barrier methods

I heard a rumor that butches have access to the world of men by virtue of their polished boots and perfect Winsor knots
Some tragedy tells me that they are the pretend women; the women born wrong; the women-not-women
who inhabit a spectral plane where they wear shackles identical to mine but cannot name the cage they’re in

I heard a lie that butches are men in a bad plastic mask
That their privileges include public hisses, leering eyes, and strangers plodding close behind
I heard that butches sink venom
into femme women
into straight women
into whoever passes by their street corner
at which of course they are leaning against a brick wall with their thumbs hooked into their Dungarees

(But this is not about my fantasies)

I was told some tedium
when I was a baby gay
salivating over Stephanie with the chain wallet and the sneer
who spoke against the cruelty of boys in my class
when I was sold the snake oil that butches were hiding in the shadows
with lighters
waiting to burn my bra
But here is what I have learned:

Butches swing bats against true predators
scaled monstrosities preying up and down the block
They have dug their heels in for my right to call myself a lesbian
to free me from every constricting dress and shapewear that men would otherwise cram me into

I was always good enough, small enough, big enough, loud and quiet and sour enough

A butch woman taught my public school sex education class
and gritted her teeth when her students asked about barrier methods
hands tied by the confines of simply needing to pay her rent
so no she could not dismantle the system
But, she said,
“If anyone–anyone–Has any questions, my office is open”

Butches ask me if I’m doing okay when I’m in a new space
They ask me to dance
if I feel safe
if I need to get a cab home
Butch women have been the ones to catch my terrified stare when I have Shrodinger’s rapist standing next to me on the subway

because you don’t know
until you know

Butches love flowers,
split the bill
whisper sweetly to their cats
secretly sleep with teddy bears

Butches snore like sleeping dragons and bite like them, too
but only when their homes have been invaded
caved in, gutted
and carved beyond recognition

Butch is not a liminal space
a go-between
Butch is a force to be reckoned with, but if you let it, then the rain will come
and everything good will grow from the ground
The rain will come

The dyke rages on.

—  Dan Yell, @anarchism-lesbianism
Birth Control Methods: Diaphragm.

What is a Diaphragm?

A diaphragm is a flexible, latex, dome-shaped cup with a bendable rim. It is designed to fit securely in the vagina to cover the cervix. Diaphragms have been used since the 1830s and require a prescription to obtain. They are considered to be the first major innovation for women seeking personal control to protect themselves from an unintended pregnancy. Due to improvements in design and effectiveness, diaphragm use still remains a popular birth control choice for many women.

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Inktober Day 15. Intimacy

@iffy-kanoknit @melisjevisje

Softly glowing twin bedside lamps, illuminating the master bedroom’s sophisticated coziness. A four-poster bed the centrepiece of the nest, and in it, two pyjama clad figures. One curled around a small fluffy dog, tapping away on the abrasive light of a smartphone, the other opting for the timeless comfort of a good book just before sleep.

A phone is turned off, and a burning flame of curiosity sparks against the flint of calm.


Eggsy says his lover’s name both as a question and a statement. The elder man looks up from the novel Eggsy found him in Harrods last week, that he’s been utterly devouring, and appraises him with a slight lift of his eyebrows.

“Yes, darling?”

“Was just thinking….” Eggsy scratches tiny Hamish’s ears, and the dog wriggles with delight on the  cushioned bedcovers. Harry rests his novel on duvet, and adjusts his position against the grand wooden bedhead.

“D'you ever take your eyepatch off?”

The former Galahad digests Eggsy’s question for a silent moment. “Well I take it off in the shower, yes.” He gently slips a bookmark between two pages of his novel, clearly conscious of the leather pad strapped upon his face.

“And when I must wear my glasses, for work.” Harry’s tone carries a lilt that suggests Eggsy knows this already, but is unsure of what his partner is getting at.

“Yeah, I know babe,” Eggsy replies, propping himself up on an elbow. His bare chest and arm provide a cosy nook for Hamish, who immediately snuggles his tiny body in. “But d'you ever like, just leave it off? Like no glasses or nothin’.”

“Was just curious, s'all,” the dirty blond adds as an afterthought. His eyes traverse Harry’s features, in an attempt to gauge a reaction.

