How to find an NFP friendly Doc…

March 20, 2012 by Kristin  
Filed under Fertility, Latest Thoughts

Last year the following NFP doctor “how to” was published by our friend Jess over at NFPworksblog. Since then I have received numerous requests on our NFP forum from young women needing further assistance finding a doctor in their area. As a result our tips have been updated! If you are searching for an NFP doctor or know someone who is we hope the following can be of use! – Kristin, Foundress of Living The Sacrament- NFP forum

One of the most common issues NFP users face is finding a doctor who “gets it”.  In fact most women don’t even expect that. When it comes down to it we really just desire a doctor who will respect our decision to use NFP when postponing a pregnancy rather than whatever artificial pill, patch, or barrier samples were left behind by the last pharmaceutical rep. to enter the building. This is no tall order. This should be easy but often is not.

If you are struggling to find an NFP friendly doctor don’t lose hope! Try the following and with any luck you will find some great options in your area! Generally speaking as you are going down the list, the fewer steps it takes you to find a doctor, the more likely they will be not only NFP friendly, but possibly even trained in a specialty such as NaProTechnology.

  1. Creighton Fertility Care: Check out the Fertility Care Website and use the left hand index to “Find a Medical Consultant” (if looking specifically for a NaPro Doctor please e-mail fcco[at]popepaulvi.com for the most up-to-date information on your area.)
  2. One More Soul’s NFP Directory: Run a search for your area (Helpful, but not always 100% upt to date. No luck?  See#3)
  3. Network:

Contact your closest Catholic NFP Diocesan Coordinator. Let them know you are looking for an NFP friendly doctor in the area.

Seek out and call your local NFP instructors! More than likely they go to the doctor from time to time so see who they use!

Search for a Pro-Life OB/GYNS (AAPLOG) . While not all physicians identified as Pro-Life are NFP friendly, many are.

Consider calling a few of the local Midwives if you have any in your area.  Though not all are supportive of NFP, many are, and might know of a doctor in your area who is as well!

4. Social Network: You never know who people know, so post to the Living The Sacrament Forum, the Facebook NFP Group (CLOSED group is probably the best option), or your NFP tweeps.

Believe in your Body

March 14, 2012 by Leah  
Filed under Fertility, Latest Thoughts

A few weeks ago we asked over on ourFacebook page  and our friend site Living the Sacrament for you to share reasons why you choose to use natural methods of family planning versus the widely championed artificial birth control being mandated in the controversial Obama Administration’s HHS Mandate.  We got some wonderfully insightful responses and wanted to share them here.  If you want to add your own reasons, please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of the page.

We also want to point out the WomenSpeakforThemselves.com campaign which is collecting signatures of women all across this country that oppose the HHS Mandate. Please share and sign the letter to make our voices heard in this debate.

 

 

I like having the knowledge and control of my body to make the decision to abstain/avoid pregnancy one month- if our hearts change the next month about pregnancy, we don’t have to wait for side effects to wear off and fertility to return, as if it were a disease to begin with. That’s one of MANY reasons we choose NFP! – Jaci

 

We use Natural Family Planning and monitor my changing fertility because we know it is better for my body and our relationship. The amount of communication needed and the basic level of respect he must have for my body prove we are together for more than the great sex. We’re in this together as a team, which is how I think sex is meant to be. It is not a solitary act and should not be dealt with in that way. I am grateful to have more than a sexual partner, but a partner outside the bedroom as well. I love the ability to recognize and appreciate my healthy body doing what it was naturally made to do.  – L

 

 Because it’s good for my marriage, and there are no side effects. I used hormonal BC until I knew better and the doctors kept switching it because of all the side-effects, finally they said you either deal with the side effects or take your chances. I hardly call NFP taking my chances. It makes me feel better, allows me to know what’s going on in my body, and it opens up communication between my husband and I. There are so many more great reasons. But that’s why we started – Patricia

 I love NFP because it does keep communication open between us.  I feel more respected by dh & more respectful of him. I feel like it creates a stronger bond between us. – M 

I can monitor my body, what is going on with it, if there is something “going on”, how life/emotions/medications affect my body. I can tell my doctor more about my body/cycle than he can tell me. I don’t have to play guessing games about what phase of my cycle I am in. No drug interactions. No allergies to artificial birth control, or having to switch to make me feel “normal”. I love my body! It’s amazing how it works. – Celeste 

To me healthcare should prevent, detect, or treat disease. Artificial birth control does none of those things. And in fact, contrary to the purpose of healthcare, can CAUSE disease. The most deadly form of breast cancer? No thanks. It can also mask other natural indicators of infertility thus making detection and actual treatment of those conditions impossible. In effect it is the *opposite* of healthcare and is a shameful indicator of the priorities of popular culture. – Dwija

