a mom of eight, and now that I am in my seventies I am enjoying the thoughtfulness of my children and grandchildren. I grew up with lots of aunts and uncles and holiday times were always so filled with family joys. I watched my grandmother who was always so peaceful and soft-spoken. She had seven living children and brought them up in very poor conditions, but there was a lot of love. That helped me be unafraid to have a large family. I saw what a blessing to be altogether was, and there were no divorces in spite of many financial struggles.

None of my children ever got a brand new shiny bike for Christmas. We gave modest gifts to them. However, none of them were without a bike, as relatives and close friends shared hand-me-down bikes, (also clothes) that they no longer needed. As they became teenagers they earned money baby-sitting, delivering newspapers and advertising circulars, mowing lawns, and shoveling snow. Knowing what it is to work for something was good for them.

Our children and grandchildren are mighty blessings. When material things get in the way we become blinded.


#6

Gosh, I didn't know having a bunch of kids makes you a freak. Amongst my friends, there is a couple who have 4 kids, 3 couples who have 5, another that has 6, and finally, one who have 7 children. They are not treated as freaks. People may remark on "Are they all yours?" but I think most people just smile.

In current society, it's just unusual to have more than 3 due to lots and lots of factors. I know MANY couples who have only one or two who wish they could have more, but had fertility troubles and had to really move mountains to have they ones they do. Several have adopted children, many have had fertility treatments of some kind. I doubt people would spend years and tens of thousands of dollars if they thought children were NOT a blessing. My own parents adopted me and my brother -- my mother was not able to carry a pregnancy successfully. She has often said that if she had been able to, she would have had 5 or 6 kids.

I also think it's a mistake to condemn people for not having larger families when you have no personal knowledge of their circumstances. Using NFP has lots of licit reasons. I think we should generally mind our own business when it comes to other people's family size. After all, although there are lots of selfish reasons to limit family size, there are also lots of selfish reasons for HAVING children...like, to try to save a marriage, or because someone "wants" that boy or girl so desperately that they continue the quest,,,, as through each child who is born is not what they "wanted", so, let's keep trying to get what we WANT.

And lastly, although it is the extreme example, let's not forget Andrea Yates, and what happened as a result of their single-minded devotion to the credo of "More kids at any cost."


#7

[quote="Flavius_Aetius, post:1, topic:221410"]
Certainly seems that way; I mean why do Catholics lie to the world saying children are a blessing, and that there open to whatever God gives them?

[/quote]

The Church, and God in the Bible, do not lie when they say children are a blessing.

[quote="Flavius_Aetius, post:1, topic:221410"]
Using NFP is essentially the same as Condoms; the end is purposely trying to not have a child the only difference is NFP is more along the lines of taking a greater risk. I fail to see the moral difference between couples who schedule it all to lead to no impregnation and a couple that uses hormones or condoms to do the same thing.

[/quote]

Do you see no moral difference between stealing and buying something? Both have the same end of obtaining that something.

Morality is more than intentions. It also includes the way in which we arrive at that intention. There are three fonts of morality.

The Church doesn't teach it is wrong to space births-- it never has. So, this is not an immoral end in and of itself. The Church teaches there are moral and immoral means of arriving there. Abstaining, periodically or totally, is a moral way. Contracepting is immoral.

[quote="Flavius_Aetius, post:1, topic:221410"]
That and the fact is that if you have more than three kids it seems your some kind of freak. I mean my grandparents had nine children total, but nowadays it seems like its something unthinkable.

[/quote]

Secular society might see you that way. The Church does not.

And, if such is the case, then I know and have lots of freaks for friends with 5, 6, and 7 children. And they LOVE all their children immensely and think they are blessings.

At some point, you have to just not care what other people think about you and be an adult who care about God and holiness.


#8

[quote="Flavius_Aetius, post:1, topic:221410"]
Certainly seems that way; I mean why do Catholics lie to the world saying children are a blessing, and that there open to whatever God gives them?

