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William
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« on: August 15, 2011, 08:13:56 PM »

Does the Orthodox prohibition of contraception mean that Orthodox couples have tons of kids? What if you can't afford to raise them all or you neglect to pay adequate attention to some because you have so many?

Granted, I won't need to deal with any of this for a long time. But it's still a bit worrying.
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« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2011, 08:22:41 PM »

William, you are potentially opening up a Pandora's box, here.

I will start the discussion by saying that the Orthodox Church's attitude towards contraception (however defined) probably doesn't rise to the level of "prohibition", though it depends on who you talk to.
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« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2011, 07:30:21 PM »

LOL! I see you didn't get many responses to this. Everyone is afraid to touch it.
The idea behind contraception, mainly chemical, is that is does not simply prevent ovulation in the wife. Hence, it has to have other back up mechanisms that are inherently abortive in nature. We can't just simply say we are pro life then do everything possible to commit atrocities for the sake of our convenience.
Plus, Orthodoxy doesn't separate sexuality from procreation as protestants and the secular world are so wont to do.
It ain't easy, I will tell you that much Wink
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« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2011, 07:40:28 PM »

To help break down some of the issues involved, both for discussion and our consideration, we can find ourselves with some high points.

1. Love for all life
2. God and our Trust in Him
3. Our self-control
4. Our adherence to the principle inherent in the above
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« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2011, 09:58:35 PM »

I just hope that I'm not going to hell for only intending to give birth to two children (whether that's going to happen or not is another story). I'm not going to lie, I get nightmares of having to choose between my life and the child's if something goes wrong during the pregnancy (and there is a good chance it might, actually). Even thinking of my first birth will start a panic attack.

I love children and we do plan to adopt, though. I like to hope that at the end of the day, that it won't matter too much. God will judge me.

I think some more women need to chime in on this one. It's easy for men to take such firm stands on contraception when they don't have to give birth. Offense intended. I won't tell my TMI story here, what I'm doing, but I am struggling with this idea at the moment.

And yes, I know what the hard-line view on contraception is. Now, whether Orthodox couples practice that is another story.
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« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2011, 10:18:07 PM »

Offense intended.

Taken. After all, we're only heartless men, with no attachment, love, or appreciation for life and it's creation.
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« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2011, 10:27:09 PM »

Offense intended.

Taken. After all, we're only heartless men, with no attachment, love, or appreciation for life and it's creation.
I was joking, sorry that I didn't put a winky face there. Although, in all seriousness, I don't pretend to empathize with situations that I have not experienced myself. I can only sympathize. And while I believe that most men whole-heartedly sympathize, I don't believe that they generally have the same fears that a woman does about her child. Scratch that. Fears to the same degree, I guess?

Of course I consider what the Church says on it, though, which is why I admit that I'm struggling. I was just pointing out that it's easy to put a number and say "absolutely no thinking about preventing pregnancy, ever!" if the person doesn't have to give birth or is not concerned about that at the time.
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« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2011, 09:26:17 AM »


I love children and we do plan to adopt, though. I like to hope that at the end of the day, that it won't matter too much. God will judge me.


I don't make a habit of speaking for God, but based on some of the stuff He said while He was here, you'll probably come out alright if you adopt.  You know, the whole orphans and widows thing.   Smiley
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« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2011, 09:53:37 AM »

I have been Orthodox for 12 years.  I have never seen or heard of any *really* large families in all that time.  I have seen a few with six kids, which to me is still quite manageable.

Just sharing my personal experience:

We have four children.  During the time they were coming along, we used no contraception.  They all arrived roughly 2 years apart. 

During my last pregnancy, about halfway through, I began having extremely strong thoughts and feelings of "this is the last time I can do this."  Too strong to ignore.  After she was born, and after much prayer and counselling with our priest, we made the decision for my husband to have a vasectomy (I would have had a tubal after the c-section, but it was a Catholic hospital and they don't perform them).

A few years after that, I developed problems that necessitated having the Novasure procedure done.  Pregnancy after this procedure is extremely dangerous and is to be avoided.  So, he would have ended up having the vasectomy anyway, eventually.

As far as affording kids, my first thought is that it is not NEARLY as expensive to raise a child in this country as the media would have us believe, particularly if one parent can stay at home and avoid childcare costs.  We lived solely on one income from 1995-2009 and we've been fine.
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« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2011, 01:24:37 PM »

Mary I don't know if I can wholeheartedly agree with you. I have 7 after all (for now), and one of those is profoundly disabled with a condition that is totally random. Having that one child is like 7 more all by herself. *manageable* is a term that can't be decided for other people.
Today is her 9th birthday and she has spent it seizing in my arms, despite a medication increase that causes her to turn into Godzilla. We have been a single income family since marriage in 1992, and while it doesn't take the copious millions the media suggests it DOES take more than we can generate. Especially when God won't bless one blessed thing my dh does. ( even our priest is shocked at how much we are enduring, and he's rarely speechless) I am not one of those quiverful ppl that pretends that God puts magic groceries on your stoop or pays your light bill with the power of the cosmos. That irks me. The reality is hard, but then the path IS narrow.

I do not find men in general to be callous about regards to life, but they tend to a bit more removed from it in a direct sense as they cannot carry it within them. Of course I am speaking about moral men to begin with. My husband has been able to remove himself from this surprise pregnancy entirely despite the fact that I never got so sick in all our years together, because he CaN. In the end however, its about trust and living our Faith in action. We might have a legitimate health issue, those do arise. However for *most* women (exceptions included) it comes down to trusting whatever God plans for your life. That could be adoption, or a large family or none at all. The same goes for men, and I think for them its harder to get to the point of agreeing to shoulder the material responsibility than it is for women to get to the point of literally carrying the physical responsibility. That's my take from all these years of making people. Wink
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« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2011, 01:52:07 PM »

Oh wow, calligraphqueen! You are so strong to endure all of that! I don't even know what to say that's adequate.  Embarrassed

Lord have mercy on you and your family. I will say a prayer for all of you.
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« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2011, 02:16:53 PM »

Calligraphqueen,

All I meant, and said, is that six seems manageable *to me*, and I think I could have handled six as well as I handle four.  Of course I cannot, and wasn't trying to, speak for anyone else, nor addressing special circumstances.  I am sorry if anything I said seemed flip or offensive to you.

God bless you and your family.   Smiley
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« Reply #12 on: August 18, 2011, 04:55:35 PM »

interesting points.
i think that certainly discretion should be used in special cases (i think it's called ecconomia) and i think most orthodox and catholic scholars approve the 'rhythm' method, where a woman's most fertile days are avoided.
There are very few families in the Bible that had huge numbers of children, so family 'spacing' must have been carried out then as well.

i have (very) disabled people in my (extended) family too, so i know how much work that is; may God give you peace and the ability to ask for help as well.
by the way, not all contraceptive pills have side effects of possibly causing abortion; only the 'progesterone only' pill does that. It stops any fertilised egg from implanting, although the main effect is to prevent fertilisation of the egg.

maryofegypt - cool user name.
of course another way to avoid having children is to live in the desert as a hermit and see no other human until you are very old...
 Wink
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« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2011, 05:02:44 PM »

1. How come this conversation onlya mentions the pill and abstinence? What about condoms?

2. If single income life is possible for you, you should really thank God for that. In Orthodox countries (with the possible exception of Cyprus) it would be completely impossible for a family to survive on just one income.
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« Reply #14 on: August 18, 2011, 05:05:49 PM »

i think condoms are considered by most orthodox churches as the same as 'spilling your seed', so they are not encouraged.
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« Reply #15 on: August 18, 2011, 05:10:46 PM »

2. If single income life is possible for you, you should really thank God for that. In Orthodox countries (with the possible exception of Cyprus) it would be completely impossible for a family to survive on just one income.

