Wednesday, March 12, 2008

BC Part One:
From A Chemical Decision to a Morality Issue.

As of lately, I have had so many people interested in talking to me about Birth Control and why our family chooses to do things the way we do. I have been wanting to write this series of blogs for a long while now, but have waited for the right timing...it tends to be such a sensitive subject. I love talking about this issue because of the incredible impact that it has made on our life and marriage, but I do realize it is not the easiest thing to discuss. It has taken us on a five year journey with the Lord that has lead us to a much deeper love and trust in Him.

I thought that the best way to start this series is to give our personal testimony on the issue and link some of our favorite articles and sermons on the issue. As you read, please know that this is what the Lord has done in our life...seek Him on the issue and He will resolve in your heart what is right for your family. I know it looks long, but please do endure.


OUR STORY

A couple months before Vernon and I got married, I went to my very first OBGYN appointment. At this, I got prescribed 'the pill' so as to regulate my cycle before our wedding day. This was totally not thought through or anything. I just went in because I thought that is "just what you do." For two months I had these episodes of crashing blood-sugar and light headedness. I would go through surges of emotions and just crash into sleep....it was crazy and completely not like me. The second month I went a week with no problems....and then it dawned on me that that was the week I was taking the placebo pill. So I noted that in my mind and continued taking the pill as directed. The next week it got so much worse that I was crashing HARD, virtually passing out...but conscience. One night this episode happened at my aunts house and Vernon came running into the room, I was crying in the midst of my semi-conscieness and somehow I muttered to him that I thought the Pill was causing this. Vernon decided that we should figure out another way of birth control and I agreed. This was only a month away from our wedding night, so this was not far out to be deciding on our future! What we walked through together that last month brought us so close to each other but even more importantly it built our Love and Trust in the Lord. We were faced with the Truth of His word and had to decide if we REALLY believed it. Did we really believe that God had numbered our days and therefore numbered our children's days? Did we believe that God would not give us more than we could handle? Did we believe that He was our ultimate satisfaction, not time with each other before children? Did I really believe that the Scripture calls children an reward/ blessing of the Lord? Did we believe that He was Sovereign over the affairs of man? Or were all of these truths and many more just ideologies we claimed when it made us feel better.
So at that point we concluded that God gave us wisdom and abilities to make decisions but ultimately it was His Sovereign hand that fashioned and formed our family. Now this did not mean just haphazardly going about our intimate life and not paying attention to the situation we were in financially or just assuming we were mature enough for children. It did mean however, that we relinquished control over the size and timing of our family. It meant we asked the Lord to reveal to us His good timing, in whatever way He liked.
So this issue for us started as a chemical issue and then made its way to a Trust issue and a Control issue.
After the Trust issue was resolved I began looking into alternative ways of contraceptive and what I found was astounding. I had no idea that birth control was in anyway a morality issue. I had not idea that OBGYNs are divided across the board on certain birth controls being abortive. Being extremely pro-life and in complete fear of facing the Lord and Him saying we had had a fertilized egg that was not able to implant in the womb because of a chemical I ingested, I immediately began to read anything and listen to anything I could get my hands on....I wanted to know both sides and what each side said in full. And basically my conclusion was to opt to side on the safe side and avoid any potentially abortive birth control methods.
Yes, we did get pregnant three months into our marriage, but it was not a surprise to us, we knew we were probably going to be. Many people who do not do "natural family planning" give it a hard time and tease about how many kids NFP people have. But to them I will say, we are just now pregnant after 3 1/2 years of an awesome intimate marriage...and we knew about this one too. So there are ways to control that are not potentially hazardous to you or your babies....but in the end, God has numbered the days of your sweet children, they are a reward from Him and He will give you the grace to carry them! amen.

