GILLETTE: Planned Parenthood Pressured Me To Abort. A Pro-Life Pregnancy Center Cared For Me

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When I saw two pink lines on my pregnancy test, I was immediately terrified. At the time, I was in a relationship with a young man I cared about, but we weren’t married or even engaged. I was completely unprepared for the onslaught of emotion that hit me: fear of abandonment and judgment, dread and confusion.  

My boyfriend’s reaction only added to my overwhelming emotions. He told me that the pregnancy was the worst possible thing that could happen to him in his life, and suddenly I felt responsible for his pain and future.  

He gave me the phone number for Planned Parenthood and told me to make an appointment. The pressure to abort escalated as soon as the receptionist answered the phone. I asked her if I could make an appointment to discuss my options because I didn’t know what I wanted to do. The receptionist emphatically told me that by the time a woman calls Planned Parenthood, she has already made up her mind about wanting an abortion.

She continued to apply pressure by telling me that the procedure was extremely time sensitive and if I wanted to have an “easy abortion,” I needed to make and keep an appointment.

I felt like I was running out of time, but I was also conflicted, feeling the pressure and coercion to abort from the man I cared for deeply, and the staff at the abortion facility. However, I had no idea how intensely the pressure to abort would escalate until I entered Planned Parenthood’s doors.  

When I slid $800 toward the receptionist to pay, I asked her if I could get a refund if I changed my mind. I was still so unsure, but my boyfriend urged me to proceed.

We saw a doctor, and while she was friendly, she never asked me what I wanted or told me I had options. She gave me the abortion drugs, and for over 45 minutes I agonized over whether I should do this.

Finally, it felt as if the only way out of that drab and dark Planned Parenthood was to take the drugs. They told me, “It’s going to be as easy as taking a Tylenol.” So, I took them, one in the office and the other at home the following day.  

I could never imagine the physical agony I would feel as the drugs took effect. The profuse bleeding, nausea, diarrhea and sweats were uncontrollable, and I suffered through it alone. I eventually passed the amniotic sac and could see my recognizable baby. In agony, I flushed my baby down the toilet.

To this day, going to that facility and having an abortion remains my greatest regret.

A few years later, I was pregnant with my fourth child when my OB-GYN told me I was experiencing a blighted ovum, which is a medical condition where the sac develops normally but the baby does not. I was devastated because I knew I would miscarry.

However, the doctor ran a blood test, and it turned out my pregnancy hormone, HCG, was very high. She told me with those levels, she should have detected a baby and a heartbeat. I requested she run them again in 24 hours to see if they would double as they are supposed to, but she was confident in her diagnosis and refused to do a second blood draw.  

She told me to prepare for a miscarriage and urged me to take abortion drugs to hurry the process. Having experienced the horrors of abortion drugs years earlier at Planned Parenthood, I vehemently disagreed with her suggestion. 

Something inside me told me I needed to fight for my pregnancy and for my baby, so I called the pregnancy resource center in my hometown and made an appointment.  

From the moment I entered the center, I knew the experience would be different. 

There were comfortable chairs and couches, toys for children and calming words on the walls. The staff was friendly, and I was given an advocate named Annie. She asked how I was feeling and if there was anything I needed. Then, when I felt safe and at ease, we went into the ultrasound room. 

The ultrasound technician started with an over-the-abdomen scan and found no pregnancy. I was so nervous, but they reassured me that no matter what we found, I wouldn’t be facing it alone. Then the technician performed a transvaginal ultrasound, and within seconds she found the baby with a strong heartbeat! 

We all burst into tears of happiness and relief. 

After my appointment, Annie often called to check up on me throughout my pregnancy and the center gave me a car seat, diapers and clothes to help prepare for the arrival of my baby. 

Every year, the nearly 3,000 pregnancy resource centers throughout the country help women and families. In just a year, these centers have performed over half a million free ultrasounds, and they provided a total of $367 million dollars’ worth of medical, education and support services and material goods. 

I am just one of the millions of women who have benefited from a pregnancy resource center. These centers offer compassion, help and life-affirming options, and nearly 100 percent of those who visit a pregnancy resource center have a positive experience. They made good on their promise to walk with me from my first appointment to postpartum and beyond, and I have a beautiful, healthy boy who has been an absolute treasure in my life because of that. 

Elizabeth Gillette survived a drug-induced abortion when she was 24 years old. She currently resides in Salem, Oregon.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.