What would you want your doctor to know about NFP?


Hey Guys,

I have the unique opportunity to present NFP to a group of my Medical School classmates. Unfortunately this is only a small group (about 10 students) and this is all the education they are going to get on NFP, but its a start. I may try to turn it into a lunch-talk for more of next year’s class.

Anyway, my question to you all is, when you walk into your doctor’s office, what would you like him or her to know about NFP? In other words, what are the most important things that I should cover when talking to my classmates?



That’s awesome!
Here’s a couple things I’d mention…

~ NFP is NOT the “rhythm method” anymore. It’s biologically based and has lots of research to back it up.

~ NFP is NOT just attractive to those with moral concerns about birth control - it’s gaining wide popularity!

A great site that may be useful in this setting is tcoyf.com/… it’s not religiously or morally based. I mention this because many medical students may initially be turned off to the entire subject of NFP because it’s “just for religious nuts” :rolleyes:… if you can keep the conversation SCIENTIFIC then that’s going to be your best route! :thumbsup:

Good luck with your presentation! :slight_smile:


It would be nice if NFP were more widely understood: what it is trying to accomplish, what people who use it are doing (abstaining during phase 2 if they don’t want children, not just using it to GET pregnant, etc). It’s frustrating to go to a doctor, and point to irregularities in the cycle, and have them respond by either pushing contraception or misunderstanding the problems the cycle poses for NFP. A general knowledge of what’s going on would certainly be useful!


I would want them to USE THEIR BRAINS. Stop letting pharmaceutical companies dictate what they learn about female fertility. Suggest they check out www.popepaulvi.com and www.omsoul.com for REAL info on women’s health.

I would want them to know what NFP is: a medical model of observing fertility signs.

I would want them to know the models of NFP and ability to talk intelligently about them: Billings, Creighton, and Sympto-Thermal and their websites

I would want them to know that NPF is not the rhythm method, withdrawing, or a calendar method

Just last week I had to go to the urgent care clinic for a bad cold. The doctor on duty asked me what I was using for “birth control.” Being completely sick and not having my wits about me to be prepared for such a quesiton, I just said “natural family planning” to which she responded with a BLANK STARE.

“Do you mean withdrawing?” No, I mean NFP
"Do you mean doing nothing?" No, I mean NFP
"So, you mean using a calendar?" No, I mean NFP

I then told her about the medical models and the observation of signs of fertility to which I received a BLANK STARE.

Good Grief, doctors are IGNORANT.


My OB/GYN has practiced NFP herself and has taken an NFP class for physicians, so I guess notifying the students that there are seminars they can attend to learn about NFP is what I’d want most. :smiley:


I am so proud of you! I am a physician and the only mention of NFP in med school (graduated 1990) was the comment “What do you call couples who use the rhythm method? Answer: Mommy and Daddy” It was one smug, misguided, uninformed sentence in a lecture series on artificial birth control!

I would give an overview of the different types - although the Creighton model has a more standardized format and educational program and will probably appeal to students more. (contact the different organizations for info) I would emphasize that NFP can be used to achieve pregnancy as well as avoid. It can also be used to evaluate other problems such as infertility, PCOS, recurrent miscarriages, PMS and others. I would mention that it is natural and can be used throughout a womans reproductive years (even peri-menopause) safely and without side effects. Also, the very low divorce rate - 1.7% amoung NFP users is certainly worth mentioning!

God bless you. You and your classmates are in my prayers!


You know calling us all ignorant is rather rude. Unfortunately, the medical curriculum is such that we just don’t learn about NFP or learn misleading facts about NFP. The truth is if more women wanted to practice NFP then more doctors would know about it. But the opposite is also true, if more doctors knew about it, then more women would practice it. So it is a vicious cycle.

We had an NFP practitioner come talk to medical students about Creighton Model. We had 70 people come. It was excellent. We want to do it again this year to get the next group of students in on the action. Trust me, there are many medical students that are interested. Some will learn enough to at least understand it when a woman uses NFP, other will start practicing it. After the talk, the president of the Christian Medical Association (not our Catholic group) asked me for the email of the Creighton teacher. I thought that alone was worth the price of gold.

Good luck and God bless


Thanks everyone. You’ve given me a lot to work with. :slight_smile: If anyone thinks of anything else, let me know. I’m giving my presentation tomorrow, but I can always add something in the future if I give this presentation again.

As a related side note, I’m looking forward to learning how to do NFP with my fiance. I think we’re going to go with the sympto-thermal method as taught by the Couple-to-Couple League.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.