What’s involved in learning NFP?
Learning NFP may be done in a class situation, one-to-one instruction, or through correspondence or online course. Whatever format is utilized, instruction may consist of a presentation, learning activities, and personalized follow-up with chart review. Simple reading a book, or even attending a class without personal attention, is not adequate.
Is it difficult to learn NFP?
The observations themselves can be learned fairly quickly. In one World Health Organization (WHO) study, 97 percent of women were able to identify the cervical mucus changes in the first cycle. Most people are familiar with taking a temperature reading and find it takes just a little effort to establish a habit of taking it upon waking. However, each woman’s situation and cycling pattern is unique, so personal attention is a very important component of instruction. This may take place face-to-face, over the phone, or in written or email correspondence. It is critical for a couple to learn from a certified NFP Provider.
What’s involved in follow-up?
In follow-up, the NFP Provider reviews the client’s chart for correct and consistent charting and interpretation. There is a dialogue about how the observations are being made and the correct understanding of definitions and rules are clarified. It is also an opportunity for the client to ask questions, receive information appropriate for the specific cycling pattern being experienced, and be encouraged and supported in the practice of NFP.
Is it difficult to use NFP?
The basics aren’t hard. Most people master them fairly quickly and easily. Since most of the observations can be done during a woman’s daily person care, it takes very little time. The challenge in using NFP can be integrating NFP into the couple’s lifestyle and adjusting to the periodic abstinence required if avoiding pregnancy.
How much abstinence is involved?
Because each woman’s cycling pattern is just a little different, and each cycle is unique, there is no hard and fast rule about the amount of abstinence. For a woman who has typical cycling, the average number of days of fertility is about 9-12. It is important to keep in mind that studies have consistently shown that couples using NFP to plan their family have as many (or more!) acts of intercourse during a cycle as other couples, it is just distributed differently.
How does periodic abstinence affect the couple’s relationship?
There is often a concern that periodic abstinence will have a negative impact on the couple’s relationship. In fact, in a five country trial, the WHO found that “marital friction” as a result of periodic abstinence was uncommon in 80-99 percent of cycles according to both men and women. In this same study, over 95 percent of both men and women rated their satisfaction with NFP as good or excellent. Couples using NFP report increased and enhanced communication, increased self-esteem, and enhanced spirituality.
Does NFP really work? How effective is it?
Modern methods of NFP have been shown to be highly effective with method effectiveness figures ranging from 97-99.9 percent. Use effectiveness, reflecting the actual experience in day-to-day life, shows 90-99 percent effectiveness with the Sympto-Thermal Method of NFP. To achieve these effectiveness figures, it is important that couples participate in a structured learning program with individualized follow-up, that they chart consistently and correctly, and that they follow all rules, especially complete abstinence during the method-defined fertile time.