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NFP Method Selection: Trying to decide which Method of NFP is right for you?
Cindy Leonard, July 14, 2016 (About Natural Family Planning)

Here at the Diocese of Phoenix, we offer classes in a variety of NFP methods so each couple can decide the method that will be the best fit for them. Below are some questions you can ask yourselves that may help in your decision making. Ultimately the decision may come down to pragmatics if you are in a rush to join the next available series of classes, but if you have time to wait for the method that you really want to learn and use, take this quiz!

Remember, all NFP methods are fairly similar because the woman’s reproductive system is non-method specific!

1. They all rely on the charting of observable signs of fertility and infertility in the woman and abstinence from all genital contact during the method defined fertile time in order to avoid a pregnancy.

2. They are all reliable, highly effective, and free from side effects and the abortifacient nature that haunt all chemical forms of contraception and IUDs . These methods are NOT the old fashioned Rhythm we’re teaching! Each of the national USCCB approved methods has their own organization that promotes the method, publishes materials, does research, and trains teachers. They each have excellent websites for more information. However, most charting apps for your iphone don't have those bragging rights. Most are only rhythm based, so buyer beware. There is an excellent article out now that studies the performance of these apps to avoid pregnancy. You might be pretty surprised by their results! Performance of Fertility Awareness-Based Method Apps...

3. All class series are fairly lengthy because it takes time to learn and chart a couple of cycles to make sure you are charting correctly and that you and your fiancé or husband understands the rules for your particular circumstance. This isn’t something you can cram into a weekend study session!

4. All methods welcome the couple and expect both husband and wife to learn the method and know how to chart so it is truly a shared method of family planning.

Ok, now on to the Quiz!

1. Do your menstrual cycles seem pretty regular or pretty irregular to you?

A) They may not be completely regular but I’m not looking to do anything drastic to fix them.

B) They are not at all regular and I’d do anything, including surgery, to fix them.

C) They come and go but I don’t pay much attention. Is there more that I need to know?

D) Now that I keep track on my iphone, I am seeing patterns for the first time!

2. Are your menstrual periods severely painful or do you have really bad PMS?

A) No, honestly neither is a problem for me at all.

B) I have a lot of pain. Or: My boyfriend says I could have PMS too, but I’m not sure.

C) Meh, I can deal with it.

D) Not as bad as they were in my teens!

3. Are you concerned about your ability to conceive a child?

A) I haven’t given it much thought.

B) Well, kind of. I’m getting older and I sometimes wonder if that will be a problem when we want to have a bambino.

C) I have to worry about that now?

D) I do a lot of online reading and research and know what to look for. Not worried yet.

4. Do you like lots of one on one personal attention from an instructor or do you prefer learning in an online format or in a classroom setting?

A) In person classes with professional teachers and other couples.

B) I wish we could be carefully mentored through these classes in privacy.

C) One on one sounds fine, if it isn’t too long or intrusive.

D) I’m too busy to fit classes into my schedule. I’d rather study online with my fiancé.

5. Do you work night shifts or have varying waking times?

A) I usually wake at more or less the same time every day.

B) Just depends. I really don’t have a "normal" routine.

C) I work night shifts so have a different routine each day.

D) My wake-up time varies somewhat but usually just on weekends.

6. What makes you feel more comfortable?

A) I like the idea of checking several signs, so that I always have a backup.

B) I want just one or two signs to check but will do this religiously.

C) I’m comfortable focusing (more intently) on one sign.

D) Give me lots of data, please!

Results of Quiz!

Mostly As- A sympto-thermal method (STM). You’ll take your temperature each morning and observe your cervical mucus each day; you may optionally check your cervix as well. For more information, check out: Northwest Family Services or Couple-to-Couple League International

Mostly Bs- Please note that all methods of NFP can be used to identify women’s health issues, but the Creighton Model (CrMs) tends to be the model people most often choose for gynecological diagnoses and infertility issues, because there are physicians trained in Natural Procreative Technology in our city and throughout the country.Creighton Model FertilityCare System (CrMS)

Mostly Cs- A mucus only method. You’ll observe your cervical mucus signs each day. For more information, check out: Billings Method (BOMA) or Family of the Americas(FAF)

Mostly Ds- Take these classes online in the privacy of your own home but with the assistance of a dedicated teacher to guide you through the learning phase to become autonomous as a user. NWFS Sympto-Pro offers online NFP classes!