It ain't particularly easy here too.  I cannot imagine having a wife and certainly not kids on my salary, as it stands.  They'd be wearing rags and eating stray dogs.
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« Reply #16 on: August 18, 2011, 07:38:27 PM »

 It is a wonderful experience, having children, but it is also a trial by fire that never ends. The rewards outweigh the headaches, and every day I am glad to have these little monsters in my life, but I find it hard to take seriously those who want to pontificate about birth control but don't have children themselves. These types also tend to have plenty of parenting advice.

I say this as the second of six and as a father of three (and at 26, likely more).
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« Reply #17 on: August 18, 2011, 07:45:49 PM »

2. If single income life is possible for you, you should really thank God for that. In Orthodox countries (with the possible exception of Cyprus) it would be completely impossible for a family to survive on just one income.

It ain't particularly easy here too.  I cannot imagine having a wife and certainly not kids on my salary, as it stands.  They'd be wearing rags and eating stray dogs.

The necessity of the double income is another of the sour fruits of feminism in the Anglosphere.
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« Reply #18 on: August 18, 2011, 08:03:07 PM »

2. If single income life is possible for you, you should really thank God for that. In Orthodox countries (with the possible exception of Cyprus) it would be completely impossible for a family to survive on just one income.

It ain't particularly easy here too.  I cannot imagine having a wife and certainly not kids on my salary, as it stands.  They'd be wearing rags and eating stray dogs.
The necessity of the double income is another of the sour fruits of feminism in the Anglosphere.

+ One thousand million.  A rarely spoken about phenomenon.  Without steering the thread off course, good on you for mentioning it, Akimori!
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« Reply #19 on: August 18, 2011, 08:16:17 PM »

2. If single income life is possible for you, you should really thank God for that. In Orthodox countries (with the possible exception of Cyprus) it would be completely impossible for a family to survive on just one income.

It ain't particularly easy here too.  I cannot imagine having a wife and certainly not kids on my salary, as it stands.  They'd be wearing rags and eating stray dogs.
The necessity of the double income is another of the sour fruits of feminism in the Anglosphere.

+ One thousand million.  A rarely spoken about phenomenon.  Without steering the thread off course, good on you for mentioning it, Akimori!

When you double the workforce you drive down prices (i.e. - wages, the price of labour).  Workers are a commodity and are bound by the same rules as all other commodities.
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« Reply #20 on: August 18, 2011, 09:10:33 PM »

2. If single income life is possible for you, you should really thank God for that. In Orthodox countries (with the possible exception of Cyprus) it would be completely impossible for a family to survive on just one income.

It ain't particularly easy here too.  I cannot imagine having a wife and certainly not kids on my salary, as it stands.  They'd be wearing rags and eating stray dogs.
The necessity of the double income is another of the sour fruits of feminism in the Anglosphere.
+ One thousand million.  A rarely spoken about phenomenon.  Without steering the thread off course, good on you for mentioning it, Akimori!
When you double the workforce you drive down prices (i.e. - wages, the price of labour).  Workers are a commodity and are bound by the same rules as all other commodities.

Precisely, and that ridiculously rapid influx (1970s until present) and subsequent shift in jobs, wages, etc. caused a substantial change in how most families are now able to operate.   

And we sit and wonder why Western societies aren't having lots of kiddies.  I'm not saying that's the only factor, but it's certainly a major one.
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« Reply #21 on: August 18, 2011, 09:35:04 PM »

LOL! I see you didn't get many responses to this. Everyone is afraid to touch it.
The idea behind contraception, mainly chemical, is that is does not simply prevent ovulation in the wife. Hence, it has to have other back up mechanisms that are inherently abortive in nature. We can't just simply say we are pro life then do everything possible to commit atrocities for the sake of our convenience.
Plus, Orthodoxy doesn't separate sexuality from procreation as protestants and the secular world are so wont to do.
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See some other thread, where I pretty much PWN'd someone on this issue.

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« Reply #22 on: August 18, 2011, 09:37:50 PM »

i think condoms are considered by most orthodox churches as the same as 'spilling your seed', so they are not encouraged.

Which is silly in prohibition. But "pulling out" when done correctly is pretty much as effective as proper condom usage interestingly.

And that means very effective.
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« Reply #23 on: August 18, 2011, 09:39:35 PM »

RE: Double income.

I'll gladly stay home and raise the kids.

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« Reply #24 on: August 18, 2011, 09:40:15 PM »

i think condoms are considered by most orthodox churches as the same as 'spilling your seed', so they are not encouraged.

Which is silly in prohibition. But "pulling out" when done correctly is pretty much as effective as proper condom usage interestingly.

And that means very effective.
There's that old myth over pre-cum that can causse pregnancy which I think the chances are below 18%.

Couples who utilize the pull out method are actually in the tens of millions worldwide, and if I'm not mistaken the most commonly used birth control method.
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« Reply #25 on: August 18, 2011, 09:50:18 PM »

i think condoms are considered by most orthodox churches as the same as 'spilling your seed', so they are not encouraged.

Which is silly in prohibition. But "pulling out" when done correctly is pretty much as effective as proper condom usage interestingly.

And that means very effective.
There's that old myth over pre-cum that can causse pregnancy which I think the chances are below 18%.

Couples who utilize the pull out method are actually in the tens of millions worldwide, and if I'm not mistaken the most commonly used birth control method.

"Pre-cum" is just silly anyway. I'll get the study. Pulling out is over or just about 90% effective.

Ain't many semen in that fluid before organism, it is primarily seminal fluid. Your prostate relieving itself. More likely to occur under certain circumstances. The amount of "pre cum" seminal fluid can be quite large.

I can add a personal anecdote here within a medical context backed up by the experience of my urologist, if wanted.

If you couple pulling out with just a vague understanding of time of ovulation, the likelihood of pregnancy is very, very low.

For many guys though, pulling out ain't a reliable method for others it is no problem.




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« Reply #26 on: August 18, 2011, 10:00:31 PM »

The number of kids should be one, or, maximum, two. Otherwise you are creating very unhappy humans. There aren't enough resources to care for more than two children in this mad, mad, mad modern world.
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« Reply #27 on: August 18, 2011, 10:01:34 PM »

"Pre-cum" is just silly anyway. I'll get the study. Pulling out is over or just about 90% effective.

