TOB Tuesday: Sex Doesn’t Have “Consequences”

ChelseaPro Life12 Comments

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the birth control pill.

Ahhh, Contraception. How you have enriched our society! Let me count the ways: infidelity, divorce, pornography, prostitution, STDs, out of wed lock/teen pregnancy and, of course, abortion. Sure, these things existed before your invention, but they’ve become veritable epidemics since your use has become so accepted and widespread over the last 50 years.

In this presentation Fr. Thomas Euteneuer discusses one of the worst fruits of the “contraception revolution”, explaining the connection between birth control and abortion and the 4 stages of development through which birth control morphs into abortion. “Abortion is not the revolution,” Fr. E says, “contraception is the revolution.” Sex divorced from procreation is the revolution.

In the final analysis, the abortion debate is not so much about when life begins, but the meaning of sex and the human body. As I’ve said on here several times before, people did not just wake up one day and decide they have a right to kill their unborn children – but they did progressively decide it was their right to have meaningless sex without limit or consequence. This is what has lead to the de-humanization of the unborn child. It’s not because so many people are really that ignorant about basic human biology, but that now pregnancy is seen as an undesirable consequence of and a hindrance to a misguided notion of sexual “freedom.” This attitude has turned the unborn child into a parasite, a tumor, an enemy who must be destroyed. This is why:

It is an illusion to think that we can build a true culture of human life if we do not…accept and experience sexuality and love and the whole of life according to their true meaning and in their close interconnection (JP II, Evangelium Vitae n. 97)

Here’s the thing: Sex does not (or at least it shouldn’t) have “consequences”; it has a purpose. If you have sex and you or your partner gets pregnant, something did not go wrong. Something went beautifully and fundamentally right! Sexual intercourse is meant to be both unitive and procreative – a renewal of the marriage covenant. Any sexual act outside of this context is an affront to our nature as human beings, not to mention a gross distortion of the eternal reality it is meant to symbolize (Eph 5:21-32).

Read: Humanae Vitae

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12 Comments on “TOB Tuesday: Sex Doesn’t Have “Consequences””

  1. The birth control pill is just like alcohol.

    It improves the quality of the life of the wise and the responsible, and creates an incredible amount of suffering amongst the not-so-wise and the irresponsible.

  2. The birth control pill is not like alcohol. The deliberate prevention of pregnancy is in and of itself evil because it violates the very purpose for which God created human sexuality. Thus contraception is, in itself, an unwise and irresponsible act, no matter who does it.

    Moreover, by what infallible standard do we judge who is “wise” and “responsible” if not He Who is wisdom itself, namely God? And God, in His infinite and perfect wisdom, through the Church that He founded, has declared that contraception is antithetical to what it means to be human, in other words, what it means to live as having been created by Him in His image. Henceforth, contraception is never, under any circumstances, morally acceptable as it is contrary to the ultimate good of human nature–God Himself.

    To be “wise” and “responsible” is to surrender our wills to He Who created us and trust that He will lead us to our ultimate happiness, which is Himself. In marriage, that means always being open to the gift of a new human person whenever He chooses to bestow him or her.

  3. Bob, do you insist that a woman should not have any control over her own body? That she should become some breeding machine on the mercy and whim of her male companion?

    If you do, your opinion is nothing short of male chauvinism. If you don’t, your opinion is close to cluelessness.

    I am planning a circiumnavigation on a yacht with my husband. The least thing I want is an unplanned and unwanted pregnancy in the middle of the ocean. It could risk my life and it certainly would risk that of my baby. That is why I certainly will use some kind of contraception during the voyage – and I will let God judge me when it is the time once this earthly race is over.

    The birth control pill is a two-edged sword. It will allow a married woman to have her children at the time when she is ready for motherhood and when she is mature enough for motherhood and her household is economically stable for it. It will allow a female policewoman, security officer or soldier to avoid an unwanted pregnancy in the case of being physically assaulted and raped. And it will allow a married couple to say after their fifth child that “now we will stress on the quality of our children rather than quantity”.

    And on the other hand, it is a destructive thingy on the hands of the irresponsible. It will give a false licence to promiscuity. It will give false feeling of safety to practise irresponsible sex for the immature, underage or just plain stupid. It will enable the irresponsible to follow their animalistic, hormonal urges instead of acting responsibly – and being no better than apes.

