NFP Tip #2: If At First You Don’t Succeed, Learn Another Method

NFP Tip #2: If At First You Don’t Succeed, Learn Another Method July 22, 2014

It’s NFP Awareness Week.   You might be thinking, “I am aware of how wonderful, marriage-building, and personally-affirming NFP is.  I love, love, love NFP.  Doesn’t everybody?”

Well, no, not everybody loves, loves, loves it.

But if you have a serious reason to avoid pregnancy, it’s still pretty much your best bet.   (There are a few cases where the 100% method is better.  Very few, but they happen.)

Likewise, if you are trying to conceive, NFP should be your method of first resort. {Cue foreshadowing music for Tip #3, coming another day.}

And now, thanks to this helpful series, you don’t have to hate NFP nearly as much as you once did.

Tip#1 – Learn from a real live human.

Tip#2 . . . down below.


FYI – The book you want on NFP, in addition to your how-to tutorials, is Simcha Fisher’s excellent The Sinner’s Guide to NFP.  Simcha’s hosting a giant giveway this week with very many cool prizes, some of them directly related to NFP (ex: fertility monitors), some only indirectly related (ex: my book), and some particularly suited to those who’d rather forget NFP altogether.


My Number Two Most Important Tip for Successful NFP: If the First Method You Learn Doesn’t Work So Well For You, Learn Another Method.

The spouse and I started out learning the Creighton Model of NFP, and let me just say that if you want expertise about cervical mucus, this is your method.  It happened to be the method being taught locally, and getting to work with an in-person instructor was invaluable.  I would not for a minute fantasize about going back and doing things differently.  The education we received via the Creighton Model was priceless and irreplaceable.  Top notch professionalism, sound science, and an instructor who stuck with us when we were not the easiest clients to teach — I couldn’t ask for more.

Except maybe a thermometer.

  • If you’ve been using STM and mucus has you puzzled, look into Creighton or Billings.
  • If you’ve been using using NFP to conceive and suddenly you need to avoid pregnancy, you might find that the method that helped you conceive is not the best method to help you avoid.  Or vice versa.
  • If you find you need to abstain significantly more than even your instructor thinks is normal, a second method can help you understand your cycle better and refine your charting.

Learning a Second Method is Pretty Easy

You did the hard work with Method #1. Learning a second method is much less stressful because you already have a good idea of how your body works, how NFP works, and what to expect when you aren’t expecting.

You can keep charting using  the first method you learned to help reality-check you on how well you’re using the new method.  (The second method might also help you better understand some of your difficulties with the first.) You can often learn a second method via distance-instruction or a self-study course.

Not sure what to try next?  Here’s the USCCB’s directory of NFP links.  Scroll down for links to most of the major NFP-instruction options.  Here’s a similar list from  I concede I’m pretty intrigued by the sympto-hormonal method, which I’ve never used.  Fascinating.



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