The taller man replaces his book on the nightstand, folding his hands in his lap. “No. Not really, no.”


The question hangs suspended in the mild air, waiting for one of the two men to snatch it up.

When Harry doesn’t jump to respond, Eggsy supplements the question with, “Just wondering, I spose. Cos’ you’ve never really taken it off in front of me ever.”

Once again, Harry’s answer seems carefully measured, as though the man planned it carefully. “Well, until now, you’ve never expressed any desire for me to. So I just did as I do when in public, and cover it. It makes no difference.”

But by the slight tremor in Harry’s voice, and the stiffening of his spine against the cold headboard of the bed, imperceptible to the untrained eye, it clearly does. As much as Harry tries to hide it.

“I think it does. Make a difference, I mean, babe.”

“Are you implying you’re comfortable with me removing the patch?”

“Of course I am.” Eggsy’s tone is full of feeling compared to his partner’s reserved one. Yet the older man studiously refuses to meet his eyes, gazing down at the intricately patterned duvet beneath his hands. Hamish snuffles in his sleep.

“Harry.” Definitely a question, this time, though softer in hue. “Will you show me?

Please.” Eggsy’s words have the weight of a single feather, landing soundlessly upon the mattress. A conflicted expression passes over Harry’s face having his young lover reconsider such a heavy request. Yet after some thoughtful, brooding stalling by lamplight, a murmured ‘yes’ still exhales from close lips.

Gently shifting the sleeping puppy away from his limbs, Eggsy scoots over in bed, so his warm frame presses into Harry’s. The mood between them has intrinsically shifted, a crackle of apprehension and intensity between them both.

Sliding down with his hands to meet Eggsy in the bed, Harry rests his head on the same pillow. Inhaling, exhaling, he stares up at the ceiling. With rigid, mechanical movements, trembling hands gently reach behind, into the thick, short waves of chestnut hair, and ease off the sturdy band that keeps the eyepatch in place.

Eggsy waits with bated breath as turning away, Harry deposits the eyepatch on the nightstand with his book, and lays his head back onto the pillow. But the older spy keeps his face toward the ceiling, so only the unmarred side of his profile is visible to Eggsy.

“Are you certain.” The waver in Harry’s voice is a whisper of anxiety, only those closest to him can detect. Eggsy hears it instantly. The tiniest inkling that the usually unshakeable gentleman, who could kill in a heartbeat, was actually afraid.

A smaller hand slips over to rest soothingly on Harry’s sternum, feeling the rise and fall of his lungs. Harry grabs it like a lifeline.

“Absolutely,” Eggsy murmurs steadily.

Connection, familiarity, intimacy. It isn’t always the art of love-making, of twin nudity, or anything outrightly sexual at all.

It’s the lightest of brushes with pinky fingers as lovers walk through their neighbourhood, leashed dog trotting happily in front. Randomly gifting a partner a book theyve never heard of, but are sound in the knowledge they will like, because it sounds like the ones they’ve read before. Afternoons in the garden in summertime, with a gin and tonic and The Sun, getting utterly drenched by a dog mid-wash, but unable to keep a smile away when a boyfriend swoops in for a kiss that tastes like sweat and dog shampoo.

Communication with but a glance. The twitch of a jaw muscle or setting of eyes that says more than words ever will.

It’s Eggsy seeing Harry remove that last, tissue paper barrier between them with methodical, distant hands, even as his eyes swim with intense emotion, jaw set. And then rolling over, to bare all.

Intimacy is letting your lover touch a part of you you barely let yourself go near, with the brush of a single finger over rippled, convoluted flesh.The few inches of skin that are a visual reminder of so much pain, both physical and psychological, of stained glass windows, high white ceilings and splintered pew seats and blood and gore and rage and a single gunshot. Of angry goodbyes that might have been forever, if not for some nanobots, alphagel, and little Hamish, who yipped in his slee, a fluffy croissant unaware of his crucial role in an agonising road to recovery. Everything they had gained, everyone they had lost, all came down to a piece of scar tissue.

The part of you that makes you recoil in disgust at its sight, and hide away with trembling hands. For fear that your lover will react the same way, and shy away, because you are no longer whole.

Eggsy takes Harry’s face in a steady hand, and presses the tiniest breath of a kiss to Harry’s trembling, ruined eyelid.

