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ConfusedByAMistakeInMyYouth wrote:

Hi, guys —

My future husband and I are devout Catholics. Our faith is everything to us. We have abstained from sex during our relationship for almost four years, however when I was younger, I dated someone else and gave into temptation.

Not knowing it, this ex-boyfriend transmitted herpes to me. My future husband knows and we have great, open communication. He expressed he would use condoms when we get married,
to prevent him from getting the herpes virus, however, I feel torn about it because we both feel strongly about the Church's stance on artificial birth control.

  • What should we do?

I asked him how do we move forward and have children, and he said when we are ready to conceive, we will have sex without condoms during the days I am prone to conceive.

He said, we will be using the condoms to prevent infection, not prevent pregnancy. I just feel confused!

  • What options do we really have?


  { What options do we have if we wish to remain faithful to the Church's teaching on birth control? }

Mary Ann replied:

Dear ConfusedByAMistakeInMyYouth,

This article sums up the issues well.

While there is some debate among moral theologians, the consensus is that the nature of the act of contracepted sex is intrinsically evil, even when one engages in it for a good purpose.

Whatever the status of the question, the fact is, that a study of the facts will reveal that there is less urgency about the situation than you think.

For instance, condoms do not prevent infection, they only reduce the possibility of contagion. Moreover, there are the facts that one can contract the virus through non-sexual activity. Men are less susceptible to contracting it, and viral shedding can be reduced with antivirals.

Herpes is intermittent in its symptoms, often very mild in its symptoms, and after a while, many people become asymptomatic. In short, perhaps you are making more of this situation than is warranted.

Outbreaks can be prevented by many things, so do your research and don't worry.

Mary Ann

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