I SYMPATHISE with Mrs Keauffling's experience of eight out of nine pregnancies conceived in the "safe period", and many other families who have had the same experience in the past (September 30).
However, I must say that one of the greatest difficulties in encouraging Catholics to consider using natural methods of birth regulation is combating the bad press arising from the failure of earlier systems. NonCatholics, increasingly turning to natural family planning, do not have the same history. A fertile woman produces reliably fertile signals and these can be charted and intepreted. Anyone charting for as little as three cycles will discover this to be true.
For NFP to work, however, one must stress that: it should be taught by a qualified instructor;
there must be adequate instructions and follow-up until the couple are fully confident; husband and wife should share the responsibility of charting and interpretation; they need to be well motivated and in agreement on the use of fertile and infertile phases according to their need to space, limit or conceive.
May I ask those who are following this correspondence to reflect that Georgetown University, USA would not have been awarded $15 million of USAID for NFP programme development internationally, nor would the World Health Organisation be involved in NFP education and promotion, in order merely to prop up a failed system.
Jean Johnson NFP National Tutor London W14