The Links

My favorite sermon so far that i have heard on this topic is by Marc Driscoll and here is the link for that

http://www.marshillchurch.org/sermonseries/religionsaves/week_01.aspx

The first link is my over all favorite article but the rest are great as well:

http://www.epm.org/pdf/bcpill.pdf

http://epm.org/bcp.html

http://www.aaplog.org/decook.htm

http://www.aaplog.org/collition.htm

http://www.aaplog.org/responsetoacogethicscommittee385.htm

http://www.abort73.com/HTML/II-D-2-types.html

5 comments:

The Dodds said...

Thank you for this! About 7 months ago, Tyler and I set out on this journey. I had been on the pill for the first 2 or so years of our marriage. I did not have episodes as severe as your experience, but, I had TERRIBLE mood swings. For a while we thought... this is just "me getting used to being married." After two years of "getting used to being married." Nothing changed and we started doing some research and I IMMEDIATELY stopped taking the pill. It only took a few days for me to get "my old self" back. I feel truly liberated and Tyler and I have entered into a deeper relationship as you have sort of described. I feel like we just got married about 7 months ago and that the 2 years and 3 months before sort of glazed by me as if they never happened. It's a little bit sad. Thank you for sharing your testimony!

The Sanders House said...

okay, you have my attention. i had terrible mood swings...terrrrrrible!
i can relate to the Dodds. I thought there was something wrong with my marriage only to find out that the pill was driving me crazy. have your read my blog lately? partly I decided to use an IUD because it stops the sperm and egg from ever meeting. however...i have been randomly thinking about this for the past few days and wondered if it is better to do natural planning. of course, i am leaning more to the iud for now after what happened. 'cause getting it taken out does not seem fun. i will be apart of your blogging audience for sure.

adamandcourtney said...

Our Story:

I was on the pill after we got married, and had absolutely no problems with it. I didn't, however, really talk to my doctor or research anything, just did what he told me to do. After all, he's my doc, right?

We decided to get pregnant 9 months after our wedding. I got pregnant the first month we tried. After Honor, nursing kept a second pregnancy at bay for quite a while, then when I weaned her I used an Ovutech (http://www.johnleemd.com/store/more_ovu-tech.html). This was a super easy way to use natural family planning! I highly recommend it. Until I got lazy, hence, Patience, our second. We were at that not trying but not not-trying stage.

After Pate, I went on the pill (not really sure why, just kind of did what my doctor thought I should). I was on the mini-pill because I was nursing, and got pregnant with Justice 5 months after I had Patience. That really freaked me out, because we kind of thought we were done with two, so Adam got a vasectomy right after Justice was born. I was extremely hormonal, and it seems like if I look sideways at my husband I'm pregnant. It was taking a toll on my body and spirit, and all I could think was, "I can't do this again."

Of course, now I want more babies! Always longing for what I can't have, right? I know God is sovereign, and if he blessed us with more children it would be great. But I think my longing for more babies is really just me being scared at entering a new phase in life (the childhood years, school and all that jazz). And I guess we do need to save room in the quiver for some adopted kids. : )

My biggest lesson learned in navigating birth control is RESEARCH. Remember that your doctor may not share your morals and won't go out of his/her way to say, "Hey! This might be potentially abortive. You sure you want to do this?" And factor your hormones into decisions you make about birth control. Looking back, someone should have shaken me for going ahead with a permanent birth control option just 20 days after I'd given birth.

My highest recommendation to the ovutech device (there are others out there too besides ovutech, that's just the one I happened to use and find). I have friends that used it for infertility to figure out when they were ovulating; I also have friends who used it for natural family planning and all their children were planned, and are four years apart.

Harris Family said...

Love love love this blog. You are such a blessing, Amber. Thanks for listening so closely to the heart of God for you and Vernon.

Sunni at The Flying Mum said...

When we decided to try for Ava, I stopped the pill and started reading Taking Charge of Your Fertility and learned SO MUCH about my body. I love the fact that nothing "tells" my body what to do. It just does what it's supposed to in it's own time.