Ain't many semen in that fluid before organism, it is primarily seminal fluid. Your prostate relieving itself. More likely to occur under certain circumstances. The amount of "pre cum" seminal fluid can be quite large.
I was under the impression if one masterbates before sexual intercourse there is still semen in the uretha if I'm not mistaken..

But yes pulling out is 90% effective.

Quote
If you couple pulling out with just a vague understanding of time of ovulation, the likelihood of pregnancy is very, very low.

For many guys though, pulling out ain't a reliable method for others it is no problem.
From personal experience, it does get harder and harder to pull out upon each sexual encounter especially if you are in a relationship.

I'm going to refrain from talking too much about it but I am in agreement with you here.
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« Reply #28 on: August 18, 2011, 10:05:47 PM »


From personal experience, it does get harder and harder to pull out upon each sexual encounter especially if you are in a relationship.

Well that is obviously what the WOMAN is for.

Sorry, TMI too.
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« Reply #29 on: August 18, 2011, 10:18:15 PM »

Are we allowed to say "pre-cum" on OC.net?

Sometimes I wonder if the obsession with sex-related topics on OC boards is the result of an oversexualized culture or if it is the result of high numbers of former Evangelical converts, who tend to be sex-obsessed but in weird, repressed ways (the same can be said for Catholics, but to a lesser extent).
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« Reply #30 on: August 18, 2011, 10:22:42 PM »

Are we allowed to say "pre-cum" on OC.net?

Sometimes I wonder if the obsession with sex-related topics on OC boards is the result of an oversexualized culture or if it is the result of high numbers of former Evangelical converts, who tend to be sex-obsessed but in weird, repressed ways (the same can be said for Catholics, but to a lesser extent).

I am just offering sex-ed. Most people are just wrong about birth control in general, especially religious folks, since they try to make principled stands based on theoretical medical possibilities.

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« Reply #31 on: August 18, 2011, 10:23:54 PM »

Are we allowed to say "pre-cum" on OC.net?

Sometimes I wonder if the obsession with sex-related topics on OC boards is the result of an oversexualized culture or if it is the result of high numbers of former Evangelical converts, who tend to be sex-obsessed but in weird, repressed ways (the same can be said for Catholics, but to a lesser extent).

If we are not allowed to say that, then I apologize and hope my post is edited for content.

Sex is very much apart of our culture, in fact even more so than the past few decades when you think about it...yet it remains so taboo. I've never really understood that. For a culture that is constantly being bombarded by sexual imagery and prose you'd think people would be more comfortable about it, though that's not the case.
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« Reply #32 on: August 18, 2011, 10:24:50 PM »

I think we're all skirting the line. Most of us are being particularly vague and generalizing what we're saying.

Argh, I want to go more into this discussion of withdrawal, but I shall refrain for the moment.
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« Reply #33 on: August 18, 2011, 10:26:41 PM »

I think we're all skirting the line. Most of us are being particularly vague and generalizing what we're saying.

Argh, I want to go more into this discussion of withdrawal, but I shall refrain for the moment.
I've sent you a PM, I actually enjoy this type of discussion but considering the nature of this board it's probably in the best interest to not divulge here.
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« Reply #34 on: August 18, 2011, 10:28:08 PM »

I am just offering sex-ed. Most people are just wrong about birth control in general, especially religious folks, since they try to make principled stands based on theoretical medical possibilities.
There are medical reasons to be against [some forms of] chemical birth control, but the reasons religious folks give are usually off-base.

Since we're laying all our cards on the table, breastfeeding coupled with a woman knowing when she is or isn't fertile (and it's not as complicated as the thermometer and chart brigade wants to make it sound) and being willing to use coitus interruptus is pretty darn effective.

But I can't see how anyone railing against any kind of birth control can even practice that if they're being intellectually honest. Birth control is birth control, even if you're using a more "natural" means. If you're really that against it, then leave it in and hope this one doesn't count.
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« Reply #35 on: August 18, 2011, 11:07:19 PM »


Sex is very much a part of our culture, in fact even more so than the past few decades when you think about it...yet it remains so taboo. I've never really understood that. For a culture that is constantly being bombarded by sexual imagery and prose you'd think people would be more comfortable about it, though that's not the case.

That's the difference.  Our "culture" is bombarded with sex, not our Church.  Culture appeals to our ego, and emphasizes pleasure of body and self.  Church focuses on the salvation of our souls, and not so much on bodily pleasures.

Unlike other religions which emphasize sex (Islam comes to mind - burkhas so as not to tempt the men, and yet those men will get 72 virgins in paradise - just plain creepy), Orthodoxy on the other hand emphasizes God and the salvation of your immortal soul.

Sex is reserved for the married couples.  It's not emphasized because in truth marriage is an "optional" sacrament.  Some marry, some don't.  Therefore, excessive talk of sex to the unmarried, just might push them beyond their self-control and make them stumble.

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« Reply #36 on: August 18, 2011, 11:21:55 PM »

As a Traditionalist Roman Catholic I never used artificial contraception (I actually would not have even if I had not become an RC, simply because I don't believe in drugs for elective purposes).

Unlike the modern novus ordo People of God church (in existence since after Vatican II), Traditionalist Catholics do not even practice Natural Family Planning (not to be confused with the old "rhythm" medthod which did not work). NFP, with Trad Catholics, is used only when a woman must space pregnancies for health reasons. Modern novus ordo adherents seem to believe in using it routinely.

Anyway, in all those years I conceived 7 times (and a few of those were when we were using NFP to actively try TO conceive). 4 of those babies tragically we lost to stillbirth and miscarriage, but we ended up with 3 living children.

All without ever using any birth control method, or even NFP (for avoiding pregnancy).
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« Reply #37 on: August 18, 2011, 11:28:12 PM »

I just hope that I'm not going to hell for only intending to give birth to two children (whether that's going to happen or not is another story). I'm not going to lie, I get nightmares of having to choose between my life and the child's if something goes wrong during the pregnancy (and there is a good chance it might, actually). Even thinking of my first birth will start a panic attack.

I love children and we do plan to adopt, though. I like to hope that at the end of the day, that it won't matter too much. God will judge me.

I think some more women need to chime in on this one. It's easy for men to take such firm stands on contraception when they don't have to give birth. Offense intended. I won't tell my TMI story here, what I'm doing, but I am struggling with this idea at the moment.

And yes, I know what the hard-line view on contraception is. Now, whether Orthodox couples practice that is another story.


I don't want to scare you if you have not had children yet, but let me tell you what all happened to me once I overcame my fear of having children (yes, even Traditional Catholics can have those feelings).

I became pregnant 7 times in the course of my marriage. The first 2 children were delivered by C section, but that was really the least of it. After our second child, we lost 4 babies in a row...one 10 week miscarriage, and three 6th-7th month stillbirths. But wait, its not over yet.

Then I conceived a 5th time, and while that pregnancy was uneventful and resulted in our last living child, a girl....I unwisely chose to try a vaginal birth after Caesarean with her, and the result was a catastrophic uterine rupture (look it up--very rare and usually very fatal to both mother and child)...thanks be to God we both survived with no harm done, other than that I needed an emergency Csection with her, and also a subtotal hysterectomy (uterus removed, plus one ovary and tube damaged in the rupture.)