    If God gives us enough wisdom to decrypt the endocrine and discover hormonal contraception, He sure will give us enough wisdom to use it responsibly as well.

    A knife is not an evil instrument per se. It all depends whether it is at the hands of a carpenter or a mugger.

  4. Intentionally sterilizing the marital act is always morally wrong, no matter who is using it. It is, as I said in this post, an affront to the nature of the marital act as God created it and a gross distortion of the eternal reality that sex is meant to symbolize (Eph 5:21-32). No one is suggesting that women become “breeding machines”. Contraception is not a necessity for avoiding pregnancy. A woman does not ovulate every day of the month and modern methods of natural family planning can determine with almost absolute certainty when a woman is ovulating so that, if a couple has a serious reason for avoiding pregnancy, they can avoid intercourse during that period and take advantage of the natural cycles of infertility to engage in marital intercourse. Unlike birth control this upholds the beauty and sanctity of the female body and the marital act and allows couples to cooperate with God – rather than taking their fertility and the matters of life into their own hands.

    Contraception is to be judged so profoundly unlawful as never to be, for any reason, justified. To think or to say the contrary is equal to maintaining that in human life, situations may arise in which it is lawful not to recognize God as God (JPII, October 10, 1983).

    To experience the gift of married love while respecting the laws of conception is to acknowledge that one is not the master of the sources of life but rather the minister of the design established by the Creator. Just as man does not have unlimited dominion over his body in general, so also, and with more particular reason, he has no such dominion over his specifically sexual faculties, for these are concerned by their very nature with the generation of life, of which God is the source (Humanae Vitae, 13).

    Fr. Frank Pavone has an excellent column on this: Humanae Vitae, Control, and Fear

  5. “[I]t is never lawful, even for the gravest reasons, to do evil that good may come of it (cf. Romans, 3:8)—in other words, to intend directly something which of its very nature contradicts the moral order, and which must therefore be judged unworthy of man, even though the intention is to protect or promote the welfare of an individual, of a family or of society in general. Consequently, it is a serious error to think that a whole married life of otherwise normal relations can justify sexual intercourse which is deliberately contraceptive and so intrinsically wrong.”–Pope Paul VI, Humanae Vitae, 14

  6. Great post Chelsea! And yes, even though we live in a culture that regards contraception as implicit, Fr. Euteneuer makes an excellent point when he says that contraception came before abortion….many pro-life advocates do not even acknowledge this! The culture will need to ‘root-out’ this contraceptive mentality before legalized abortion can come to an end!!!
    One of the most shocking statistics for me to read is that 90% of Catholics (in the US) use contraception…this is even higher than the general population! It demonstrates how gravely misled and uneducated Catholics have become!

    Your blog is a great exception, however! You present the life-issues in a positive and hope-filled way!

    Great blog, I have enjoyed reading this and keep up the good work.

  7. Chelsea wrote: “Intentionally sterilizing the marital act is always morally wrong, no matter who is using it.”

    This is an argumentation fallacy known as dicto simpliciter ( It is either making a rule into an exception or an exception into a rule. See also

    Sometimes the question is about two evils, a situation in philosophy known as Zugzwang – “damned if you do, damned if you don’t”. In my case, as I mentioned, the least thing I want is an unwanted and unplanned pregnancy in the middle of the ocean. Reason:

    1) It may risk my life. There are no doctors in the middle of nowhere.
    2) It may risk the life of my baby. Ditto, and even more so.
    3) It is unwanted. I am no breeding machine like the Muslim women are. I simply don’t want to start a new human life in a situation where it would be really unfeasible for him/her.

    Do you insist that I should risk a human life – or two human lives (a great sin) in order to avoid committing intentional act of sterilizing an intercourse (a small sin?) This is a real risk. Things like that have really happened – with extremely nasty consequences.

    The moral value of an act is not measured by the act per se. It is measured by its motivation and its consequences. If the motivation of intentionally sterilizing the intercourse is to prevent a greater sin – risking one or two human lives – from happening, then it is justified. If the intention is to live in promiscuity, then there is no justification.

    “No one is suggesting that women become “breeding machines”.”

    That is the logical consequence in the light of the human history. When the women are taken away the control over their own bodies, they are subjugated into breeding machines. One look at the Muslim world is enough to get convinced.

    “Contraception is not a necessity for avoiding pregnancy.”

