"laestadian, apostolic, gay, lgbtq, ex-oalc, ex-llc, llc, oalc, bunner" LEARNING TO LIVE FREE: Birth Control as a Basic Human Right

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Birth Control as a Basic Human Right

Check out this blog from Finland about the Laestadian ban on birth control and its impact on fathers as well as mothers.
Women and men should know that there does not exist any ban of birth control in the Bible. This Laestadian doctrine of large families and of sin of contraceptives are created only by human beings, by the Laestadian preachers who know almost nothing about biblical scholarship.  Sex and sexuality have been the exclusive domain of Laestadian husbands and preachers in the patriarchate gender system. Laestadian women are  never asked to express their opinions and experiences on this issues. However, the birth control is a determinate part of the human rights, and everyone’s right to privacy should always be respected in these issues. 
The UN’s World Health Organization defines reproductive rights as follows: 
Reproductive rights rest on the recognition of the basic right of all couples and people to decide freely and responsibly the number, spacing and timing of their children and to have the information and means to do so, and the right to attain the highest standard of sexual and reproductive health. They also include the right of all to make decisions concerning reproduction free of discrimination, coercion and violence. 
If you would like to investigate more details e.g. about the Bible and contraception, read this post by Ed. A. Suominen.


  1. This issue of high-risk pregnancy is not limited to Laestadian circles. A young Lutheran pastor of generations of heritage in church work crossed the path of high-risk childbirth in 1945. A next-town neighbor of the pastor in the North Dakota Badlands came to visit after dark. This was a big raw-boned Irish-American farmer who had four kids. His wife was, by medical agreement, under a death sentence if she ever got pregnant again, and the Irish-American's local Catholic priest had said "No sterilization" [tube-tying]. The wife needed to play her given role in life.
    This severe priestly statement was delivered at the largest hospital in Western ND, 90 miles away--a Catholic-run facility. Now this is nearly 70 years ago and all parties are deceased, so the narration continues, for here will unfold the main points.
    The Lutheran pastor suggested a visit to another secular hospital, and wrote a letter of introduction on his church letterhead. The Irish-American and his wife "visited shirt-tail relatives" in another part of the state and the wife was able to get her tubes tied. Game over for early death risks for her, as she remained healthy and happy with their four kids. She was 26 years old at the time. He was 27.
    What would he have done with four kids if she died? This was an era before women held much of a life insurance portfolio, and there was at that time no money for surviving husbands under the Social Security Act. Yet the Catholic priest, knowing of the risk of pregnancy-related death, expressed puzzlement several times at no more babies. Finally the couple became Episcopalian, about the time the Lutheran pastor moved away (1948).
    This is a lengthy story, one of anguish and hurt. But the author here had the advantage early in life of knowing this human adventure was an issue for many families. The author took the meaning of this story as, on the one hand, a tale of learning about human woe. On the other hand, when the Lutheran pastor told this tale of woe, it became also a tale of redemption. It became an affirmation that prayers, faith, and compassion must mean something here on earth, not just for the hereafter.
    On earth.

    1. This is really a serious question of human rights. Aslo a question of women's and childrens' rights.

      Conservative Laestadian doctrine of contraception ban is probably the most stringent in the world. It is possible that hutterites’s rules are as tight. Their fertility is also very high statistically.

      It should be noted that the Catholic Church accepts and even recommends the so-called natural contraception. It means following the calendar method. In fact, the previous Pope has recommended, as we have read in interviews. The Pope also approved the use of a condom, at least in certain situations.
      Fundamentalist leaders of Conservative Laestadians do not accept any contraception. Even celibacy should not engage in a longer time than illness or other issues requires it.

      It is a precious thing that you have brought this to our attention and wide debate. This affects and damages tens of thousands of women and families in Finland and America, as well as in poor countries, where Conservative Lestadians have active in their missionary work: in Africa and Latin America.

      It is desirable that the public debate on the serious harmfulness and e.g. about that very tragic case in Phoenix, causes that the religious leaders will change their doctrine.

      Red Rose (Finland)

      PS. There is a investigation about the roots and background of the Laestadianism's ban of contraception that demonstrates that it invented in the sixties and decided in the meeting of the Lestadian preachers 1967. (No one Laestadian woman was asked to comment the decision.) The site is in the Internet (only in Finnish).

