TTA using NFP--Reality question... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 03-16-2004, 09:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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How many mamas who wanted to use NFP or FAM for avoididng couldn't keep up with the charting?

I am currently approaching the end (sadly) of LAM of birth control. Even though I really don't want to go on hormonal birth control and IUDs are out for me, I definitely need to use something.

We conceived son #2 on day 8 with a condom that broke, son #1 was the product of withdrawl, and son #3 was conceived after 1 night of trying. So, fertile I am.

I am incredibly unorganized, am afraid that I will lose my thermometer, charts, etc., and really want to hear that it's not as tough as I am thinking it will be.

My husband is willing to help as much as possible as well.

So, tell me: what is the REALITY of charting?

Amanda
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#2 of 12 Old 03-17-2004, 09:21 AM
 
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You know, it's not really so bad. When I first started charting I thought, "Oh this is going to be a huge pain.", and stopped and of course got pg. Now I'm charting again, and don't really mind.

There are some things to take into consideration though. You have 3 kids, how old are they? Are you bfing? Do you co-sleep? My ds is 3 mos old and I exclusively bf (yet AF came back, go figure!) and co-sleep. He's really little so it doesn't make a difference, but if my 2 yr old was still in the bed, it might be harder. Although it did take some creative thinking to get a regular time to chart in the morning.

I just keep the therm. next to my bed and hide it during the day from dd. Maybe you'd want to try charting on the 'puter instead of paper. It helps to take some of the guesswork out, which especially when you're new at this, makes a huge difference. Also, after doing it for a few days, it gets easier. You wake up and go "where's the thermometer?", and then it seems like nothing. But maybe try a practice cycle of just remembering to wake up and temp.

Hope that helps!
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#3 of 12 Old 03-17-2004, 10:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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It does help!

I do have 2 in our bed--my 5 month old and my 2 year old. He's a very active, wakeful child and rarely do I get enough sleep to actually temp, but I'm going to go ahead and take them just to see. I'll probably rely on the other signs greatly.

I started temping today--my husband popped the thermometer in my mouth at about 5:30 AM, and my thermometer stores the temperature until you take another one. This might help.

I'm tandem nursing and so hopefully I have a few more months of no ovulation. Pregnancy for us would not be a tragedy, necessarily, but we *do* want to wait before deciding to have another.

I'll definitely try the computer charting.

Thanks so much!

Amanda
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#4 of 12 Old 03-19-2004, 05:34 PM
 
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HI! I wanted to give NFP/FAM a thumbs up! I use the Ovusoft software that is based on Toni Welscher(?) book and find that it helps alot. I just put my signs in and it does the figuring. I never have a consistent 3 hour stretch of sleep, so I don't even temp (someday though). I just go by my cf and cp. Since I know this isn't the greatest way of checking, we use a diaphragm or avoid if I think I'm anywhere close to ovulation. It's been 5 months and no baby so far. I really don't want another baby until I'm out of the Army so I can stay home!

I definetly didn't want to go back on the pill (DH didn't want me to either b/c that didn't work last time). I had an IUD for 4 months but I really didn't like the fact that I had a foriegn object in my body and I had no way of controlling~removing it, w/out going to the OB/GYN. It was just too wierd for me.

HTH and hopefully it will work for you.

Trish~mama to Kaelie 5/03 and Amelia 12/13, surro mama to Aidan 2/08 & Ellyss 6/09, 

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#5 of 12 Old 03-23-2004, 06:50 PM
 
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Hi Amanda,

For me, the charting took about 2-3 weeks to become a habit, and now, I just check my CM throughout the day and record it at the end of the day (or beginning of the next day). I have used both paper and computer programs --- and think whichever is most convenient for you will be best on the long term.

It is important to be consistent in charting, so that you can accurately tell where your cycle is. I recommend using the Sympto-Thermal Method, which uses the temperature sign to cross check CM. That way if one sign is weaker you can rely on the other signs. For me, charting has been an outstanding measure of what where my cycle is. For example, if stress or illness delays ovulation on a given month, I can see it very clearly on my chart, so I am not surprised when my period is later than expected. Also, on a chart I can see whether the luteal phase is normal for me.

