I took three at home pregnancy tests, only to find out that I was pregnant for the first time in my life.
I am 26 years old and I haven't always been "careful". It finally caught up with me. I discussed everything with my boyfriend and we decided that abortion was the best choice for our situation. Our situation is: I just got a divorce from my ex-husband finalized in December and here it is, the end of January, and I'm pregnant with another man's baby. Also, my boyfriend and I had only been dating for about a month and a half, and the biggest problem is that he is still legally married and in the process of divorcing his soon to be ex-wife. She just had a baby that may or may not be his, as she was unfaithful in their marriage which led to their divorce and if the child is his, then he will have to pay that child’s support. So, for all of those reasons I decided that an abortion was right for me.
I did my research and read up on both the medical abortion with Mifeprex and Mistoprolol and the surgical abortion. I called my local clinic and scheduled my appointment and decided after reading that the medical abortion sounded right for me. Well, it has been anything but right. Here is my story... I go to the clinic on Wednesday, January the 28th. I have an ultrasound, which confirms I am five weeks pregnant. So, this is good news to me. It means I can have the medical abortion, since I am less than seven weeks pregnant. I speak with a counsellor/nurse. She tells me all of the risks and benefits, including that I am going to bleed and cramp. She also tells me that the procedure is 92-95% effective, which I already knew from reading. She also says that they have been doing the medical abortions at their clinic since 2002 and only one woman’s abortion since 2002 has not been successful. She said that the woman had excessive bleeding, so she had to have the surgical procedure urgently.
She told me that today was considered "day 1" and I would take the Mifeprex tablets today, which would help soften my uterus and get it ready for evacuation and that it blocked the body's release of progesterone, which is necessary to continue the pregnancy. She said I would need to come back to the clinic to take the Mistoprolol on Saturday, January 31st: "Day Four". She said she expects that my pregnancy will pass from my uterus sometime late Saturday night or early Sunday morning. She also said she can't tell me what I will and won't see, but usually women see jelly-like clots. She said I will bleed or spot on average 9-16 days after, but some women bleed/spot for about a month after, which is normal. She said I may start bleeding today after I take the Mifeprex, but most women don't bleed much or at all until they take the Mistoprolol. She then told me that I was to come back on "Day 14" which would be Feb. 11th, or a few days after, to make sure my pregnancy had ended and that everything was ok. She said if my pregnancy had not ended, and reiterated that I should have no problems if I followed the instructions and came back like I was supposed to, that the doctor would discuss other options, to include a surgical abortion, which would be free of charge.
So, I paid my $530 for my medical abortion, saw the doctor and he told me basically the same things that the nurse/counsellor did and told me to come back on Saturday and not to worry about making an appointment, just to come around 9am and let the girl at the front desk know that I was a medical abortion patient and I was there for my second visit. I wouldn't have to wait and he would see me and get me out of there. He said he would be looking for me Saturday around 9am and to make sure I had someone to drive me home Saturday. I took my Mifeprex and went home.
Saturday, January 31st: I arrived at the abortion clinic around 8:50am. I told the girl at the front desk that I was here for my second visit for a medical abortion and that the doctor told me to get here at 9am and he would see me and I wouldn't have to wait. Also that he said he would be looking for me. The girl said ok and I took my seat in the waiting room. An hour passed... it was now 10am and I was still sitting... I went to the desk and reiterated what I had already told the girl and she told me that there were people in front of me and I had to wait my turn. Finally, about 15 minutes later a nurse came out in the waiting room and asked: "Is there anyone here for a follow up?" I stood up and said "me". The girl at the front desk said: "She's not here for a follow up", with a very nasty tone. I proceeded to talk to the nurse and I told her what I was there for and she said: "Good... you are the person I was looking for. The doctor is here and he's been asking if you were here, but no one came back here and told us you were here... I will let him know you are here so he can see you and we can get you out of here... as soon as they get your chart ready, call you back and get your vital signs, tell them in the back that you need to see me and she gave me her name. The snot at the front desk was put in her place at that time, but I was still aggravated. So, after a few more minutes of waiting I was called to the back and got my vitals taken... I guess I waited another good 45 minutes to see the doctor. He gave me my Mistoprolol and told me to come back around "Day 14", which would be approx Feb 11th.
I starting cramping almost immediately after I took the medicine and I bled, much like a regular period for me throughout the weekend and the first of the week. I never saw that I passed any clots of tissue, but I was hopeful that everything was going as planned. By the following weekend, I was only spotting, so I figured that was good news and my body must have expelled the pregnancy. I continued to spot and I returned to the clinic on Saturday, Feb 14th for my so-called "post-abortion follow up", which was "Day 17". I had my ultrasound and I knew something was up, because the ultrasound tech just gave me the impression there was by her lack of words or anything. So, I was sent to see the counsellor again and I had to pay $25 for this visit, which I didn't know I was going to have to pay for. They failed to ever mention that on either of my previous visits or in any of the literature I received.
The doctor said that I was still "pregnant". He said that my pregnancy had not continued as the gestational age from the ultrasound was the same as it was on my first visit, which was five weeks. I peeked at my chart and read where it pretty much said that my baby was a "vegetable" in not so many words. I am a nurse myself so I understand medical terms very well. So, I thought to myself, great, I have a dead baby inside of me. The doctor told me to come back in another week, that he suspected that between now and next Saturday that I would get a period and pass a nice size clot and the clot would be the gestational sac. He was almost positive that this would occur and I had nothing to worry about. He also told me that I came back too early, that he didn't want to see me until three weeks after I had taken the mistoprolol and I told him that EVERYTHING I read said come back on Day 14, the nurse and you yourself told me to come back on Day 14. I don't know why he said that about me coming back in three weeks, unless it was to make himself look "good" and like this procedure was not going to be a failure or whatever.
