Anxiety Over Recommended Hysterectomy

Question

I am a 42 year old female with a regular period. My husband and I have two beautiful children ages 11 and 8. We have been blessed with NFP for three years now and I love the changes it has made in our lives and marriage.
The problem is I have cervical prolapse, a cistocele and a rectocele that are progressively getting worse. My OB recommended a hysterectomy a year and a half ago due to pain and bowel issues but I refused and we did a uteran suspension instead. The results were not as good as I had hoped. Every month as my cycle nears I have pretty intense swelling which leads to the pain and rather awful constipation. I treat these with creams, medicines,etc. but get nominal relief. I offer it up to God and pray as I know I should. While we are open to God’s will for more children in our life, I don’t think I could carry one to term at this point and truth be told my husband is happy with the size of our family now. Still he would accept His will. My OB told me that while the time will come when the operation will be medically necessary, for now the surgery is a matter of how much pain I can stand. There are times that I don’t think I can take another minute of it, I have almost fainted from it before. It hurts worse after lovemaking which makes my husband feel bad and I hate that. Yet when the pain goes away I don’t want to have surgery at all. I have prayed over this but am still so confused, my priest told me it was ok but it doesn’t feel right.

Please give me your advice if you choose and if the answer is “yes it is ok,” how does a couple who is not able to bring life into the world anymore still share their love in such a respectful and loving way that NFP promotes? I truly don’t want to lose that.

Heather

Answer

Last Updated: May 2, 2022
Dear Heather,

I don’t know if I can help you with your decision to have surgery or not, but if you and your husband have a loving and communicative marriage now it can continue as most happy marriages do after the fertile years. These years, by the way end sometimes naturally in the early forties. Different events come into play as couples age together, becoming less in love isn’t one of them. Deeper, yes, and definitely more relaxed and thoughtful.

We in NFP practice SPICE as you probably know and we get pretty good at it because it’s built into the daily charting and conversations we have. Sexual contact to us is more than genital contact but multi-dimentional and involves not just Physical contact but Spiritual, Emotional, Intellectual and Creative contact. These are what bring us closer together if we allow our contact with each other to have plenty of opportunities to make all aspects of sexual contact part of our marriage.

Abstaining from intercourse will continue to be part of your life just as it is now. Just because you may no longer be able to conceive and bear a child does not diminish the love that has been building between you during your fertile years. You have had three years of NFP as part of your marital life style and see the difference it has made. You’ve been very lucky.

Judy Wilmurt

Answered By:

Judy Wilmurt
Judy Wilmurt, Professional Member of CANFP, and past member of the Executive Board, taught the Creighton Model FertilityCare System of NFP in the Oakland region, wherre she resides with her husband Eric.

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