Looking for wise advice on Birth Control and inlaws

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jjraby

Puritan Board Freshman
My wife and I are struggling with Birth Control. She has been on the pill, but we have since stopped. Mainly because of the Abortifacient aspect of it. The main question is. How do i deal with my inlaws when and if my wife become pregnant. I know to tell them to Trust God and things like that. and how do i address the "you can't afford children" argument. I am looking for some wise advice on dealing with my in-laws basically in the event that my wife becomes pregnant? They may just be excited if she does, but from what i have heard, they will not be too happy. I know I am the husband, and the decision is mine. but i would really like the support of my inlaws if it is possible to get it. Which it may not be.
 

Andres

Puritan Board Doctor
This is going to sound harsh, but it's really none of their business. Any family that can't be happy for you and your wife upon finding out you're going to have a beautiful baby has issues. Because we're recently married, people ask my wife and I all the time if we are "thinking about having kids" anytime soon or how many kids we "plan" on having. We always tell them that we are completely trusting the Lord to bless us with children in His perfect timing. This includes however many He decides. Sadly, many people have a big problem with this, but it's there problem, not mine.
 

White Knight

Puritan Board Freshman
Ditto to the above. Also worth noting, the only way to not have kids is to not have sex. So, when I am approached with that question, my answer is quick and easy. As to the old money question, politely ask how much money is enough. Anybody with children will know they have lost the discussion instantly.
Believe me, lack of finances aren't new to me, but I'm really conservative anyway, so I don't see problems with no money. I have all I need and then some. I have one child with another one on the way come late May. Everyone around me asked and or told the same stuff. After I responded to them, half of them have a greater respect for God, the other half....
Children aren't a burden either, usually the people that are concerned about having children, have that in the back of their mind. Not all people by any means, but that is what I faced mostly.
Lastly, take delight in doing what God purposed you to do.
 

jjraby

Puritan Board Freshman
thanks to the above. I agree, i just need some reassurance from other Christians it seems that a lot of Christians are divided on the birth control issue. and my in laws are Christians, they are just misguided on their view of children. In my ethics class, he said, :The wealthier a society is, the less they think they can afford children." The baby boomer generation's view on Children has been perverted, and it spilled into Christian circles. Its a shame that i have to convince Christians that children are a blessing.
 

Montanablue

Puritan Board Doctor
My mother's approach to anyone who asked questions about our family's reproductive choices was a wide-eyed and scandalized "Pardon me?" This generally gets the message across that this is no one's business but the family's.
 

Tim

Puritan Board Graduate
You are to be commended for your decision regarding the abortifacient aspect of the pill. Many people are probably unaware of this content of the pill. Everyone should tell their young married friends about this.
 

jason d

Puritan Board Freshman
I think one thing for them to understand your theology and conviction behind this. I understand that this is a very touchy subject, so I would probably direct them to listen to a message (that way someone else is saying all the hard stuff) and then discuss it afterwards.

Love him or hate him the best discussion I have heard on this issue is via Mark Driscoll: Mars Hill Church | Religion Saves | Birth Control
 

sastark

Puritan Board Graduate
Jeremy, first, as it has already been said, it's none of their business. Second, you will never be able to "afford" children. There will always be bills to pay and other expenses. But, then again, I don't view children as a line item on a budget. I view them as an inheritance from the Lord. It sound like you and your wife may be newly married (?) and if so, I can tell you that you will have other issues with your in-laws. It really is part of the process of establishing your marriage. I have a great relationship with my in-laws, but there have been times when my wife and I have had to set limits and that has ruffled their feathers. Just remember: 1. It is your family, not there's and 2. Even though you are married, you are still under the command to Honor your father and your mother, though the way of honoring them may have changed from when you were under their authority.

Lastly, good for you and your wife for getting off the pill!
 

Tripel

Puritan Board Senior
Being one on the liberal end of the PB spectrum, I fall into the camp of exercising responsibility regarding child birth. Even though children are more than "a line item on a budget", they ARE expensive. Yes, they are a blessing, but that doesn't cancel out the fact that they cost money. It takes more than love to raise a child.

