The third-year nursing student and college cheerleader had found out just days before that she was unexpectedly pregnant, and now, in the abortion clinic with her boyfriend, she was facing pressure from doctors and nurses. They were telling her that she was “doing the right thing” by getting an abortion. After all, as the doctor said, “It’s not the right time” to have this baby—and her boyfriend agreed.
Andrea knew she had reservations about what she was doing. In the days leading up to her trip to the abortion clinic, her mom had been begging her to reconsider her decision. This morning, Andrea had barely been able to keep back her tears in the waiting room while waiting for the clinic nurse to call her name.
When the doctor handed her the first of two abortion pills—an increasingly common method of abortion, called chemical abortion, performed during the first trimester of pregnancy—Andrea says she “froze.” The doctor, seeing her hesitation, said abruptly, “Now hurry up and take that pill before it melts in your hand, it’s very expensive.”
Suppressing that screaming inner voice telling her not to do it, Andrea swallowed the pill, then, wishing she hadn’t, tried to throw it up. The doctor reminded her to take the second abortion pill 24 hours later.
When she left the clinic, Andrea says she ran “straight for the car where I fell to the ground crying and screaming for God to forgive me.” She knew she had to “fix” her “mistake,” so she called her mom, who took her to hospitals and doctors, hoping someone could offer a way to reverse the chemical abortion already in progress. Their search turned up empty, so Andrea, devastated, called her aunt to pray that God would save her baby despite her bad decision, and then went to bed.
When Andrea awoke the next morning, she stumbled upon an article about a doctor who had successfully reversed a chemical abortion. She immediately called a phone number, operated by Abortion Pill Rescue, a coalition of prolife OBGYNs who offer what is called “abortion pill reversal.” The compassionate voice that answered the phone put Andrea in touch with a local doctor, who told her to rush to the doctor’s office.
The doctor confirmed the baby’s heartbeat and immediately began the reversal procedure, which involves progesterone injections that can reverse the chemical abortion, stabilizing the pregnancy and allowing for a healthy baby.
Just like Andrea, many women enter abortion clinics unsure about the decision they’re making. These women immediately regret taking the first dosage of medication to end their pregnancy, yet they often don’t know where to turn or what options they have available to reverse what could be the worst decision of their lives.
Knowing this, North Dakota Rep. Daniel Johnston and other state legislators, with the help of Family Policy Alliance of North Dakota®, led a successful effort earlier this year to enact a state law requiring that women who receive chemical abortions be informed that it may be possible to reverse the effects of the medicine if they change their minds.
Unfortunately, pro-abortion activists are suing the state to overturn the North Dakota informed consent provision that empowers women like Andrea with the knowledge to make an informed decision about their chemical abortion. To make matters worse, a judge recently blocked the enforcement of the law.
As the director of advocacy for Family Policy Alliance of Idaho®, I’ve seen something comparable to what is taking place in North Dakota also play out in my state.
The Idaho legislature, with the help of Family Policy Alliance of Idaho and other pro-life organizations, passed a similar informed consent bill in 2018 that also faced legal challenges in the courts. Our informed consent law survived the court challenges, an outcome that should give hope to our friends in the Peace Garden State.
Informed consent for chemical abortion is supported by the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, which boasts a membership of over 2,500 medical professionals.
And these laws seem to be effective. Although it’s a relatively new medical practice, abortion pill reversal protocol has saved the lives of 750 babies so far, according to Heartbeat International. Sadly, too many mothers living in states without these informed consent laws don’t find out there’s a way to reverse their chemical abortion until it’s too late.
Remember Andrea, the cheerleader and nursing student? She gave birth to Gabriel, a perfectly healthy, beautiful baby boy. “I thank God and I thank my doctor, an angel sent from above to save precious little lives, and to save the lives of mothers, because without her, I don’t know where I would be today,” Andrea also wrote in an online testimony. Family Policy Alliance® talked to her in this video after Gabriel was born.
Please keep praying that the North Dakota informed consent provision survives its legal challenges in the courts. Laws like these are medically sound and legally defensible, furthering a compelling state interest to ensure women are adequately informed before undergoing medical procedures. But perhaps most importantly, these laws really do save lives—and save mothers from a lifetime of regret.
Standing with you for life,
Director of Advocacy
Family Policy Alliance of Idaho
By Brittany Jones, Policy Manager
When making important medical decisions, doctors typically provide a laundry list of possible side effects and options available to you. When it comes to the abortion industry, however, the Left typically works against laws that would increase women’s access to information about the procedure, options available, and side effects.
This is particularly scary because with the latest method of abortion—abortion by pill (RU-486)—the woman usually isn’t even under the direct supervision of a doctor. Instead, the abortionist gives a woman two pills. She is told to take the first (mifepristone) right away, and it goes to work starving the baby of nutrients. She is told to take the second (misoptostol) two days later. It will then cause contractions that result in the delivery of a lifeless baby.
Many women, including those pressured into having an abortion, are not provided with information about what they may experience emotionally or physically as a result of this type of abortion—or information about other options available to them.
A law in several states is seeking to change this information gap, though. States are beginning to push for laws that would require abortionists to provide women with information about a process called “abortion pill reversal.” This process introduces large doses of progesterone into the woman’s body, after she has taken the first of the abortion pills. This is intended to “out-compete [mifepristone] at the receptor,” as explained by the leading doctor of this method, Dr. George Delgado.
The process is not always successful, but more often than not, women are able to deliver a healthy baby. This information can provide broken and hurting women with hope that their decision is not final. Baby Gabriel is just one example of a precious life saved because his mother Andrea chose to reverse the abortion she had planned:
South Dakota, Arkansas, and Arizona have all passed laws that require doctors prescribing the abortion pill to inform women that it may be possible for her to reverse a chemical abortion. Last month, Idaho introduced a law that would require abortionists to provide women with this life-giving information. It passed out of committee just this week and is headed towards the Senate floor.
Providing women with hope should be what the pro-life movement is all about. Please join with Family Policy Alliance and our state allies in supporting bills like Idaho’s that will protect life inside the womb—and provide hope for their mothers.