What is Fertility Awareness?

There are many methods that are called Fertility Awareness Based Methods (FABM) and there isn’t just one method that is called Fertility Awareness. 

You can see the different categories and how we differentiate between them in this diagram.

Fertility Awareness Terminology

What they all have in common is that they somewhat rely on natural cycles, without any intervention. When we say Fertility Awareness Method (which is not to be confused with the Rhythm Method) we mean that we are checking the bodily biomarkers that are telling us whether we are fertile or not. 

The category on the left, the calculation methods, are all the methods that are trying to predict when ovulation occurs based on algorithms or cycle length. They are not very effective though. In the second category are methods that are based on body signs which are: cervical fluid (or cervical mucus), basal body temperature and cervix position. 

After our period, when estrogen rises, our cervix starts to produce cervical fluid. This substance is the beginning of our fertile phase and tells us in real-time that we are fertile now and it is time for us to adjust our behaviour according to our goals. Basal body temperature is a biomarker that tells us in retrospect that we have ovulated. After ovulation, when the dominant hormone is progesterone, we will experience an increase in our temp for the rest of our cycle. The cervix, which is an optional biomarker, gives us some additional information and can help us if there are some signs that were unclear for some reason. 

Some methods, like the Billings, in which I am also qualified, only use cervical mucus appearance and sensation. Here you might also find the temperature only method which is very effective but you are basically left with very few days where you can have unprotected sex.

The methods that are based on a daily check of these 3 body signs are called SYMPTOTHERMAL SINGLE CHECK. 

The next category is combined methods using something external like OPK, calculation or a device and checking all or part of the biomarkers.

The method that I am teaching is called SYMPTOTHERMAL DOUBLE CHECK and the difference is that we are also taking your past her-story cycles into consideration. This method has been studied and found very effective in avoiding pregnancy.

This method has been studied and was found to have a 99.6-99.4% efficiency rate in perfect use and 98.2% in typical use.

The Fertility Awareness Method can be very useful during a transitioning time such as breastfeeding, coming off the pill and pre-menopause. By understanding how a female body works, the menstrual cycle and the endocrine system, one gets to become so empowered and excited about their body.

Once we gain the skill sets to practice Fertility Awareness, we can listen more closely to our emotions during the different phases of our cycles. By understanding which phase we are in at any given stage of our cycle, we gain a valuable perspective on why our emotions are a certain way. We can learn to connect with ourselves on the deepest levels and in turn, we can take control of our actions or re-arrange our schedule according to our unique needs during each phase.

Those who experience menstrual cycles are only ever offered medical interventions that most often have far-reaching effects on our bodies. Fertility Awareness is a hormone-free, no side effects method of contraception or conception, with the added benefit of being able to help us identify potential problems with our menstrual health, as well as allowing us to involve our partners in this process.

We live in a culture that has moved away from our cyclic nature. We live in a culture that tells us how we should behave, how we should look and feel, what to wear, what’s right and wrong, and many times it is far from our nature, far from what is true to ourselves and our body. We are taught not to pay attention to our sexuality, to our menstrual cycle and even that we do not need our periods. We are encouraged to shut our reproductive system off until we want to have babies.

Not only is this untrue because we do need our menstrual cycle but it is horribly objectifying our body. Shutting our reproductive system off might cause us so much damage and if there are any underlying problems, it just postpones the time when we need to deal with them by masking them.



No Artificial Hormones

Learn Your Body's Signs

Learn how to use a natural, hormone free method of contraception. Once we start charting, we learn how long our luteal phase is. The first phase of our cycle, follicular phase, can vary but the luteal phase is constant between 12-16 days in a healthy cycle. Once you have confirmed ovulation and you know how long your luteal phase is, you can know when your period arrives. No more oops. It doesn’t interfere with your libido like hormonal birth controls do.


Optimise Your Chances to Conceive

Know When You Are Fertile

Optimize intercourse to achieve pregnancy. If one knows when the fertile wave starts then we will know when will be the most effective time to have intercourse, making the most of this wave. Know exactly when your due date is. You know when your wave started and you also chart intercourse, so you would have quite a good understanding of the day when conception may have occurred. This is such important information because so many doctors start to talk to you about inducing once you are close to 40 weeks, but if you know when you conceived, you can tell them exactly how far you are.


Learn the Warning Signs

Identify Potential Issues

Gauge your health. Many systems in our body are related to our hormones. If they don’t work well, they will influence our hormone production which will reflect in our menstrual cycle. It is also called the FIFTH vital sign. As a medical assessment, we can see many issues simply by charting such as endometriosis, PCOS, thyroid issues, early peri-menopause, abnormal bleeding, adrenal fatigue and hormonal imbalances.


It Becomes a Life Skill

Demystify Your Body

As a life skill, once you learn it you own it. It will serve you during your reproductive years, when trying to avoid pregnancy, achieve pregnancy, postpartum, breastfeeding and peri-menopause until menopause. By demystifying your body, you learn how your reproductive system works and it is more clear to you what’s happening in your body, whether you ovulate or not, if your hormones are working well and so much more. It opens new lines of communication between partners as both need to be on the same page regarding this practice, what and if there is a need to use anything during the fertile wave. You are able to make informed choices as once you know your options, you know how your body works, how many days you are fertile during your cycle and you can decide what you want to do based on facts.