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Am I crazy to try 'Natural cycle' contraception

(14 Posts)
yogaandwine Sat 19-Nov-16 20:48:52

Am I being crazy to think this could be a viable option?

I'm fed up with hormonal options and also scared/freaked out by the coil. I'm thinking that just using condoms on fertile days could be a workable solution?

I don't want to get pregnant, but also don't want to use condoms every time me and DH have sex... thought this might help with knowing when we should 'wrap up'!

I've downloaded an app which works out your fertile days based on you inputting dates of your periods.

Has anyone used this method of contraception (successfully!)

TheCakes Sat 19-Nov-16 20:52:00

I got pregnant on NFP. Turns out I have irregular cycles, that the pill regulated, so when I stopped it I got caught out by a rogue short cycle.
Think it's OK if you're regular. I didn't use an app t

Soubriquet Sat 19-Nov-16 20:56:26

It is not a contraceptive

You are very likely to fall pregnant with no condom.

Polly99 Sat 19-Nov-16 20:56:38

I have used NFP for years. I am subfertile these days but it worked perfectly well when I wasn't (both for contraception and for planning pregnancies I did want). But you really can't rely on an app that only takes account of your usual cycle length - that's basically the rhythm method, which has led to a lot of pregnancies! You need to track fertile cervical mucus and to chart your temperature for this to really work. I'd suggest getting a copy of Take Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler which explains how it works in detail.

Starlight2345 Sat 19-Nov-16 20:59:28

I am not an expert but I believe the reliability of this method is considerably lower so..How would you feel if it failed and your got pregnant..

BroomstickOfLove Sat 19-Nov-16 21:03:35

I wouldn't use an app, but did use Take Charge of Your Fertility. I used it to avoid pregnancy for a year, then to get pregnant, and then to avoid pregnancy and to conceive a second child.

It worked brilliantly for me, but that was at a time when getting pregnant wouldn't have been a disaster.

The main downsides are that any condim failure is very serious, because it will always happen when you are most fertile. If you choose not to have the sort of sex that might lead to pregnancy during your fertile times, you might find it frustrating, because you tend to have a higher libido at around that time.

It can also be difficult if you work shifts, or have young children or other things that cause you to have an irregular sleep pattern.

BroomstickOfLove Sat 19-Nov-16 21:09:16

Basically, it's extremely effective (99%) with perfect use, but perfect use is quite a lot of work and so in actual real life it is less effective than that because people tend to just think 'fuck it' and have sex anyway. On their most fertile day.

PetyrBaelish Sat 19-Nov-16 21:16:24

I would only use it if I was putting off trying for a few months but it wouldn't be the end of the world if I got pregnant IYSWIM.
I had a pregnancy false alarm recently (now would be a really bad time for my family) which really shook me, so I would definitely err on the side of safety.
I would also be worried about if I went down that road I might have a glass of wine and think "oh well, it's only one or two days outside of the safe zone" and have sex and end up pregnant.

Wolfiefan Sat 19-Nov-16 21:17:53

Only if you don't actually mind falling pg.

Weathergirl1 Mon 21-Nov-16 17:38:15

I don't think you're mad, as long as you use it properly - I'm not sure I'd just go on dates though - to do it properly you'd need to record BBT. There's a sponsored thread that's active at the moment on the Conception board which might be worth looking at. It's advertising Natural Cycles, which is an app that uses this method. I subscribed to it about 6 months ago after reading about it in a newspaper article and doing a bit of research. It was invented by a female physicist at CERN (of Large Hadron Collider fame) and the algorithms it uses have undergone clinical trials which showed it to be as reliable as the pill.

Since coming off the pill, I've actually got my libido back which was pretty much non-existent, and I feel so much better than I did on hormonal contraceptives. We've been using condoms all the time in addition to the app (bar one instance when we were away from home but I was very much in safe days) but will probably relax about that in a few months when I've put more data into the app. From my experience, it's overly cautious especially if your cycles are a bit out of synch from coming off the pill, but the more data you can put in, as well as ovulation test results, the better it gets (more safe days).

Taking BBT readings every morning isn't too bad - the thermometer sits on my bedside table and I just pick it up first thing when I wake up.

I don't know if we'll ever have a child or not, but at 36 if we do decide to go down that route, then I wanted to put myself in a position of already knowing what my body was doing and not needing to wait for it to return to normal if I stopped taking the pill at a later date.

sashh Mon 21-Nov-16 17:47:39

Only use it if a baby wouldn't be a disaster.

A basal temp only changes by 0.25 -0.5 deg C at ovulation, most thermometers are not that accurate, and really you want to be taking an anal temp.

Richard Madley once said, "natural contraception, or in our house Chloe" and I think that's the risk.

scaevola Mon 21-Nov-16 17:49:13

It's not too bad a method if done very diligently.

A single 'method' isn't enough. You need to combine daily basal temperature with examination of mucous, with a nod to the calendar, plus any other useful symptoms you find you have.

You need to chart for at least 3 months to see if you are confident you are spotting your fertile period accurately. If you're not sure, this is not the method for you

Anatidae Mon 21-Nov-16 17:53:49

Only if you don't mind getting pregnant. If hormonal contraceptives don't work for you consider the cool - it's honestly not that bad

BroomstickOfLove Mon 21-Nov-16 18:02:17

It is reliable if you do it properly - but the temperature chatting requires a fairly regular lifestyle because you need to take your temperature at the same time each day after a proper sleep. I couldn't have done it between children. But it was probably the best form of contraception I've ever used - I had an irregular cycle, and I was really nice knowing exactly when I'd get my period, and being able to see the ests that various things affected me. And when I (deliberately) got pregnant, it was nice to be able to chart that and not get stressed out going pregnancy tests. I did the tests anyway, but my pregnant chart was cool.

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