Quick, go to any NFP forum and see how long it takes before someone claims their method is hands-down, objectively, THE best method in the whole universe. It won’t take you long to find such a post, I can just about promise.
Instead of that argument, I tend to start a different one. Even though I’m an NFP instructor (I teach the Billings Ovulation Method), I do not believe one method is absolutely and everywhere better than another. Admitting this, and that I have and will refer clients to instructors in other methods when needed, starts this other argument.
It’s one I’m happy to have, though, because I think we lose sight of the goal of helping women when we argue about which method is best. In my opinion, the best method is the one that works best for that woman at that time, where she is knowledgeable of the method and supported in it.
So what does that look like? Well, while all the methods can be used from menarche to menopause, the different circumstances the woman encounters in her personal life, and the way her body responds to those changes, can make one method easier (better?) than another for her at that time. At a different point in life, she may find a different method works better for her.
For example, even though I know all the science behind Billings and that it is objectively a good method, if the woman is not at all confident in trusting her own (subjective) mucus observations, then the method isn’t going to work for her. At such a time, I feel it can be better to refer to, say, a method with a monitor, where she doesn’t have to rely on her subjective observations and there is less chance for user error. Or maybe she feels she needs another sign to cross-check. I will, of course, try to help her gain confidence in Billings first, and will continue to support her in that method if it’s what she prefers, but I won’t hesitate to refer to another method if I see that it will mean less stress for her.
So what’s the best method? The one she likes best and learns best at that time. Let’s end the method wars.