How not to criticize NFP

August 2, 2006 | 2 comments

A conversation between me and a relative this morning:

HER: So I guess pretty soon you’ll get on the Pill or something. Sure would be terrible to get pregnant now.

ME: We use natural family planning, which is–

HER: Oh, yeah, THAT works! [Scoffing disdainfully] That’s how Leslie and Jeff got here. [Referring to her beloved youngest siblings.]

In the awkward silence that ensued, neither of us were sure what point was just made. That NFP leads to horrible things like…Leslie and Jeff? It was weird. I didn’t jump on the the opportunity to get preachy, I just let her think about it.

It was a good lesson for her: when slamming NFP (which you know nothing about) because you perceive it to be innaccurate, it sounds a lot more ominous to use the impersonal, vague example of having “too many kids” or “an unwanted pregnancy.” But try not to follow those examples through to actual living, breathing loved-ones. It makes it sound like new life, whether intended or uninteded by you, might just be a good thing.


  1. GLouise

    yes- you wouldn’t want another “Leslie and Jeff!” 🙂 Too funny what people say!!

  2. Sharon

    I could’ve written the same post!
    We practice NFP-happily AND effectively. My sister does not. Every time birth control comes out or when dh and I may try again, she snickers at NFP.
    Yet she has no trouble coming to me when she wants me to tell her when she’s ovulating, etc.

    Why is it people want to study up on other tihngs before an argument, but not NFP?

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