  2. Hm. And yet people who follow a strict Bible interpretation would not listen to the WHO. Nor should they. You argue that everyone has the "right" to this or that....yet would deny these people the right to choose what to do with their bodies, in this case, NO birth control. I know people who use it, and ones who don't. Each must make that choice for themselves. I think you forget that.

  3. FALCon,
    So if people can ignore human rights and the WHO based on "strict Bible interpretation," can others do so by citing the Koran? Or visions they had on LSD? Universal human rights are just that, universal. No matter what you profess to believe, every adult should have the ability, without threats or punishment, without excommunication or abandonment, to decide what to do with his or her own body.

    Denying a woman control over her own fertility is essentially enslaving her.

    We know what the Bible says about slavery, right?

  4. What about catholicism? The Pope speaks against birth control, just as the ministers in the LLC do...that it is not okay under any circumstance.

    "In 1968, Pope Paul VI issued his landmark encyclical letter Humanae Vitae (Latin, "Human Life"), which reemphasized the Church’s constant teaching that it is always intrinsically wrong to use contraception to prevent new human beings from coming into existence.

    Contraception is "any action which, either in anticipation of the conjugal act [sexual intercourse], or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible" (Humanae Vitae 14). This includes sterilization, condoms and other barrier methods, spermicides, coitus interruptus (withdrawal method), the Pill, and all other such methods"
    (found here: http://www.catholic.com/tracts/birth-control)

    Why must the LLC change their position, but it is okay for the catholic pope to make such a statement? Just because people listen to the ministers but hardly any catholics give a darn what the pope has to say?

    -Unclear on bounderies

    1. Unclear,
      I agree that there isn't a dime's worth of difference between the Laestadian and Catholic bans on birth control (unless you call a dime's worth the rhythm method). Both contradict the right of a woman to control her own fertility, and are headed for the historical dustbin.

      Ironic, isn't it, that Laestadius would be cheek-by-jowl with his nemisis the Pope on this one?

      Self-determined women, like independent slaves, are frightening to those who benefited from their domination.

      That power is not given up easily, but with vast majority of people (even Catholics) favoring the right to birth control, it has largely been secured. The extremists will soon be footnotes in the history books, marveled at for their quaint ideas, like readers of entrails and tea leaves.

    2. Can we see difference between Catholics and Laestadians here: If a catholic person choose to control her fertility, and would say it openly to other members of the local congregation, she would not get any consequences as sanctions. If you look e.g. the fertility number in Italy, it is one of the lowest in Europe. Is is clear that birth contol is very popular there althoug nearly all people are Catholics, and there is the headquarter of Pope, Vatican.

      In a Laestadian congregation woman using contraception would become blaimed and excommunicated out of the congregation, if she would express this issue openly. I have never heard anyone ordinary people being excommunicated among Catholics for any reason anymore in our time.

      Red Rose

  5. Free, I like your responses. I wish you had a "Like" button, like on Facebook :)


  6. Well, since catholics have come up, I just thought you all might find this quite interesting, as I did. It is about a catholic who felt she was abused in 'the church'. She seems to hold much of the same fears as you all did, even if the 'rules' weren't quite so 'strict' or, perhaps, they were just different, with eating fish on fridays and so on instead of not wearing makeup, etc. http://emergingfrombroken.com/spiritual-abuse-and-the-catholic-church-by-lynn-tolson-2/

    I also felt this quote from http://myfullcup.wordpress.com/2013/03/19/spiritual-abuse-in-the-church/
    really hit home and was a good reminder. "Remember, love your neighbor as yourself includes those who share the same pew with you, or maybe they worship at the Methodist church across the street, or the Lutheran church down the block, the Baptist church around the corner, the non-denominational church around the block or the Catholic church across town.

    We are all equally guilty. We are all equally susceptible to spiritually abusing those in our sphere of influence. We are all called to love. And how can we claim to love Jesus and yet hate our fellow believers?"

