Letters to the Editor

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BIRTH CONTROL: Natural alternative is available

Letter by Susan D. Davis, Tacoma on Feb. 29, 2012 at 11:57 am with 47 Comments »
February 29, 2012 11:57 am

Just because Catholics do not follow the Catholic Church’s teaching is no reason to suggest that some teachings are contrary to the truth of God given through the Catholic Church to help all people experience God’s love and peace here on earth.

Perhaps many people have not been informed about natural family planning, a viable alternative to the artificial birth control methods. Many women, Catholic and non-Catholic, appreciate the fertility awareness of natural family planning. Many couples plan their families through application of the principles of natural family planning that is safe, healthy and 99 percent effective. Organizations such as the Couple to Couple League and others teach various methods of natural family planning.

Personally, it was because of the strong witness of the Catholic Church that I turned to natural family planning, though I feared it would not work. Contrary to those fears, it has enhanced and strengthened our marriage and our family. I am grateful that the American Catholic bishops together with all other bishops in union with the pope continue to share the truth and beauty about marriage and family life and love.

Leave a comment Comments → 47
  1. Susan – I’m not sure where you get your “99% effective” (aside from propaganda from the Catholic Church), but that point aside, the majority of American women are not under the contraints of an antiquated mythological system and wish to use birth control as per their physician’s advice.

    It is their right and I’ll suggest that they have already considered your option.

    I’d be greatful if the Catholic Church would get their belief system out of the way of the employees they hire and just provide their share of premiums for health care benefits, leaving the decisions on health care to the patient and the doctor.

    In short, what goes on between employees and their choice of doctor, is none of the employer’s business.

  2. My aunt and uncle practiced Natural Family Planning – they have 13 children.

  3. Your comments are reasonable and valid, Susan. Of course it doesn’t always “work” — but then neither do other forms of birth control at times.

    The more important point here is that what you suggests dares to challenges people to have self-control and exercise restraint of appetite. This runs counter to a culture that wants instant gratification of all desires without consequnces, and what’s sad about that is that many never experience the deeper joy that comes from a disciplined life.

  4. Sozo – whose business is it how people conduct their private sex lives?

    Again, the church – a church, seeks to chastise a married couple for exercising the most intimate portion of their joined lives. Why should there be “consequences” when there is the consultation of a medical doctor, the availability of a pharmaceutical solution and the choice of the couple?

    Possibly you only see sexual activity between married people as a “gratification”. Others see it as a bond, an act of love.

    Those who wish to follow churches are not being told they can’t.

    As usual, your comment extends the idea that your choice in life is superior to the choices that others make.

    Such arrogance is a fast track to resentment from the rest of society.

  5. Not sure where she got that 99% effectiveness. What I saw is that – if practiced perfectly, Natural Family Planning has a 90% effectiveness rate – but the AVERAGE rate is 75% effective.

    sozo – what other form of birth control has, on average, a 25% failure rate?

  6. surething says:

    99% effective? Give me a break, at least look up actual statistics before embarrassing yourself in the paper.

  7. Just chuckling to myself.

    I open the very first letter to the editor and come to the conclusion again, that if someone were to write in the observation that the grass is green and the sky is blue, there would be a half a dozen readers in Tacoma who would find a way to argue against it! :D

  8. Dale, right now the sky is grey and the grass is brown (topped in white) in snowy SE Idaho….

  9. Since when is the Catholic church in the business and knowledge of medicinal science? BC pills and patches are most often prescribed to alleviate HEAVY menstrual bleeding, cramping and hormonal imbalances. Such conditions most often lead to other serious conditions if left untreated. Sure the pill was created as a preventative measure for pregnancy, but it was soon discovered to be effective in treating a myriad of MEDICAL ailments for women.

  10. old_benjamin says:

    I’d be grateful if the goverment would get it’s unconstitutional intrusion on religious faith and practice out of the way of Catholic hospitals’ right to provide those services they deem right and proper. When the government alone becomes the arbiter of what is appropriate in the realm of health care, we are not far from Nazi Germany and Dr. Mengele. Yes, it can happen here.

  11. itwasntmethistime says:

    My parents practiced natural family planning at the direction of the Cathoilc Church. The result? 5 kids in just over 4 years. They switched to aritficial birth control and had just 2 more kids in 8 years.

  12. Old Benjamin? When a religious right extreme exerts its influence and authority over a government of the masses, then we have the likes of the Taliban.

  13. old_benjamin says:

    Frida, the government exists to protect the very right in question, the right to practice one’s faith. No where does the Constitution guarantee you the right to health care at all, let alone whatever coverage you may want from whomever you may want it. Whatever right you imagine you have is trumped by those guaranteed by the Constitution, specifically the First Amendment. You Statists need to get it through your thick heads that in this country the Constitution is supreme, not your notion of “social justice.” The Constitution protects us against utopians who imagine they can bring peace and justice to earth by government fiat. The Founders knew that all governments tend toward tyranny. Thus, they severely limited the powers of government. Ours never had and never will have the power to coerce religious conscience in pursuit of some utopian pipe dream. You don’t have the brains to know it, but you should thank God for it.

