In Rachel Scott’s post, Making Babies Together–Unlocking the Mystery of Christian Divorce Part 3, she describes how birth control creates emotional barriers between a married man and woman, which can prove detrimental to their overall relationship. Here’s a quote from her her post:
Even though sex if done right will feel good, when both lovers agree to use birth control, the couple has started the relationship on the premise of rejecting their seed. Subliminally this rejection will be very hard to overlook because rejection creates an emotional barrier or “wall.” How high a wall is built between them or how broad it could affect their intimacy will be up to the individuals. Once the idea of their need for birth control protection becomes part of their sexual experience, the need to alienate themselves in other areas will increase. How can it not? The unspoken communication has already said in this area, “I am against oneness,” and this will make the expression of naked, unashamed sex extremely difficult to achieve. Tensions outside the bedroom often originate from the need to protect oneself inside the bedroom.
It will be harder to be lovers outside of the bedroom because the unspoken need to protect will now be there. Naked and unashamed has been replaced by lack of trust, apprehension and anxiety. All communication will be filtered through this emotional wall. She will know that he is afraid of her eggs and womb and her ability to conceive a child he does not want. He will know she is afraid of his sperm and its power to impregnate her when she is feeling unsure.
Neither one will make the “connection” but the expression of protection during sex will speak louder than words because both agree with fear!
I agree with her.
Birth control–whether through hormonal, barrier, surgical, withdrawal, or “natural” methods–does indeed create walls between a man and wife. My own experience has proven this to be true. When the husband wants his wife to use birth control, even the natural method, he’s REALLY saying, “I’m afraid of your eggs and your womb. I don’t want your body to function the way God made it to function. I don’t think God made a good choice when he made you fertile. I wish you weren’t fertile. I wish your fertility was damaged. I would prefer it if you were less of a woman. I need to protect myself from you. You’re dangerous.” How painful! And even though the woman may externally agree with him, internally she feels rejected.
This could go for the man, as well, when it is the wife who is pushing for birth control. He may feel that she “is afraid of his sperm and its power to impregnate her,” leading to feelings of rejection. She doesn’t want him to be potent. She wishes that God hadn’t designed his body the way that He designed it. She wishes his potency was damaged. She would prefer it if he were less of a man. She feels the need to protect herself from him, and sees him as dangerous to her well-being and the well-being of their relationship. And, though the man may externally agree with her, internally he feels rejected.
God designed each part of our bodies with a purpose in mind. Our brain, our heart, our lungs, our digestive system, etc. all function according to His design, and we have no problem with it. But, when it comes to our reproductive system, we wish God hadn’t made us the way that He did. Basically, we say to our Maker, “Why have you made me this way? You must have made a mistake!” We block God’s purpose for our reproductive system because we are afraid.
And this fear controls us.
Fear is not God’s will for us.
Some people will say, “Well, we’re just using our God-given brains and being responsible. But where does God say in the Bible that He wants us to “be responsible” by cutting off, or limiting, our fertility? Is THAT in the Bible? I don’t see it. To the contrary, I see that God was responsible for the fertility of Abraham and Sarah, for Isaac and Rebecca, for Jacob and Rachel and Leah, for the entire Hebrew nation, for Elkanah and Hannah (who bore Samson and five more children afterwards), for Zacharias and Elizabeth (the parents of John the Baptist), for Mary the mother of Jesus, etc… If God was wise enough on His own, without anybody’s help, regarding these people’s fertility, isn’t it logical to believe that He is also wise enough on His own, without our help, regarding our fertility? Why can’t we trust Him? Is it that we’re afraid we can’t? Are we afraid that God doesn’t know what He’s doing, and that our lives will spin out of control if we give control of procreation over to Him?
Creating physical barriers within our marriage (through birth control) can, and does, have ramifications. When we give in to fear, and basically say to our spouse, “I’m afraid of your fertility,” and “I don’t trust God to do what’s best for us,” we’re setting up a wall that will also prevent us from experiencing the openness and closeness that God intended for our marriage. We’re saying to our spouse, “I want you, but not ALL of you.” We’re saying to our lover, “I love your body, but just not THAT part of your body.” We’re communicating to our partner for life, “If your body were to function the way God made it to, I would NOT be okay with that; in fact I would be upset and disappointed. I want to experience sexual pleasure with you, but I refuse to accept the logical conclusion of that experience (a baby). I reject that ultimate expression of our oneness (a newly-conceived child).”
This can lead to feelings of being used. “He wants to use my body for his own sexual gratification, but he doesn’t want everything that comes with it (a new life). He wants my body, but not a baby with me. He is only willing to go so far in our relationship, but has put up a barrier that keeps us from going as far as we could. Is there something wrong with me? Is there something wrong with the way I feel about this? Should I be having these feelings? Maybe I’m just being unreasonable…”
How can we do this to each other? We tear down our relationship, and damage the bond that God designed for sex and procreation to create in our marriage. He created marriage, in great part, FOR procreation! Just read the beginning chapters of Genesis for the account of how He made man and woman. He told them to be “fruitful and multiply.” I don’t see ANYWHERE where He says to us, “Now you don’t have to do that anymore. I take back what I said. It’s time to stop.” Do you?
Birth control was NEVER God’s plan for us. Fear has taken control of us, and we’ve given in to the lies of the enemy, who HATES to see new children conceived. Our enemy, Satan, does everything he can to prevent new image-bearers (bearing God’s image) from being born. He uses clinical, surgical abortion. And he uses contraception. Christian’s won’t usually accept abortion as a means of birth control. But they’ll use other methods. The birth control pill, the patch, the ring, the IUD, condoms, diaphragms, sponges soaked in spermicide, vasectomy, tubal ligation, withdrawal, even the natural method, all are means used to achieve the end of LIMITING CHILDREN.
If we were to allow God control of our fertility, we would have to walk by faith.
And if we were to allow God control of our fertility, we would also have a closer relationship with our spouse. When my husband and I gave God control of this area, we began to experience greater intimacy and trust in our relationship. No longer were we trying to protect ourselves from each other. No longer were we treating each other as “the enemy.” No longer were we rejecting each other’s body (the reproductive part of it). We were unified and strengthened as a couple. We sought God together for solutions to outside problems. We grew together in character and faith. We rejoiced in the fact that our sexual union could result in a beautiful baby. We allowed ourselves to become fully cooperative with God in the creation of a new human being. So many good things have resulted from no longer using birth control! How I hope that others will see the beauty of life without birth control.
The lies of the enemy that have convinced us to use birth control have stolen from us our intimacy in marriage, have killed the possibility of newly-conceived life, and are destroying the power of our faith.
Let us rise up, and live by FAITH in our Creator, that He is worthy of our trust, that He knows what is best for us, and that the way He designed our bodies is still “very good.”