I love NFP because it gets my husband and I to talk about us and our family goals most days. Definitely helps with our communication – K

I am more in tune to my body; it opens communication between me and my husband. It inspires more respect between us as spouses and respect for God as having all the control and it opens respect for the miracle of life. I LOVE neither paying nor placing my “trust” anyone/company, to be ‘able’ love free and naturally. I feel natural, healthy, and clean/”pure”. – Jacque

 Being able to become pregnant is a sign of health. I do not want to poison or maim myself. As a woman my fertility is part of me, not something wrong with me. And I like babies. – Jessica

 

I love NFP because it indicates health or lack thereof, of SOOO many different aspects of my body.  Yes fertility is the obvious one, but so many other issues can be “red flagged” by proper charting and symptom recording.  Definitely empowering! – Kristin

 IMO, NFP is *feminist* family planning. It is not feminist IMO to compromise your own health for the sake of a man’s pleasure. It is not feminist to outsource family planning to a Pharmaceutical company. If NFP didn’t exist, we would use condoms consistently & correctly. In women with non-monogamous relationships, Pharmaceutical contraception actively puts them @ risk for STDs. I had a natural birth, I choose natural family planning. It is a great use of my science degree. As an environmentalist, I enjoy keeping synthetic hormones out the water supply too. – Ellen

 I love NFP because, not only does it open the communication about our family plans, it opens communication for other things.  One thing leads to another and before you know it we are talking about other important things. It also keeps me tuned in to my body. I figured out I had a bladder infection ridiculously early because of my observations for NFP. I also have identified more mittelschmerz cramps because I know what is where in my body and what point in my cycle they do what they do. Rarely do I have any kind of a pain that I don’t know what or why it is. And I appreciate my husband’s self control. It amazes me and makes me fall more in love with him every time I think about it. – J

 No more cancer risk. No more chemicals. No more possibility of aborting my own child. More natural, more in touch with my body, more open to children, more faith, more God. – Sonja

 I love NFP because it leaves me 100% free of the health risks associated with contraceptive hormones.  I really do love that freedom!  Contraceptive hormones (Pill, patch, implant, Nuvaring, Mirena, Depo, etc) all seem like convenient solutions, but they come with price tags.  Even if I wasn’t Catholic, I’d probably still be a nurse and I would not be comfortable with those risks at all!  Things like blood clots, heart attack, stroke, cancer, depression, weight gain.  And most of all, contraceptive hormones can all work as abortifacients.  As much as I have needed to avoid pregnancy at times, I have never been OK with the idea of using a drug that could harm a new life inside me.   It would feel like I was putting my sex life ahead of human life.  Lovemaking is a gift from God and an important part of marriage, but I know deep down that putting it ahead of human life is not the right way to use that gift in marriage.  So, I love that NFP allows me to avoid pregnancy effectively without having to worry about ANY of those things.  I appreciate what NFP has shown me about my reproductive health.  My charting revealed that I have poly cystic ovarian disease (PCOD).  I would not have known that or been treated for it if I wasn’t doing NFP.   My charting has also allowed me to monitor the treatments I’ve received for PCOD, to see if it’s improving things or not.  I love how NFP forces us to have conversations that could have easily stayed dormant if we were using BC.   NFP doesn’t cause problems in our marriage, but it sure shines a spotlight on problems that are already there.   That can be painful, but it’s good for us.  Without the spotlight, we could ignore those problems and then they would only grow in secret…slowly.   NFP requires us to face them head on.  To face the way we treat each other, the way we communicate, the way we co-operate or don’t co-operate with each other.  NFP has taught us some difficult lessons and has challenged us as a couple.  I would not trade those hard moments with NFP for anything.    The growth in our marriage and our hearts has been worth it.    – S

 If you are interested in learning more about the different methods of natural fertility care and Natural Family Planning, watch for our next post sharing with you how you can go about finding a doctor or practitioner trained in the various methods.

Because we believe women deserve access to education about themselves, not more free birth control.

 

Having our Say….

March 7, 2012 by Leah  
Filed under Fertility, Latest Thoughts

Deadly health risks for women: The unspoken side of the Obama birth control mandate

By Jenn Giroux

February 14, 2012

Reposted with permission from http://jenngiroux.com/2012/02/14/deadly-health-risks-for-women-the-unspoken-side-of-the-obama-birth-control-mandate/

For far too long there has been an ominous silence across America on arguably the most controversial and devastating issue of the day — birth control. As so often we see in history, oppression gives rise to courage and, no question, courage is exactly what we are seeing in Church leaders and layman alike in response to the Obama administration’s recent birth control mandate and more recent unacceptable modifications.