I think how successful *charting* is depends on your motivation. If you have a really serious reason to avoid pregnancy, then there is very little that will convince you to take chances with charting or otherwise.

I have use NFP to postpone pregnancy now for over 3 years, and though there have been times I really, really wanted to have sex, because we were so sure we needed to postpone pregnancy, we followed all the guidelines have not become pregnant unexpectedly. The NFP method itself is very effective when used according to guidelines/recommended chart interpretation. But the biggest factor in our "success” had been our mutual commitment. My DH takes responsibility for my temps, and I do the CM. If I am having a hard time staying motivated, then he encourages me and vice versa.

I really like Mavourin’s idea of a practice month to build a new habit without the stress of worrying over a missed temp.

Best of luck ---
Palmetto
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#6 of 12 Old 04-29-2004, 01:04 AM
 
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I used a cm only method and it was easy. I kept my chart in the bathroom and just charted their before I went to bed (which is what you're supposed to do w/ the Creighton Model). I would think temping and whatnot would be harder, esepcially w/ a non-sleeping baby.

Jennifer, LPN and nursing student, Doula, CPST, and VBAC mama x3 to
AJ (5/03), Evan (12/04), Ilana (11/06), Olivia (2/09), and Unity (8/2012)

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#7 of 12 Old 04-29-2004, 05:22 AM
 
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Would cycle beads help you out?
http://www.cyclebeads.com/

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#8 of 12 Old 04-29-2004, 11:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, my six months of LAM is over--yay--and we need to start charting, so I think I'm going to start Sunday. Totally arbitrary day, but as we're using condoms exclusively, anything would be better. I've not noticed any CM at all, so that's good...

I'm tandem nursing, and I don't really expect to start ovulating right away.

My 2 year old is sleeping much better--8 hours at night. So, I get about 5 hours uninterrupted sleep. Maybe this will be enough to notice thermal changes.

Thanks so much for your advice!!!

Amanda
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#9 of 12 Old 04-29-2004, 01:10 PM
 
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It's pretty easy for me. I decide on a good time to temp every day, set my alarm, wake up and temp, go back to sleep for another hour or two, and when I wake up for real, I mark it on the chart. Every time I go to the bathroom, I check my CM... it's a habit now, I think I'd do it even if I wasn't charting. At the end of the day, I mark the most fertile CM I've had that day. I dont' have kids though, so maybe it's harder with kids? *shrug*
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#10 of 12 Old 04-29-2004, 03:19 PM
 
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Oh yes, it's harder w/ kids! I have no idea why it was hard to chart at night, but it was. I know I was doing bathroom sprints so checking cm wasn't at the top of my to do list. Oh well, it's o.k. now, I'm pg again so I have some more no charting time.

Jennifer, LPN and nursing student, Doula, CPST, and VBAC mama x3 to
AJ (5/03), Evan (12/04), Ilana (11/06), Olivia (2/09), and Unity (8/2012)

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#11 of 12 Old 05-03-2004, 01:19 AM
 
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I've been using FAM for yrs and it has proven to be successful for me.We have 3 planned kiddos and no surprises yet I have never temped but I do use the Ovusoft program on the puter.I would HIGHLY recommend that ...it seems to make it sooooo much easier, especially if you decided you want to temp. GL!

Ima to Mizz.Jonas- 14, Isman- 12,Javsar- 9, Nani Gweesa- 4 and Baby Micah born into the Universe sleeping at full term Oct. 19th 2008 and Partner to Abba ~ belly.gif8/2011  Grateful to be Dead  broc1.gif
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#12 of 12 Old 05-08-2004, 10:36 PM
 
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We successfully used the cervical-mucus only method to space #1 and #2 around three years apart. I've never charted temps--never got enough solid sleep. I got af back at 5 months with #1--before that we used a condom every time. We did the same thing until I got my cycles back with #2 when she was nine months old, but my third cycle was long and the cervical mucus/ovulation pains were confusing--we really weren't being strict enough, has unprotected sex, and are now expecting #3. After this one arrives (we were planning on 2 kids, although I really wanted a third), we're planning to be more strict with fertility awareness, either using condoms during the fertile period or having sex but not intercourse.

Heather, Mama to DS(10) DD(7.5),DD(6)
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