    1. Jekida,Spiritual abuse is spiritual abuse, no matter where it occurs.
      Unclear on Boundaries...while as Free points out, there may be little difference between Catholic teaching on birth control and the teachings of the LLC and other branches of the Laestadian tree, there is a significant difference in practice. There is a difference in the Catholic Church, as has been pointed out, in that one is not shunned or kicked out for using birth control. The difference is that people are currently much less likely to set aside personal conscience at the behest of priests, the Bishops, or even the Pope. Statistics clearly show that people have taken that matter into their own homes as a matter of personal conscience and basically ignored the teaching of the Catholic Church on this matter. Also, one can question, say that one has doubts and enter into dialogue. (I left the LLC and found freedom and a spiritual home in the Catholic Church, despite the institutional problems) But clearly it, like any other earthly human run institution has sin and problems.

  7. Brian,

    I understand that spiritual abuse is spiritual abuse. And I understand that there ARE changes that need to be made in the LLC (but I don't see these as changes to the core teachings of the LLC, but rather as changes in how people treat one another, which can only come through awareness and understanding of others), but I think many can find that freedom and 'spiritual home' in the LLC that you find within the Catholic Church. There are still people in the Catholic Church who feel spiritually abused today, and as you are a member of that church, why do you not clammor for change there, just as you do in the LLC? Just because people are afriad for reasons other than "shunning", does not mean they are not afraid. I just feel like people make excuses for their current church (by saying since they are able to find freedom within it, the rest is just "sin"), but that to them there is no excuse for the LLC (why can it not be that we have "sin" too? We DO!) I desire awareness for ALL spiritual abuse. I understand this blog is focused on Laestadians, but I think people here forget that this happens in larger denominations, and simply wanted to remind them.

    1. Jekida,
      I don't think my spiritual journey is for everyone. I believe that some people may be satisfied in the Laestadian or other fundamentalist traditions...but I was in the Church until I was 28, and I don't remember a lot of Happy people. The sermons were not particularly happy. The idea was that "we are traveling through the world, an evil place, and we must keep our eyes to Heaven, because earth is a vale of tears. And we must not mingle with our neighbors because we might be tempted to sin, and we must not talk about questions or doubts because that is sin" Interesting that we humans are all God's creation, the Earth is God's creation, yet we considered it a wicked evil place. It is as though sin and not God is the more powerful. And we sure didn't see Christ in our neighbor. Looking back, there was so much fear of sin and sinning, that one had little time to celebrate God's Love and Mercy.
      As far as the Catholic Church, the LLC etc, all are operated by humans, and all are subject to sin. I would suggest that if you are a member of the LLC and you are willing to be in dialogue here, and not throw in the "oh it's a simple faith, you are too smart for me" of the other nonsense that is tossed about, and you make statements such as "but rather as changes in how people treat one another, which can only come through awareness and understanding of others", then you are the exception. The fact is, most believers in an absolute truth see little reason to be aware of and understand others..because there is nothing to learn. There is no revelation or enlightenment outside the "one true faith"
      So thank you for intelligent, unfearful discussion. I am no threat to you, or your church or your beliefs.
      Peace of God be with you

    2. I can only say that, despite everything you veiw as negative in the sermons, I always found joy and peace with in them (LLC). The world IS an evil place as sin is in the world, but that does not mean you cannot find joy in it. What of all the singing, which always brought me joy, and the sermons on the beauty of Gods creations? I remember many sermons which spoke of how loving God was and how lovingly we each were created with our own unique and special gifts. Talk about positive messages! :)

    3. Jekida,
      My experience is that there were lots of sermons about how lovingly we were created with our own unique and special gifts...those of us in the special flock of believers. There was never talk of the beauty of God's other human creations...certainly no recognition of seeing Christ in the poor, in the homeless, in the abused. And for all of the talk of Love, there was little love shown...to outsiders. I always thought...what if Jesus had treated the woman at the well the way the church treated outsiders. For all the times I heard the parable of the Good Samaritan, it was never explained to me that the Samaritan was of a group of people not seen as believers by the Jews of Jesus time.
      Peace be with you

    4. What of all the singing, which always brought me joy, and the sermons on the beauty of Gods creations? I remember many sermons which spoke of how loving God was and how lovingly we each were created with our own unique and special gifts. Talk about positive messages!