But hey, I'm still here! Would I do it all over again if I knew the outcome in advance?

You bet I would.
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« Reply #38 on: August 18, 2011, 11:29:09 PM »

As a Traditionalist Roman Catholic I never used artificial contraception (I actually would not have even if I had not become an RC, simply because I don't believe in drugs for elective purposes).

Unlike the modern novus ordo People of God church (in existence since after Vatican II), Traditionalist Catholics do not even practice Natural Family Planning (not to be confused with the old "rhythm" medthod which did not work). NFP, with Trad Catholics, is used only when a woman must space pregnancies for health reasons. Modern novus ordo adherents seem to believe in using it routinely.

Anyway, in all those years I conceived 7 times (and a few of those was when we were using NFP to actively try TO conceive). 4 of those babies tragically we lost to stillbirth and miscarriage, but we ended up with 3 living children.

All without ever using any birth control method, or even NFP (for avoiding pregnancy).

I am so sorry for your loss. My wife and I have lost two children because of mere "biology" (most likely, immunological incompatibility), so I can relate.

Yet, three children, if you ask me, are too many. One or two of them will have to pay their college expenses, which, likely, means loans, etc. (and very likely confusion, depression and the like).

Just why is it that several children are beter than one child?
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« Reply #39 on: August 18, 2011, 11:36:33 PM »

As a Traditionalist Roman Catholic I never used artificial contraception (I actually would not have even if I had not become an RC, simply because I don't believe in drugs for elective purposes).

Unlike the modern novus ordo People of God church (in existence since after Vatican II), Traditionalist Catholics do not even practice Natural Family Planning (not to be confused with the old "rhythm" medthod which did not work). NFP, with Trad Catholics, is used only when a woman must space pregnancies for health reasons. Modern novus ordo adherents seem to believe in using it routinely.

Anyway, in all those years I conceived 7 times (and a few of those was when we were using NFP to actively try TO conceive). 4 of those babies tragically we lost to stillbirth and miscarriage, but we ended up with 3 living children.

All without ever using any birth control method, or even NFP (for avoiding pregnancy).

I am so sorry for your loss. My wife and I have lost two children because of mere "biology" (most likely, immunological incompatibility), so I can relate.

Yet, three children, if you ask me, are too many. One or two of them will have to pay their college expenses, which, likely, means loans, etc. (and very likely confusion, depression and the like).

Just why is it that several children are beter than one child?

My kids have no interest in going to college, so that's not an issue. They are interested in technical school instead.

Why are several children better than one? As someone who grew up as sort of an only child (my only sibling was 12 years older than me and already out of the house by the time I was 6), I HATED it. I never had anyone to talk to other than my parents (which was OK, but its one reason why I can't relate to people my own age, only much older).

Being an only child is a CURSE that no child should have to endure unless the parents simply were not physically able to have another child.
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« Reply #40 on: August 18, 2011, 11:38:17 PM »

I actually want 21 kids to be honest.
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« Reply #41 on: August 18, 2011, 11:41:22 PM »

I actually want 21 kids to be honest.

Trying to beat their record?


http://www.duggarfamily.com
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« Reply #42 on: August 18, 2011, 11:45:44 PM »

I actually want 21 kids to be honest.

Trying to beat their record?


http://www.duggarfamily.com
Yep.

And the fact that kids are pretty great.
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« Reply #43 on: August 18, 2011, 11:47:22 PM »

I actually want 21 kids to be honest.

Trying to beat their record?


http://www.duggarfamily.com
Yep.

And the fact that kids are pretty great.

God bless you! I hope it all works out well for you. The Duggars have some good info and insight on their website about raising large families, you might want to check it out.
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« Reply #44 on: August 18, 2011, 11:51:47 PM »

As a Traditionalist Roman Catholic I never used artificial contraception (I actually would not have even if I had not become an RC, simply because I don't believe in drugs for elective purposes).

Unlike the modern novus ordo People of God church (in existence since after Vatican II), Traditionalist Catholics do not even practice Natural Family Planning (not to be confused with the old "rhythm" medthod which did not work). NFP, with Trad Catholics, is used only when a woman must space pregnancies for health reasons. Modern novus ordo adherents seem to believe in using it routinely.

Anyway, in all those years I conceived 7 times (and a few of those was when we were using NFP to actively try TO conceive). 4 of those babies tragically we lost to stillbirth and miscarriage, but we ended up with 3 living children.

All without ever using any birth control method, or even NFP (for avoiding pregnancy).

I am so sorry for your loss. My wife and I have lost two children because of mere "biology" (most likely, immunological incompatibility), so I can relate.

Yet, three children, if you ask me, are too many. One or two of them will have to pay their college expenses, which, likely, means loans, etc. (and very likely confusion, depression and the like).

Just why is it that several children are beter than one child?

My kids have no interest in going to college, so that's not an issue. They are interested in technical school instead.

Why are several children better than one? As someone who grew up as sort of an only child (my only sibling was 12 years older than me and already out of the house by the time I was 6), I HATED it. I never had anyone to talk to other than my parents (which was OK, but its one reason why I can't relate to people my own age, only much older).

Being an only child is a CURSE that no child should have to endure unless the parents simply were not physically able to have another child.

I grew up as an only child and I LOVED it. I cringe when I hear my wife's stories about the sibling rivalry she had with her sister growing up. She would be so much happier if she were the only child.
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« Reply #45 on: August 18, 2011, 11:54:42 PM »

We'll see how long my relationship lasts with my current girlfriend. I don't know I've been having this pull to the monastic vocation for the past few months, and trying to reconcile that and the prospect of marriage; just not sure what God is telling me, where I should be etc.
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« Reply #46 on: August 19, 2011, 12:11:58 AM »

I imagine the joy one get's from children is ultimately dependent on the person.  Their is a lot of joy in our home, today we just had our 7th!  He weighed 12lbs!

I'm thankful my wife has never had to work, and my work allows me to center our life around all that we love.  It's tough, but anyone's life is tough, and my wife and I wouldn't live any other way.

That being said, I would never tell someone how many children they should have. This is our choice, I'm sure it's not for everybody.
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« Reply #47 on: August 19, 2011, 12:54:40 AM »

I figure three kids is good: replication and expansion.  But I am 27 with 0 kids so I really don't have a foal in the race.
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« Reply #48 on: August 19, 2011, 04:14:07 AM »

'double income' is not necessarily feminist.
most poor people in most of the world have families where both parents work and grandparents, friends and neighbours help with raising the children.
that is why african women invented the baby sling, so they can still work in the fields with a baby.

but if you have enough food to eat, then both parents working full time is usually putting the desire for more money over the need to bring up the kids well.
i hope this is understood as a desire to discuss this nicely, not to start a huge fight!
 Wink
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« Reply #49 on: August 19, 2011, 04:48:49 AM »

I grew up as an only child and I LOVED it. I cringe when I hear my wife's stories about the sibling rivalry she had with her sister growing up. She would be so much happier if she were the only child.
Sorry, but I need to contradict you on that point: Many problems in Ukraine are related to people getting only one child. First of all, simply not enough children are being born anymore. Secondly, only children are quite often spoiled and overprotected by their parents, which means that in many cases, they are unable or even being prevented from taking their own responsibilities as adults.