[/quote]

Why do you lump all Catholics together in this blanket indictment? I know many Catholics who do not "Lie" when they say that children are a blessing.

Using NFP is essentially the same as Condoms; the end is purposely trying to not have a child the only difference is NFP is more along the lines of taking a greater risk. I fail to see the moral difference between couples who schedule it all to lead to no impregnation and a couple that uses hormones or condoms to do the same thing.

There is a huge moral difference between ABC and NFP. One requires a commitment not only to "spacing children" but to be disciplined in our sexual lives taking into account God, our spouse and the Child we might concieve. ABC in contrast removes any need for discipline at all.

That and the fact is that if you have more than three kids it seems your some kind of freak. I mean my grandparents had nine children total, but nowadays it seems like its something unthinkable.

Perople who are worried about hwat others think are nto worthy of the Kingdom of God.

I would rather look foolish to the world for the sake of God than look foolish to God for the sake of the world.

Of course you might disagree wtih all of the above, but that will be between you and God.

Peace
James


#9

[quote="Vico, post:2, topic:221410"]
The families are smaller. My grandmother had 14 children and died giving birth to the last two (that also died soon). She had them from age 15-38.

[/quote]

Yes, and considering that most women now marry in their late 20s or even in their 30s and beyond, that also impacts the number of children you have. It is unlikely you will have 14 children if you don't start until you are 35.


#10

[quote="shondrea, post:3, topic:221410"]
ABC is telling God NO

NFP is asking him PLEASE

[/quote]

A great analogy I once heard was that everyone a couple has sex they're sending God an invite to a party. However, if they use ABC they are in affect sending an invite and then telling God he can't come to the party. But when the couple uses NFP they're sending God an invite to the party saying that if he wants to show up he can but if he can't make it they understand. In other words NFP always leaves open the possibility that God will work a miracle and make a baby even when you didn't think it was possible whereas ABC tries to circumvent the miracle.


#11

I admire big families. I always wanted to be from one (my only siblings came in the form of 1 half brother and 1 step sister). I always wanted to have one for myself.

The Catholic way of child bearing is accepting what God gives you with GRACE. Whether that number is 0, 1, or 12.

Personally, I have 1. He's 7 1/2. I would ecstatically accept more but it hasn't been in His timing yet so I am trying to patiently wait and quite possibly accept that it may only be one.

Children ARE a blessing. Not even remotely a question in this family. We pray for another member of our little family soon.


#12

Keep in mind that more couples deal with infertility and secondary infertility now too.


#13

Thanks to everyone for taking the time to post in this thread; I'm sorry if my OP may of been agressive in anyway. After reading everything I still have problems shaking this idea that NFP is just working numbers with the thought "please God don't make me pregnant". But like I said I understand how that is more selfless than contreceptives; actually requiring a time of abstinence between time periods.

In any case; it may be something I'll come to understand, but for now I'm to blindly angry at humanity to give them the benefit of the doubt.


