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Old 07-10-2013, 10:04 PM   #1
aaiya
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My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

I've been attempting to chart using the Creighton method for 6 weeks now. The learning curve is killing me! (I'm breastfeeding and I think I have continuous mucus discharge). My teacher is a nice girl, but each of the 3 times we've met, I just sit there thinking how pointless it is. We go over basically the same stuff each time and I'm still having a hard time differentiating "smooth" from "lubricative" as well as determining whether or not things are substantially the same from one day to the next. The guidance/answers my teacher is giving me aren't helping much and I'm feeling stuck. She also said she has to get permission from her supervisor for some stuff (which kind makes me think she's a newbie). Should I try to find a different teacher? (and if so, how do you break up with a fertility method teacher)? Bag this method altogether? At this point, I have zero confidence in this as a birth control method. And if we're going to end up using condoms as a backup method anyway (it's that or avoid altogether), then why give myself the aggravation?

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Old 07-10-2013, 10:59 PM   #2
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

You might look at the Billings Ovulation Method website. They have some of their basic info available for download that might help you describe things better. There's also some good books you could try to get your hands on - Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler, The Art of Natural Family Planning by John and Sheila Kippley, The Garden of Fertility by Katie Singer, or The Billings Method by Evelyn Billjngs and Ann Westmore. All but the last one talk about the sympto-thermal approach. I'm not terribly familiar with the specifics of the Creighton Method, but I think it's similar to the Billings Method.

Have you started menstruating again yet? If not, it's possible that you're in a basic infertile pattern with your cervical fluid, which is why you're not experiencing the full range of possibilities. In my experience the fertile quality fluid is pretty obvious. If you're having a hard time discerning changes, it could be because it's not really changing.

Have you expressed your frustration to your teacher? Could you ask to talk to her supervisor? Or her and her supervisor together? Good luck. Don't give up. I think learning while you're breastfeeding would be much more challenging. It will get easier as you get more experience and as your baby gets older and nurses less, allowing your cycles to normalize. It can take several months for things to normalize from what I understand.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:59 PM   #3
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

Some of it is kind of annoying/lame that they have to ask you so that they know you understand, and I didn't think our teacher was that great of a fit personality-wise either, but I wouldn't bag the method. Though you may have better luck with Marquette because the fertility monitor is nice with breastfeeding and a continuous mucus pattern, it's much harder to find an instructor for that.
If you haven't ovulated, you probably haven't felt lubricative, so that would be a reason why you can't tell a difference. It's hard to understand until you've felt both. It's the more really wet, slippery feeling. You'll usually only feel this one or two days a month.

Try a different teacher. If there is a "main office" you can call, I would go about it that way, just say you don't click with your teacher and is there someone else you could see.
I will say that while breastfeeding is the hardest time to learn. That is when I learned as well.
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:56 AM   #4
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

She sounds like a newb and since you're breastfeeding its more complicated. I have no idea how to go about breaking up with her. Could you email her supervisor directly? I don't know, good luck.
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Old 07-11-2013, 09:43 PM   #5
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

Thanks for the replies, ladies I'm 4 months pp, still no cycles (and no data as to when I might possibly return to cycles because I had a mirena after each of my first 2 kids). I'm really going to have to figure out how to break up. The supervisor is apparently in a whole other state (!) and is crazy busy and hard to get a hold of even for my instructor and blah blah blah. So....I dunno. Right now I think my plan is to keep on keepin on with my charting (and use condoms because I don't trust this at all for birth control). I know with Creighton supposedly you just avoid contact and be intimate in non-sexual ways when you're having fertile mucus but since I have a continuous mucus pattern and I have no ethical objection to condoms...that'll keep things happy on the home front. If it wasn't for the cost of each meeting with my instructor, I wouldn't be so worried about it...but at $40 a session I can't keep meeting with her every 2 weeks so she can continue to NOT clarify things for me or help me be able to rely on this for its intended purpose.
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Old 07-11-2013, 10:45 PM   #6
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

Yeah no need for you to pay to be her guinea pig! Not your fault she doesn't know much.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:53 AM   #7
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

Are you practicing ecological breastfeeding by chance? Or interested in it? You're still in the effectiveness window. The rules are:

Breastfeed exclusively for the first six months of life; don't use other liquids and solids, not even water.
Pacify or comfort your baby at your breast.
Don't use pacifiers or bottles.
Sleep with your baby for night feedings.
Sleep with your baby for a daily nap feeding.
Nurse frequently day and night, and avoid schedules.

It has a 98% effectiveness rate for avoiding pregnancy in the first six months. After that you should pay attention to your fertility signals and start taking your waking temperature if you decide to go sympto-thermal (rather than mucus only). If you aren't doing any of the things listed, doing so could encourage your cervical fluid to dry up. I would say that consulting with your teacher is not a useful thing given where you are. She may be new and not very experienced, but even if that weren't the case, no one can really answer questions about your cycles when you're not having them. I think getting a book (Garden of Fertility has a good chapter on breastfeeding and fertility and the information is very accessible and well written) to have on hand for when you do resume your menstrual cycle would be good. Then, once you've charted a cycle or two you can talk to your teacher again if you have questions. Or talk to a different teacher. Either way, I think you need to be actually having cycles before further meetings with a teacher would help you. If the ecological breastfeeding doesn't seem appealing or doable, then I think condoms are a good choice for now.

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Old 07-12-2013, 10:26 PM   #8
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

Yeah...we're *almost* ecological bfing...BUT I do give her my finger to suck when she's just being munchy (meaning she just ate and isn't interested in the breast or she's just messing around which leads to sore nipples if I let her keep at it). We also don't nap together (I have two other children who don't nap so that would be a disaster! ) I know...almost doesn't count. Ohhhh well.
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Old 07-13-2013, 12:10 AM   #9
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

Could you do a 20 minute "quiet time" where you lay down with the baby and have the older two look at books or something in your room? I only have one, so don't have experience with those kinds of logistics, but have heard of others doing that. The other thing that's not on the list is baby wearing. If you have your baby on you for most of the day, it might be able to replace the nap time. Though I do think the resting component is important, even if it's not actual sleep.

If you're doing those things and have unchanging cervical fluid, then you probably are infertile. But you have to decide your comfort level there.
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Old 08-13-2013, 02:28 PM   #10
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Re: My Creighton teacher and I don't click. What should I do?

She sounds inexperienced and unsure, and that can't give you any confidence in the system. I wouldn't give up yet. Look for a different instructor. You can find them on fertilitycare.org. Don't worry about offending your current instructor. What's more important is making sure it's working for you.

Also, you can still use Creighton even if you have continuous mucus. Has your instructor introduced yellow stickers to you? I had continuous mucus cycle and my instructor introduced yellow stickers to me. However, she was an R.N, and had years of experience. I probably would not have had confidence in using yellow stickers if I hadn't had such a good instructor who clearly explained things to me.

You also said you started this six weeks ago. I hope this doesn't sound discouraging, but it took me a few months before I really began to understand and feel confident in Creighton. Now it's second nature to me. Don't be too discouraged, because it takes time to learn and you're just beginning. But by all means, find a better instructor.
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