We first learned about the Sympto-Thermal Method (STM) of Natural Family Planning (NFP) from Couple to Couple League (CCL) in 2002 when we took a class as an engaged couple. We had decided to learn about NFP because we wanted to follow the Church’s teaching but we had concerns about wanting to delay pregnancy until after Kristine finished up the experiments for her graduate thesis since she was working with X-rays. We chose to learn from Couple to Couple league specifically because – ever since becoming engaged we were getting peppered with questions from our friends and family about NFP and we wanted not only to learn about how to use it – but about why the Church teaches what it does about marriage and sexuality so that we could better explain it to those who asked.
One of the benefits about learning NFP was that we learned how to apply it even for irregular cycles. Kristine always had very irregular cycles especially throughout college and graduate school. Within the first month of learning about NFP Kristine was greatly relieved to find out that not only would NFP work with irregular cycles -- it could actually give her a much better understanding of her body and what was going on – especially during those irregular months. It was tremendously liberating for Kristine to finally have a clue what to expect from her cycle regardless of its length!
While we used NFP to help us postpone pregnancy initially, after Kristine’s experiments were concluded we began trying to have a family. Unfortunately it did not happen as quickly or as easily as we would have liked and after a year we really began following Couple to Couple League’s suggestions for trying to achieve pregnancy and eventually became pregnant with our eldest – and now we have two wonderful daughters. Our fertility story has had lots of ups and downs and we were very blessed to have Couple to Couple League and the help of our NFP-only doctor to help us through the joys and struggles.
After having our first child, we decided that we wanted to help other couples by teaching Natural Family Planning through CCL and underwent training and became certified teachers in 2009. We like that this method teaches it’s students to read a couple of different signs of fertility so that they can be used as a cross check, but perhaps even more importantly that it also educates the married and engaged couples about the Theology of the Body and encourages them to discern what God’s plan is for them and their family every step or cycle along the way. These teachings have helped us in all the different chapters of our married life thus far, and we want to help give other couples these tools to use in their marriages as well.
Couple to Couple League offers their NFP teaching series three different ways:
- On-site in-person classes with an instructor couple
- Virtual (live) classes with an instructor couple
- Self-paced online
Registration for all three types of classes can be found at www.ccli.org
You can contact Kristine & Darin directly at firstname.lastname@example.org @gmail.com or 517-648-2083.
We have a pretty active Couple to Couple League Chapter in the Lansing Area and like to keep all of our local NFP families connected through picnics, potlucks, talks, and updates on upcoming classes. You can join our facebook group for Couple To Couple League – Lansing Area at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/LansingAreaCCL/