Bad Experience W/ Planned Parenthood of Al

I found out I was pregnant about five days ago and both myself and the father are unsure, but we're seriously considering abortion since it's probably still early enough to just take the pill. I was/am somewhat of an alcoholic and feel horrible that I drank daily and heavily until I found out. I had my last period getting close to 3 months ago now, during Christmas 2008, and I knew there was a chance but I had a negative test in January.

When I still didn't get my period and my boobs suddenly started getting bigger I took another test, (drunk at the time, too, I hate to admit), and it was positive. I felt so guilty, we're both afraid I've already ruined the child with my drinking but I just wish I knew how far along I am, (I'm guessing 5 - 7wks). I could NEVER have a surgical abortion after the embryo became a fetus and had a heartbeat. In the videos you watch at the clinic, they don't go into detail about what exactly they do: they crush up the fetus enough so it can fit through the vacuum. I'm pro-choice, but I think that once the fetus reaches a certain age there's no excuse for this kind of dehumanizing brutality unless absolutely necessary.

To me, a medical abortion doesn't seem as bad, since the embryo is still pretty much just a mass of cells, not yet a baby/fetus.... Either way, it's a very hard choice to make. Anyways, here is my experience so far:

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APPT. 1 - Planned Parenthood of Alabama, (downtown Birmingham) - Feb. 23, 2009

The directions on the website were confusing, it took us forever to find the place and once we did, I just wanted to turn around and go straight home. It looked like a back-alley, scary, uninviting place. I've always heard good things about Planned Parenthood so it was my first choice when I started considering abortion, but now I'm starting to regret it. I don't know if it was just this clinic or what, but it was a very frustrating experience. I guess what can you expect, Planned Parenthood is the place to get the cheapest abortions...

First off, the lady in the reception room seemed nice but not entirely competent. She handed me the paperwork, I had to explain to her that I didn't want the surgical, I wanted medical but was still unsure whether or not I even wanted to do it and wanted to be sure to see a counselor first. She assured me I would see one and gave me more paperwork to fill out. Just filling all that out probably took an hour. There was a sheet on top that said, "Return with your I.D. and $100". I still can't believe that visit costed me $100: it was totally NOT worth it in the least, a total waste of time.

When they called me back, a woman had me pee in a cup for the pregnancy test, weighed me, took my blood pressure, and did some blood work. That's all they did for me, medically. I figured surely, for $100, they'd at least do an ultrasound or SOMETHING, but they did all that and sent me back to another waiting room. There was a woman sleeping and some other women who looked frustrated, like they'd been there awhile. I could hear R & B music playing more loudly than would be considered professional in a freaking abortion clinic, and the nurses kept laughing and talking loudly in the halls. They had me watch videos demonstrating and explaining both the surgical and medical abortions. I waited for at least 45mins to see a "counselor". That was the most amusing experience of the whole appointment, I think.

They called other women who'd come in after me back first, and when they did call me back I was annoyed and even more anxious to see that I wasn't going to be able to speak privately with the "counselor". They had the door open and there was another woman sitting behind me the whole time this nurse discussed my medical history. I could hear the entire conversation of the woman who went in before me. It was ridiculous. The room was used as the recovery room, as well as the counseling room. Another nurse came in, laughing that the nurse/counselor needed a raise because she gave out the pills for the medical abortions in that same room as well.

She asked me very personal and embarrasing questions in front of and in earshot of others, and kept saying she didn't know anymore than what she told me about the pills. Total incompetence and unprofessionalism, I wished more and more that I'd gone somewhere else. Shouldn't the counselor know what the hell she's talking about??! She told me I'd have to ask the physician at my next visit about most things and explained the procedure for taking the pills.

My main concern is that I want an ultrasound to find out how far along I am and if the baby's healthy before I decide for sure to abort. I told her that and she said the physician would give me an ultrasound at my next visit. She rushed me through signing some more paperwork and told me to go back to the waiting room to be called again.

The receptionist called me back up to the desk within 10mins to give me a sheet saying my next appointment was in a week, (March 2nd). Are these people stupid?! Medical abortions can only be done up to the 7th or 9th week, the longer I have to wait to come back the less chance there will be that I can even do it. I won't get a surgical abortion unless there's something wrong with it, and there's a chance I could be getting close to the 2nd trimester.

What was really shady was that the sheet also said it would be $375 more for the medication CASH ONLY, and to bring only myself and the money, no purse, and only one person with me who would not be allowed back with me. It seemed like some back-alley, illegal clinic. I really don't want to go back, I called another nearby clinic and they said they do the ultrasound and everything else all in the same day but I'd have to take ANOTHER day off work and pay even more money, they're also more expensive.

This sucks, now I have to torture myself for another week worried and wondering how far along I am, if it's too late to abort, if I've already ruined this child with my irresponsibility and selfishness. In short: Don't go to Planned Parenthood unless you're ok with having to wait forever, especially if you live in Alabama. There was a woman there that I talked to who said she'd been there a couple years earlier for an abortion and had it all done in one day, but it's pretty bad now. Like I said, I had always heard good things about it and it could just be this one clinic, but it was a very unsettling experience.

I'm still unsure of whether or not I'm going to go through with it, but in the meantime I have of course, completely stopped drinking/smoking. I only take pain pills and ocassionally anxiety medicine since I've been freaking out over this so much. I almost had a nervous breakdown the first few days, I just couldn't stop crying. I'll update with what happens as it happens....

uninhibited666 uninhibited666
18-21, F
6 Responses Feb 23, 2009

you are an idiot how can you have a ******* abortion u know other people dream of having babies but their not able to have a baby .. **** YOU ALLLLL ******* WHO KILL UNBORN LITTLE ANGELS.. USE A ******* CONDOM OR DONT HAVE ******* SEXXXX.....

i think anyone who would even consider an abortion is a fool and a murderer why dont you just put the child up for adoption better yet dont have sex if your not married .planned parenthood is a disgrace and one of most horrible ,greedy places on earth .the people who work there should just kill their selves instead of an inosent child .drunk or drug head dont do it its your choice and your just make excuses to justify your own mistakes .Have the child after all who will take care of you when your time comes. i love all people even unborn people. GOD LOVES YOU EVEN MORE

I won't delete your comment, because everyone is entitled to their own opinions. HOWEVER, I think you're an idiot. :)

Thank you for sharing your story. It's amazing because Planned Parenthood receives over $300 Million in tax payer money EACH YEAR.

My trip to Planned Parenthood in the midwest was also a good experience.

yes please, this PP does not sound right at all.... I had mine done at a PP in the midwest and it wasn't THAT bad and I had everything you didn't that first day... so I suggest going somewhere else.. Your health is worth it!!! take care of yourself and if you ever need anythign at all pm me anytime!!!

I had an abortion 7 yrs. ago and if I had it to do all over again I don't know if I would have done the same. I do know that I wouldn't have gone through planned parenthood. They messed my ultrasound up when I went in one week they said I was 12 weeks along but the crazy thing is I hadn't had sex with anyone 12 weeks prior. They said because I was showing that far that it was going to cost more. I didn't have the money so I had to return exactly one week later with the money. They did another ultrasound saying I was 13.6 week along. Do the math. I should have only shown at 13 weeks. They are incompatant and totaly suggest you talk to a family dr. Not nessasaraly your own just a family dr. they will tell you the best place to go through if you don't want to deal with Planned Parenthood. By the way I live in Missouri so they arn't that different. I hope it all works out for the best for you.