Is a married couple required to use treatments for infertility?

Hi! So I’m an (aspiring) author and I’ve encountered a moral hypothetical in my writing that I’m not sure how to solve. Let’s say that one member in a (married) couple is infertile; the couple would like to have children but are actually grateful for this infertility because the same member who is infertile also has a serious genetic disorder that would inevitably be passed on to their children.

Now let’s say that the couple finds out about a miracle fertility pill which would allow them to have children; however, they still want to avoid pregnancy because of the genetic disorder. My question is, is the couple required to take this pill (and presumably practice NFP), or can they choose to remain infertile? Would that render them not open to life?


Married couples do not have an obligation to have children. They only have an obligation not to deliberately obstruct the procreative process.

The situation you describe is one of inaction rather than action. Thus it would not be unlike those who practice NFP to avoid pregnancy. It would also be similar to those who suffer from impotence, the Church does not require them to take available drugs.

Even if f there was a pill that guaranteed conception, the Church would not require a couple to use it.


In America we have a tendency to think that we can solve all problems with the right “technology.” But children are not engendered by technology or produced by an industry. Children should arise from an act of love between a husband and wife, in cooperation with God. No human being can “create” the image of God. That is why we say that human beings “procreate” with God. Engendering children is a cooperative act among husband, wife, and God himself. Children, in the final analysis, should be begotten not made.

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