  14. Do you people realize that it costs more than $3,000 in contraceptives just to get through law school?

  15. sandblower says:

    ben says: “No where does the Constitution guarantee you the right to health care at all, let alone whatever coverage you may want from whomever you may want it.”

    hey ben, what ever happened to: “‘Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness’ is a well-known phrase in the United States Declaration of Independence and considered by some as part of one of the most well crafted, influential sentences in the history of the English language.[1] These three aspects are listed among the “unalienable rights” or sovereign rights of man.”

    You seem to be narrowing our choices, which is what the extreme right always does. I would put health care in the “life” category. How about you?

  16. Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

    But not born yet life has no rights.

  17. Dcr,
    Letters such as you describe often show up on this blog – most often in support of some fantastic conservative fiction.

    What is the cost of an unplanned pregnancy?

    Typical right-wing rant – government must stay out of our lives in one area (birth-control) but MUST be involved in a related area (right to live/choice).

    One has the right to practice their faith – but they do not have the right to force their beliefs on others.

    Constitutional Right to Healthcare – I suggest you look at the 9th and 10th Amendments.

  18. Frida, when the extreme left exerts its influence, you end up with communism, which in theory can sound pretty good, but when put into practice, stinks.

    Utopianists are dangerous…mostly because they actually believe a system can defy the brokenness of the human condition.

    bBoy, and for that matter others here…I’m not against birth control and I am aware it has other uses. All I’m saying is that there’s a trend in this culture that suggests that controlling one’s appetite is next to impossible.

    I want neither the Taliban nor the State interfering in the private lives of husbands and wives. The one exception I make in that of course is that the government MUST interfere when abuse and murder is taking place, and given my personal belief that life begins at conception, they have every right to act on behalf of the unborn, unprotected, innocent child.

  19. Ben – The Catholic Church has an interesting way of deciding when the government is in their way and when they can ignore the government.

    They have provided health care benefits, including birth control, for employees for 10 years and suddenly…no miraculously…they have a problem with a law that they’ve lived with for 10 years. Additionally, The Catholic Church has no problem entering into business relationships with health care providers that offer birth control and abortion services – providing that it brings revenue in their bank account.

    In short, Ben, this is a faux issue and to equate it to Nazi Germany, you might want to think back to which Church did appease Hitler.

    Meanwhile, in a state by state assault on women’s health care, the governments are making medical procedures mandatory for women, in spite of their doctor’s orders and in fact threatening the doctors if they don’t agree.

    Now what were you saying about the government and people’s rights? Are you only concerned for those that pretend to have a great fairy in the sky or does everyone have equal access to the First Amendment?

  20. Well…we’ve had the invoke of Nazi Germany, now sozo doles out Communism. When is the right wing going to stop with the knee jerk fear movitations? Probably never, because they live life based on fear of something or another.

    This was a classic:

    Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
    But not born yet life has no rights.

    Uh…yeah. How can unborn have rights when the rights of women who have been here 18 years and more are being trampled?

    I wonder how much right that unborn child will have, once it has been born, and needs to be fed, but its family doesn’t have food.

  21. “given my personal belief that life begins at conception, they have every right to act on behalf of the unborn, unprotected, innocent child.”

    Your personal opinion is not the law.

  22. Uh…yeah. How can unborn have rights when the rights of women who have been here 18 years and more are being trampled?

    What 18 year old women’s rights are being “trampled”?

    Yeah, I didn’t think so.

  23. Cardinous says:

    Any 18 year old living in Virginia or Alabama.

    Yeah, I know so.

  24. sandblower says:

    The unborn have only the rights endowed by their mothers. We encourage mothers to be careful and considerate and to choose wisely.
    What else you may wish is an infringement on the privacy the mother unequivocally has.

  25. bobcat1a says:

    The institutional Catholic Church has a serious hatred of pleasure for the sake of pleasure. You idiots can argue theology until south Hell is deep in snow but you ignore the reality that sex is good and needs no other justification. If you believe in God, HE gave us the ingenuity to outwit dumb biology with the discovery of all sorts of drugs to make life more pleasant. Reliable birth control allows us to ignore the medieval church position that sex outside marriage (pleasure without incumbent pain) is wrong. Having experienced a lot, but not nearly enough, of it I can say authoritatively that any sex is better than no sex, and protected sex is way less stressful. God didn’t create sex so we could be paranoid about it; he created it so we could enjoy it. He also didn’t create this planet to sustain another few billion “accidents.”

  26. The Catholic religion has and always be against the use of birth control… My in-laws are practicing Catholics and they had 9 kids my family is practicing Catholics and they have 3 or more kids except for my dad who had 2…. I would bet that you will end up unexpected pregnant using the “natural method” unless you’re not fertile

  27. To all the lib’s out there bite me!

  28. took14theteam says:

    Wow! I actually agree with bobcat1a.

    Now can you explain that to my spouse?


  29. Sozo and OldBen? When the extreme religious right takes over government, then you have the likes of the Taliban. No difference. Our founding fathers created a SECULAR government that protected RELIGIOUS FREEDOMS for a reason.

