I am hoping to gain some insight from fellow Catholics on a conversation that my mom and I had earlier this evening. We were speaking about God’s plan for the family, and whether Catholic teaching frowns upon couples who, through use of natural family planning, choose to have only 2 or 3 children.
I am a 24 year old single woman, so this is not a predicament for me at the moment. In my “ideal world” however, I hope to marry and have a small family or 2 or 3 kids. I have artistic ambitions, and a career that I am passionate about, but I also feel called to marry and have children. And while I greatly admire the couples who have 4, 5, 6 or more children, I do not feel that I have that same vocation.
My mom feels that God’s plan for a couple includes bringing many children into the world. She worries that my “ideal family” is not a model of what a good and selfless couple would pursue, and that it is not reflective of the Catholic family, which should, in her opinion, be a large one (assuming the couple is not challenged with infertility and is able to afford and care for a large family).
I am wondering if anyone can find any definite Catholic teaching on this? I welcome all insights. I wish to abide by what the Church teaches, but I do strongly feel that God wants me to contribute to the world in other ways than by having a large family. I work with children in my job, and I also have a great passion for writing, and artistic endeavors that I feel called to pursue. Personally, I can’t understand why God’s plan for every couple would be to have a large family. If a person is called in different directions, and can be open to life through planning their family through NFP, I do not see how this is going against God’s will. But I am open to being corrected on this…