Real couples really do use NFP, and we asked them to tell us their NFP story. We will be sharing them here on the blog — the good parts and the struggles. Each of these couples are writing their own love story, and have chosen to do so by following God’s plan for marriage.
Here is Matt and Kirby’s story.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Were you initially skeptical about NFP?
No, I really learned about NFP from looking up the effectiveness rates. A lot of it just made logical sense to me.
Has anything surprised you about using NFP?
It is fantastic for having long-term, thorough medical records! I eventually learned I had cysts and tumors on my pituitary gland. Following surgery I was able to use my charts to prove to the doctors concerns I had about my recovery and to urge changes in how they communicate post-surgical information to women of child-bearing age.
Do you two work together on observations, charting and interpreting?
Yes, Matt is in charge of waking me at the same time every morning, giving hand the thermometer, and recording the temperature, while I do all of the other observations. We determine changes in phases and which Phase I rule to follow together. We love that NFP is a shared responsibility.
What changes have you seen in the dynamics of your relationship (if any) since starting natural family planning?
Dynamics can change drastically depending on how our communication is going. NFP can really point out weaknesses in our communication skills! That can put a lot of strain on our marriage, but it also urges us to action to grow and improve.
Have you and your spouse ever disagreed on NFP?
Absolutely! In any given cycle we will disagree about which Phase I rule to use, how to determine Phase III, even whether or not we should be trying to avoid (vs. trying to conceive). It helps that we both bought into NFP as the only moral option for avoiding pregnancy. We have learned to talk about it in increments — setting aside time here and there to address any issues.
How has NFP affected your relationship with God?
NFP can be a discipline. It is another tool that can form our will to that of God. Practicing NFP means that we are practicing what we preach. If life is always valuable, then it is always valuable. Marriage is always something that should involve complete openness to your spouse. To do otherwise would indicate we only mean that when it is convenient. So it’s a discipline, but one with really significant goals.