[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.
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.