Because the truth is, the part of you that turns your stomach is the part they see no difference in. And love, just as unconditionally and endlessly as the rest of you.

“I told you, Harry. I love you, all of you. Always have. One eye or both.”

Hamish the sleepy yorkie wiggles over to the two big waterbottles in his bed, both of which seem to be leaking, and curls up between them with a final huff of contentment.

anonymous asked:

Question! Just so you know I am pro-choice if that affects how you answer. I am just wondering why the pro-life movement is so focused on making abortion illegal when we know women will still have them. Why not focus on reducing the number of women who need abortions? Raising awareness for birth control, fixing the foster care system, addressing child abuse and domestic violence and rape which all contribute to why a women may feel abortion is her only choice. Pro choicers would def be on board

Most people who are not in the pro-life movement only really see stereotypes and the extreme fringes. Having been in the pro-life movement for four years now, I’ve seen a very different side of it. The vast majority of pro-life people, especially those active in pro-life organizations, are doing most of what you’re saying.

Almost every pro-lifer would happily vote for a representative who promised to make abortion illegal. That said, we know that our ultimate goal is to make abortion unthinkable. Banning abortion will help, but it won’t be the end of our work. I believe we will abolish abortion in my lifetime, but I hope to live a long life, and I don’t think it’s going to happen tomorrow, this year, or maybe even this decade.

In the meantime, pro-lifers are working to provide for families in need, care for children in the foster care system (I actually know a lot of pro-lifers who have adopted and/or are foster parents), and raise awareness for issues like domestic violence, child abuse, homelessness/poverty, and so on.

Many pro-lifers have issues with most forms of birth control for a few different reasons, but this is actually a matter of controversy in pro-life circles. Most pro-lifers agree that birth control is not the magic solution to the abortion problem, and promote natural family planning (which can be more effective than oral contraceptives or barrier methods) and/or abstinence as an alternative that achieves the same goal of preventing unplanned pregnancies. 

We also recognize the need for quality health care for women and families. At the same time that we were calling for the defunding of Planned Parenthood in the wake of the Center for Medical Progress undercover videos, pro-life groups came together to create a directory of community health resources for those who were in need of affordable care or who were worried about losing the non-abortion services they received from Planned Parenthood. 

We also have a separate directory for those in crisis pregnancies who need resources and support in order to choose life for their child (There are other national directories, but this is my favorite for ease of access and accuracy of information). Many community pro-life organizations also have their own directories of resources in their area, which are more comprehensive. For instance, here’s the directory for central Texas, where I live. It includes medical resources, counseling and support, housing, and material support. The website also has information for those seeking adoption information, family planning help, miscarriage support, post-abortion support, and general OB/GYN healthcare.

The ideal pro-life world is one where preborn children are treated the same as born children under the law, making it illegal to kill them. In addition, mothers and fathers are supported and encouraged as they care for their children, and they have access to the resources they need. The foster system is streamlined to put children in loving homes faster (either their original home if possible, or with an adoptive family). Young women are given accurate information about their reproductive system, their natural fertility, and the accuracy rate and risks of various pregnancy-prevention options, including science-based natural family planning methods. Those in crisis pregnancies are given accurate information about their pregnancy and their child’s development. They are connected with the support and resources they need whether they choose to parent or to place their child for adoption. They are provided with safe housing and support if they need to leave an abusive or dangerous situation. High schools and colleges have supportive policies in place that help pregnant and parenting students finish their education and pursue their academic and career goals. 

We want to create a world where women don’t feel that they need abortion. If we do this in addition to making abortion illegal, we will make abortion an illegal procedure that women don’t need and that everyone knows will kill a human child. This will make abortion unthinkable.

Will it still happen? Of course. Children of all ages are still murdered in this country by various means. We are shocked when this happens, but we know it will happen again, despite the fact that it is illegal. We don’t use this as a reason to legalize the killing of children. Instead, we let it spur us to do more to keep children and families safe. 

anonymous asked:

I have another question about mistresses. How did they prevent pregnancy? We see Fantine is unsuccessful, but her friends seem to prevent it (iirc).


Discussion under the cut for people who want to avoid birth control talk!

