“For making this most difficult time of my life as easy as it could possibly be I thank you MSI from the bottom of my heart.”
A client story with abortion pills at home (telemedicine).
“I decided to write this detailed account to give something back to MSI UK for an amazing support I received from them and also for all the other women who might be scared and stressed in this moment.”
So back to the beginning. I am 41, I have two sons and I absolutely did not plan to have another child.
My periods are regular and I always know one is coming two days before as I have little stains and spotting. This time was different so on the 28th evening of my cycle I took the test and it was positive. Only a faint second line but it was pretty obvious. I cannot describe the panic and stress I felt immediately.
I cried and told my partner I was not going to carry on, it would be a big struggle for all of us in many ways. I was lucky to have his support.
“Even though I was nervous, the way she [the nurse] talked to me – not judging but helping, listening with understanding – put my mind at ease.”
Immediately I started searching the internet for the options of early abortion. I found MSI and called them the next morning. It was Sunday.
I felt really nervous but straight away I felt that they wanted to help me. I answered a few questions about my situation and I got my account created with the pin and password to call any time and discuss anything regarding my case over the phone in the future. I then had a medical telephone assessment booked for Monday.
On Monday the nurse called me and asked about my medical history, time of the last period, and if I needed counselling. Even though I was nervous, the way she talked to me – not judging but helping, listening with understanding – put my mind at ease. I was given another telephone appointment for Tuesday with the nurse from the center that was the closest to where I lived.
When I received the phone call, I decided that I needed more time to think it through. Straight away I was offered counselling but I did not want it, I was comforted by the nurse with the advice on what to do if I decided to continue with the pregnancy and also told that I could call them any time if I decided not to.”
I was thinking for the whole day and having mixed feelings. I am a believer and termination wouldn’t normally be an option for me. I thought maybe there was a reason for me to have this baby, maybe somehow I could manage.
I started searching for the information about the process of termination and I fixed my mind on all the side effects one may have. I got really scared and confused.
I decided that I need more time to think it through. Straight away I was offered counselling but I did not want it, I was comforted by the nurse with advice on what to do if I decided to keep it and also told that I could call them any time if I decided not to.
I went back to searching other accounts and stories, there weren’t too many but one was very detailed and my worries disappeared after reading it.
I realized that I am in such an early stage that the zygote has not developed into an embryo yet. I thought to myself: it’s now or never. I called MSI again and asked if I could receive the medicine the same week. I booked the appointment I missed for Wednesday (the first available at that moment).
“Three weeks after I took the pills on Friday I took the special pregnancy test provided in the pack from MSI. I had no doubts what it was going to show. It was negative.”
I was offered an option to collect my pack or to have it delivered. I decided to collect it as it would be quicker.
On Wednesday I had a detailed discussion to establish if I could safely take the medication at home. I could without any further scans etc. I was offered an option to collect my pack or to have it delivered. I decided to collect it as it would be quicker. Time mattered for me immensely because I knew that I could not carry on with the termination after the embryo had developed and had a heartbeat – it is just my belief.
So on Thursday morning I was informed that the pack is ready for me to collect. I got instructed on how to take it and I was offered other advice on contraception, STI etc. I picked up the bag, I was wished all the best and I was reminded about 24/7 nurse/midwife after care available over the phone.
I took the first tablet that stops the pregnancy from developing any further the same evening (I was 4 weeks and 4 days pregnant if counted from the first day of my last period) after my partner came back home. I did cry thinking there was no way back but I also did feel this is what I needed and wanted to do. I did not feel any different for the next 24h, no side effects whatsoever.
“Next two hours passed (over 4 altogether) with no change so I called for the 24/7 aftercare line for advice. In no time I was talking to the nurse who asked me some specific questions and she then advised me to take other two tablets (provided just in case I need them) the same way, the slight temperature rise was common.”
I was really scared that I was going to experience some terrible pain but nothing was happening for over two hours. I just watched some silly movies to take my mind of everything. I had no pain at all.
On Friday evening 26 hours later, I decided to take the main medication. I put on maternity pad and took the painkillers from the pack I received, 10 minutes later I put 4 tablets inside the vagina as instructed, I lied down and waited. I was really scared that I was going to experience some terrible pain but nothing was happening for over two hours. I just watched some silly movies to take my mind of everything.
Over two hours passed and only tiny bleeding started, no pain or cramps. Then slowly the bleeding became a bit heavier, with little clots, just like a normal light period. My temperature rose to 37.4 but I didn’t feel bad at all.
The next two hours passed (over 4 altogether) with no change so I called the 24/7 aftercare line for advice. In no time I was talking to the nurse who asked me some specific questions including if I passed any big clots (like plum or lemon size). I did not so she advised me to take other two tablets (provided just in case I need them) the same way, the slight temperature rise was common.
I took 2 paracetamol tablets because again I was scared that it would really hurt this time (I was advised that it would be safe) and I inserted the extra two tablets ten minutes after, lied down and read a book.
One hour later I still felt OK, no problems at all, no pain or cramps. I stood up and went to the toilet I noticed much more bleeding this time, like a very heavy period and also 3 or 4 big dark plum-sized clots came out. I had no pain at all. I laid down, took the temperature, which was still 37.5 and went to sleep as it was really late.
The next morning I was feeling a little bit sick but my temperature went back to normal. I was still using maternity pads because bleeding was quite heavy in the night, heavier than a heavy period.
For the rest of the day the bleeding was really light, lighter than normal period, I felt a little bit tired but had no pain, occasionally I felt a bit light-headed. Because it was Saturday I was able to spend the day not doing much and being looked after by my partner.
On Sunday I felt nearly the same, with not much energy and a bit light-headed at times, bleeding like a period.
The next two days the bleeding became really heavy again with clots passed day and night. I did not need any painkillers.
On day 5 the bleeding became very light again and lighter and lighter every day since.
It carried on for another week with just a regular pad for lighter period needed, until it stopped completely.
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Sharing stories is at the heart of ending the stigma that too many people still feel when it comes to abortion.