I think it would be good to have at least three children.
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« Reply #50 on: August 19, 2011, 08:43:57 AM »

I imagine the joy one get's from children is ultimately dependent on the person.  Their is a lot of joy in our home, today we just had our 7th!  He weighed 12lbs!

I'm thankful my wife has never had to work, and my work allows me to center our life around all that we love.  It's tough, but anyone's life is tough, and my wife and I wouldn't live any other way.

That being said, I would never tell someone how many children they should have. This is our choice, I'm sure it's not for everybody.

this has pretty much been our experience.  Of course there are bumps, but that shouldn't be the primary reason just to have 1 child.  We just got back from our family vacation with 5 of our kids.  It was so nice being together and watching the kids goof off and relate to each other as they've grown into young adulthood.  It was also nice to watch them help their youngest sibling (he's 10).  Over the years, I've gotten a lot of positive comments about how my older boys play with and help with their youngest brother.   

We get the college excuse all the time. It's just smoke and mirrors, IMHO.  Yes, college is expensive but it doesn't have to break your back.  We've been fortunate that we've been able to pay for our kids, however, my SIL has 7 and they couldn't pay for their kids colleges.  So far 4 have gone off (3 finished) and none of them have had loans.  They worked hard, got scholarships or worked for the college to help pay.  They didn't got to high priced colleges either and neither have our kids.   I've seen this with other families - whether they had 2-3 kids or 7-8 too. 

FWIW, We're no longer paying for our oldest's college (she's in grad school).  She got a full ride + a very nice stipend from John's Hopkins.  She's doing research in genetics.   

All that to say that the notion that lots of kids = horrible college loans doesn't have to be true. 
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« Reply #51 on: August 19, 2011, 01:31:27 PM »



this has pretty much been our experience.  Of course there are bumps, but that shouldn't be the primary reason just to have 1 child.  We just got back from our family vacation with 5 of our kids.  It was so nice being together and watching the kids goof off and relate to each other as they've grown into young adulthood.  It was also nice to watch them help their youngest sibling (he's 10).  Over the years, I've gotten a lot of positive comments about how my older boys play with and help with their youngest brother.   

We get the college excuse all the time. It's just smoke and mirrors, IMHO.  Yes, college is expensive but it doesn't have to break your back.  We've been fortunate that we've been able to pay for our kids, however, my SIL has 7 and they couldn't pay for their kids colleges.  So far 4 have gone off (3 finished) and none of them have had loans.  They worked hard, got scholarships or worked for the college to help pay.  They didn't got to high priced colleges either and neither have our kids.   I've seen this with other families - whether they had 2-3 kids or 7-8 too. 

FWIW, We're no longer paying for our oldest's college (she's in grad school).  She got a full ride + a very nice stipend from John's Hopkins.  She's doing research in genetics.   

All that to say that the notion that lots of kids = horrible college loans doesn't have to be true. 

For us college is an issue. My oldest works after doing dual enrollment in high school, and because of this and her disabled sister lives here- she gets NO real grant assistance. Federal assistance doesn't look at the real situation and jobs dont' support school as easily as they did in my day. All that to say its hard, but it can be done.

My kudos to your daughter. As the parent of a child with Rett, genetic research is high on my list. Without it we would not know the gene responsible for Rett, and even thus we are the only autistic spectrum disorder that does know the specific genetic cause. They have also managed to find the cure using an animal model, we are just slowly waiting to translate that to humans safely and effectively. I commend anyone going into that field.
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« Reply #52 on: August 19, 2011, 01:40:46 PM »

I grew up as an only child and I LOVED it. I cringe when I hear my wife's stories about the sibling rivalry she had with her sister growing up. She would be so much happier if she were the only child.
Sorry, but I need to contradict you on that point: Many problems in Ukraine are related to people getting only one child. First of all, simply not enough children are being born anymore. Secondly, only children are quite often spoiled and overprotected by their parents, which means that in many cases, they are unable or even being prevented from taking their own responsibilities as adults.

I think it would be good to have at least three children.

You mean you think it would be good for you & your spouse to have 3 kids don't you?  You cannot force people to have children.  Not eveyone is a good parent.  Thaink of all the abused children in the world.  If possible I think it would be wonderful for good parents to adopt some of the abused and unloved children of the world.
Has abyone heard of a recent study of single child families and the benefits to children?  It was mentiond in passing in a newspaper article last week.
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« Reply #53 on: August 19, 2011, 01:43:56 PM »

i think condoms are considered by most orthodox churches as the same as 'spilling your seed', so they are not encouraged.
Got any church doocuments to backup your assertion about condoms?  I haven't seen any.  Condoms are a form of contraception and that is all.
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« Reply #54 on: August 19, 2011, 01:51:33 PM »

[

NON   SENSE!
NON   SENSE!

See some other thread, where I pretty much PWN'd someone on this issue.


You will never be able to erase a lifetime of experience with this stuff and its effects on my person or others I know. I came to the table perfectly capable of understanding the inserts in medical-ese in my old Ortho Novum packets from years ago, long before the mini pills of the day. I researched diligently through medical journals and the PDR. My own mother nearly died from one of the earlier batches of bc pills in the 70's, as many women on that run actually did lose their lives. Even as it was she lost two children in the years following their usage due to damage from that level of hormones.  The facts are what they are. I can use a tiny tiny drop of progesterone cream on my child when she is having a hormone (estrogen) based seizure and it stops immediately. Hormones are very very powerful, as most males know intrinsically.  Tampering with them without restraint for the simple momentary sexual pleasure will always have consequences. There are always consequences to drug use, God knows I use enough other ones to cease epileptic activity in my daughter each day. And the reproductive hormonal system of a woman's body is particularly fine tuned and not to be tampered with.  Ask someone who is in the 1% of women childbearing age worldwide that responds opposite of how she should to even natural progesterone cream.
And for those that pull the nursing and natural family planning jargon. BULL! With all the hormones added to our food supply these days its impossible to firmly trust the nursing thing. I can't tell you have many women I know that were exclusively bf'ing and got pregnant anyway. And since I was part of the quiverful movement for a time, that's a lot of moms. Whatever may have worked before in biblical times, before they added crap to our food sources, ain't working now! And the whole knowing when you ov is bunk too. Science has found that a great portion of women tend to ov twice a month for reasons they can only suspect are hormone based, and the second ov doesn't show up with the same telltale flags. Pull out, yeah right. Condoms are for hookers and johns, not the wife of your youth.
There are no hard and fast rules save abstinence, and for married couples this bites extensively.
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« Reply #55 on: August 19, 2011, 02:03:03 PM »

You mean you think it would be good for you & your spouse to have 3 kids don't you?  You cannot force people to have children.  Not eveyone is a good parent.  Thaink of all the abused children in the world.  If possible I think it would be wonderful for good parents to adopt some of the abused and unloved children of the world.
Has abyone heard of a recent study of single child families and the benefits to children?  It was mentiond in passing in a newspaper article last week.
I am not forcing anyone to do anything. I am describing an ideal. And since I am convinced of the negative effects of being a single child, as decribed above, I would think with average parents, the whole thing is likely to turn out better with three kids than with just one.

