Here's a piece of it:
Lots and lots of Catholics have fallen into the habit of what I call "Simon Peter Says" thinking when it comes to the guidance of the Church. That is, instead of beginning with the assumption that our normative attitude as Catholics is to give assent to what the Church guides us to do, while also exercising prudence in those areas the Church herself urges us to exercise prudence (such as your situation), many Catholics take a massively reductionistic approach to the Church's teaching and frequently talk as though, unless the Church has infallibly defined some point of teaching and forces us, under pain of damnation, to obey it, you can basically do whatever you like. This is a pan-Catholic phenomenon.
So, for instance, a common argument from people who reject the Church's clear, unambiguous and authoritative teaching on artificial contraception is that the Church has not infallibly declared, pronounced and defined that artificial contraception is immoral. They then go on to point to various theologians who say it's fine to use artificial contraception and announce that there are therefore "two traditions" in the Church on the matter and you can feel free to blow off Humanae Vitae and the Catechism. The magical words invariably invoked to ignore the bleedin' obvious teaching of the Church here are "prudential judgment" and "conscience."
Similarly, back when the Bush Administration was busy torturing people and calling it "enhanced interrogation" Catholics who supported the gravely and intrinsically immoral sin of torture (to our shame, in greater percentages than the general population) were busy coming up with all sorts of excuses for torture, including the ridiculous claim that "until the Church infallibly defines X (waterboarding, cold cells, strappado, suffocation, terrifying children with insects, among other techniques used by our government) as torture, we simply have no way of knowing what torture is". So, once again, "prudential judgment" was pressed into service to ignore the bleedin' obvious teaching of the Church with the pretense that it was impossible to know what torture was since the Church had not spelled out every single possible permutation of torture. (Strangely, torture advocates never pretended that it was impossible to know what abortion was despite the fact that the Church has also never spelled out every conceivable abortifacient technique or drug.)
The struggle to ignore the clear, obvious, and authoritative teaching of the Church on torture, like that struggle to ignore the clear, obvious and authoritative teaching of the Church on artificial contraception, boiled down to "Unless Simon Peter Says it infallibly you can completely ignore it". The idea was to take the Minimum Daily Adult Requirement approach to the Church's teaching. Instead of asking, "How do we treat prisoners humanely as the Church commands?" the question was instead, "What can we get away with? How much abuse can we heap on prisoners without it technically being a mortal sin?" And even though we had prisoners die from our tortures, the insistence on protecting the power to torture trumped the obvious teaching of the Church. Some Catholics even insisted that opposition to torture was actually in opposition to the Church's prolife position instead of, very obviously, a corollary of it.
But the key, in both cases, was that the drive was to minimize the clear, obvious, and authoritative teaching of the Church in favor of some ephemeral cultural imperative involving either great desires (Limitless Sex!) or great fears (The Terrorists Will Kill Us All!). In addition to these motivators for ignoring the clear, obvious, and authoritative teaching of the Church are money, power, and honor. As a general rule of thumb, it's always a good idea to check our pulse when the Church offends us and try to see if one of these basic drives are being thwarted by the call of the gospel to die to ourselves.
Bottom line: The Church does not function by the maxim, "That which is not forbidden is compulsory". Nor does she function by the "Simon Peter Says Principle". When the Church offers us clear, unambiguous, and authoritative teaching our duty is to give it assent, not to search for loopholes and Clintonian redefinitions of obvious things like "artificial contraception", "torture", or "baby". So unless a case can be made that the Church's guidance is really going to result in immorality, or is radically impractical, counterproductive, or destructive of human flourishing, our default position is to be obedience, not "How little of the Church's teaching can I get away with obeying?" In the cases of artificial contraception, abortion, and of torture, no such case exists.
But similarly, when the Church offers some statement that, say, recycling is a good thing, or supporting 40 Days for Life is encouraged, our response should be to look at that in light of the tradition as well, and not in light of our polarized politics. So even though recycling is reflexively seen by some as one of those "green left liberal" things and 40 Days for Life is reflexively seen by others as one of those "conservative rabble rouser" things in polarized American media discourse, our thought should not be boxed in by the cramped political categories of American civic life. Our first thought should not be "Will I be perceived as a green left liberal or a conservative rabble rouser?" It should be "However I am perceived by the worldly mind, how can I be a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ and do my bit to follow the Church's lead by taking care of creation and working to defend the dignity of human life?"
Read the rest.
If you're Catholic, it'll serve you well. If you're a Catholic hater, it might make you less hateful.
If you're apathetic, then the hell with you... or more accurately put, you're well on your way to hell so... to hell with you (though I hope you'll change your mind).