The Birth Control Mandate has forced the issue of contraception to move from being the elephant in the room to center stage. Perhaps in time we will see that it was a hidden blessing for our country. For years pro-life organizations refused to discuss or take on this topic despite the fact that free access to birth control increases the number of surgical abortions[1][2]. Most people repeat over and over that birth control decreases the number of abortions. Nothing could be farther from the truth. In fact, today for every child born in the US, there are an estimated 2 children killed in the womb from both surgical and chemical, abortifacient drug abortions [3]. What isn’t being talked about is that the new mandate also pre-disposes women to serious long term and permanent health problems. In conjunction with the defense of both religious liberty and the spiritual well-being of women, we must also refute the absurd and deceptive statement that “women are healthier on birth control.”

Providing free hormonal birth control to women under the guise of ‘preventative services’ and ‘women’s health’ is a lie and women of all faiths deserve to know the truth.

Hormonal birth control methods can enter the body in various ways. These ways include ‘The Pill’ (by mouth), the Mirena IUD (Intrauterine Device), the implant (placed under the skin), ‘the Patch’ (absorbed through the skin), and the Vaginal Nuvaring. There are many other estrogen -progestin name brands that can be added to this list. Any way you name it, these hormone drugs dispense poison into a woman’s body.

Perhaps HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius should inform her President of the following before he makes additional statements to the press like “it is cheaper to prevent than to treat.” Consider this:

— Since 1975 there has been a 400% increase in “in situ” breast cancer among pre-menopausal women under 50 years old. This mirrors the increased use of birth control over these same years. (“In situ” is a medical term which means “at the location” [4].

— A Mayo Clinic study confirms that any young girl or woman who is on hormonal birth control for 4 years prior to their first full term pregnancy increases their breast cancer risk by 52%. [5]

— Women who use hormonal birth control for more than 5 years are four times more likely to develop cervical cancer. [6]

— The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a research arm of the World Health Organization, classifies all forms of hormonal contraception as a Group 1 carcinogen. This group of cancer causing agents also includes cigarettes and asbestos. [7] Why is it that the FDA can require cigarette manufacturers to place warning labels and real life photos of corpses on cigarette packages to warn consumers of the health dangers yet they, in turn, take an equally harmful substance (hormonal birth control) and force companies to give it away free to young girls without parental consent and woman of all ages?

— For high school boys and men to take steroid drugs, it is a crime. Whereas girls and women taking steroid drugs (i.e. hormonal birth control) are now treated as if they are taking a sacred, life preserving vitamin that women cannot live without. [8]

— In October 2010 the NY Times carried an article about Hormone Replacement Therapy drugs. It quoted the America Medical Association (AMA) as warning women that these post-menopausal drugs which were originally marketed as keeping a women “young and sexy” were discovered instead to be more likely to cause advanced and deadly breast cancer.[9] It stopped short of making one other startling revelation: The only difference between hormone replacement therapy drugs which cause deadly breast cancer and the hormonal birth control drugs (now mandated by the Obama administration) is that the birth control drugs are six times the dosage — and are the very same drug!

Never before has the US government mandated that private companies must provide services and it adds insult to injury when this mandate includes substances that harm women and cause them to unknowingly self-abort their babies a certain percentage of the time when they are using these substances.

How is it possible for women to self-abort when birth control is meant to prevent pregnancy? It is possible because many of these birth control methods still allow the woman’s body to ovulate every month. If sexual relations occur during that time, it is possible to get pregnant. Recently doctors tried to figure out why some women could not get pregnant using artificial insemination. They conducted a study which discovered that the lining of a woman’s uterus must be at least 8mm thick in order for a baby, in its tiniest form, to implant and grow in the womb. They found that the use of hormonal contraception (in any of the forms mentioned above) generally keeps the uterine lining below 6mm.[10] To be clear, if a baby is conceived by a woman on hormonal birth control the embryo cannot implant and grow to full gestation of 9 months if the integrity of the uterine lining is too thin. Instead the baby, in its tiniest form, is unknowingly self-aborted by its mother. This is what is meant by the word “abortifacient.” It isn’t just the “morning after” pill or “Ella” that is in the abortion inducing drug category. It is nearly all of the hormonal birth control that is being mandated.