That said, babies happen. And it's glorious. If you get pregnant, I seriously doubt your in-laws are going to get upset with you, though they may think it is bad timing. Even though you are the head of your family, your in-laws have reason to be interested in your financial well-being. They want for their grandchildren to be provided for, and naturally so. If a baby comes at a time they don't think is appropriate, you can assure them you are taking the steps necessary to provide for the new child. It may not be the standard of living your in-laws would prefer, but you will have your needs met.
 

jjraby

Puritan Board Freshman
Being one on the liberal end of the PB spectrum, I fall into the camp of exercising responsibility regarding child birth. Even though children are more than "a line item on a budget", they ARE expensive. Yes, they are a blessing, but that doesn't cancel out the fact that they cost money. It takes more than love to raise a child.

That said, babies happen. And it's glorious. If you get pregnant, I seriously doubt your in-laws are going to get upset with you, though they may think it is bad timing. Even though you are the head of your family, your in-laws have reason to be interested in your financial well-being. They want for their grandchildren to be provided for, and naturally so. If a baby comes at a time they don't think is appropriate, you can assure them you are taking the steps necessary to provide for the new child. It may not be the standard of living your in-laws would prefer, but you will have your needs met.
well how would that be done without violations of God's commands and trying to take control of the future of our lives? Children arn't a luxury to be had when the time is right, and they arn't something that we buy to enhance our lives. I agree with alot of what you said, but how do you walk the line of trying to take control of your life, and being dependent on God?
 

raekwon

Puritan Board Junior
Being one on the liberal end of the PB spectrum, I fall into the camp of exercising responsibility regarding child birth. Even though children are more than "a line item on a budget", they ARE expensive. Yes, they are a blessing, but that doesn't cancel out the fact that they cost money. It takes more than love to raise a child.

That said, babies happen. And it's glorious. If you get pregnant, I seriously doubt your in-laws are going to get upset with you, though they may think it is bad timing. Even though you are the head of your family, your in-laws have reason to be interested in your financial well-being. They want for their grandchildren to be provided for, and naturally so. If a baby comes at a time they don't think is appropriate, you can assure them you are taking the steps necessary to provide for the new child. It may not be the standard of living your in-laws would prefer, but you will have your needs met.
well how would that be done without violations of God's commands and trying to take control of the future of our lives? Children arn't a luxury to be had when the time is right, and they arn't something that we buy to enhance our lives. I agree with alot of what you said, but how do you walk the line of trying to take control of your life, and being dependent on God?
Do you lock your doors at night or put on your seatbelt when you drive?
 

Tripel

Puritan Board Senior
how do you walk the line of trying to take control of your life, and being dependent on God?
We make decisions and take steps each day towards certain ends. Sometimes it goes according to our plan, and sometimes not, but it always goes according to God's plan.
Is a single man taking "control of his life" if he makes a conscious effort to find a woman to date and marry? What if he chooses to avoid those kinds of relationships because he doesn't feel ready to be a husband? Is he more "dependent on God" if he just sits back to see whether or not God sends a woman his way?

Just because we enter into various pursuits doesn't mean we lost our dependence upon God.

Children arn't a luxury to be had when the time is right, and they arn't something that we buy to enhance our lives.
Neither is a spouse, but that doesn't mean I can't choose when or when not to pursue one.

And what about adoption? Are you suggesting it would be a violation of God's command if a couple were to plan an adoption around when the "time is right"? Surely you would allow that it is acceptable for a couple to put some thought into when or if they should adopt. I'd say that a couple can do the same regards to child birth. It doesn't mean that it will work out exactly as you want it, but it also doesn't mean that wanting it a certain way is wrong. It becomes a problem when we think our way is better than God's way.
 

jjraby

Puritan Board Freshman
Being one on the liberal end of the PB spectrum, I fall into the camp of exercising responsibility regarding child birth. Even though children are more than "a line item on a budget", they ARE expensive. Yes, they are a blessing, but that doesn't cancel out the fact that they cost money. It takes more than love to raise a child.