    The rhythm method requires that the woman knows her period really well. It won’t work on those who have irregular menstrual cycle or on those with oligomenorrhea, like athletesses.

    The rhythm method is reliable – to a certain point. Beyond that, all bets are off.

    I really don’t want to risk that situation.

  8. All of the reasons you gave are good and serious reasons for avoiding pregnancy. But, still, contraception is not necessary for avoiding pregnancy. It doesn’t sound like you went to the link I provided about the CREIGHTON MODEL FertilityCare™ System. The days of the “rhythm method” are long gone. I don’t know any NFP practicing couple who uses it. Again: the modern method of natural family planning can determine with almost absolute certainty when a woman is ovulating – it is scientific and accurate.

    The oppression of women in the Muslim culture is indeed wrong. Catholic teaching holds that a husband and wife are subjected to one another and can and should make decisions together about responsible parenthood and regulating birth – in a way that does not offend the moral principles. Admittedly this teaching has not always been well practiced over the years, but contraception is not the answer to the oppression of women.

    Many actions are wrong in and of themselves, not matter what the motives are behind committing such actions – abortion, IVF, euthanasia, creating/using and destroying human life for scientific research, just to name a few. And, yes, deliberately sterilizing the marital act qualifies as well. I’m not ignoring an acceptable exception – there simply isn’t one in this case. John Paul II explains it thus:

    “When, therefore, through contraception, married couples remove from the exercise of their conjugal sexuality its potential procreative capacity, they claim a power which belongs solely to God; the power to decide in the final analysis the coming into existence of a human person. They assume the qualification not of being cooperators in God’s creative power, but the ultimate depositories of the source of human life. In this perspective, contraception is to be judged so profoundly unlawful as never to be, for any reason, justified. To say or think the contrary is equal to maintaining that in human life situations may arise in which it is lawful not to recognize God as God.” (JPII, September 17, 1983).

  9. “79. One must therefore reject the thesis, characteristic of teleological and proportionalist theories, which holds that it is impossible to qualify as morally evil according to its species–its “object”–the deliberate choice of certain kinds of behaviour or specific acts, apart from a consideration of the intention for which the choice is made or the totality of the foreseeable consequences of that act for all persons concerned.

    The primary and decisive element for moral judgment is the object of the human act, which establishes whether it is capable of being ordered to the good and to the ultimate end, which is God. This capability is grasped by reason in the very being of man, considered in his integral truth, and therefore in his natural inclinations, his motivations and his finalities, which always have a spiritual dimension as well. It is precisely these which are the contents of the natural law and hence that ordered complex of “personal goods” which serve the “good of the person”: the good which is the person himself and his perfection. …

    Reason attests that there are objects of the human act which are by their nature “incapable of being ordered” to God, because they radically contradict the good of the person made in his image. These are the acts which, in the Church’s moral tradition, have been termed “intrinsically evil” (intrinsece malum): they are such always and per se, in other words, on account of their very object, and quite apart from the ulterior intentions of the one acting and the circumstances. …

    As is evident, in the question of the morality of human acts, and in particular the question of whether there exist intrinsically evil acts, we find ourselves faced with the question of man himself, of his truth and of the moral consequences flowing from that truth. By acknowledging and teaching the existence of intrinsic evil in given human acts, the Church remains faithful to the integral truth about man; she thus respects and promotes man in his dignity and vocation.”–Pope John Paul II, Veritatis Splendor

  10. Ironmistress,
    So basically your argument is that there is an exception to every rule, except to the rule that says there is an exception to every rule, and except to the rule that says there is an exception to every rule except to the rule that says there is an exception to every rule, and except………

    Your argument is inherently contradictory. Since you presuppose that every moral prescription has an acceptable exception, on what basis do you judge what constitutes an acceptable exception? Whatever moral standard you rely on to judge what constitues an acceptable exception is your moral absolute. But you reject moral absolutes. As such, your argument is self-defeating, and I can reject it–which I do.

  11. By the way, the contraception restriction does not apply only to women–men are forbidden from sterilizing themselves, too.

  12. Ironmistress,
    Sorry if I jumped to an incorrect conclusion about your position. I was trying to make the point that some acts (i.e. rape) are, by their very nature, always wrong and admit of no exception. Rape is always wrong because it is contrary to the dignity of the human person. Same with contraception.

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