Since Roe v Wade there has been over 55 million surgical abortions. These chemical abortions add an estimated 250 million additional abortions to our nation’s holocaust. [11]

This is not information that should be kept from the public. Women deserve to be told the truth. They are not being warned that birth control methods are causing breast, liver, and cervical cancer. They are not being told about the “silent killer” effect which is causing them to unknowingly abort their babies. They are instead being told that they are healthier on birth control because it decreases ovarian and uterine cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, out of 100 women with cancer, 31 have breast cancer, 6 have uterine cancer, and 3 have ovarian cancer. This is not a healthy tradeoff of risks that is worth taking. [12]

If, indeed,” it is cheaper to prevent than to treat” then it is time for the White House, Kathleen Sebeilius, and all health agencies within the government to sound the warning trumpet to warn women on hormonal birth control about these devastating medical consequences.

Clearly, birth control does not help women at risk, it places women at risk.

Jenn Giroux has been a Registered Nurse for 26 years where she has seen both the physical and spiritual harms of contraception. She also founded the “Speaking of Motherhood” project in an effort to educate women of the harms of birth control and to elevate the profession of motherhood. She and her husband, Dan, live in Cincinnati, Ohio and have 9 children.

NOTES:

[1] http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html ;

 

[2] Jones RK, Darroch JE and Henshaw SK, Contraceptive use among U.S. women having abortions in 2000–2001, Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, 2002, 34(6):294–303.

 

[3] International Pharmacists for Life 2003;http://www.prolifephysicians.org/abortifacient

 

[4] www.cancer.org

 

[5] Kahlenborn et al., “Oral Contraceptive Use — as a risk factor for pre-menopausal breast cancer: a meta analysis,” Mayo Clinic proceedings 2006 pp. 1290-1320, 2006

 

[6] Bosch, et al, “Effect of oral contraceptives on risk of cervical cancer…” International Agency of Research on Cancer, 2002

 

[7] International Agency for Research on Cancer, a research arm of the World Health Organization, 2010

 

[8] http:www.mayoclinic.com/health/performance-enhancing-drugs/SM00045

 

[9] New York Times, Oct. 19, 2010

 

[10] Rabe T etal The Effects of Monophasic and triplasic Oral Contraceptives on Ovarian Function and Endometrial Thickness Eura J Contra Reproductive Care 1997 2, 39-51

 

[11] Kuhar et al,”Infant Homocides through Contraceptives,” International Pharmacists for Life, 5th Edition 2003

 

[12] www.bcpinstitute.org

© Jenn Giroux

We have a say too.

March 3, 2012 by Leah  
Filed under Fertility, Latest Thoughts

I am sorry we haven’t been posting here in response to the chaos and insanity taking place all around us with the HHS Birth Control Mandate.  It has been a month of trying to catch our breath and figure out what exactly many women’s groups are asking and demanding the American people support in the name of our health. First there was the Susan G. Koman/Planned Parenthood fiasco to dominate the women’s health headlines, and now this mandate that says all women must have access to free birth control or…..or what?……well, we’re not exactly sure.

We’ve honestly been scratching our heads and trying to figure out if they really are saying that without free birth control our society will fall apart? Well, yes. That does seem to be exactly what they are saying. And in not so public ways, they are also saying that women must in fact be pretty ignorant and undisciplined and that without certain organizations helping them, we would all end up with 17 children, barefoot and pregnant, and, gasp!, “wasting” our intellect and potential on raising the next generation.

There are so many blantantly false assumptions about women’s abilities and our strengths being thrown around in the media right now. I am actually afraid for our adolescent and teenage girls to watch anything on tv or hear anything in a health class about their supposed weakness of fertility. I just cannot accept that our daughters might be hearing this toxic nonsense about women’s abilities and coming to believe these things about themselves.

The “I have a say” campaign initiated by Planned Parenthood attempts to say that women are not being heard and that all women know and agree that “birth control is basic healthcare”. Well, I agree with Cecile Richards that not all women are being heard. But who is really not being heard in our media? Those of us who can see the negative side-effects of birth control and who refuse to accept the lie that we are incapable of understanding and managing our fertility naturally.

We are beautifully and wonderfully made. Our bodies are capable of conceiving, gestating, and nourishing other human beings. This is amazing! There is nothing wrong with us the way we naturally are! What is wrong is a society that refuses to see these parts of us as the gifts they are to humanity. It is very wrong to tell women that we are foolish to not expose ourselves to artificial hormones and suppress the abilities of our bodies. IT IS WRONG for groups like Planned Parenthood to further their own business agenda by belittling our intellect and claiming to speak on our behalf. They DO NOT speak for me.

In the coming days we want to represent the voices of women who choose knowledge of their fertility over suppression. We want to give a voice to those of you who appreciate your natural gift of fertility. We want to teach the world about New Feminists and show them that the days of conforming women to meet societal standards are over.  It is time the world recognizes our abilities and honors us for our strengths.

Please feel free to comment here about the true needs of women, or send us an email at leahjacobson@theguidingstarproject.com and we’ll include your comments in an upcoming post.