Also, before I get into this: all of this is presented for historical value/knowledge only. Do not try this at home, or at anyone else’s home. This is from the 19th Century, fer crying out loud. They drank mercury and thought bleeding was hygienic. Don’t be like them. 

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I have a friend I was counseling through an STI scare and she just got her results and she doesn’t have herpes or any bacterial/fungal infections. However, she has had genital itching and sores for three years.

I’ve given her information on avoiding infections:

Avoid using Bubble baths, soaps, vaginal contraceptives (spermicide, diaphragms, cervical caps, and the sponge), feminine sprays, and perfumes. If you use lube make sure it doesn’t have glycerin or parabens. Never get food near your vulva. If you use condoms try latex free condoms. Using barrier methods during sex (vaginal, oral, manual, and genital rubbing) can help as well.

Avoid tight fitting non absorbent clothing. Wear cotton underwear and loose bottoms.

Avoid disposable tampons or pads. Menstrual cups and reusable cloth pads work better.

Upping the immune system can help tremendously. Using  vitamins like vitamin C and eating garlic and taking Echinacea help. Eating yogurt (especially organic or sugar free) can help a lot.

Only wash your vulva with water. Avoid using soaps, “feminine hygiene products” and douching. Wipe from front to back and never put anything that has been in your anus in your vagina.

Always urinate and clean up after sex.

Drink plenty of water and limit sugars as much as possible. Eat good food and exercise regularly. Get lots of sleep and avoid stress.

and on genital bumps:

If it’s a large, red, painful bump with a head it sounds like a cyst. If you put a warm compress on it it’ll help with the pain. If the bumps are on either side of your vaginal opening it could be a bartholin gland cyst. If it’s painful you need to go to a doctor. Usually the infection goes away before it gets painful but if it doesn’t it’ll need treatment. If it’s a clump of bumps that looks like a cauliflower it’s genital warts. if it’s a few to a lot of painful red blister looking things that pop and crust over it could be herpes. If it just looks like regular acne, vulva acne is common and will go down as you age just like regular acne. If it kind of looks like gooseflesh (or your arm whenever you get “goosebumps” and you’ve always had them, it’s probably fordyce spots. They can occur on both penises and vulvas and are totally harmless. If it is small, painless and kind of resembles a pearl it could be  Molluscum contagiosum. It can also occur in a line of bumps. This is a viral infection and you should see a doctor for it. If you have multiple red lesions and blackheads that enlarge, break open and drain pus it could be Hidradenitis suppurativa. It is a skin problem that’s considered a severe form of acne.

and I told her to make an appointment with her GP and try to get tested for hormone imbalances, blood sugar issues, and immune issues. I also told her to check her medications to see if that’s causing it.

Is there anything else I’m missing that could help her?

Crystal Elixirs

a crystal elixir (otherwise known as gem water) is essentially water that has taken on the properties of crystals. it’s used for the same purpose regular crystals are used for. this guide on how to make crystal elixirs uses a barrier method to keep the crystals from directly coming in contact with the water. this is because a lot of crystals are toxic and can cause serious harm to you if ingested. some crystals are also water soluble. if you decide to place the crystals directly in the water PLEASE do your research first.   

how to make: 


  • glass jar
  • crystal(s) of your choice
  • a barrier (preferably of glass, this can be a glass sheet, smaller glass jar/cup)

1. fill your jar with water. you can use moon water, rain water, sea water, ect. 

2. put your barrier on top of the jar or within it and place your crystal(s) on top.

3. leave in a window or outside in the sunlight or moonlight to charge for a few hours (some crystals may fade in the sunlight, do research on your crystals first).  

really simple to make & can be very useful. blessed be everyone! 

How To Protect Yourself In the Astral (Part Two)

Hello everyone! Now that you mostly know how magic works in the Astral (and hopefully have practiced a bit in your mindscape), it’s finally time for part two of the protection course! This lesson will deal with the other forms of protection I mentioned, as well as spells to be cast both in the Physical and the Astral.

Types of Protection

Last time, I briefly mentioned a few common methods and elaborated a bit on wards. The wardspells I talked about were all very basic, using a few of the well-known spellcasting methods. Wards are arguably the most difficult type of protection spell, but there is a reason I started with them; a few, actually.