Of course, there are bad parents. But I believe that the Orthodox Church can help them to improve.
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« Reply #56 on: August 19, 2011, 02:24:15 PM »

You mean you think it would be good for you & your spouse to have 3 kids don't you?  You cannot force people to have children.  Not eveyone is a good parent.  Thaink of all the abused children in the world.  If possible I think it would be wonderful for good parents to adopt some of the abused and unloved children of the world.
Has abyone heard of a recent study of single child families and the benefits to children?  It was mentiond in passing in a newspaper article last week.
I am not forcing anyone to do anything. I am describing an ideal. And since I am convinced of the negative effects of being a single child, as decribed above, I would think with average parents, the whole thing is likely to turn out better with three kids than with just one.

Of course, there are bad parents. But I believe that the Orthodox Church can help them to improve.
I am sorry if I misunderstood your post.  I agree if children are born into a loving family of practicing orthodox parents, they stand a better chance of growing up to be well adjusted adults.
My comments are about families in society in general. I am not sure about statistics, but aren't there studies of 3 child families and the problems of being a middle child?  I will try to find the study about single children being well adjusted and more mature than children from families of mutiple children.  But frankly in the long run, I really think it depends on the parents.  If the parents have a happy marriage and welcome children then I think the children have a better chance of being well adjusted. 
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« Reply #57 on: August 19, 2011, 03:29:13 PM »

'double income' is not necessarily feminist.

You're quite right, but Akimori's comments referred to "the Anglosphere," so that was the framework I was using.  This can probably be expanded to include most modern, wealthy "Western" nations though. 

Quote
i hope this is understood as a desire to discuss this nicely, not to start a huge fight!

Oh yeah...? PROVE IT! 
 Wink
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« Reply #58 on: August 19, 2011, 03:56:36 PM »

[quote
'double income' is not necessarily feminist.

[/quote]
I agree with you.  For example, I would say that my family was/is "double income" because I come from a farming family & my mother works as hard if not harder than my father.  The vegetable garden, chickens etc was throughout rural history always considered "women's work".  Not to mention all that cooking and cleaning.

We cannot be thinking that middle-class values was the norm in our society because it isn't.  In working-class families many women worked since the Industrial revolution and in what we call peasant societies women worked too very hard.  Middle class societies often had maids and laundry help etc. and still do.
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« Reply #59 on: August 19, 2011, 04:09:28 PM »

[quote
'double income' is not necessarily feminist.
I agree with you.  For example, I would say that my family was/is "double income" because I come from a farming family & my mother works as hard if not harder than my father.  The vegetable garden, chickens etc was throughout rural history always considered "women's work".  Not to mention all that cooking and cleaning.

We cannot be thinking that middle-class values was the norm in our society because it isn't.  In working-class families many women worked since the Industrial revolution and in what we call peasant societies women worked too very hard.  Middle class societies often had maids and laundry help etc. and still do.

During the pre-world war two period in Pennsylvania, when the men worked the mines or the railroad, the women and the teenagers worked in the mills. In the southern tier of New york, the men and the women both worked in the shoe factories. (The men were tanners, the women did piece work.) "Baba" looked after the little ones. It was only after the war during the boom times of the 1950's and 1960's that the stay at home mom was the norm among the second generation American families.

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« Reply #60 on: August 19, 2011, 05:18:21 PM »

As a Traditionalist Roman Catholic I never used artificial contraception (I actually would not have even if I had not become an RC, simply because I don't believe in drugs for elective purposes).

Unlike the modern novus ordo People of God church (in existence since after Vatican II), Traditionalist Catholics do not even practice Natural Family Planning (not to be confused with the old "rhythm" medthod which did not work). NFP, with Trad Catholics, is used only when a woman must space pregnancies for health reasons. Modern novus ordo adherents seem to believe in using it routinely.

Anyway, in all those years I conceived 7 times (and a few of those was when we were using NFP to actively try TO conceive). 4 of those babies tragically we lost to stillbirth and miscarriage, but we ended up with 3 living children.

All without ever using any birth control method, or even NFP (for avoiding pregnancy).

I am so sorry for your loss. My wife and I have lost two children because of mere "biology" (most likely, immunological incompatibility), so I can relate.

Yet, three children, if you ask me, are too many. One or two of them will have to pay their college expenses, which, likely, means loans, etc. (and very likely confusion, depression and the like).

Just why is it that several children are beter than one child?

My kids have no interest in going to college, so that's not an issue. They are interested in technical school instead.

Why are several children better than one? As someone who grew up as sort of an only child (my only sibling was 12 years older than me and already out of the house by the time I was 6), I HATED it. I never had anyone to talk to other than my parents (which was OK, but its one reason why I can't relate to people my own age, only much older).

Being an only child is a CURSE that no child should have to endure unless the parents simply were not physically able to have another child.

I grew up as an only child and I LOVED it. I cringe when I hear my wife's stories about the sibling rivalry she had with her sister growing up. She would be so much happier if she were the only child.


When I was little, there were two very religious Catholic families on our block: each had 9 children. I used to love going into their homes, because there was always someone to play with, unlike my house. And they were very kind to each other, the older siblings always helping the younger ones. They used to pray the Rosary and ask me if I wanted to join in.

Maybe your wife just had a dysfunctional family?
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« Reply #61 on: August 19, 2011, 06:22:18 PM »

Please let's not reduce this discussion to steretypes:
all kids from small families are happy and all kids from large families are unhappy.  Let's not talk about incest and neglected children.

I still say it all depends on the parents: if they have a good marriage whatever they decide as to the number of children will make a happy family.  the children will be loved and cared for.
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« Reply #62 on: August 19, 2011, 06:39:18 PM »

crikey....chemical contraception is not ok and you can't spill any seeds?? lolOl.... that only leave like ....one option. Too funny, i bet a bloke thought that one up!!!! ¬_¬

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« Reply #63 on: August 19, 2011, 07:07:15 PM »

Actually, there are different kinds of happiness. Only children often get spoiled, maybe that can be called "happiness" in the world. But that surely is not an Orthodox ideal. We must learn to control our passions. And for this, it is a good situation to be in a larger family and learn to dealing and share things with others, respect your siblings etc.

I am astonished how many people here are stating positions without taking Orthodoxy into consideration at all. Isn't this supposed to be the Orthodox Family Forum? And yes, I do believe that God told us to be fruitful and multiply.
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« Reply #64 on: August 19, 2011, 07:19:50 PM »

I like fruit, im not that keen on bananas though  Grin
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« Reply #65 on: August 20, 2011, 11:21:05 AM »


all kids from small families are happy and all kids from large families are unhappy.
If anecdotes are worth anything, I was raised in a family of six children and we were probably the most functional family I knew.

