Like many couples, my husband and I suffered with infertility. Our first child was conceived easily, but it wound up being 8 years before we had another child. During that time we underwent most of the standard tests and encountered the usual problems, such as doctors who casually recommend IVF as if it was no more problematic than having your tonsils removed.
I dismissed it immediately because I knew the Church teachings, but even my non-religious protestant husband thought it was wrong. “It is just the wrong way to bring a child into the world,” he said. He instinctively knew IVF was an affront to human dignity, although he did not phrase it that way. I wish we had known about NFP and charting and also some of the links below.
Many Catholics have absolutely no clue as to what the Church teaches about fertility, infertility and all the “reproductive technologies” like In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF). Many don’t really want to know either, if they suspect it may not allow them to do whatever they want.
Infertility is inherently a painful, stressful time in couples lives. But it can also mean a time of growth and a time of learning to trust God completely. That is what happened with us. After all the years waiting, crying, prayers and licit procedures, we finally decided to stop trying. I told God that if He wanted us to have another baby I will trust that He will send us one, but that I needed to go on with my life. I could not continue to go on like this. And that is what we did. Several years later, we discovered we were unexpectedly pregnant. It was all in God’s time, not our time. We wanted kids 2 years apart. God had other ideas.
I thought I would share with you some articles and resources to help you and your spouse if infertility is in your lives.
Perfect Work at InsideCatholic.com
The Pope Paul VI Center uses the Creighton Model and NaPro Technology to help couples conceive naturally. There are doctors trained in this technology all over the country. If you are having trouble conceiving, this should definitely be one of the places you check out. Read one couple’s experience with NaPro at CatholicInfertility.org
Here is a series of articles from Catholic Exchange about
The Gift of Infertility: Part I, Part II, Part III & Part IV by Dr. Jameson and Jennifer Taylor.
You might also be interested in Catholic Infertility Resources