One of the reasons is that wards are mostly permanent unless you actively break them down or they become unstable. They will protect whatever is inside and are useful in an infinite number of situations in the Astral. Some spells can be used to hide things, as well as protect them. For example, in the Astral, you can ward a room so that no one on the outside can hear or see whatever goes on in that room. You can also program a ward to contain any magic done inside, which is very useful for magical experiments or powerful magic that you don’t want leaking to the rest of the Astral.

The second reason I introduced wards and how they worked first was because anything that can be done with a simpler spell, such as a shield or a screen, can be programmed into a ward. As I talk more about those simpler spells, you can figure out ways to incorporate them together to create stronger spells. I find that if I link my protective magic together in some ways, it can be stronger. So let’s look at some of those methods, eh?

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  • sex (sexual intercourse)  性交 せいこう
  • fertilisation 受精 じゅせい
  • conception 受胎 じゅたい
  • STI  性行為感染症 せいこういかんせんしょう
  • contraception 避妊 ひにん
  • sexual response 性的応答 せいてきおうとう
    • excitement 興奮 こうふん
    • plateau 定常 ていじょう
    • orgasm オルガズム or 性感極期 せいかんきょくき
    • resolution 解決 かいけつ
  • refractory period 不応期 ふおうき
  • cervical mucus 頸管粘液 けいかんねんえき
  • capacitate 受精能を獲得する じゅせいのうをかくとくする
  • acrosome 先体 せんたい or アクロソーム
  • granulosa cell 顆粒膜細胞 かりゅうまくさいぼう
  • corona radiata 放射冠 ほうしゃかん
  • zona pellucida 透明帯 とうめいたい
  • sperm receptor 精子受容体 せいしじゅようたい or 精子接受体 せいしせつじゅたい
  • second polar body 第二極体 だいにきょくたい
  • male pronucleus 雄性前核 ゆうせいぜんかく
  • female pronucleus 雌性前核 しせいぜんかく
  • mitotic spindle 紡錘体 ぼうすいたい
  • sterilisation (to prevent reproduction) 不妊手術 ふにんしゅじゅつ 
    • (sterilisation to destroy microorganisms would be 滅菌法 めっきんほう)
  • tubal ligation 卵管結紮 らんかんけっさつ
  • vasectomy 精管切除術 せいかんせつじょじゅつ
  • barrier method バリアー法 ばりあーほう
  • latex ラテックス or 天然ゴム てんねんごむ
  • condom コンドーム
  • diaphragm ペッサリー
  • sponge スポンジ
  • cervical cap 子宮頚部キャップ しきゅうけいぶキャップ
  • female condom 女性用コンドーム じょせいようコンドーム
  • birth control pill 経口避妊薬 けいこうひにんやく
  • depo-provera デポプロベラ
  • contraceptive ring 避妊リング ひにん リング
  • intrauterine device 子宮内避妊具 しきゅうないひにんぐ
  • implantation 着床 ちゃくしょう

anonymous asked:

Whats an easy way to do a strong spell? Im looking to do a good protection and invisibility spell since im closeted but im also a baby witch so im not too confident in using a lot of my own energy, plus my environment isnt great and not easily cleansed so im not sure what to do about those dilemmas

Hi Hon! 

There are a couple of layers to this, at least from my view. Each of them can be used on its own, but for best results you can try them in combination. These are to ground before and after your spellwork, to cast a circle to contain the energy you raise, and simply to practice


Originally posted by txchnologist

Before practicing your craft in any method or context, it can be useful to ground yourself and balance out your energies before trying to channel them into a specific purpose or intent. This is particularly useful and important before attempting a big or strong spell. There are lots of ways to ground yourself, so I encourage you to find one that works well for you - I like to envision a root coming out of the base of my spine and into the dirt, absorbing Earth energy and releasing any tense, anxious, or otherwise off-balance energy that I’m harboring. When I feel like I’m back in balance, I pull the root back up and into myself for next time. 

Side note - I also use grounding as a way to calm my body and mind to help me sleep at night! It has a LOT of uses and is a good skill to develop for any witch!

