Natural Family Planning (NFP) an umbrella term for modern, healthy, scientifically accurate, and reliable methods of fertility management used to monitor reproductive health as well as achieve, postpone, or avoid pregnancy.
There are several available methods of NFP; none involve drugs or side effects. Couples find NFP to be reliable, easy to learn and simple to use.
Many couples find that their marital bond is even stronger after learning how to use NFP. Using Natural Family Planning also helps couples live out their married life according to the teaching of the Catholic Church.
Why Natural Family Planning?
The Catholic Church teaches that marital intercourse is a sign and symbol of committed love and is most fully human only when it is open to the gift of life. Each time a couple makes love they are reenacting their marriage vows as they give themselves freely, faithfully, fruitfully, and totally to one another.
This belief needs to be coupled with the Church’s assertion that as stewards of God’s creation, we are responsible to care for the children we help to create. Natural Family Planning respects the life giving (procreative) and love giving (unitive) aspects of intercourse by not separating the two, the way that contraception does. Contraception not only blocks conception, it also blocks husband and wife from completely bonding. Natural methods, while avoiding pregnancy by abstinence during the fertile time, are still open to the transmission of life.
Through the use of Natural Family Planning, Catholic couples can live out their marital vows in keeping with Church teaching.
Benefits of Natural Family Planning
For the Woman
There are no chemicals that she needs to put into her body, making her decision to avoid pregnancy immediately reversible as well as providing an organic alternative to birth control pills. She is able to be aware of issues to her health that are related to her fertility such as stress-induced illnesses and more.
For the Marriage
No doctors appointments to receive prescriptions or injections, no chemicals from productions in factories and no waste from the packaging going to landfills.
Estrogen and other synthetic hormones found in oral contraceptives do not filter out of the fresh drinking water supply, so men and children drinking city water are being exposed to these female hormones.
For the Environment
A survey completed by Physicians For Life about the divorce rate of couples using Natural Family Planning garnered these results:
- Have a dramatically low (0.2%) divorce rate
- Experience happier marriages
- Are happier and more satisfied in their everyday lives
- Have considerably more marital relations
- Share a deeper intimacy with spouse than those who contracept
- Realize a deeper level of communication with spouse
- Have relatively large families with many children
- Are appreciably more religious and attend church more often
- Incorporate prayer more in their daily lives
- Rely strongly on the teachings of the Church, the Bible and God
- Are personally happier
- Have strong traditional, social, and moral views
- Preserve the family unit more responsibly than the other groups
- Are unlikely to have ever had an abortion
- Are unlikely to have ever cohabited
- Are unlikely to work full time
- Are unlikely to be supportive of and to engage in sex outside of marriage