Over a year ago, Annemarie (not her real name) walked into a California Planned Parenthood clinic.
She came to the abortion facility alone - no one else knew about her pregnancy or her plans to abort. Already the mother to a son, Annemarie remembers thinking she was “not ready to have another baby.”
An ultrasound and a pamphlet later, she had concerns about the chemical abortion.
Annemarie remembers looking at the pills in the cup and wanting more time. But the staff gave her two options: “take the pills or reschedule.”
She felt hurried and admits she was “thinking fast.”
Annemarie decided to take the first pill. In 24 hours - at home - she was to take the second medication to complete the abortion of her baby.
Leaving, she realized she “didn’t think things through correctly,” already grappling with the awareness of “killing a human being.”
At home, there was a lot of bleeding and clots, evidence that the first pill was doing what it was intended to do.
Annemarie wondered if “one of the clots was [her] baby.”
“It was very frightening, and I didn’t know what to do,” she said.
Annemarie couldn’t escape the truth there was “actually a human being growing inside” of her.
One with a voice.
Annemarie says in her mind she could hear her baby asking, ‘Why is my brother born and not me?’
It was a question Annemarie couldn’t answer – and it compelled her to search. She went on-line, seeking any possible option to undo her abortion decision.
Even now she recalls what she typed in the Google search bar: “If I don’t take the 2nd pill, can I still save my baby?”
And there, in the results, came a lifesaving answer.
APR is a medical protocol that, if started before taking the second medication in a chemical abortion, gives moms a second chance at choosing life for their unborn children.
The protocol involves prescribing progesterone, the natural hormone in a pregnant mom’s body that sustains her pregnancy. A newer application of an FDA-approved treatment used for decades to stop miscarriages, APR has been successful when initiated as long as 72 hours after the first abortion drug has been taken, but best results occur when reversal is started within 24 hours.
Annemarie admits she was suspicious and wondered if the information she found about abortion pill reversal was true. But around 2 a.m. that next morning, Annemarie knew she needed someone to help her.
Though self-admittedly not religious, Annemarie remembers she “just started praying.”
“I wanted help and all of a sudden I got help,” Annemarie said.
Her internet search had connected her to Option Line, Heartbeat International’s 24/7 contact center, consultants from which then connected her to a Heartbeat affiliate pregnancy help center, also part of the APRN.
Annemarie remembers the response when she began texting through Option Line: “They said, ‘We can help.’”
Option Line connected Annemarie with an APRN-affiliated clinic that could provide the APR protocol. But the clinic was almost four hours away. The distance was daunting; Annemarie considered giving up.
But the APRN – in the practice of saving lives - did not give up.
APRN representatives reached out to a local pregnancy care center closer to Annemarie, also a Heartbeat affiliate. A staff member from the center contacted Annemarie at 4 a.m. that morning, still less than 24 hours since she’d taken that first pill.
Then came a series of life-saving events.
The first - a visit to the local ER to get an ultrasound to see if her baby was still alive.
Annemarie remembers the medical staff’s response: “Well, you took the abortion pill, of course you’re going to get an abortion. Just take the second pill.”
She remembers asking if her baby was still alive.
“They did not tell me if the baby was there or not,” she recalled.
And then, an answer.
“I was crying, and the lady from the ultrasound told me, ‘I see a heartbeat, that’s all I can tell you,’” said Annemarie.
The staff still advised Annemarie to “continue with [her] abortion pill.”
She left the ER with hope – a heartbeat.
Annemarie knew she needed to go to the APRN clinic, but she had no way of getting there.
Actually, she thought she had no way.
The pregnancy help center staff member – the woman who first spoke with Annemarie at 4 a.m. - drove Annemarie almost four hours to the clinic for the intervention her baby needed.
There, Annemarie received an ultrasound and saw the beating heart of her six-week preborn child. The abortion pill had still not completed its purpose.
Annemarie began receiving regular treatments of progesterone for the next few months.
The pregnancy continued, as did the support Annemarie found on-line that first night.
“The whole time the woman from [the pregnancy help center] … has always been there helping me out,” Annamarie said.
So how did her story end? Well, it hasn’t.
Annemarie’s baby is here - breathing and living his story. He is seven months old. He is healthy and according to Annemarie, “perfect.”
During a phone interview with Pregnancy Help News, Annemarie considered what could have been.
“I can’t imagine myself without him,” she said. “I always thought another baby would be more of a handful, but my kids love each other, and I am so much happier now.”
Tweet This: I can’t imagine myself w/out him. My kids love each other & I am so much happier now. - APR mom
“I’m glad they were there,” Annemarie said of the people who helped her save her baby’s life.
“(Planned Parenthood) actually told me nothing about (APR),” Annemarie said, “even the hospital did not say anything about that.”
In the case of Planned Parenthood, this omission is by the abortion giant’s own admission, intentional. For the nation’s largest abortion provider, which self-promotes with the word “choice,” abortion pill reversal is not a choice to be endorsed.
Now far from that frightening night, Annemarie believes women should receive better information before they choose an abortion – including information about the option to change their minds.
Christa Brown, director of Medical Impact with Heartbeat International, agrees with Annemarie:
“At Abortion Pill Rescue we believe an informed decision is the best decision…even after starting a chemical abortion, there is hope to continue a pregnancy with the abortion pill reversal protocol.
We are seeing lives saved and motherhood restored every single day. We believe women have the right to withdraw consent from chemical abortion and should never be forced to complete a medical process they no longer desire. Every day women are given a second chance to choose life for their children. And it’s amazing and beautiful!”
The good news is that Annemarie doesn’t have to live with the question she attributed to her son, “Why is my brother born and not me?’
Because she searched for help and found the APRN, the good news is also that her son is still alive and with his mother.