Casting a Circle

Originally posted by dancing-at-the-funeralparty

For my personal practice, I mostly do relatively small daily practices or spells, but when I do want to do something bigger I’ll go ahead and cast a circle. The circle helps contain the energy I raise, and I actually think it helps me focus better so I can raise more energy and with a clearer intent. You can also use crystals of various types to help focus your energy as well. When in doubt, quartz is a good bet, but amethyst is another good one, or jet or obsidian. Black crystals are often used to protect against negative energy, so that might be good both generally for protection and in your specific context, which you suggest doesn’t feel particularly good to you. 

Crystals can also be really useful for cleansing energies, especially in places where you don’t feel like you can do a proper cleansing ritual. Citrine is a great one for this, as is selenite. 


Finally, in my own experience, I have found that if I cannot muster the energy to do one big or focused spell, doing a smaller one on a regular basis can be really useful (and frankly can be great even if you are able to do the big one, just as maintenance). So if I don’t feel like I can create and maintain a big bubble of protective energy around my house, for example, I can create strands of energy that surround it, and one by one they add up to create an effective barrier. 

Originally posted by thewitchystuff

This method is also good as a way to get you to practice your craft and a given method, until you feel really proficient at it - and I suspect that as you practice, you’ll find that the energy you can channel into it increases as well, making it a stronger spell each time you do it. 

I hope these ideas are helpful for you - As far as I can tell, the strength of a spell comes from the level of intent and focus you can put into it, so really all the methods I’ve suggested above are ways of increasing that focus. You may also find other methods of doing the same thing that work best for you, as you continue to practice! Best of luck!

-Your Witch Mums

anonymous asked:

actually, if you are disregarding the cdc's information about npf and all that, you are as dumb as they come, sister. the cdc is run by people who didn't just get a college education to run around protesting abortion. lol. they are scientists and doctors. but hey, keep pretending you don't want to trap your childfree husband. go for it. it'll be hilarious to see that all happen. lolololololololololol!!!!

How the CDC Screwed Over NFP

Okay. Hear me out. This is the CDC’s page on contraception.

This is the NFP section: 

Natural family planning or fertility awareness—Understanding your monthly fertility pattern can help you plan to get pregnant or avoid getting pregnant. Your fertility pattern is the number of days in the month when you are fertile (able to get pregnant), days when you are infertile, and days when fertility is unlikely, but possible. If you have a regular menstrual cycle, you have about nine or more fertile days each month. If you do not want to get pregnant, you do not have sex on the days you are fertile, or you use a barrier method of birth control on those days. Failure rates vary across these methods. Overall, typical use failure rate: 24%.

Emphasis mine. 

They admit that different methods have different failure rates, but they only give one overall rate to cover all of them. Those methods include the rhythm method (which is not at all accurate) and methods that involve a lot of guessing.

If you want to know which contraceptive method is right for you, overall failure rates spanning multiple methods aren’t helpful.

There are outdated methods, and then there are more modern, more accurate methods. I’m using one of the latter – the Sympto-Thermal Method. It has a typical use failure rate of just 1.8%

Interestingly, the CDC doesn’t lump all the hormonal methods together and give them one failure rate. They even list the combined and progestin-only birth control pills separately, even though they have the same failure rate: 9%

The Depo-Provera shot has a typical use failure rate of 6%.

In fact, if you want to beat NFP with a hormonal method, you need to get an implant. Even then, you’re only 0.45% safer than if you used the Billings Ovulation Method (with only a 0.5% typical use failure rate). 

Typical Use vs Perfect Use

Why do I always quote typical use failure rates? 

Perfect use failure rates assume you have used the method exactly as you’re supposed to. If you’re on the pill, that means never missing a pill and taking them at the same time every single day. If you’re using the shot, that means never missing or delaying an appointment to get your next injection. If you use a condom, it means using them correctly every time. If you’re using the Sympto-Thermal Method, it means taking your temperature at the same time every morning before you get out of bed and keeping track of your cervical fluid every day. 

Nobody’s perfect. I know I’m not. No matter what method you use, something will happen. You forget to refill your prescription. You oversleep. You get sick on the day you were supposed to get your injection. Your partner is using a condom that’s the wrong size. It happens. 

The typical use rate tells you how effective your method of choice will be when crap happens. And crap happens. So when evaluating a contraceptive method, always look for the typical use failure rate of the individual method you’re considering.

For Your Reference

Typical use failure rates of modern NFP methods:

Marquette Method: 10.6% (not one I usually recommend – less accurate and more expensive. Bleh.)