That said, babies happen. And it's glorious. If you get pregnant, I seriously doubt your in-laws are going to get upset with you, though they may think it is bad timing. Even though you are the head of your family, your in-laws have reason to be interested in your financial well-being. They want for their grandchildren to be provided for, and naturally so. If a baby comes at a time they don't think is appropriate, you can assure them you are taking the steps necessary to provide for the new child. It may not be the standard of living your in-laws would prefer, but you will have your needs met.
well how would that be done without violations of God's commands and trying to take control of the future of our lives? Children arn't a luxury to be had when the time is right, and they arn't something that we buy to enhance our lives. I agree with alot of what you said, but how do you walk the line of trying to take control of your life, and being dependent on God?
Do you lock your doors at night or put on your seatbelt when you drive?
Yes, But that is to protect my wife and myself from harm, not to prevent a blessing until we deem ourselves ready to receive it.

---------- Post added at 12:17 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:14 PM ----------

how do you walk the line of trying to take control of your life, and being dependent on God?
We make decisions and take steps each day towards certain ends. Sometimes it goes according to our plan, and sometimes not, but it always goes according to God's plan.
Is a single man taking "control of his life" if he makes a conscious effort to find a woman to date and marry? What if he chooses to avoid those kinds of relationships because he doesn't feel ready to be a husband? Is he more "dependent on God" if he just sits back to see whether or not God sends a woman his way?

Just because we enter into various pursuits doesn't mean we lost our dependence upon God.

Children arn't a luxury to be had when the time is right, and they arn't something that we buy to enhance our lives.
Neither is a spouse, but that doesn't mean I can't choose when or when not to pursue one.

And what about adoption? Are you suggesting it would be a violation of God's command if a couple were to plan an adoption around when the "time is right"? Surely you would allow that it is acceptable for a couple to put some thought into when or if they should adopt. I'd say that a couple can do the same regards to child birth. It doesn't mean that it will work out exactly as you want it, but it also doesn't mean that wanting it a certain way is wrong. It becomes a problem when we think our way is better than God's way.
Well, adoption i think is somewhat a different thing where you are taking responsibility of a child already in existence, or soon to be.

anyway, how would i go about using birth control in a Godly way? the pill is not an option, due to the abortion aspect. condoms? that seems to be add an impersonal barrier to the communal aspect of sex. I don't know, it is something that i am struggling with. should or shouldn't we? and if we should, then how?
 

MRC

Puritan Board Freshman
You are to be commended for your decision regarding the abortifacient aspect of the pill. Many people are probably unaware of this content of the pill. Everyone should tell their young married friends about this.
My understanding with oral contraception is that it prevents the release of an egg into the uterus. The lining of the uterus still swells, as it "thinks" it has an egg, but with no egg conception is impossible (and therefore not a violation of God's law). The usual menstral cycle still results. I have always understood that pills that have an abortifacient are called the "morning after pill".

I looked into this when my wife used oral contraception for our first year of marriage, so I know this was the case with the type of oral contraception she was on - I assumed this was true of all oral contraceptives. If I am mistaken can you provide a link to contrary information on an abortifacient in oral contraception?
 

Kiffin

Puritan Board Freshman
My understanding with oral contraception is that it prevents the release of an egg into the uterus. The lining of the uterus still swells, as it "thinks" it has an egg, but with no egg conception is impossible (and therefore not a violation of God's law). The usual menstral cycle still results. I have always understood that pills that have an abortifacient are called the "morning after pill".

I looked into this when my wife used oral contraception for our first year of marriage, so I know this was the case with the type of oral contraception she was on - I assumed this was true of all oral contraceptives. If I am mistaken can you provide a link to contrary information on an abortifacient in oral contraception?
This is my understanding as well. I need some input, considering that I'll be married in Ocober.
 

White Knight

Puritan Board Freshman
You are convinced that the pill is wrong because of Abortifacient. You are concerned that condemns add an impersonal barrier to the communal aspect of sex. What are you struggling with? Sounds like your mind is made up. The tension between trusting God and being reckless with trusting God and being a dictator is always there.
Your wife is on your side. Take joy.
 

