How can I deal with conflicts about family planning and child spacing

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In order to resolve conflicts regarding family planning it will be necessary for you to talk with your husband or partner about the use of family planning and about the method you will use. To facilitate the conversation it may be helpful to share the following information with him:

  • Women under the age of 18 are more likely to die in childbirth because their bodies are not fully grown, and their babies have a greater chance of dying during their first year of life. So it is better not to have babies too soon.
  • Older women face more danger in childbearing, especially if they have other health problems or have had many children. So it is better not to have babies too late.
  • A woman’s body needs time to recover between pregnancies, so adequate spacing between pregnancies is safer for both women and their children. So it is better not to have babies too closely after one another.
  • A woman with more than four children has a greater risk of death after childbirth from bleeding and other causes. So it is better not to have too many babies.
  • Having fewer children means less economic pressure on the family and will allow a husband to take better care of his family. So with fewer children a family can afford a better standard of living and better education for its children.
  • Fewer children can mean more time for parents to share themselves and with their children.
  • Family planning can also help a couple enjoy sex more because they no longer need be afraid of unwanted pregnancies. However, being protected against unwanted pregnancy does not make women want to have sex with other men.

If your husband still does not want you to use family planning after learning about its benefits, you must decide whether you will use family planning anyway in order to protect yourself. If you do, you may need to choose a method that can be used without your partner knowing about it. No matter where you live, you will be healthier if you have control over how many children you have, and when you have them.

Therefore, deciding to use—or not to use—family planning should always be your choice.

  • Burns, A. A., Niemann, S., Lovich, R., Maxwell, J., & Shapiro, K. (2014). Where women have no doctor: A health guide for women. Hesperian Foundation.
  • Audiopedia ID: en021013