Creighton Model: 3.6% (if you’re having fertility problems, you can use this to find out what’s wrong)

Sympto-Thermal Method: 1.8% (the one I’m using)

Billings Ovulation Method: 0.5% (yeah, only a 0.5% failure rate for typical use)

anonymous asked:

Hi! I have a question that might be really stupid but I really just honestly don't understand. What I want to know is, why is this method okay? Like birth control isn't allowed because it blocks conception from happening or even having the chance to happen, but isn't "only having sex on days you're not fertile" also blocking all possibility of conception and just a way for couples to have sex for pleasure only? I'm not trying to be mean or say nfp is a sin of some kind I honestly don't get it, I

pt 2. assume there has to be something I’m missing about this, because the Church endorses it and so I assume someone who understands better than I do has thought it through. Thanks!      

I don’t mind the question at all! People ask about this all the time.

Now, my favorite response to this question is, “Can a condom, IUD, or hormonal method get you pregnant as easily as it can prevent pregnancy?”

And the answer to THAT question, of course, is no.

Fertility awareness is a type of body literacy that requires an acceptance of our fertility: that it is there, it is healthy, and we learn to live with it. We adjust our family planning and lifestyle around fertility. The more serious the reason to avoid a pregnancy, the more likely the couple is to be conservative with the charting and rules required to prevent conception. The less serious reason they have to avoid pregnancy, the less likely they are to care about charting or rules and more likely they are to become pregnant. And, very importantly, this method can be used to aid in targeted conception as well!

With every menstrual cycle that comes and goes, couples face their temporary window of fertility. They ask themselves, “is it worth abstaining this month?” and they discuss it as a couple. They are forced to face their financial, emotional, mental, and psychological state, as well as the state of their marriage. They then use this opportunity to pray about these matters and follow God’s will.

Some people find that God says, “Karen, you have severe PPD, abstain.” and so they abstain though they wish for more children. Others here, “I know you worry about how you won’t be able to afford this or that new thing, but you should really open your home to another baby.” NFP forces couples to really, truly, view their lives and God’s without the filter that birth control forces on all users.

Other methods are totally one-sided: barrier methods are designed for one person to use, and hormonal methods and IUDs only require the woman to take. The completely shut down their fertility or block normal intercourse, and only give one option: no pregnancy. Forcing the normal biological system to shut down instead of abstaining during fertile periods means that the couple need not worry about using one another for sex, or whether they should sit down and talk to God about it.  Sure, you can stop using it if you decide it’s time for a baby: but do you face that question every cycle? Do you weigh this decision with whether its worth to abstain? Is this decision made in respect to unhindered fertility?

NFP isn’t “allowed” in the sense that it can do no wrong, but that it can be made compatible with God’s Truth. And even then, couples have the choice to use no method at all, and rely only on breastfeeding (which in itself requires leaning on God’s Will as well!)

Both birth control and NFP have the same end goal: preventing conception. But NFP has a different means to that goal (periodic abstinence) and can be used for pregnancy achievement, and as a way to open up lines of communication that otherwise would not be used.

Also, on a personal note, NFP allows the couple to say “no” to sex. Both my husband and I are grateful for this even if things get hard, if only because it allows us to show love in other ways we normally wouldn’t. Plus, in a world where couples feel pressured to have sex all the time, or where one person has lower libido than the other, it can help those couples find a middle ground. Birth control, on the other hand, causes the couple to realize they can have sex whenever, and less power is given to this unitive act.

If this does not answer your question, I’m not sure what else to say other than to suggest other places to read. I have lots of posts about NFP testimonies (both good and bad) on my blog, and also know a few encyclicals and theological writings on family and sex that could be helpful. If you want to read more, feel free to send in a PM or ask and I will share what I can. :)

I live! + No Condom Herpes Sex

Hello to all,

Yes. It’s really me. 

First off, I’d like to apologize for my unannounced hiatus from Tumblr. 

