Your relationship during natural family planningMaría Arellano
Love, planning and pregnancy
If you want to plan your family the natural way be prepared because you’ll need two things: first off a strong commitment to periodic abstinence and second a really cool boyfriend/girlfriend or life partner that is willing to cooperate!
In this post we’ll talk about the ways natural family planning can reinforce an already strong relationship and make love work!
Both men and women benefit from learning about natural family planning, so don’t hog all the info – share the wealth!
Guys and natural family planning
Where family planning is concerned, turns out men ARE interested in obtaining information about sex and reproduction.
Sometimes, though, his view of what constitutes being a “real man” hinders both his need to ask as well as his female partners desire to learn. So says a study led by Karen Hardee of the Population Council and published in Reproductive Health (2017).
The solution? According to the study, the solution is more couple’s education and promotion of men’s involvement in family planning programs.
Which means if you want to plan your family the natural way you really need to access information together, get involved, learn new things about reproductive health and talk about it all- and yes that includes cervical mucus!
And if you are doubting if he is the right guy to plan a family with, take a look at our post on is he the perfect father for your future children?
Natural family planning is GOOD for your relationship
The more you and your partner know about natural family planning, the better it is for your relationship.
Intimate relationships constitute an important source of happiness, support, health, and well-being in our lives (via Mireille Ruffieux)
The same study conducted by the Population Council mentions the role male involvement during natural family planning plays in revival of marital dynamics.
And what did the investigator’s hard work reveal?- yup, you guessed it, men should definitely get involved! The majority of already established relationships have better dynamics when both partners are involved in natural family planning.
And communication is key!
The more you communicate the better… or is it the type of communication?
Did you know communication within relationships actually varies according to your age? In truth this has more to do with your goals at different stages of your life and less to do with biology…
“Communication behaviors are not the same in couples of different age groups, the priorities of marital goals change across adulthood. More specifically, young couples emphasize personal growth goals, middle-aged couples emphasize instrumental goals, and older couples prioritize companionship goals” (See Mireille Ruffieux)
There are different types of communication within relationships.
If you want to learn more, read this thesis titled Different forms of couple communication and their significance for relationship functioning and written by Mireille Ruffieux.
Why natural family planning benefits your relationship
In the past, Natural Family planning has been said to hinder (or negatively affect) relationships.
Mostly because of stress, loss of spontaneity, long periods of abstinence, conflicts of communication and increased fear of pregnancy.
But that was back in 1966 when a study conducted by members of the Papal Birth Control Comission surveyed 266 couples in order to inform whether or not natural family planning was a good choice for Roman Catholic church members.
Decades later, a study published in the Journal of Nursing Scholarship (2004) has given us a different perspective:
while negative experiences do appear among the testimonials of couples that practiced Natural family Planning, turns out most surveyed couples spoke in positive terms of their experience and expressed that Natural Family Planning benefits their relationship.
With over 330 surveyed couples, the study concludes that there is such a thing as enhanced relationships due to natural family planning practices.
How does natural family planning enhance your relationship?
There are several reasons why natural family planning benefits your relationship.
We’ve mentioned a few of these, but here’s the whole list as expressed by the 2014 study and what you can look forward to if you decide to go with natural family planning in your current relationship:
An enhanced relationship means that the couple has deepened their communication and created a deeper bond through shared sensitivity to the other person’s needs as well as less selfishness. Be prepared to feel more love and greater understanding for one another. Other aspects to look forward to include greater feelings of comfort around each other, greater respect and shared responsibility. Plus, there is greater appreciation for sexuality.
2. Improved knowledge
Another benefit of learning about natural family planning as a couple has to do with what you do with that knowledge. Be prepared to obtain a shared increased awareness of the female reproductive cycle and to deepen your knowledge of other lovemaking techniques – even to the point of redefining what you consider to be a healthy sex life!
3. Enriched spirituality
Natural Family Planning has also contributed to making couples feel closer to God, feel more in tune to church teachings as well as creating a warm environment of welcome to the new child (be it a planned pregnancy or not).
4. Method success
Finally, when everything works out as planned, Natural Family Planning allows you to space pregnancies, learn self-control and remain healthy.
Plus from a husband’s perspective there are five clear benefits that far outweigh the negative side of periods of sexual abstinence within marriage:
Mutual decision making
Raises appreciation of intimacy
Marriage insurance (turns out couples that practice natural family planning are less likely to get a divorce!)
It looks like the list of benefits of natural family planning only gets longer and longer!! Remember, these benefits all depend on partner cooperation.
Why partner cooperation and Natural Family Planning
Partner cooperation is important for natural family planning. Here are a few key facts:
Previous NFP methods include calendar rhythm and BBT.
Newer methods have been designed to emphasize the importance of cervical mucus as an indicator of the fertile window in women.
These newer methods have diminished the abstinence window, making NFP more accurate as well as a bit more bearable.
Why more bearable?
Well, the term bearable depends on how much you detest abstinence! Newer methods still require partner cooperation with abstinence BUT the abstinence window has been reduced to 7-12 days per month.
Sexual abstinence and hiMama
Seriously, it is impossible to believe Natural Family Planning harms your relationship after reading this post – even if it does require sexual abstinence!
Ok! So, recap. Natural family planning requires sexual abstinence, partner cooperation (real biggy) and knowledge of your fertile window.
Any questions about how the hiMama monitor can help you find your best practice for a healthy sex life while balancing in periodic abstinence to the mix? Let us know!
If you want to take your natural family planning to the next level, the hiMama fertility calendar app helps you manage dates on your mobile in tune with your menstrual cycle by synchronizing with the hiMama monitor. It’s easy to use!