I am in a little bit of a difficult situation. DH and I have a 15 month old daughter and are totally ready to have more kids. However, we have a situation with our insurance that is causing some problems. Basically, I just added maternity coverage and we have a 12 month waiting period, which means I can not get pregnant for about 3 or 4 months. We practice NFP, but I still have not started my period back yet. I am not really sure how to use NFP before the return of my cycle. We really can not get pregnant till this insurance kicks in, but I have NO IDEA how to chart right now. I know realistically that we can not just give up all marital relations for 4 months. It would not be good for our marriage! I just have no idea what to do in this situation! Any advice?
Do you have ANY background in NFP classes? I’m just trying to figure out which method you may know before I confuse you…
I took classes in the Symto-thermal method through CCL. However, hubby and I were ready to start a family as soon as we got married, so I only have experience charting for about 3 months and it has been almost 2 years since I last charted.
I know it will be difficult but let me just advise you against using NFP as a beginner before you have a couple of cycles underneath your belt.
Using Symptothermal postpartum is truly one of the more challenging things to do and I have seen many masters with many many years of experience using the sublime art of NFP fail. You need to learn to walk before you run and starting with something that advanced might not be a good idea.
I’m in a meeting right now, but I’ll be back with some info… I’ve used ST method postpartum while BFing 3 times successfully now…
I’ve constantly heard great things about the Creighton model for NFP (especially on Catholic Answers Live) creightonmodel.com/
Go here to find out more about where you can find a good teacher: creightonmodel.com/teacherlocation.htm
I think you’d certainly want that 99% efficiency by being properly taught as opposed to risking it by self-teaching or being unsure about what to do. I hope this helps!
Thank you! This gives me hope! Our class didn’t really teach anything about postpartum NFP b/c most of us were engaged couples. I might end up taking the class again just as a refresher, but I really need something to help me avoid pregnancy for the next couple of months!
If it’s only 4 months, you might be better off just using abstinence. It’s foolproof, it’s easy to use (at least in theory). It might fray at the marital bonds, but its unlikely to break them.
EXPLICIT words warning!
Are you familiar with how your fertile mucus symptoms look? We use Billings NFP and have never had any problems reading signs post-partum. Presuming your normal infertile pattern is a LACK of vaginal mucus, you ain’t got the fertility back until the mucus comes back.
I am familiar with my mucus pattern and that is the one sign I have been on the lookout for that fertility is returning. I thought that I noticed a little bit one day an then that was it. I may have been mistaken. That was several weeks ago. My daughter is still breastfeeding very frequently at night and during the day which makes me think I am not fertile yet, but again I really can not “chance it” right now.
Sorry I’m just now getting back online - I’m swamped at work. :rolleyes:
Definitely break out the CCL book and read through the sections on breastfeeding infertility again. You are going to want to concentrate on the mucous and cervical position signs primarily. If you’ve never kept track of your cervical position, it can be tricky to learn, but you can do it. I personally find it to be the MOST useful sign for detecting returning fertility during this phase, so definitely chart it as best you can. I usually check at least 2-3 times per day - almost every time I’m using the bathroom (it only takes a second). I tend to have lots of confusing mucous signs during this phase, but I still keep track of them on the chart. When you notice A LOT of fertile mucous along with a changing cervix that moves to open-soft-high position - THAT is your fertile sign. If you notice this fertility you’ll want to abstain up to 3-4 days AFTER the signs have disappeared.
I also recommend you get into the habit of taking your temperature daily. It’s a SECONDARY sign, so you can’t determine when you’re ovulating from that sign, but it’s a confirmation for when you actually do ovulate - when you eventually do see your temperature spike after your fertile mucous/cervix signs, then you can safely say you’re in that infertile luteal phase.
Here are some fabulous resources…
nfpandmore.com/nfphowto.shtml - FREE how-to guide on the sympto-thermal method. It’s nice to have a secondary source to read over. This site also has free charts you can print out at home.
tcoyf.com/ - this is not a Catholic book (so ignore the parts where is suggests using condoms during the fertile phase), but I highly recommend it from a medical perspective. It has some wonderfully detailed descriptions and yes, even pictures of cervical positions and mucous… VERY good book!
HTH a little… dive right in and do your best with charting. If you have any “questionable” days, then be conservative and abstain.
Good luck and let me know if you have any other questions!