SRoper

Puritan Board Graduate
The pill and other hormonal contraceptives thin the lining of the uterus. It is theorized that this would reduce the chance of implantation if a break-through ovulation were to occur (and they do occur--you can still get pregnant on the pill). It is unknown whether this is actually the case, and if so, what the magnitude of the increased risk is. My wife and I have decided that the risk isn't worth it as there are plenty of other viable alternatives such as natural family planning, condoms, and diaphragms.
 

puritanpilgrim

Puritan Board Junior
Ditto. None of their business. When I had my third someone at work asked me if I was Mormon. With my forth, I was told many other ridiculous things I'm not going to put down. But it really only bothered me when I began to notice dissent my in-laws. My question was, "Well, which one would you get rid of." Really, brother...God will take care of you. His intent is not that you will have a baby then have you finances fall apart. You may have to learn how to work harder, or spent money only on things which matter. But, that's all a part of being conformed to the image of Christ. And meanwhile you get to raise another in the Lord. Which is evangelism.
 

Andres

Puritan Board Doctor
Being one on the liberal end of the PB spectrum, I fall into the camp of exercising responsibility regarding child birth. Even though children are more than "a line item on a budget", they ARE expensive. Yes, they are a blessing, but that doesn't cancel out the fact that they cost money. It takes more than love to raise a child.

That said, babies happen. And it's glorious. If you get pregnant, I seriously doubt your in-laws are going to get upset with you, though they may think it is bad timing. Even though you are the head of your family, your in-laws have reason to be interested in your financial well-being. They want for their grandchildren to be provided for, and naturally so. If a baby comes at a time they don't think is appropriate, you can assure them you are taking the steps necessary to provide for the new child. It may not be the standard of living your in-laws would prefer, but you will have your needs met.
well how would that be done without violations of God's commands and trying to take control of the future of our lives? Children arn't a luxury to be had when the time is right, and they arn't something that we buy to enhance our lives. I agree with alot of what you said, but how do you walk the line of trying to take control of your life, and being dependent on God?
Do you lock your doors at night or put on your seatbelt when you drive?
Rae, I do both the above, but if God told me specifically in His Word that having intruders break into my home or me flying through my windshield during crashes was a blessing from Him, then I would immediately stop. My point is that your examples have unfavorable consequences that we want to avoid at all costs. Having children is a blessing from God and always good (Psalm 127:3-5).
 
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Tripel

Puritan Board Senior
anyway, how would i go about using birth control in a Godly way? the pill is not an option, due to the abortion aspect. condoms? that seems to be add an impersonal barrier to the communal aspect of sex. I don't know, it is something that i am struggling with. should or shouldn't we? and if we should, then how?
I don't want to talk you into something your conscience is geared against, but if you are looking for a birth control alternative, try the diaphragm.
 

MRC

Puritan Board Freshman
The pill and other hormonal contraceptives thin the lining of the uterus. It is theorized that this would reduce the chance of implantation if a break-through ovulation were to occur (and they do occur--you can still get pregnant on the pill). It is unknown whether this is actually the case, and if so, what the magnitude of the increased risk is. My wife and I have decided that the risk isn't worth it as there are plenty of other viable alternatives such as natural family planning, condoms, and diaphragms.
Fair enough - thanks.
 

Kevin

Puritan Board Doctor
Keep in mind that human body is fallen, including the reproductive system. Especially the reproductive system.

The "just trust God to send us all the blessings possible" is an attitude that has some serious flaws in it, in my opinion. That is a subject for an other thread, however.

If you are covinced in your own mind, AND your wife agrees then I don't see your issue. The first post answered the OP perfectly.
 

lynnie

Puritan Board Graduate
As a wife ( four kids) I really appreciated my husbands willingness to use condoms, despite the fact that normally speaking it would be preferable for him to not use them. And they worked fine for us.

