Originally Posted by ChristaN
And then there is my body which seemed to take the approach of, "she's having sex, quick ovulate!" Dh and I got pg twice within days of my period ending (our two kiddos both conceived while I was in my 20s). Whenever I was sexually active, my periods would come every two weeks and I'd ovulate immediately following a period. When I was not, my periods and ovulation were on a more normal cycle.
I wouldn't be relying on NFP with younger women either especially if their bodies work anything like mine and do whatever can be done to get pg!
NFP has nothing to do with having regular cycles. That's the "rhythm method", which obviously only works for a small percentage of women who have totally average length, consistent cycles. It is also not the pull-out method, which is ineffective (and would go against the beliefs of many who abstain from artificial birth control). NFP is about being aware of when you are most fertile (which very often IS immediately after your period... that's a highly fertile time...) It can be tracked using various observations, including cervical position, cervical fluids, basal body temperature, ovulation monitors, ovulation microscopes, etc. (methods would depend on personal preference as well as whether the goal is to avoid or achieve pregnancy). As I said before, I really REALLY wish this was taught in public schools. It can be very very reliable if taught/understood correctly and very empowering to have such deep knowledge about what's going on in your body. I learned it as an adult but I really wish I had learned it as a teen and I think it would have had a more positive effect on the way I viewed my body. (TMI but I always thought I had some weird "cold" symptoms or something when I discovered cervical mucous... I was always worried about it but too embarrassed to ask anyone what was going on...)
There is a fairly recent study showing that abstinence-only programs may in fact work: http://archpedi.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/short/164/2/152?home
Unfortunately, it looks like they only reported how many abstained (vs. how many got pregnant), but they did say that condom usage was unaffected by which program the kids were in, so it would stand to reason that fewer taught abstinence-only ultimately got pregnant since fewer were having sex in the first place.
However, I think overall, this is a hard issue to properly & objectively study because, just like not vaxing, no one has a true financial interest in abstaining...
Anecdotally, I have seen abstinence-only to be very effective. And I've seen teaching BC to be very ineffective... In other words, almost all of the unplanned pregnancies that I'm aware of were teens/young adults who WERE taught BC and there is only one person I know that was taught abstinence (though I think in conjunction with BC methods? so I'm not 100% positive which side she falls on). I know anecdotal evidence is not "evidence" but neither is implying that ONE person (Bristol Palin) is evidence of the inefficacy of abstinence (and as a pp said, it sounds like she was not ONLY taught abstinence, and isn't that the point of this whole discussion? Abstinence ONLY?)Edited by crunchy_mommy - 4/26/11 at 6:29am