3 Reasons You’re Wrong About Natural Family Planning.001

The following the first few paragraphs from a post I wrote over at Your Tango defending Natural Family Planning.  As you may know, NFP has meant a lot to our marriage, and I’m pretty passionate about clearing up misconceptions.  While I don’t try to convert people to practice NFP, I get a BIT upset when large websites publish blatantly false information.  Fortunately, in this case, I was given an opportunity to respond.  Enjoy!

If you’ve heard the term Natural Family Planning (NFP), there’s a very good chance, it’s probably almost a certainty actually, that you were given some bad information about it.

As someone who has practiced NFP with my wife for around six years, I know I’ve heard more than my fair share of misguidance from family, the media and even priests.  Sometimes it’s honest confusion or simply a passing along of misinformation, but other times it’s a blatant attack on a somewhat mysterious practice that many in our culture chalk-up to some form of crazy desire for 20 kids or an exercise in Pope-worshiping.

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I’ve heard it all as a marriage blogger who writes openly about all aspects of NFP and healthy sexuality over at Engaged Marriage.  I’ve even written here at Your Tango about the challenges of Natural Family Planning.

So, I was a bit shocked when I read a recent post by Lyz Lenz in the Traditional Love Blog bashing NFP while linking to said post.  I’m actually cool with bashing, and my goals in writing about NFP are never about converting people to practice it (I’m not that naive), but when someone publishes blatantly false statements about Natural Family Planning and further feeds the steady stream of misinformation that caused my wife and I so much emotional pain early in our marriage, I get upset.

But getting upset does no good, so I thought I’d instead share a bit of a rebuttal to Lyz’s post and hopefully clean up some of the mud that was slung at Natural Family Planning, which she called “ridiculous.”  I could literally write a book on this subject, but you don’t want to read a book about NFP, so let’s just hit three major misconceptions, all of which were part of Lyz’s post.

For the rest of this post, please go over and read it at Your Tango.  While you’re there, I’d LOVE it if you could share your own thoughts/experiences in the comments section.  Thanks!




About the author 


Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.

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  1. Thank you for writing this great article! I shared it w/ all my friends. We do sympto-thermal method as taught by CCLI.org. Fortunately we haven’t actually had to use it all that much – breastfeeding provides perfect childspacing for us.

  2. Interesting perspective and thank you for defending a practice used long before the crusades. There are a lot of current studies ongoing which tackle the negative impact the pill can have on relationships and procreation – it appears women on the pill (because it mimics pregnancy) do not choose mates with DNA that would produce the best offspring. I read they are going to take that study further to see if it contributes to divorce rates later (presumably because sometime after marriage a woman may discontinue use of the pill in order to conceive, and then find herself less biologically attracted to her mate.

    I am single and I have chosen to pursue NFP for health reasons and have never had a problem. I don’t know anyone else who does. My doctor thinks I’m nuts, especially now that there is more research now to indicate that it is not healthy for women to have as many cycles as we do, promoting the idea that periods on artificial birth control can contribute to preserving fertility. Women who have more children (i.e. spend more of their lives not experiencing a regular cycle) have lower rates of cervical cancer, endometriosis, etc. This is a pretty new one to me and I’ll have to put more thought into it.

    Side note to your generalization in “2. Misunderstanding Contraception” : You need to brush up on some facts there. To which “all-time high abortion rates” are you referring? I would hope you are discussing another nation because this is factually incorrect about the United States. In 1990, approximately 1.6 million abortions were performed in the US, in a population of nearly 249 million. In 2008, approximately 1.2 million abortions were performed in a population of 309 million. This figure for 2008 also factors in the 13% of “abortions” resulting from the morning-after pill. Logic tells us that 100% of women taking Plan B were not pregnant, so that figure is even smaller though we cannot measure it. So, you see, the absolute number of abortions has most certainly fallen (1.6M – 1.2M = 400,000 fewer abortions in fewer than 20 years), and when you factor in the population growth, abortion has fallen by over 39%. That is a statistic I hope you do not ignore in the future! Regardless of anyone’s pro choice or pro life opinion, abortion is unpleasant, painful, and hurts women, so to see that decline is good news on which I wish more people would educate themselves.

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