Randy Alcorn of Eternal Perspectives Ministry has a quite a bit about the pill keeping fertilized eggs from implanting, if you want to try to search his site.
 

raekwon

Puritan Board Junior
Do you lock your doors at night or put on your seatbelt when you drive?
Yes, But that is to protect my wife and myself from harm, not to prevent a blessing until we deem ourselves ready to receive it.
Rae, I do both the above, but if God told me specifically in His Word that having intruders break into my home or me flying through my windshield during crashes was a blessing from Him, then I would immediately stop.
My point is this, guys: the use of birth control doesn't necessarily mean that you're somehow not trusting God or wresting control of your life from his hands, no more than locking your door or wearing a seatbelt is.

If God wants to bless you and your wife to have a baby -- guess what? He's gonna bless you with a baby, regardless of the means in which you try to stop that from happening. That doesn't mean that taking measures to prevent it if the time doesn't seem wise is wrong. In fact, perhaps those are the secondary means by which God is bringing his timing to fruition. Who knows?
 

christiana

Puritan Board Senior
After I had my first three in 11 months my mother in law began to make suggestions. I chose to just let her talk as I figured that was none of their concern. Then I had three more and listened to both suggestions and remarks from others which I chose to ignore but never discuss. At that time such conversations were considered in very poor taste, different from today when most anything at all is discussed. My husband was a pharmacist and would have never allowed me to take birth control pills and this was when they were first being prescribed. Our Lord is so excellent at what He does and can be trusted to provide for all of our needs and we must be so grateful and thankful!! He is faithful! Responding like Kathleen's mom was and is a good thing! Private things should be kept private within marriage!
 

Montanablue

Puritan Board Doctor
After I had my first three in 11 months my mother in law began to make suggestions. I chose to just let her talk as I figured that was none of their concern. Then I had three more and listened to both suggestions and remarks from others which I chose to ignore but never discuss. At that time such conversations were considered in very poor taste, different from today when most anything at all is discussed. My husband was a pharmacist and would have never allowed me to take birth control pills and this was when they were first being prescribed. Our Lord is so excellent at what He does and can be trusted to provide for all of our needs and we must be so grateful and thankful!! He is faithful! Responding like Kathleen's mom was and is a good thing! Private things should be kept private within marriage!
It never fails to astound me how people think its perfectly appropriate to comment on one's reproductive system - whether its to tell you to have more kids, to stop having kids, or to get married soon or you'll be too old to have kids. Appalling, really.
 

Tripel

Puritan Board Senior
It never fails to astound me how people think its perfectly appropriate to comment on one's reproductive system - whether its to tell you to have more kids, to stop having kids, or to get married soon or you'll be too old to have kids. Appalling, really.
Those comments are appalling. One thing I don't mind being asked is if we plan on having more children. But to be asked to stop having kids or to hurry up and get married? That's too much.
 

Peairtach

Puritan Board Doctor
The Christian farmer trusts in God and also plans what and when and where he will sow.

If it's true/you believe the pill is abortifacient, there are other forms of contraception in God's providence that aren't abortifacient.

There are injunctions in Scripture against taking human life, but none against contraception itself. If it is so immoral why is it not condemned in Scripture?

Also, sexual relations between man and wife are presented in Scripture as having other purposes apart from having children. How is this right if all contraception is wrong? I'm not aware of any baby being mentioned in the Song of Solomon for instance.
 
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Berean

Puritanboard Commissioner
It never fails to astound me how people think its perfectly appropriate to comment on one's reproductive system - whether its to tell you to have more kids, to stop having kids, or to get married soon or you'll be too old to have kids. Appalling, really.
Or, how you should properly raise those kids (because they know best). And after all, they're just trying to be helpful. :um:
 

Montanablue

Puritan Board Doctor
It never fails to astound me how people think its perfectly appropriate to comment on one's reproductive system - whether its to tell you to have more kids, to stop having kids, or to get married soon or you'll be too old to have kids. Appalling, really.
Those comments are appalling. One thing I don't mind being asked is if we plan on having more children. But to be asked to stop having kids or to hurry up and get married? That's too much.
The asking isn't so much an issue as the telling. Its one thing to say, "Do you think you'll have more?" and quite another to say "Well, I certainly hope you'll be having more than 2! Two doesn't half fill a quiver!"
 
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