Who can and can't use NFP? (Need guidelines.) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 04-22-2004, 12:05 AM - Thread Starter
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I am really attracted to NFP, but I have not seen any guidelines about who should or shouldn't use it.

I'm trying to avoid pregnancy. I know that there are advantages and disadvantages to all birth control methods. I understand the pros and cons of NFP, condoms, diaphragms, etc. I am looking for some guidelines on NFP .... for instance, women who have heart problems shouldn't use the pill; and, women who are already prone to UTI's (urinary tract infections) probably shouldn't use a diaphragm because it can aggravate conditions leading to UTIs.

What about NFP? For example, does it matter how long your cycles are? If I have cycles that vary in length (29-39 days), can I still use NFP to avoid successfully?

-- Caitlin
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#2 of 9 Old 04-22-2004, 12:36 AM - Thread Starter
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(I found this on a website somewhere)

* Women whose age, parity or health problems make pregnancy a high risk

* Women without established menstrual cycles (breastfeeding, immediately postabortion)

* Women with irregular cycles (calendar method only)

* Women whose partner will not cooperate (abstain) during certain times in the cycle

* Women who dislike touching their genitals
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#3 of 9 Old 04-22-2004, 12:58 AM - Thread Starter
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So, I fit into two of these categories. (1) no established menstrual cycle (I'm bfing). and (2) irregular cycles.... well, they are just irregular in length, but it says "calendar method only".
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#4 of 9 Old 04-22-2004, 12:47 PM
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If you use the sympto-thermal method or the cervical mucus method, then you should be ok. If you're breastfeeding and haven't yet ovulated, then you have to consider yourself as potentially fertile at all times. You can still chart your temps and check your CM, but anytime you have fertile CM AT ALL you must abstain or use another form of birth control. If your cycles are merely irregular, then you should be ok, because the sympto-thermal method doesn't base anything on past cycles. Does that make sense?

Ack, I just realized that I biased my post for people TTA. If you're not TTA, then what I say still goes, but the opposite way. Did that make sense? :
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#5 of 9 Old 04-28-2004, 11:45 PM
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We used NFP and we just used condoms during the fertile times though we were supposed to abstain as condoms aren't very effective a lot of times. Just b/c your periods aren't regular, doesn't mean you can't use NFP. You body should still give off the same signs as everyone else's when you are Oing. We used a cm only method and I never once had to touch my genitals. I simply looked at what was on the tp after I wiped and charted that. Check out Creighton Model You can get more info here and even request info. I love this method so much! I used it to avoid before we got AJ on the first try and then I used it from 4 wks pp while bfing and then got this one on the first try too after I Oed. Good luck!

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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#6 of 9 Old 05-13-2004, 12:56 PM
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You can totally use NFP successfully and there some great resources available. Like any method, it comes down to your willingness to give it a fair shot. I have used NFP for 3+ years to postpone pregnancy, and have been very pleased. To clarify something posted earlier, there is no contraception use with NFP; you abstain during the fertile times. FAM does promote contraception use during the fertile times.

Cycles vary for a number of normal reasons, and they may change over time, for example, cycles naturally become longer during lactation and perimenopause. If you’re curious about improving your cycle lengths, check out Marilyn Shannon’s book on nutrition. It is sooo insightful. It’s called Fertility, Nutrition, and your Cycles or something. It has a bright pink cover, you can’t miss it.

You asked about restrictions on NFP. Well, one of the beautiful things about Natural Family Planning is that is natural, it’s 100% based on your, personal fertility signs and backed up with solid scientific data, so you rest assured about the method’s efficacy. It’s not harmful and it is immediately reversible. There are some posts on this fertility board that explain the method in more detail...check them out and feel free to email me if you have any questions.

Check out:

Art of NFP
Take Charge of Your Fertility
And a new book I read about on Amazon, can’t remember the name

Good luck.
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#7 of 9 Old 05-25-2004, 02:08 PM
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NFP discussion board:

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#8 of 9 Old 05-25-2004, 03:35 PM
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I have irregular cycles as do my several sisters. I've never done NFP, but at one point, I needed to have regular ultrasounds. I ovulate at times that were not predicted at all by temperature or CM, and which frankly suprised the daylights out of my doctor.

My sisters are catholic and they tried NFP. They took the classes, are highly educated, were very motivated and all had unwanted pregnancies.
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#9 of 9 Old 05-25-2004, 04:02 PM
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EFMom: When you say you have irregular cycles, can you explain further? Approximately how many days long are they?

As far as using NFP/FAM, temperature charting does not predict ovulation. It merely confirms that you have ovulated and that progesterone is now being produced by the corpus luteum at the ovary where the egg came from. Cervical fluid assessment is definitely a learned art, and nutrition and individual body biochemistry also have a role to play and can enhance/take away from the fertility of cervical fluid.

Just wanted to clarify...

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