The Catholic belief on birth control is a tough pill to swallow (pun intended). Since I’m a man I often get a look of disbelief when people learn that my wife and I don’t use contraception.
“You really believe in no birth control?”, they say. “Are you planning to have 20 kids?” “I have a friend who’s Catholic and his wife is on the pill.”
Unfortunately, these reactions are the norm (the last one kills me). This is probably in part because according to a study in 2014, 78% of Catholics disagree with the Church’s teaching on contraception.
Despite being in the minority, Nicole and I don’t use contraception. Per the guidance of the Church we have chosen to be open to all that God has to offer, including however many children He wants to bless us with. We want our marriage to match the kind of love God has for us–a love that is free, total, faithful, fruitful (a.k.a., the four components of God’s love for us).
So what do we do, just roll the dice every time we want to get down?
Nicole and I use Natural Family Planning, something we have written about here before. So why not contraception? Beyond the Church’s wisdom on this teaching, I thought I should summarize a few reasons why I don’t use contraception and instead choose to use NFP as our method of family planning.
We hear it all the time…well at least in the crowds I roll with.
Pray with you spouse.
Yeah…okay, but what they really mean is to pray for my spouse.
Nope. Wrong. They actually mean to pray with your spouse.
Ugh…but that’s so awkward.
The truth is that you are exactly right. It is awkward…really awkward.
While there is an incredible benefit and need to pray for your spouse, I want to focus on the equally beneficial (and necessary) act of praying with your spouse. By sharing your prayer life with one another, you allow God another avenue to enter into your lives as a couple.
Whether you’re preparing for the vocation of marriage or have been married for decades, there are a few books that I think every couple must read. I’ve read these marriage books over the last couple years and they have not only inspired me in learning how to love my husband better but have also helped me navigate my way through murky waters when times get tough…and we all experience times like that.
Babies change EVERYTHING. Some would even say that having a baby ruined their marriage and I would have to agree with them. I love my daughter as well as the life my husband and I are building with her, but that doesn’t mean my pre-baby life isn’t ruined. In fact, it’s been demolished.
I can never go back to life before kids…never. From the moment my daughter was born until the day I leave this world, I will forever be a mother.
About a year ago I made the best decision of my life–I married my wife Nicole. This has been the most significant thing I’ve ever done (sans having our daughter). We celebrated one amazing year of marriage in November. So much has happened in the past twelve months that it feels like we’ve been married for much longer (kind of like dog years, but in a good way). However, its seems like this time of flux is rarely unique for newlyweds.
With a year of experience under my belt and since I’m clearly a pro at married life (yeah right, just ask Nicole), I thought I would share some of the things I have learned so far. Here’s some newlywed wisdom for you–three points on how to survive, or better yet thrive in the first year of marriage.
Tip #1, make time for your wife
This sounds pretty basic. When you get married you will naturally spend more time together, right? After all, isn’t this what the honeymoon period is for? Ahh…thus the conundrum. Story time…
It doesn’t take long to realize that marriage is work. Funny how that works isn’t it? I can’t say I’m all that surprised. After all it’s not like no one warned me of this. I suppose I just didn’t expect to be facing this challenge so soon. Pat and I are a mere six months into this vocation (newlyweds by most definitions) and yet we have already felt the chaos of day-to-day life pulling us in different directions. So how do couple’s stay connected in a culture that demands you give every ounce of yourself to all the things that really don’t matter? This is our vocation and should always be a main priority despite how busy life gets. Continue reading
Recently, Pat and I celebrated a whooping three months of marriage. Hooray for newlywed life! Like many married couples, we have dreams and plans for our future together. Here is a recap of our first three months, summed up in GIFs.
First we were all like, ‘Now that we’re married we should get a dog! Yeah, a dog would be fun.’
After about two months life changed a little and I was like…
Meanwhile, Pat was at the grocery store blissfully unaware of how in a mere three minutes something would drastically change our lives.
Time ticked on… and on and on and on.
Finally, Pat returned home and I was like…
And he was like… Really?
And I’m like… ‘yep two positive tests don’t lie, Daddy.’
Then Pat proceeded to revel in his accomplishment.
And I’m all ‘wake me up after the first trimester.’
Now we think…dog…
Despite our initial surprise, we are thrilled to announce that Baby Padley will be coming this September. We can’t wait to share all the ups, downs and growing pains of pregnancy with you.