So, disgusted and mad I left and made me an appt for the following Saturday. Saturday Feb. 21st: Well, seems I can't make my appointment at the abortion clinic today. I had a stomach virus, which I caught at my work, as there was an outbreak. So, I called and they told me to come on Wednesday Feb 25th at 9am. Here it is, Saturday, and I had yet to get a period like the doctor was expecting and I had not passed any clots or tissue or anything or than some spotting of blood/vaginal discharge each day. Sunday morning Feb. 22nd, I wake up and go to the bathroom and to my surprise when I use the toilet paper to wipe, I get a small/med sized clot on my toilet tissue and I see that there is blood in the toilet with my urine. So, I'm optimistic at this point and think I passed my pregnancy finally and I have my period... good.
I continued to bleed like I was on my period and have some uterine cramping for the next few days. Wednesday Feb. 25th: Here goes my fourth visit to an abortion clinic, as if it wasn't painful enough having to go three other times. I am here again and the staff are beginning to recognize me and remember my name... that's bad. I have my ultrasound and this visit free of charge and the ultrasound tech is a little more optimistic this time... I pee in a cup, then take my seat and wait to see the doctor. The doctor tells me that my pregnancy test is coming back a strong positive and that I still have the gestational sac in my uterus. So, once again, my pregnancy is still incomplete. I guess I did pass something on that Sunday, because you can see changes in the new ultrasound as compared to the old ones done. To me, it looks like my body is trying to expel the pregnancy, but just can't quite do it. So, he tells me he wants to do the suction today free of charge and I tell him I can't... I am scheduled to go to work and I have already now missed about two hours of my work day and I have no one to drive me home. So, he decides he will give me more Mistoprolol, which according to everything I read he should have done already on my "Day 14" visit or post-abortion follow up visit, when my pregnancy had not been expelled, but he chose not to and didn't even mention that as an option to me on "Day 14". He also gave me a prescription for Methergine tablets, which he said would help contract the uterus and hopefully the Mistoprolol and the Methergine together would work to end my pregnancy... nonetheless, I would have to come back on Wednesday March 4th for a follow up and if my pregnancy still had not ended, to be prepared for the surgical suction procedure.
I told him I could come back on Saturday the 28th and just have the suction and not worry about taking the Misto and Methergine combo and he said he wouldn't be there Saturday, that the other doctor would, and I asked why couldn't the other doctor perform my abortion and he said that I wasn't the other doctor's patient and that would be "totally up to him and his discretion". I reminded my doctor that I am missing work every Wednesday that I come in for these appointments and that I am having to lie to my boss in order to come. I told him I can't up and tell my boss I am having an abortion and it's not going exactly as planned. The fact that I am having an abortion is none of her business and something that I don't feel comfortable sharing with her for a lot of reasons. So I have to lie to her and it's not something I like doing, but if I have no choice, but to either have the procedure today or take the meds and come back next Wednesday, then I guess I have to just come back next Wednesday, because my boss is expecting me and I have to be at work, as I am a nurse. So, I take the Misto and get my script for the Methergine. Here it is Friday, Feb 27th and I am bleeding sort of moderately... no clots yet and I am having some of the worst uterine cramps I have ever experienced. I am hopeful, yet doubtful.
I do not recommend the medical abortion to ANYONE. It has been and will be over a MONTH since I first started this abortion, before I can finally say it's over and I am no longer pregnant. Not only is it physically taxing to one, but also mentally and emotionally. If I had to do it all over again, I would have had the surgical suction procedure and called it a day. This is by far one of the worst experiences I have ever had with a medical treatment or procedure. If you do this type of abortion make sure you have patience and an understanding boss if you work, because when this is all said and done I will have made six visits total to an abortion clinic. Next Wed will be my fifth and then I will most likely have to return for a sixth visit if they have to do the suction, because I will have to have a follow up from the suction to make sure my uterus has healed properly.
My relationship with my boyfriend has been strained and we have called it quits because of all of the emotions and things I am feeling and going through. I am depressed and don't really feel like going out and having a good time. I feel like I can't until this is over. Also, we can't have sex until this is over and if I have to have a suction, I am looking at about another month of no sex. My body still tells me I am pregnant, as I have gas, bloating, acne and my hormones are just way out of whack. So, this is my story of what a pretty much failed medical abortion can do to a person physically, mentally and emotionally.
Editor’s note: Thanks for sharing your story with us…You sound very angry about your experience. The truth is that no medical procedure can be guaranteed to go as expected. To induce an abortion is an unnatural process and our bodies can respond how they choose. I think your anger may be more than just about the procedure and the decisions that were made in the process – it may be that the reality of what is happening is affecting you at a deeper level than you realise. You don’t mention the fact that this is the end of a pregnancy, nor do you mention what that meant to you, except in terms of your circumstances. Having such a prolonged procedure is a painful reminder of what’s really happening for you, isn’t it? It would feel so much better to get it all over with as soon as possible, wouldn't it? It may be that when you have finally gone through the physical process that you may want to pay some attention to how you are feeling at a deeper level. There are other organisations that offer free specialist support for post-abortion and you can find these on the web. We’ll be thinking of you.