#14

Hi

I have a 20 yr old son conceived out of wedlock and not wanted, even thought of aborting. I am now happily married to a wonderful man, we are both catholic, married in the church and after nearly destroying my fertility with contraceptives for 11 yrs, have had 6 miscarriages since trying to fall pregnant naturally and finally this year God granted me a miracle baby girl, whom I have called katherine. By the grace of God my eyes have opened and I realised if you live according to your own plan and will you seperate yourself from God. My husband and I are 'born again catholics' and having suffered the miscarriages has strengthen our faith in God. My daughter is named after catherine of sienna whose birth place I visited last year not knowing God had this baby in store for me. I am 43 yrs old now and plan to have more children if God so wish. I thank God for having shown me that children are indeed a blessing and I have consecrated her to our lady and hope she will grow up to be a strong christian to love and serve God. I think in my struggle to conceive I realised how we take things for granted, such as our fertility and thinking we are entitled to children as if its like owning a piece of property. I also realised that everything we have and own belongs to God and we should be thankful for it wether we have children or not. I began to live my life just seeking to do his will and I did not even pray for a child, I just asked to be open to His will wether it be to have more children or not. We are using NFP because we truly believe that as catholics this is the only way to live by, if we want to be open to the will of God. I also believe that we need children with sound christian values in this world to pass on the faith because there are so many children who have no faith at all and who live according to the values of this world and we need good christians and they can only come from people who are willing to give themselves totally and completely to God's plan and not their own.I feel that my 2nd child is like a 2nd chance at motherhood. I love my son dearly and I have made many mistakes in raising him but I sure am not doing the raising of my daughter and future children without God at the centre of it all and our lady beside him. I am blessed to have Katherine because I have learnt many lessons along the way that I never would have learnt otherwise. God bless those mothers who have given themselves totally to raising children for the kingdom of God.:)


#15

[quote="Flavius_Aetius, post:13, topic:221410"]
Thanks to everyone for taking the time to post in this thread; I'm sorry if my OP may of been agressive in anyway. After reading everything I still have problems shaking this idea that NFP is just working numbers with the thought "please God don't make me pregnant". But like I said I understand how that is more selfless than contreceptives; actually requiring a time of abstinence between time periods.

In any case; it may be something I'll come to understand, but for now I'm to blindly angry at humanity to give them the benefit of the doubt.

[/quote]

Blind anger is certainly something that you need to deal with in order for other things to come into focus.

May God help you with this. And may God use us to help in any way we can.

We Love You

Peace
James


#16

[quote="sandrabolongaro, post:14, topic:221410"]
Hi

I have a 20 yr old son conceived out of wedlock and not wanted, even thought of aborting. I am now happily married to a wonderful man, we are both catholic, married in the church and after nearly destroying my fertility with contraceptives for 11 yrs, have had 6 miscarriages since trying to fall pregnant naturally and finally this year God granted me a miracle baby girl, whom I have called katherine. By the grace of God my eyes have opened and I realised if you live according to your own plan and will you seperate yourself from God. My husband and I are 'born again catholics' and having suffered the miscarriages has strengthen our faith in God. My daughter is named after catherine of sienna whose birth place I visited last year not knowing God had this baby in store for me. I am 43 yrs old now and plan to have more children if God so wish. I thank God for having shown me that children are indeed a blessing and I have consecrated her to our lady and hope she will grow up to be a strong christian to love and serve God. I think in my struggle to conceive I realised how we take things for granted, such as our fertility and thinking we are entitled to children as if its like owning a piece of property. I also realised that everything we have and own belongs to God and we should be thankful for it wether we have children or not. I began to live my life just seeking to do his will and I did not even pray for a child, I just asked to be open to His will wether it be to have more children or not. We are using NFP because we truly believe that as catholics this is the only way to live by, if we want to be open to the will of God. I also believe that we need children with sound christian values in this world to pass on the faith because there are so many children who have no faith at all and who live according to the values of this world and we need good christians and they can only come from people who are willing to give themselves totally and completely to God's plan and not their own.I feel that my 2nd child is like a 2nd chance at motherhood. I love my son dearly and I have made many mistakes in raising him but I sure am not doing the raising of my daughter and future children without God at the centre of it all and our lady beside him. I am blessed to have Katherine because I have learnt many lessons along the way that I never would have learnt otherwise. God bless those mothers who have given themselves totally to raising children for the kingdom of God.:)

[/quote]

Thank you for sharing that wonderful post!


#17

Here we go again.

My usual response to the same old NFP = contraception charge is: "Then why are you so desperate to avoid having to practice NFP?"

Answer: NFP is HARD! I can't always get what I want when I want it.

So there IS a difference. Maybe there's a deeper meaning than you suspect right there. Food for thought.


closed #18

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