"A Realistic Voice for NFP": Q&A With Katie of "NFP and Me"

This month on Reading Catholic, I am determined to share some of the great recent resources on human sexuality out there.  This will include blogs, podcasts, and other resources I’ve encountered as I reviewed this month’s column, Adam & Eve After the Pill:  Paradoxes of the Sexual Revolution by Mary Eberstadt and My Peace I Give You: Healing Sexual Wounds with the Help of the Saints by Dawn Eden.   (In case you missed it, I featured a  Q&A with Mandi of Catholic Newlywed about her “Broken” series last week.)

Today, I’m delighted to get a chance to introduce readers of The Catholic Post to Katie , a medical student who writes a smart, terrific blog called, “NFP & Me.” 

I first discovered Katie on Twitter  (where Katie is @NFPandMe I am @ReadingCatholic), when she began posting links to wonderful buttons about “I Use NFP” (and inviting people to share them on Twitter with the hashtag #iuseNFP).  But she’s been blogging and spreading the great word about NFP for some time.   Just this month, Katie also had several articles in the latest issue of Our Sunday Visitor Newsweekly on NFP (coinciding with NFP Awareness Week).

Katie graciously agreed to do a Q&A for the Reading Catholic blog this month, even though she is in her surgery rotation in medical school.  If you’re not familiar with Katie, please take a moment to go over to her blog and visit.  Thanks, Katie!

Q.  Tell Reading Catholic readers a little bit about yourself, your family, and how you began blogging.

Well my name is Katie, I’m 24 years old, married, and a dog mom to Jack.  I’m currently in my third year of medical school. I’m Italian, but not like Snooki. I’m a crazy dog lady and so is my husband (only not a lady). Seriously, you may see us on animal hoarders someday.  ☺

I started blogging by the grace of God. I have a friend who is a fantastic writer, really superb, and I would call him with my ideas of things he should write about. God love him, but he’s not the most reliable. He would never write about my fantastic ideas. He unfortunately quit blogging so I decided that I should give it a try. God had really put it on my heart for a few months and I decided to just go for it. 

Q.  This is kind of a goofy question, but why did you name your blog NFP and Me?  Could you tell us what you hope to accomplish with your blog?

I have no idea where the name came from. I knew I wanted to blog about NFP but I hadn’t thought of actually giving it a name. In fact I didn’t even read blogs at the time so I didn’t exactly have examples. I do remember thinking “Well this rhymes.” and decided to run with it.  

Mostly my goal for my blog is to be a realistic voice for NFP. When I started using it I was so scared of it. I thought it didn’t work, I thought it was only for crazy people.  I was the ultimate skeptic and I know there are countless women out there who were just like me. I just want to be a voice of reassurance, someone who isn’t the holiest snootiest women on earth sharing her fears. There’s an invaluable resource in camaraderie and commiserating.  I’ve built more genuine friendships out of my blog than I could have ever hoped for.  I guess that’s a roundabout way of saying I didn’t even have hopes for it because I didn’t think anyone would read it. In fact I’m still surprised anyone reads it, I think Google Analytics may be lying to me. ☺

Q.  My number one favorite recent post from your blog is “Tell Me Why,” contrasting a popular song lyrics (liberation) with quotes from John Paul II (oppression?) : .  Love!  Do you have a favorite post, or two or three that would really give Reading Catholic readers a feel for your blog? 

I have to admit, I’m a big fan of Tell Me Why too. If there’s minimal writing on my part, I’m for it.  I think my favorite post is We Were Wrong (note from Nancy: love this one, too! well worth a read) . It’s about the discourse between the pro-life stance and the way pro-lifers act. A woman read it who is post abortive and responded how much it meant to her to not be met with judgment, but love. I couldn’t ask for more out of a post.

Q.   Your website IuseNFP.com is newly launched, with a lot of great graphics and content.  What do you hope to do with the website over time?

Oh, what don’t we hope to do with it? Ha! Ultimately we hope our site is a safe place where women can find comprehensive information about their natural family planning options. We want to be a place for every woman, no matter her religion, to feel comfortable asking questions and seeking information. 

Q.   Could you explain about the IuseNFP buttons, and how people can use them on their sites and to share?

We want the buttons to be a simple fun way for people to share that they use NFP. My experience with evangelizing NFP has always been a struggle. Most women don’t use it and there’s always that question mark on young couples in Mass who don’t have kids (couples like my husband and me). The buttons are easy little things that people can share on Facebook, pin to Pinterest, or put on their blog to let people know “Hey, people actually use NFP.” We want the buttons to be fun and modern. We can’t keep throwing babies, however cute they may be, at women. We’re competing with people like Planned Parenthood and we have an obligation to advertise just as, if not more, effectively than they do. 

Q.  You’re a busy medical student.  Why spend time blogging at all? about NFP?

Because I’m called to it. I’m not a gifted writer, I don’t have the most fabulous ideas, I’m not freaking Marc Barnes but God put this on my heart for a reason. When I started this I thought it was there because I had a lot to say but in the year I’ve been blogging I realized it’s because I have a lot to learn. If I can document my learning process in a way that’s relatable to people that can maybe help just one person then I have an obligation to do it. 

We have too many bloggers telling people what to believe and how to act but we don’t have a lot showing how they believe or how they came to believe and doing it with humility. Fortunately for me, being in medical school keeps me pretty humble, let’s just hope I figure out the showing aspect pretty soon. 😉