Now, let me start off by saying that I have read very good, completely logical arguments supporting the Catholic position that a man and wife ought not to use contraception. (I happen to not grant one of the premises, which is why I fail to be convinced.) However, “Catholic” in the modern day is a little like “Jew” – okay, so you might identify yourself that way, but are you an observant member of that group? Most Catholics, in my experience, are “cultural Catholics” and probably have even less of an understanding of their own doctrines than Protestants do. So this is not an essay about the Catholic Church’s Magisterium-approved doctrine, or whatever they call the authoritative writ on the matter.
The issue I have is with the Catholics who hold “artificial conception” like condoms and birth control pills as immoral, and then turn right around and advocate Natural Family Planning.
Let me be very clear here: Natural Family Planning is an ABOMINATION.
Any person who decries condoms as immoral and then advocates NFP is a terrible hypocrite.
Now, if someone were to grant that using contraception is licit, and then advocate NFP on practical grounds, I would be willing to hear the argument. There are good reasons for a wife to want her husband’s semen other than for conception; and some people have medical reasons why they would reject hormonal birth control methods. These are all valid. Just because one method of “family planning” works for one couple doesn’t mean it will work for another; to those who seek the most suitable method of contraception, I would recommend against NFP for one enormous reason.
What kind of idiot thinks that never having sex when the wife most desires it is a good plan? I mean, here’s the one time a month when a woman is really feeling randy…. and then it’s all “no honey, we can’t have sex because we don’t want kids”? WHAT THE FUCK. Not acceptable. Talk about perverting marital relations! The whole reason to get married in the first place is that it’s better to marry than to burn! If you’re not gonna have sex when you burn for it because you don’t want kids, what was the whole freaking point?! Some kind of half-assed “artificial conception is immoral” bullshit? Honey, deliberately not having sex when you’re fertile goes above and beyond mere “contraceptive” sex to invalidating the entire point of marriage in the first place. NFP is a form of CONTRACEPTION. Those who use NFP have the exact same intent as those who use “artificial contraception”: the will to have sex for the pleasure of it and for the pair-bonding effects of it, but specifically and intentionally avoiding the “conception” part. If you’re going to use NFP as a regular form of contraception you might as well have become a nun instead of getting married. If you use it because “artificial contraceptives are morally wrong” I will laugh in your hypocrite face. You think God cares about the method as much as the intent? Pharisee alert!
What’s really galling is that Catholics will sometimes use the example of Onan as a reason why “artificial” contraceptives are illicit. Well, aside from the fact that “pull out” is ineffective as contraception, Onan was wicked and put to death by the Lord for his intent not to provide an heir for his brother, as his duty demanded of him. And if his brother had no heirs, well, their filthy rich father’s estate just got divided into bigger pieces for the surviving heirs, so it sure looks like Onan got labeled “wicked” for shirking his duty out of greed for a bigger inheritance, NOT because he was banging his brother’s widow and using a “natural family planning” method of “contraception.” (Considering the fact that we know he probably would have knocked the girl up anyway despite his intentions, it’s a pretty good bet that his “wickedness” lay in his intent to defraud his deceased brother of heirs, which was a particularly heinous crime against the family in that culture. Levirate marriage don’t exist no more in Western culture.)