For those of you who know, I recently (about 3 months ago) starting seeing a man that I was working with. It was my first time in over 6 months talking to somebody (in real life, not over the interwebs) who I had genuine feelings for & knew that disclosure would be necessary. It was my first time disclosing in person, and I was terrified. If you’re interested in the whole story, you can feel free to read my post about it here:

Now, here’s a little bit of wise words for those little herpeeps who, like me once upon a time, felt destined to a life of abstinence after diagnosis. I have been having sex with my S.O for almost 2 months now. I take two 400 mg tablets of Acyclovir daily for suppressive therapy & to reduce viral shedding, and I sometimes take 1,000 mg of lysine on top of that. Now, here’s the nitty gritty & an honest truth that I need no finger wagging about: while I do everything on my end to protect myself and my partner sexually (#1 way to do that is by COMMUNICATION), we both feel comfortable not using condoms. In fact, we’ve used a condom once, and that was the first time that we had sex. And want to know a cool little snippet? He doesn’t have herpes. I’m keeping my little herpes muggle 100% herpes free by knowing my body, understanding its signs & taking medication. 

While some of you may roll your eyes at my stupidity (did I not, and many of us, contract herpes in the first place by not using condoms?!) here is the reason that it is okay to have sex without a condom, herpes or no herpes: If you and your partner have an open and truthful conversation about each other’s status, what you’re comfortable with, hopes, dreams & aspirations in this world then you are 100% justified to make any decision in regards to your sexual health TOGETHER. If you have herpes & your partner is aware of this fact but only feels conformable engaging in sexual activity with a condom, then you use that condom! On the flipside, if you have herpes & your partner is aware of this fact and wants to NOT wear a condom, but you feel safer doing so– then wear that condom! Every sexual decision made in a relationship should be communicated from both ends, and when it comes down to it, I think that if a person in the relationship feels safer using some sort of barrier methods then that practice gives priority, because safety is more important than sensation.

To make a short story long, many people in this community are not only petrified to have sex after their diagnosis for fear of transmitting the virus, but the thought of having sex without a condom seems almost downright homicide. The reason I do not have anxiety about this choice that my S.O and I have made together is because we are both aware of each other’s status, & have enough information about each other and our thoughts to make decisions for ourselves. I would be completely fine using a condom each time if my S.O desired that, because I care about his safety (not only about not physically contracting HSV, but possible anxiety that it might have caused him worrying about catching it). So when it comes down to it, I do not feel bad about not using condoms because my partner is educated enough about my status to made decisions for himself. If it comes down to it & he does eventually contract HSV, while it would be tough for both of us to deal with, we made an open, honest decision and there is nobody at fault for that.

I love you all.


So, I’m getting into Private Practice, the spinoff from Grey’s Anatomy and I’m up to the season three episode “Parent Trap” in which Violet and Charlotte treat an Orthodox Jewish woman who doesn’t want to have any more children, and tell them that birth control is not an option.

Which means that in this universe, doctors have twice treated Orthodox Jewish patients and had them refuse “modern” treatments for religous reasons, even though those treatments are not against halachiac law. Orthodox Judaism prohibits barrier methods such as condoms, but allows for hormonal birth control such as the pill or an IUD. Interestingly enough, the reason for this, that the prohibition is against spilling the seed and hormonal birth control doesn’t involve that, is freaking brought up by Charlotte when the team consults with a Rabbi and the Rabbi disagrees with her!

The other time was in season one of Grey’s Anatomy, when Alex had his Orthodox Jewish girl who refuses to have a pig valve transplant, because she won’t put a treif animal in her body. This is so not Jewish law it isn’t even funny.

If my memory serves, there is only one other time a patient has been explicitly Jewish, the one where a thirteen year old boy wants breast reduction surgery, and his Judaism amounts to a passing reference to his bar mitzvah.

It just pisses me off so much. It’s not like these shows don’t have the budgets to just ask an Orthodox Jew what the halachiac view on birth control and pig valve transplants are. A simple google search would suffice. They are just assuming that all Orthodox Jews are backwards and irrational and then are too lazy to fucking check. Hell, in this episode of PP they couldn’t even bother to find out the correct pronunciation of Shimon.

I know Shonda Rhimes gets a lot of praise, but her track record with Jewish characters is fucking abyssmal.

Can we stop acting like pregnancy is accidental?

I’m 29yrs old and have never had a pregnancy scare. You know why? Cause condoms and birth control work. There are tons of non hormonal options and barrier methods other than condoms too! Do your googles and take charge of your reproductive health.

Obviously this sentiment is geared towards consensual sex