As I had previously posted, today was my big day. Today was the day that I got to go in, get assessed, and determine whether or not I am able to get a medical abortion as opposed to the surgical one.
So far, the experience has been awesome and calm. I gotta hand it to the staff that I am working it. It’s been comfortable. I found out though that medical abortion in Canada is actually very hard to get and apparently I lucked out with my timing. Medical abortions, at least in Manitoba, are done based on the availability of the doctor and very much dependent on your gestational stage. If you don’t catch it under 7 weeks, you are shit out of luck. Beyond that, I was very surprised to learn that some people in this city are so misinformed that it can cause issues if you don’t know where to go. There are doctors that believe that you can get RU-486 in Canada. You can’t. It’s illegal to import it. Not only that, but not every hospital is pro-choice….so imagine what happens when some doctor who is not all that bright tells a patient that they can get RU-486 at…oh let’s say St. Boniface Hospital. That hospital is notorious in how badly it treats women who seek abortions and post abortive women. My advice if you’re a woman in Winnipeg, has had an abortion, has disclosed that fact, and plan to give birth? St. Boniface will treat you like shit. Health Sciences Centre will have a more woman friendly facility open soon and OF COURSE you should really, really, REALLY check out the new birthing centre in the city.
Anyway, back to the topic at hand….
So. In addition to all the testing of the vitals and whatnot, there was an ultrasound involved. Yes, I did ask to see it because I really wanted to get a sense of what some women who are forced to look at them may possibly go through. My doctor obliged and showed me exactly what a pregnancy at basically 6 weeks gestation looks like. So here I am, staring at the screen at this almighty fetus picture that is TOTALLY GOING TO CHANGE MY MIND and–uhhhhhh….where the fuck is this thing?! I had to have it pointed out to me. All you can really see is the slightly transparent gestational sack and this weird, miniature blob like thing. Now, I already didn’t get the whole mandatory ultrasound laws, but now? I am like what the fuck, guys? What the fuck?! I’m supposed to be touched by a dot on a screen during a time where I really don’t want to be pregnant? What do anti-choice lawmakers hope to achieve with this technique exactly? Oh ho ho, you got me there, anti-choice lawmakers, I am just so emotionally changed by a fucking dot on a fucking screen!
Which brings me to a story of great hilarity. Some anti-choice troll on Facebook claimed that she saw the heartbeats of her 4 week old gestating twins during her ultrasound. Now, common sense already dictates that she’s full of shit, but I thought I’d confirm it with a professional OBGYN. First off, at 5 weeks with a single fetus….you cannot see any damn heartbeat. So I asked about this little factoid of the 4 week old wonder twins and sure enough, before I even finished, she said “nope”. Too bad the troll deleted her thread, I would so love to shove that in her face….of course, you can always expect anti-choicers to lie to you about everything just so THEY can have peace of mind knowing some stranger had a baby that said anti-choicers don’t actually give a shit about. Speaking of which, let’s bust another myth!
Abortion Clinic/Doctors Don’t Inform You Of What To Expect
So I do qualify for the medical abortion. Tomorrow is day 2, I get a blood test to check the hormone levels, a shot of methotrexate, and I get sent home with misoprostol and Tylenol 3s. So far, I’ve had a counselling session on Monday, another quasi-session today along with a barrage of tests to make sure that I can do this in a healthy manner, LOTS of literature explaining all of the symptoms, side effects to expect, when the bleeding is good and when it’s not, a list of things I can’t eat while this is happening (folic acid foods), and a basic time line. Along with that, it was made VERY clear to me that 5-10% of women do not have a successful medical abortion and will have to have a surgical abortion. It was made extremely clear that while most women are lucky enough to finish aborting within 2 days, sometimes it can take weeks (at any time, you can opt out and ask for the surgical abortion). I was made aware that I would have to do a few follow ups to monitor my hormone level and an ultrasound to assure full evacuation. At any time that they couldn’t get a hold of me, I had to provide 3 contacts so that they can find me (because this is serious shit). I had to read everything, learn the side effects, was made well aware that things can go wrong. I also had to sign a consent form.
…….sooooo what’s this about not being told everything?
I also want to add that I had to go through the same counselling, literature, consent form signing (so many of them…)etc etc when I had a surgical abortion some years ago. Putting that out there in case a Trolly McDoucheyface wants to be all like “MEDICAL ABORSHUNS NOT TEH SAME!!”
So yay for medical abortion! I’m disappointed that the option is not more widely available in Canada, since I know a lot of people that would LOVE to get something less invasive going. Lucky for me I have the best medical team I could ask for. All pro-choice, all professional. I would refer anyone. Tune in tomorrow when I share my methotrexate follies!