"Catholic Women Who Use Contraception"
Below is a link to a blog post by speaker, writer, and convert from atheism, Jennifer Fulwiler, in which she discusses the many Catholic women who've contacted her or spoken with her about the Church's teaching on contraception. Here's a lengthy excerpt:
I've now had long conversations with a lot of ladies in this situation, and, contrary to the impression given in many of the "98%" reports, I do not see women who display a blatant disregard for what their Church teaches.
Instead, I see women who love their Catholic faith, and who genuinely desire to live in accordance with its tenets.
I see women who have been bombarded by secular wisdom on human sexuality, yet who have never heard a detailed explanation of their own Church's beliefs in this area.
I see women who have never been exposed to the idea that this teaching is an articulation of an objective moral truth, who have instead been led to believe that the Catholic stance against contraception is rooted in nothing deeper than the personal whims of men in the Vatican.
I see women who are utterly maxed out by the challenges of modern motherhood, and are terrified that making any changes to their current family planning choices could send them over a mental or financial cliff.
I see women who endure hostility and ridicule for their efforts to explore this issue further, who are surrounded by people who consider contraception to be a modern necessity akin to electricity or running water.
I see women who have asked around at their parish for resources to help them gain a better understanding of these ideas, and who have been turned away by folks who are as confused as they are.
I see women who are beginning to see that artificial methods of birth control come with their own problems, and whose gut instincts tell them that there just might be some truth to this idea that contraception has not been a good thing for us.
In short, I see a generation of Catholic women who are poised to reject the lies of secular culture and embrace the fullness of their Church's teaching, but who will need a lot of help to get there.
First, they need to hear more about this topic in their churches, whether it's through homilies or classes or other outreach ministries.
They need access to thorough explanations of the why's behind the Church's stance on this issue, phrased in a way that resonates with someone coming from a totally different perspective.
They need to hear the truth that throwing away their contraception is actually the key to true reproductive freedom.
They need practical advice -- not only in terms of how to practice natural methods of family planning, but suggestions for what to do if their husbands are closed to the concept. They need to encounter other folks who are making or have made this journey, preferably at the local level, who can provide them with prayer support, and with the occasional shoulder to cry on.
Most of all, I think it is of the utmost importance that natural family planning outreach efforts not discount the profound changes that come with switching to this method of child spacing.