      You just did, and you’ve done so very well. Coupled with the talk about “the beauty of God’s creation,” there is often some talk of concern about the stewardship of the earth, at least the surrounding environment when this is mentioned during church camps. Pick up the trash, boys, and leave the place looking better than you found it! This is God’s creation we’re talking about here! Or the hunter’s code that is deeply ingrained in LLC boys by their fathers: Don’t shoot what you don’t plan to eat. These are certainly positive messages.

      Thank you for this perspective. “A good reminder,” as the old LLC catchphrase goes.

      Now, Brian makes an astute observation, too: The love and praise for God’s gifts is pretty narrowly focused on those in “God’s Kingdom,” to the exclusion of everybody else.

      I desire awareness for all spiritual abuse. I understand this blog is focused on Laestadians, but I think people here forget that this happens in larger denominations, and simply wanted to remind them.

      Good point!

      Welcome to the lion’s den! We’ll try to be nice and let you walk around unharmed.

    5. Thank you Eop. You made me giggle, and I appreciate the effort to be nice :) Thinking back, I have to agree that these messages were generally focused on 'believers', however I believe this is because there is such an issue with exclusion and bullying within the youth of the church and this focus was not intended to cause people to think that those in the world do not have special gifts, or do not deserve love and our respect. A matter of over emphasis in reaction to a problem creating undesired consequences perhaps?

    6. Although, I do have to disagree that we are not taught to see Jesus Christ in the poor and the homeless and "unbelievers" I have a very vivid memory of a sermon which spoke of the good Samaritan on the road to damascus and how important it was that we help, as Jesus himself would help, people of every denomination and walk of life. How Jesus would be willing to give these men the shirt off his own back if he felt they needed it more than him and we could only desire to be so welcoming and understanding and giving as that.

  8. You hit the nail on the head in your first paragraph, Brian. In the OALC it's all about sin, the evil world, and no happiness. I attended a church service in Michigan two years ago, and the preacher said, in that sorrowful/affected tone they use, "There is little joy in a Christian's life." Talk about self-fulfilling! I am glad to be away from it. Blessings, SISU

  9. Dissecting what is Spiritual Abuse is another great topic. What is the cost to see the world as evil and to discount so many without getting to know them....AND, accepting many due to what pew they sit in on Sunday mornings.

    The first 46 years of my life I had a very limited and very fearful relationship with God. He was like a larger than life parent, waiting for me to screw up. And, it seemed, he was impossible to please.
    And, I was a person filled with sin or seeking sin....or completely not good enough.

    It was close to the real life relationship between an abuser and a victim.

    When I healed and fully was able to flip around who was the wrong doer (my father) and what my part was...( and 8 year old trusting, loving girl), I was able to see a magnificent God and a child of God.

    Clearly, to me, the way we see our selves or are taught to see our selves, greatly affect our spiritual being....inside.

    My spirit of being a little girl was abused. By my father and then by the church and its teachings.

    I have heard, and find it enlightening, that often Preachers preach from their own sense of self esteem.
    Projecting their fears upon the listeners.

    Imagine little children being raised in fear and their sense of spirit totally wiped out...by not focusing on the beauty and wonder of the and instead treating it like the devils playground, where their spirits will be stolen on the outside. While IT actually has been abused inside the church.

    What is supposedly 'going to happen' in the world, IS being done inside the church and families who attend.

    I healed from spiritual abuse along with sexual abuse....by leaving both church and family. AND, my journey will not be everyones... I didn't set out to leave them both, I set out to find the truth and to live my life doing what was best for my children.

    And, I don't speak against the church...but against abuse.

    I too, like Brian would love you all to have love, peace and joy within the churches, just no more abuse, spiritual as well as sexual and physical.

    Letting all sides talk about the differences and what works and doesn't work, is enlightening to all sides. Each of us will know what is right for us, what honors our feelings and our history.


    1. Beth,
      The Prayer of St. Francis is something I turn to often.

      Lord, make me an instrument of your peace,
      Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
      Where there is injury, pardon;
      Where there is doubt, faith;
      Where there is despair, hope;
      Where there is darkness, light;
      Where there is sadness, joy.

      O Divine Master,
      grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
      to be understood, as to understand;
      to be loved, as to love.
      For it is in giving that we receive.
      It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
      and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.

