FAM - The best of both worlds!

I swore off hormonal birth control after I discovered that each method I tried had some awful side effects. I also knew I needed a better method that I could use in order to be able to conceive when I wanted to and also for when I start breastfeeding. For the last few months the hubby and I have been practicing the Fertility Awareness Method, otherwise known as Natural Family Planning. First off, let me just say that this is not The Rhythm Method. It works, and it's scientifically proven.

How it works: You chart your body temperature every morning with a basal thermometer. You daily check the consistency of your cervical fluid (not as awful as it sounds) and you check the position of your cervix. By doing all of this, you can determine when you're fertile.

Why it's awesome:
1. You can use it for birth control or to achieve pregnancy.
2. No hormones involved. No pill, patches, shots, rings, etc.
3. It makes you more aware of how your body works.
4. If you're trying to get pregnant, you will know the exact date of conception so you won't have to guess your due date.

The few cons:
1. You have to be diligent about charting in order to be accurate.
2. Some women find it a bit invasive to check their cervix.
3. There's a chunk of days in the month that you either have to abstain or use a barrier method if you're using FAM for birth control.

The best resource I found for FAM was Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler.

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