Speaking of NFP

Enter your e-mail address:

Delivered by FeedBurner


By Rebecca Teti

(Join each day’s Coffee Talk discussion: Mon: Parenting; Tues: Open Forum; Wed: NFP; Thu: Marriage; Fri: Education; Sat/Sun: Changing Roles)

This weekly thread is a place where you can share your struggles, triumphs, links, resources, concerns, and questions about all things related to Natural Family Planning.

Please join the conversation!

Rebecca Teti


  • Taking the liberty of transferring Kathleen's NFPquestion from yesterday here. "I just need some support. Maybe I should wait until NFP day tomorrow, but I've been waiting long enough to have these forums back! We use Creighton, I have PCOS and loooong cycles, and we use yellow stamps, but they only seem to buy us an extra couple of days at either end of my cycle. In the middle, there are weeks and weeks of fertile mucus, and abstaining is just getting so unsustainable. It feels like we're being punished for trying to do the right thing. If we were using contraception, we could have a relationship like normal people! Last month, we decided maybe we weren't that serious about avoiding, and decided to just go for it . . . 2 days later, my husband lost his job, so now we're back to being serious. I would LOVE to be in a position to stop avoiding right now, but we're going to be burning through our savings as it is. (And of course, the flip side of PCOS is that it may well make it difficult to conceive as well, I can't help but worry that when the time comes, we'll just be trading one difficulty for another.) It just seems like God can't actually want us to be practically celibate, but our only other option is risking conceiving a child we absolutely cannot afford."

    Posted on Dec 12th, 2012 at 7:48 AM by Rebecca

  • Thanks for reposting my question, Rebecca. I appreciated the responses yesterday, too, especially from Anne - I've been thinking for a while that paleo/primal might be a helpful diet, it just seems like an EXPENSIVE diet without carbs to fill you up, and so (between that and my sweet tooth), I've never been able to commit. Maybe I need to tackle that after the holidays this year. Anna - we tried Marquette, but it was a big fat no help at all. My cycles are usually too long, and because they're irregular, the algorithm was requiring abstinence on what would have been our only few available days right after my period each cycle. It seems like the people at Marquette could develop a PCOS protocol (maybe it would resemble the breastfeeding protocol, where you retrigger the monitor for long cycles?), but they haven't, and, as helpful as the forum usually is, I felt like they dismissed my concerns when I asked for PCOS-specific help. (I have started temping as a cross-check, and while it sets my mind at ease a bit, it hasn't really changed anything, since my problem is in the many weeks pre-peak; I'm usually fine at figuring out when ovulation has happened.)

    Posted on Dec 12th, 2012 at 9:10 AM by Kathleen

  • Does anyone know if the Answer brand OPK strips are reliable after 30 days? The box says not to use them 30 days after the package has been opened, but I only used a few this month and would like to know if anyone has experience with these. Thanks!

    Posted on Dec 12th, 2012 at 10:28 AM by MR

  • Kathleen - using yellow stamps is one way to reduce the abstinence with PCOS, but sometimes there's only so much that can be done with charting. When we've done all we can with charting and it's still incredibly frustrating, that can mean more needs to be done to bring the hormones into a better balance. I also have PCOS. Taking Metformin and high doses of Vitamin D improves my symptoms a lot; but I notice even more improvement when I exercise regularly. Even 30 minutes of exercise affects the way our bodies metabolize insulin for the next 48 hours; which is huge for those of us with insulin resistance and PCOS! Managing the condition should improve the cycles and the chart. Can your Creighton instructor recommend a doctor to help you manage the PCOS? Some PCOSers are insulin resistant, others aren't - so treatment really needs to be tailored to each person. Also, have you had your thyroid, cortisol, and prolactin levels checked? Imbalances with those can also interfere with follicular development, resulting in long fertile mucus patches. There might be multiple things going on, in addition to the PCOS.

    Posted on Dec 12th, 2012 at 2:32 PM by Shawna - Billings Instructor