This doesn't mean that raising children is easy, just that I think my parents were magic or something.
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« Reply #66 on: August 20, 2011, 12:56:10 PM »

I have not come across many large Orthodox families. But I was raised a traditional mainstream Protestant, and at our rural church there were many large families.

There were two families that had 8 or more kids. Many had 3-6 kids. (I have 20 cousins; my childhood best friend had something like 30 or 40 cousins.) Having 1-2 kids was uncommon. Having no kids meant you had recently been married or had conception problems (which was met with great compassion, BTW), but it was unheard-of to electively have a small family.

Nobody was particularly wealthy, and many were one-income households. Everyone lived relatively simply, but I never got the impression that anyone was destitute because of their family size. Everybody got by on their daily bread, which was all anyone prayed for. (Maybe that's why the stereotypically convert ideal of 19th century Russia has always appealed to me—because it's more like the way I was raised than modern Citydoxy.)

Personally this outlook appeals to me as well. But then, I have mostly lived in rural areas and I think that is more conducive to large families. And while I have no "skin in the game", the commonly-heard objections don't hold much water with me, because it completely goes against my experience of observing people live this way.
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« Reply #67 on: August 20, 2011, 03:40:27 PM »

crikey....chemical contraception is not ok and you can't spill any seeds?? lolOl.... that only leave like ....one option. Too funny, i bet a bloke thought that one up!!!! ¬_¬


No Orthodox Church Synod has ever issue a prohibition against the Birth Control pill or the use of condoms.
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« Reply #68 on: October 03, 2011, 06:33:21 AM »

I think people don’t need to plan children birth or birth unconsciously but look wisely on this issue.
I know, to bear a child it`s a big difficulty for many women but the more children family have the more firmness family is.

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« Reply #69 on: October 03, 2011, 10:35:46 AM »

No Orthodox Church Synod has ever issue a prohibition against the Birth Control pill or the use of condoms.

Brb, trying to figure out why that has any meaning whatsoever...

Ok, back, couldn't figure it out Smiley
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« Reply #70 on: October 05, 2011, 08:57:29 PM »

I think people don’t need to plan children birth or birth unconsciously but look wisely on this issue.
I know, to bear a child it`s a big difficulty for many women but the more children family have the more firmness family is.

I don't believe it. I know families that could be much better of, and could have a much higher chance to stay together if they had one or two children instead of several.

One child is enough.
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« Reply #71 on: October 05, 2011, 08:58:40 PM »

One child is enough.

This is the west is shrinking.
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« Reply #72 on: October 05, 2011, 09:35:24 PM »

Two kids, y'all. I think I might be having 4 (having 1, adopting 3  Tongue), but I think that the child at least having a sibling to learn how to share with and play with is a good thing.

I only have one sister and while we don't get along all the time, I never wished that I was an only child. I would have probably been lonely. We were both introverts so we understood that about each other.
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« Reply #73 on: October 05, 2011, 09:45:31 PM »

We have 4 children (one more set to arrive in March). These are my thoughts on children:

I will never, never regret having more than one child. I have seen countless women and men regret stopping at a certain number of children. I watched my mother and step father desperately want to have children together when it was impossible. He had a vasectomy and she had a tubal ligation. I know a dear Catholic friend that mourns the fact that she had to have a hysterectomy due to hormonal issues. They have 4 children and were intending to be "done." But deciding to be done and having it forced upon you are very different things emotionally.

You shouldn't have children simply because you can. But you shouldn't stop having children because you reached "x" number. The number of children you have requires a great deal of thought and prayer. Although this will be our 5th child, it should rightly be our 10 child due to 4 miscarriages at various stages (one pregnancy was of twins). We aren't having another child to make up for the others we have lost. But the fact that we have lost so many makes me cherish the ones we have all the more.

One actually needs much less than they think they do. There is a great deal of truth to the phrase "all you need is love." One can have just one child and be able to give them anything and everything and end up raising a miserable insufferable human being. They have anything and everything they need except the ability to see outside themselves. The idea of jealousy and sibling rivalry is often blown out of proportion. Our youngest will likely be jealous, but that will have as much to do with the fact that she is weaned than anything! Cheesy

A college education is not mandatory and in fact can be a hamper to a good career. We will be encouraging our children to pursue a trade. An electrician has a much better job outlook than an IT professional. You can easily make 6 figures a year and be an "uneducated" blue collar worker. We intend to give our children acreage in lieu of a college education. You can sell the land, live on the land- do whatever you wish. But land rarely ever loses value. Maybe it isn't worth the amount of money you would like it to be, but land is and always will be of use. College costs are almost impossible to estimate. Land is invaluable. If I had been given 5 acres of land on the peninsula I would be very happy. Smiley
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« Reply #74 on: October 05, 2011, 10:49:00 PM »

We have 4 children (one more set to arrive in March). These are my thoughts on children:

I will never, never regret having more than one child. I have seen countless women and men regret stopping at a certain number of children. I watched my mother and step father desperately want to have children together when it was impossible. He had a vasectomy and she had a tubal ligation. I know a dear Catholic friend that mourns the fact that she had to have a hysterectomy due to hormonal issues. They have 4 children and were intending to be "done." But deciding to be done and having it forced upon you are very different things emotionally.

You shouldn't have children simply because you can. But you shouldn't stop having children because you reached "x" number. The number of children you have requires a great deal of thought and prayer. Although this will be our 5th child, it should rightly be our 10 child due to 4 miscarriages at various stages (one pregnancy was of twins). We aren't having another child to make up for the others we have lost. But the fact that we have lost so many makes me cherish the ones we have all the more.

One actually needs much less than they think they do. There is a great deal of truth to the phrase "all you need is love." One can have just one child and be able to give them anything and everything and end up raising a miserable insufferable human being. They have anything and everything they need except the ability to see outside themselves. The idea of jealousy and sibling rivalry is often blown out of proportion. Our youngest will likely be jealous, but that will have as much to do with the fact that she is weaned than anything! Cheesy

A college education is not mandatory and in fact can be a hamper to a good career. We will be encouraging our children to pursue a trade. An electrician has a much better job outlook than an IT professional. You can easily make 6 figures a year and be an "uneducated" blue collar worker. We intend to give our children acreage in lieu of a college education. You can sell the land, live on the land- do whatever you wish. But land rarely ever loses value. Maybe it isn't worth the amount of money you would like it to be, but land is and always will be of use. College costs are almost impossible to estimate. Land is invaluable. If I had been given 5 acres of land on the peninsula I would be very happy. Smiley

I agree with what you said about college and trades. I will also steer our children towards a trade as the money and employment opporunities are much better.

The real difficulty is in paying off mortgages etc whilst having/raising children. One income is not enough these days.
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« Reply #75 on: October 06, 2011, 11:19:53 AM »

One child is enough.

This is the west is shrinking.