      Beth, I am reminded by my wife, who is a Chaplain, that the bible indicates that following Jesus...truly following him, may mean leaving family. I am sorry that in your case as in so many cases when people are true to themselves , it means that intentionally or not, they leave family.

    2. Beth, I am sorry to hear that you were a victim of sexual abuse. I, too, am a survivor of sexual abuse, and I understand all the ramifications of the affects of this. I have studied this topic at length, and have compassion for anyone having suffered this as a child and effects into adulthood. Back in those years as a child until only several years ago, this topic was not discussed, not believed to be happening, and there was much ignorance on this being a reality that exists. In today's world this is a national awareness reality that has been brought forth in organizations of all kinds, much education has been brought forth as to the extent of this abuse happining in all walks of life, with no boundaries of economic, ethnic, religious, etc. in all life situations. This is a fact of life that it does exist in all organizations, families, including churches. It has been hushed up in all these organizations up until recent years, due to lack of education. No one group has been spared. This issue is being addressed in the LLC churches as well, with education and policies put in place, Victims of sexual abuse are being encouraged to report these incidents to the authorities, there can be no convictions unless the victims and families affected are able to come forth and report these crimes against children. As more people become educated on this topic, the more they will be reported, with consequences set forth by the authorities, Not only within the church. but every organization there has been awareness and the need to report these crimes, and it is becoming more and more widespread the need to report, where as in the past all people outside and inside of the church have felt the need to protect the perpetrator. As a member of the LLC I have been passionate about education on these matters, as have many others. This has not been an excusive issue within the LLC as many have erroneously believed to be the case. Again, I am sorry this has happened to you as well as many, As far as spiritual abuse, the birth control issue has not resulted in banning members from the church and ministers kicking members out. I slso have had much joy in my life in this faith, children are not experiencing fear and unhappiness in being within a believing family, and members do not experience listening to sad sermons on how our lives are sorrowful, rather, the sermons and discussions focus on the joys of believing, and we completely love family and dear friends who do not attend with unconditional love and acceptance, contrary to what the ex LLCers believe.

    3. Just a thought5/12/2013 08:53:00 AM

      Anon, I thought your response was very well written, and wish it was in a topic that has seen more discussion, as I feel it would get more views there. I very much agree that the sexual abuse is not something specific to LLC, but it is good to educate and speak of these matters (and this education IS happening, worldwide and within "LLC walls"). I do feel, however, that you have over-generalized. There ARE some ex-LLCer's who have been treated poorly by those within the church (their own families included), especially those who have left years ago. This, too, is a topic that needs to be addressed, and slowly is. I feel those who leave now are generally treated more lovingly and kindly than those in the past. Still, many don't exactly reach out to those who have left, and they do need a good friend.

    4. "Children are not experiencing fear and unhappiness in being within a believing family."
      "Those who leave now are generally are treated more lovingly and kindly than those in the past."

      These two statements could serve as the vision statement for this blog. If we can help achieve those ends, the discussion here will have been well worth our time.

  10. I don't have time to respond except to say how much I appreciate all of you. Never underestimate the hope and courage you give to others, even (perhaps especially) us oldtimers.

  11. It is the responsibility of the church to proclaim the Good news of what Jesus Christ has acomplished for mankind on the cross. Thats the Gospel, and we are asked to believe that,and verbally agree that we want Jesus to be our Lord and Saviour, That's what the Bible teaches us. But the cult like churches such as the Laestadian movement and the Catholic church and others will not let that happen. Instead of just proclaiming the Bible message,they direct their followers to believe what the Pope or other church leaders have decided was the truth and not what the Bible actually teaches,and of course in our case what Luther believed ,or what Laestadian believed or Rattama, or some other Hiekki or Toivo believed. that's the reason the term "Born again" is never heard or even understood by the Laestadian movement.How can you know the term if you never trusted in Jesus Christ alone? Thats why the churches are riddled with problems. It,s no coinsidence that the Catholic church and Laestadian churches have a high rate of sexual abuse, where the Holy Spirit is not guiding the lives of people the flesh is and that is the result.I wasted a lot of years in the ,FALC, LLC,and the ALC, and finally after being obedient for the first time,I read the Bible and understood that salvation was not connected to any particular church, it is only about Believing on the finished work of Christ.There is no room for religious pride in getting saved....Matt

    1. Well put, Matt. You succinctly described the Grace + crowd. They say all you have to do is 'just believe', yet add all these man made rules to follow and condemn all others not in THEIR chosen group as not having the Holy Spirit and believing in a dead faith.

