Tuesday, May 20, 2014

So how do you 'do' NFP?

I got a lot of good follow up questions to my previous post on NFP vs. Contraception and I thought I'd link up some excellent resources here.

First and foremost, Humanae Vitae: Read with an open heart and a questioning mind, and ask yourself, "how have Pope Paul VI's predictions panned out? Does this lend credence to the Church's teachings on sexuality and procreation?

Second, Bishop James Conley's pastoral letter on the above mentioned encyclical (official teaching of the Pope).

Finally, for some practical, hands-on instruction (see what I did there?) in the actual practice of NFP, I heartily recommend Creighton's NaPro technology, great for both the practice of NFP to delay or avoid pregnancy or (and perhaps even more excitingly) to achieve pregnancy in the face of infertility. 
Borrowed from Haley over at Carrots

Seriously, it's twice as effective as IVF? And, um, free-ish. Or at least covered by insurance.

Mind blown.

There's also the Sympto Thermal Method, which I'm also trained in but, um, don't really 'get' postpartum, and then there is the Marquette Method and the Billings Method.

And I think my cousin uses something called a Lady Comp and pees on strips of test paper. Idk, you're gonna have to google that one yourself.

I'll link up some more resources on a permanent page on the 'ol blog, but right now we've got tons of family in town and I haven't showered in...well, I'll never tell.



  1. The book we started with - it's basically sympto-thermal - was Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler. But NB it's "fertility awareness method," not technically NFP, because she talks about barrier methods during fertile stages. Other than that though, it was a great place to start. I'm with you though that I am totally awful at interpreting anything post-partum! I'll be looking into classes through our archdiocese after this coming baby. I don't know about other people, but our archdiocese (KC KS) has a pretty great website with resources for NFP, including listings of doctors in the area who support it. It's worth a Google search.

    1. And I mean worth a Google search for each person's own diocese, for their local resources.

  2. We are big fans of the Marquette Method. While you have to buy the monitor and testing sticks, it's kinda the lazy girl's NFP. It takes the guesswork out that I am bound to mess up. We started using it after my first pregnancy (after cycle had returned) and I'm using it for the first time post-partum/nursing now...and so far so great!

  3. Here is a link to the resources page at Conversation with Women. If you scroll down it has a list of methods and links. Persona sounds similar to the method your cousin uses. It is supposed to be really easy, really effective, but expensive and you have to buy on line.

  4. I've tried to follow all the links online to figure out how these methods actually work, but usually the websites are poorly designed and really hard to understand. I am not Catholic, so I don't have theological reasons to use NFP. Add in being busy, having a newborn and a toddler and my natural laziness, and I basically give up before getting very far in figuring out how the methods actually work. (I'd take a one-day class, but as I'm not Catholic would prefer not to go to one that's in a Church or religious setting.) I used Taking Charge of Your Fertility to conceive but it seems like too much of a hassle day-to-day. No way am I going to chart my temperature when I can barely keep track of feeding my cat. I just want something where I stick something in a little box that blinks or makes a clear sign when I'm fertile vs. not. Is that the Marquette method? And what do I need to buy to get started with that?

    1. Tia (can I just say I love that name? My little sister is a Tia :),

      I totally understand what you mean, I could never deal with the temp either, that's why I switched to the Creighton Method which is, in my opinion, the most scientific. My instructor is also an LDR nurse and it's been really helpful to have a more medical perspective. That being said, it does require an extra step when going to the bathroom (it's a mucus-only method) but I've found that is a much, much easier thing I can integrate into my routine than waking at the same time every day/popping a pill (obviously for religious and medical reasons I wouldn't go that route).

      I think the Marquette Method is what you're looking for, and I think you'll want to find a certified instructor, just as with Creighton, to walk you through the method. I found this contact person on their website: mary.schneider@mu.edu maybe that's a good place to start?

      What I love about Creighton (last plug I promise) is that you have someone to follow up with whenever you have a question/things change/postpartum whatever...and it's very, very reassuring. I also like the fact that my Creighton charts can help my primary care doctor pinpoint other health issues that might crop up during my lifetime.


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