Only numerically and only the "traditional" Caucasian West. But I am not convinced that it is a serious problem. The world is gradually becoming more mixed, more "colored." However, I have a strong faith in Western values such as freedom of choice, accountability and transparency of the government, etc. I am sure that those non-white people who migrate to the West from the Middle East, Southeastern Asia, Africa, etc., will sooner or later adopt the values of the new lands where they are now settling. Some time in the future, the parliaments and the intellectual and cultural elites of Western countries will have a much bigger proportion of people with black or yellow or red or brown skin, but the exponential growth of the population pretty much everywhere will give way to a slower growth or stagnation. The children or the grandchildren of those families from, say, Tunisia or Mosambique who are now making their home in Belgium or Canada will realize that having seven or eleven kids is not the most important thing in the world.
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« Reply #76 on: October 06, 2011, 11:26:54 AM »

I only have one sister and while we don't get along all the time, I never wished that I was an only child. I would have probably been lonely. We were both introverts so we understood that about each other.

It is perhaps very different in different families. I was the only child, but my childhood was very happy on the most part (if anything bothered me, it was not loneliness but the fact that my parents were fighting every now and then, my mom making horrible scenes to my dad because of marital fidelity issues). I never missed having a sibling, never wanted him/her, never even thought about that. On the other hand, my wife grew up having a sister, who happened to be artistically and musically gifted and who was the "preferred," semmingly more loved by parents, other relatives, and friends of their family. This caused a very high tension and, sorry if this sounds dramatic, scarred my wife for a very long time, if not for life.
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« Reply #77 on: October 08, 2011, 04:11:30 AM »

The children or the grandchildren of those families from, say, Tunisia or Mosambique who are now making their home in Belgium or Canada will realize that having seven or eleven kids is not the most important thing in the world.

You are too optimist. Look at the Western Euopean experience, please. Many native Western Europeans get just one child, whereas quite some Muslim immigrants are successful at rejecting part of Western culture, instilling in their children a feeling of superiority and maintaining a birth rate of 3-5 children, often also importing the spouse from the home country. This means that in  places like Germany, England, Holland, there is a serious risk of getting a majority that will not think "Western" anymore in the next 200 years.

In Ukraine, on the other hand, the birth rate is down, but there is almost no immigration. The youth is going to a few cities (especially Kyiv and Donetsk) or abroad, so the villages and smaller cities are dying out.
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« Reply #78 on: November 12, 2011, 10:28:46 PM »

Time to update my and Mr. Y's kid count to three. Our latest edition Brigid Lucy was born yesterday afternoon, 8 lbs, 21 1/2 inches.  Caitlin and Evan are enjoying being big sister and brother!
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« Reply #79 on: November 12, 2011, 10:30:54 PM »

What a cutie! Many years for the little one. Smiley
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« Reply #80 on: November 12, 2011, 11:49:18 PM »

Time to update my and Mr. Y's kid count to three. Our latest edition Brigid Lucy was born yesterday afternoon, 8 lbs, 21 1/2 inches.  Caitlin and Evan are enjoying being big sister and brother!

Congratulations!   angel
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« Reply #81 on: November 13, 2011, 12:45:40 AM »

I only have one sister and while we don't get along all the time, I never wished that I was an only child. I would have probably been lonely. We were both introverts so we understood that about each other.

It is perhaps very different in different families. I was the only child, but my childhood was very happy on the most part (if anything bothered me, it was not loneliness but the fact that my parents were fighting every now and then, my mom making horrible scenes to my dad because of marital fidelity issues). I never missed having a sibling, never wanted him/her, never even thought about that. On the other hand, my wife grew up having a sister, who happened to be artistically and musically gifted and who was the "preferred," semmingly more loved by parents, other relatives, and friends of their family. This caused a very high tension and, sorry if this sounds dramatic, scarred my wife for a very long time, if not for life.

Heorhij you are correct in saying it varies from person to person.

My boyfriend was an only child, and often wished he had siblings. He grew up in a very rural area 25 miles outside of town, and there were no kids in the neighborhood to play with.

Siblings would have been a blessing, but alas his mother could not have any more children.
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« Reply #82 on: November 13, 2011, 12:48:57 AM »

We have 4 children (one more set to arrive in March). These are my thoughts on children:

I will never, never regret having more than one child. I have seen countless women and men regret stopping at a certain number of children. I watched my mother and step father desperately want to have children together when it was impossible. He had a vasectomy and she had a tubal ligation. I know a dear Catholic friend that mourns the fact that she had to have a hysterectomy due to hormonal issues. They have 4 children and were intending to be "done." But deciding to be done and having it forced upon you are very different things emotionally.

You shouldn't have children simply because you can. But you shouldn't stop having children because you reached "x" number. The number of children you have requires a great deal of thought and prayer. Although this will be our 5th child, it should rightly be our 10 child due to 4 miscarriages at various stages (one pregnancy was of twins). We aren't having another child to make up for the others we have lost. But the fact that we have lost so many makes me cherish the ones we have all the more.

One actually needs much less than they think they do. There is a great deal of truth to the phrase "all you need is love." One can have just one child and be able to give them anything and everything and end up raising a miserable insufferable human being. They have anything and everything they need except the ability to see outside themselves. The idea of jealousy and sibling rivalry is often blown out of proportion. Our youngest will likely be jealous, but that will have as much to do with the fact that she is weaned than anything! Cheesy

A college education is not mandatory and in fact can be a hamper to a good career. We will be encouraging our children to pursue a trade. An electrician has a much better job outlook than an IT professional. You can easily make 6 figures a year and be an "uneducated" blue collar worker. We intend to give our children acreage in lieu of a college education. You can sell the land, live on the land- do whatever you wish. But land rarely ever loses value. Maybe it isn't worth the amount of money you would like it to be, but land is and always will be of use. College costs are almost impossible to estimate. Land is invaluable. If I had been given 5 acres of land on the peninsula I would be very happy. Smiley

God bless you and your family Quinault! You are a woman with much more patience than I could ever hope to have!

In regards to college, if your children were to decide to pursue an associates degree and then get their bachelors, with scholarships and such, they could graduate with little to no debt.

The bottom line: Having more kids doesn't necassarily reduce their options in life. (But you already know this!)

Congratulations again on Baby #5!
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« Reply #83 on: November 13, 2011, 09:02:06 AM »

I could not read this and not respond, even though I'm new here.

Time to update my and Mr. Y's kid count to three. Our latest edition Brigid Lucy was born yesterday afternoon, 8 lbs, 21 1/2 inches.  Caitlin and Evan are enjoying being big sister and brother!

Congrats to you and your family! 

Quote
A college education is not mandatory and in fact can be a hamper to a good career. We will be encouraging our children to pursue a trade. An electrician has a much better job outlook than an IT professional. You can easily make 6 figures a year and be an "uneducated" blue collar worker. We intend to give our children acreage in lieu of a college education. You can sell the land, live on the land- do whatever you wish. But land rarely ever loses value. Maybe it isn't worth the amount of money you would like it to be, but land is and always will be of use. College costs are almost impossible to estimate. Land is invaluable. If I had been given 5 acres of land on the peninsula I would be very happy. Smiley

Great thoughts that I admittedly struggle with for my own children. 
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