    2. Who are the Grace+ crowd? That's new to me.

  12. Matt...it is interesting to note how Luther himself wanted almost all of his writings (except for the Catechism & a couple of other writings) destroyed as he felt that focusing on a man's comments and interpretations only ended up detracting from the Bible itself. I noticed years ago how large doctrinal issues within Laestadianism were often being interpreted in light of Laestadius' or Luther's writings versus the Bible itself. It was kind of strange going to meetings and the people were arguing over Luther or Laestadius' understandings verus the Scriptures. Birth control is the issue of this thread and all groups of people in all ages have had to grapple with the subject yet interestingly enough there is really nothing said about sexual practices, birth control etc.... in the New Testament but rather it only commands faithfulness to one's spouse and forbids sex outside of marriage. I wonder if Laestadian speakers should stop all the claptrap and focus in on what the New Testament really says and not on what it does not say anything about. Old AP

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  14. Jekida,
    Alternate points of view are welcome here, as a review of the archives will demonstrate.
    However, you may not cut and paste long, spurious, non-scientific arguments about birth control or any other topic. It isn't good form on any blog, and certainly not here.
    However, you can start your own blog and post anything you want.

    1. Sorry about that. I got lazy, and instead of trying to explain it myself, I stole others words. I will attempt to restate what I had quoted because I dont feel the 'arguments' (they were not intended to be, but rather something to contemplate) were 'non-scientific.' Oral birth control pills work by doing three things: 1. they prevent ovulation 2. they thicken cervical mucosa to prevent sperm from penetrating the cervix, and in case either of those two dont happen to work they 3. alter the lining of the uterus (by thinning it) to greatly reduce the chance that any egg that might have just managed to fertalize regardless of the first two, will not be able to attach to the lining of the uterine wall. This IS scientific fact. This is what happens when you take hormonal contraceptives. So, the question we all need to ask ourselves is, when does life begin (and does it matter to you)? Does life begin at the moment of conception? If so, in taking this form of birth control you really are taking the risk of 'aborting' this fertalized egg by not allowing it to attach to the uteran wall. (Science cannot say how many of these fertalized eggs are rejected by this thin uterine linning, but since people do still get pregnant even while on the pill, its a pretty safe assumption that this occurs from time to time) Or, does life begin when you are officially "pregnant" (according to doctors this is when the egg actually attaches to the uterine wall)? Or does life begin whenever the cut off for abortions are in your state of residence? Or does life begin when the baby finally comes out to join this world? If you are pro-abortion, this probably isn't an issue for you. But, if you are not, you just might want to look into the form of birth control you are using (if you use one), as "the pill" may not be what you are looking for. This is not saying anything about 'barrier' contraceptives, just hormonal ones. If you believe abortions go against Gods Word, you just may find that you also believe this particular form of birth control, also goes against that same word of God.

  15. Yes, it is true that birth control pills can reduce the likelihood of implantation, as can Advil, Aleve, and other drugs, as well as stress and obesity.

    1. Your reply interested me, and so I googled for further information. Although these drugs DO reduce your chances of getting pregnant, I could not find ANY information that stated that they allowed fertilization and then rejected the egg from implanting. I could only find that they may prevent the release of an egg, or affect ovulation in some way. In this case, you would not be 'aborting' a fertilized egg from attaching to your uterine lining, but simply not allowing the egg to fertilize in the first place (more along the lines of 'barrier' contraceptives). It is also true (as far as I've always understood it) that stress does not abort your concieved egg, but rather affects your menstural cycle. If you know where I could find information on how they 'abort' a 'conceived' egg, please let me know. I would be interested in reading about it.

    2. Here is a news article about NSAIDs and miscarriage risk.

      Having had several miscarriages myself, I suppose I am—to fundamentalists on this issue—the moral equivalent of a murderer. I'm glad my doctor and husband and friends did not make me feel like one, because I was sad enough.

      Even though I knew that fertile, sexually active women miscarry all the time without even knowing it (one out of five pregnancies are naturally aborted), even though I had a lifestyle that was squeaky clean, I was wracked with guilt.

