NFP question: When to start Charting?

Hello, I recently became engaged, and I was just wondering, when should I start charting for NFP? I am about 9-10 months away from the wedding. I have access to the book the Art of Natural Family Planning. What do you all think?:stuck_out_tongue:

Start charting now. The better you know your body, the better for you. And if you have any hidden health issues, you can find out sooner rather than later.

I would second that advice!

And, with more experience charting, you will know extremely well exactly when your fertile days are. So if you have reasons to postpone getting pregnant, you cut down on the number of days it might be necessary to be abstinent due to not really being sure what you’re seeing. Cuz what newlyweds want to abstain more than they have to? :wink: Heck, I’m 10 years in and don’t want to have to abstain more than I absolutely have to. But I’m also pregnant right now and get a free pass… tee hee. :stuck_out_tongue:

My advice, take a class!!! It’s fine to learn from a book but nothing beats having a real life person to answer your questions.

I started charting in July and got married at the end of October. I charted online though, because I figured it would be easier. It basically tells you when you ovulate(very nice for a beginner). I chart at It’s a lot of fun charting. I still have fun typing in my temp & cm and looking at my chart online.

Chart starting right now so you can plan your wedding on a day you won’t have to abstain. Assuming you want to postpone. Assuming you’re fairly regular…


I agree that you should start charting NOW. Some rules that are applied in NFP can only be used when you have charted 6 or more cycles. When you do this, it gives you a few more days for hanky panky. :wink: :smiley: But don’t stretch the rules too much, or you’ll end up like me…knocked up! :eek: (See ticker below.)

I’d second the suggestions of charting now. And if you don’t really want to do complete charting the whole time, you could maybe just do the temp charting…

Also, if you’re like me when I was engaged, I thought all the charting had to be done on the little paper NFP charts that come in the packet. When I found free excel downloads on the web (just did a google search), I was so excited. But that didn’t compare to when I found I love the program and am charting right now with it hoping for a baby…

First, explore all methods. Not all methods use temps. That doesn’t work for some people

Second, start charting now in case you have health issues that need to be cleared up first and you discover them from charting.

3rd, there is a vast difference in the philosophies between creighton and sympto-thermal. Apparently, ST method lets you shave off days, or lets you determine whether you are being “conservative” in your avoiding pregnancy or not, and so there are “iffy” days.
Creighton is absolute black and white. For example, If you engage in intercourse before the night of peak plus 4, then you are no longer using the method to avoid pregnancy, but to achieve.There’s no “iffy” in there. There is a possibility of pregnancy in there. (I’m not including pre-peak here, this was just an example).

I bring this up because I see people that say they use online charting and read books and things, but don’t mention they went to a teacher (they could, I don’t know). My concern here is this: people get pregnant when they SAY they are using NFP to avoid, but in actuality, they weren’t educated in everything, or they hadn’t been charting very closely, or they hadn’t been checking up with a teacher, and then this discredits NFP even further.

I’ve been doing creighton NFP for 5 years for my health (I’m single). I’ve used it successfully to determine 3 different health issues with my doc. I know that after awhile you get to know your body closely, and can confidently determine a lot of things without lab conditions, however, Creighton is very clear that if you want to trully rely on NFP for success (because there are definate serious conditions that people can’t get pregnant), then one must chart meticulously, go to their teacher, etc.

Don’t denigrate temperatures. CM signals may be iffy, and you may not know if you’re having anovulatory cycles if you don’t have sustained high temperatures giving full indication that ovulation took place.

I agree sympto-thermal can be used carefully or not carefully, but the instructions always let you know you are using the most conservative or the least conservative rules.

Having had many post-delivery anovulatory cycles, I personally liked the temperature cross-check. It also is helpful in early pregnancy to have temps to show a doctor, if God forbid there is a miscarriage. It can give indications of progesterone deficiencies.


I never ever “denigrated” tempatures…thats fine if its for you.

I’m talking about the philosophy.

My advice…start now.

  1. Don’t make up your own rules. We had a 10 day rule…anything before day ten was ok and then we waited until the 3 day temp rise because I always ovulated on day 14 or 15. Well, it worked great for 2 years. Then one month I ovulated early on day 12 and our 10 day rule failed…I’m pregnant. I was never checking cervical mucus either. Because I am lazy. So…follow the rules and I am sure you will be fine. But if you get lazy, this is what can happen (not all that bad :o )
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