  30. auwing1978 says:

    It is amazing to me to be having this discussion in 2012 in the United States. If I didn’t know better I would think that the clock had been moved back to 1905 with this letter to the editor and comments that support it’s validity. Boggles my mind.

  31. With 98% of Catholic women admitting that they have utilized artificial contraception it is clear that Catholics have overwhelmingly rejected the Vatican’s teachings on this issue and – according to Vatican teachings on moral teachings – it is thus not an authentic moral teaching.

    Yet a whole bunch of Americans – most of whom aren’t Catholic and, up until now were barely tolerant of the Catholic brand of Christianity – are all up in arms trying to protect a the individual consciences of people whose individual consciences have rejected this teaching.

    This isn’t a real issue.

  32. buddyandelliott says:

    Wow, glad it worked for you. I prefer to take advantage of science, it does improve our lives when utilized correctly.Good for you though, that this is what you were looking for and it gave you what you wanted out of life, you have achieved your happiness. Please don’t expect all others (especially women) to want what you want and live like you live. I am sure that you would be unhappy in the life that makes me happy as much as I would be miserable in yours.

  33. Two questions.

    When you turned to natural family planning you feared it would not work. What were your expectation and what part of those expectations did you expect to fail?

    How does natural family planning enhance and strengthen your marriage and your family?

  34. “If you believe in God, HE gave us the ingenuity to outwit dumb biology with the discovery of all sorts of drugs to make life more pleasant.”

    bobcat – during a short tenure in an AOG church, I made the mistake of saying that God gave us a brain so that we could reason.

    I was shunned for making that statement.

  35. We can argue this until the cows come home. There is ONE basic undeniable truth to this tired old battle.

    If left alone, we know without a shadow of a doubt what that unborn “thing” WILL become. You cant argue against that. At whatever stage of its development it is…it is STILL undeniably, a LIFE.

    Next I’ll have to wonder if those who WILL argue it, are glad their mothers didn’t “choose”.

  36. tellnolies says:

    “If left alone, we know without a shadow of a doubt what that unborn “thing” WILL become”

    Miscarriage never happens? Other misfortunes or worse occur as well. Very little is “without a shadow of doubt” when it comes to life on this planet

  37. tellnolies says “Miscarriage never happens? Other misfortunes or worse occur as well. Very little is “without a shadow of doubt” when it comes to life on this planet”

    There goes another one! Stay tuned folks for Twist and Spin Time on your favorite station, right after a word from our sponsors!

    Hate to break this to you, but there is a big, big difference between natural miscarriage and INTENDED “miscarriage”.

    But thats fine, you go ahead and argue till your head stops spinning. ;)

  38. tellnolies says:

    I never said there wasn’t a difference, YOU said “without a shadow of doubt”

    I didn’t spin, I just presented reality

  39. “I never said there wasn’t a difference, YOU said “without a shadow of doubt” I didn’t spin, I just presented reality”

    Well if you didnt spin, lets just say you tried to twist “reality” by distraction from facts.

    All your “miscarriage” detraction’s aside, that “thing”…the fetus…is STILL a life. And the fact remains that if it is left alone, it will become a child. By Golly, I bet even you were once a fetus!

  40. bacteria is still a life…..

  41. You guys are funny! :D

    And Beerboy, you just clearly, quite clearly, proved that trying to hold a sensible conversation on this subject is futile.

    I suppose then in the weeks before your own birth, you were simply bacteria? Arent you glad your momma didn’t think so?

  42. I am going to offer another thought on this. I’ve seen ultrasound on three “things”, “bacteria” in the womb…No one can tell me those were anything but human, developing life.

    I am going to venture the idea that if that sort of technology was available in 1973, Roe vs Wade would never have been an issue, and abortion would still be illegal.

    Today people have become so brainwashed and lost on this issue that even visual proof can no longer convince them.

    Of course its all about CHOICE these days isnt it. Unmitigated, selfish choices.

  43. Pygmalion says:


    Abortion was legal in this state before Roe and will be even if Roe is ever repealed.

    Per WA state law, birth control is a right.

    The sovereign people hereby declare that every individual possesses a fundamental right of privacy with respect to personal reproductive decisions.

    Accordingly, it is the public policy of the state of Washington that:


    Every individual has the fundamental right to choose or refuse birth control;

    Every woman has the fundamental right to choose or refuse to have an abortion, except as specifically limited by this act

    Except as specifically permitted by this act, the state shall not deny or interfere with a woman’s fundamental right to choose or refuse to have an abortion; and

    The state shall not discriminate against the exercise of these rights in the regulation or provision of benefits, facilities, services, or information.

  44. Pygmalion, I hate to break this to you, but there is a difference between birth control and abortion. ;)

  45. So beerBoy thinks a fetus is bacteria!

  46. Apparently he does Muckibr. I noticed this thread got REALLY quiet all of a sudden! “D

  47. Very quiet! And, thanks for your comment on the other thread. A knowing nod back at you.

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