      What had I possibly consumed, or done, or not done? Too much coffee or tea? Stress? Exercise? Body fat? Was I "unworthy?" Women in family had NO issues with fertility. What was WRONG with me?

      I learned that nature makes mistakes, loads and loads of them, every day, and the idea that each egg is sacrosanct (not every sperm of course, because it is WOMEN who must be controlled) is simply cruel.

      After finally being able (mysteriously), to carry to term, after our two beautiful babies were born, I began using birth control. I had several reasons to question whether the Pill was the best method, but its potential for miscarriage was not one of them. I knew my body was amply proficient in that area already.

      Having been sternly "pro life" as a young woman and having evolved on the issue through many trials, I won't argue with you about whether life begins at conception (and if God is a mass aborter), because I believe every woman needs to work that out for herself.

      Those last two words being key.

      Fortunately, there are other options for birth control.

  16. Okay, thanks for the article. I guess I now understand what you meant, and this was not news to me. I believe most women who become pregnant in todays day and age know the risks of these painkillers. Doctors make sure they do. You are told not to take these while pregnant and are given a list of medications that ARE safe (at least I was). So, why do doctors not tell you how birth control works, unless you specifically ask?

    You may be interested to know that, yes, now that I am sexually active, I do value each of my eggs as potential life. I also value each of my husbands sperm as potential life. Once I recieved that list of 'common medications' which may cause miscarriage, I do try all other options before choosing to take any of these medications, since I am not on any form of birth control, and therefore could potentially be pregnant, basically at any time. If I need to have xrays done, or something like that, I am always sure to take a pregnancy test beforehand (that is as close to sure as I can get). This is because of my own personal convictions and beliefs and I am not saying that this is what everyone should do. Nor do I have any major health concerns or worries to deal with.

    I do not mean to argue with you about when life starts, it was simply a question for each person to consider (I did not state when I thought life started, or try to create an argument for all to see things my way, did I?). Everyone will make up their own minds, for whatever reason, as to when life starts. I just think that there are many who take "the pill" without ever looking into how it works and may find that it does actually go against their personal morals. If you feel life starts with conception, you might find this particular method to be 'abortion'. As you said, if you are choosing to use birth control, there are other options.

    As your testimony states, many women (I might even go so far as to say most) are devastated to learn that they were not able to carry to full term (if it is evil to consider this a life, then why were you so upset about it?). Nature has its own way of choosing when to end life, and when to bring it full term, without any of us ever understanding completely, "why?" Even when young children, babies, teenagers, young adults, even pets (the list could go on and on) die, especially of natural causes or in an accident we are involved in, our first question often is 'Why?' because we dont understand. Why them and not me? Why die at all? Why now? WHY? So, my question is: why is this life important, but not that life (IF you do determine it as life)? IF this IS life, to you, what gives you the right to take away this small life forms 'human rights'? It's not a question I want any one person to answer, but one I want each person to consider on their own...

    Just because nature makes mistakes, does not mean we would not wish to treat EACH POTENTIAL EGG and EACH POTENTIAL SPERM as a potential baby. (ironically, if you are using a barrier form of birth control, it is YOU who, in a sense, says that the sperm is not sacrosanct by not allowing it to even try reach its destination). It takes two to tango as the saying goes.....or, perhaps, three, because nature plays a role, too, doesnt it?

    Please, I am not trying to argue with you, I'm just trying to educate so that women can make their own choices due to their own personal beliefs.

    1. I'm just amused by the notion of each sperm being sancrosanct. If each sperm is potential life, and stopping potential life is the same as abortion, and abortion is murder, I have committed genocide at a rate that can only be matched by the God of the Old Testament. ;)

    2. I never said this would be the case for everyone, I just said that it is for me.

    3. I also never said stopping potential life is abortion, I said purposely causing a miscarriage could be abortion depending on when you consider life starts.

  17. If a person is "educated" in all the choices, and still makes the choice to get pregnant (again) or carry a risky pregnancy to term.....than that is their own personal choice. You cannot force them to do otherwise. I think many things are wrong, and I have no power to force my views on people who chose to do them.

    1. Good point FALCon.

    2. Not sure what your point is, FALCon. There are many kinds of power.