{NFP Awareness Week Series} Heather

I'm so excited to bring you these posts for this week. Since it is NFP Awareness Week, we are featuring a blogger every day, all here to discuss their NFP or FAM use.

NFP = Natural Family Planning

FAM = Fertility Awareness Method
I love that all of them have totally different perspectives and ideas of NFP/FAM, and all come from different places as to why or how they came about using NFP or FAM.

1. Introduce yourself. Tell us a little about your family, husband and children.

My name is Heather. I have been married to James for almost 5 years. Our daughter, Poppy, just turned nineteen months old. I write The Parenting Patch, which is a website about parenting including a blog, news, reviews, recipes, and information including baby sign language and a week by week pregnancy calendar.

2. Where did you first learn about NFP/FAM? Why do you and your husband choose to practice NFP/FAM?

I first learned about FAM after my miscarriage back in September 2010. I was looking for a way to get pregnant again faster. Because I generally have irregular cycles (ranging from 29 days to 42 days and anywhere in between), I could not rely on my calendar to predict ovulation. When I first started using FAM, I learned that I was not ovulating after my miscarriage. Once I did start ovulating, however, my husband and I conceived our daughter in just two cycles. Now that we are attempting to prevent pregnancy, I am still using FAM to detect fertility and ovulation.

3. What type of NFP/FAM are you practicing? How did you choose this type over others? Has this changed at all during your marriage?

When I was trying to conceive, I charted my basal body temperature and my cervical fluids. Because I am now still breastfeeding and because we want to prevent a pregnancy, I am just charting my cervical fluids. I choose charting because cervical fluids are the most reliable indicator of fertility. Basal body temperature also allowed me to figure out if I ovulated or not, not just my fertile days.4. Why do you think artificial birth control, like the pill, is the default option for many women who are trying to postpone pregnancy?Hormonal birth control is often easier for women than charting, or so many women think. I personally think that, if you can remember to take a pill each day, you can also remember to chart.
With that said, I was once on the pill for my irregular cycles and terrible cramps. I highly recommend charting to other women but am not against hormonal options either. For me, charting is easier because I do not have to mess with insurance, which is one reason that I have continued to chart.
Another reason is that FAM does not mess with breastfeeding like hormonal birth control can. Does charting require a commitment? Yes, but so does taking a pill or other medication.

Does charting require a commitment? Yes, but so does taking a pill. <--- Tweet this.

5. What do you think are the major benefits to using NFP/FAM versus artificial birth control? What are the major cons?

The major benefit for me is not having to mess with insurance to get my birth control pills. When trying to conceive, I could also figure out when I was ovulating, which helped me and my husband conceive faster.

The con is that FAM is not contraception. If you have unprotected sex when you are fertile, you could get pregnant.

6. If you used NFP/FAM to achieve pregnancy, how long did that process take?

I charted for six months before conceiving. Four of those months I was anovulatory due to my miscarriage. Once I started ovulating again, my husband and I conceived our daughter in just two cycles.

7. Anything else you think would be important to know for those considering NFP/FAM?

I highly recommend the book Taking Charge of Your Fertility as a starting point for learning about FAM.

I want to thank Heather from The Parenting Patch for sharing this with us! Comment and let us know your thoughts, and don't forget to check out her blog.  photo jennasabouttheauthor_zpsd275edac.jpg