“I Was So Naive”: The Painful Stories Behind Abortion Restrictions

A couple trying to conceive, an ultrasound technician, and a gay pastor share their experiences with abortion in post-Roe America.

NOVEMBER 30, 2023

As Anya Cook sat at the hairdresser, she thought she might die. The night before, her water had broken. But being only about 16 weeks along in her pregnancy—six weeks before a fetus can potentially survive on its own outside the uterus—she’d known something was wrong; her husband, Derick Cook, had rushed her to the emergency room at the Broward Health hospital in Coral Springs, Florida. After a wait of more than 45 minutes in the emergency room—amniotic fluid still seeping from Anya’s body—a doctor had informed her that she would lose the child, but, given Florida’s strict abortion ban, there was nothing they could do. She’d been sent away with antibiotics and told she would have to wait to have her miscarriage alone.

She went to get her hair done the next day. “One thing my grandmother always said, ‘You make yourself look presentable so when they catch you dead, you’re already ready,’” she tells me. It was never the plan to deliver her baby in the bathroom of a hair salon. Anya recalls with vivid detail the sound of her fetus hitting the bowl of the toilet as blood poured out of her, dripping down her legs. After hours of surgery, Anya lost roughly half the blood in her body. The doctors asked Derick whether they should prioritize saving Anya’s life or her uterus. “That was very confusing,” he says. “I just went with the best answer: Save my wife and her uterus.” Since then, Anya has had to undergo a string of surgeries as a result of the complications she suffered.

Continued: https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2023/11/painful-stories-behind-abortion-restrictions-post-roe

Wisconsin’s dangerous abortion restrictions threatened my life and will continue to harm women

Hannah Thompson

NOVEMBER 13, 2023

Nearly a year and a half after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and Wisconsin’s 1849 abortion ban went back into effect, it may be easy for some to forget the harm that the ban has been inflicting. But as anti-abortion lawmakers in our state continue to pass legislation to obstruct and stigmatize abortion, I can’t forget what these restrictions do to women like me.

I was 19 weeks pregnant when I went into previable preterm labor with advanced cervical dilation: Our son had not developed enough to survive outside of my womb.  My husband and I would inevitably lose him. We couldn’t imagine that our state’s laws would create a situation that would nearly cost me my life in the process.

Continued: https://wisconsinexaminer.com/2023/11/13/wisconsins-dangerous-abortion-restrictions-threatened-my-life-and-will-continue-to-harm-women/

Inside the 1969 abortion arrest that overturned Wisconsin’s century-old ban

Years before Roe, a doctor's arrest in Milwaukee became a flashpoint for the abortion rights movement

By Sarah Lehr and Rob Mentzer
 Wednesday, August 9, 2023

On a Saturday in September 1969, a 23-year-old grad student walked into an office inside the Majestic Building in downtown Milwaukee. She had been there once before, for a consultation with Dr. Sidney Babbitz.

Babbitz was 59 years old and had mostly retired to Florida. But he was known in whisper networks as a doctor who was willing to perform illegal abortions back in Wisconsin.

Continued: https://www.wpr.org/wisconsin-1849-abortion-ban-history-arrest-overturned

What it’s like for doctors in Wisconsin to follow an 1849 abortion law in 2023

Obstetricians describe patients who cannot comprehend having to carry nonviable pregnancies. And only one pharmacist in town will fill prescriptions for abortion pills.

July 22, 2023
By Sarah Varney

GREEN BAY, Wis. — The three women sitting around a table at a busy lunch spot share a grim camaraderie. It’s been more than a year since an 1849 law came back into force to criminalize abortion in Wisconsin. Now these two OB-GYNs and a certified midwife find their medical training, skill, and acumen constrained by state politics.

“We didn’t even know germs caused disease back then,” said Dr. Kristin Lyerly, an obstetrician-gynecologist who lives in Green Bay.

Continued: https://www.nbcnews.com/health/womens-health/s-doctors-wisconsin-follow-1849-abortion-law-2023-rcna95433

Liberal judge’s victory in Wisconsin Supreme Court race marks political shift in key swing state

By Gregory Krieg, CNN
Wed April 5, 2023

The victory of a liberal judge in Tuesday’s Wisconsin Supreme Court election marks a significant political realignment toward the left in a crucial swing state, potentially closing the door on an era of Republican dominance with issues such as abortion rights at stake.

With liberals now poised to effectively control the seven-judge court, Democrats are newly optimistic about saving abortion access in the state, establishing a firewall against any Republican challenges to the 2024 elections and potentially redoing GOP-drawn state legislative and congressional maps. That combination of issues proved a potent force in a race that attracted massive turnout and spending.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2023/04/05/politics/wisconsin-supreme-court-liberal-victory-abortion/index.html

How are Wisconsin women doing under the 1849 abortion ban?

Not so well, say doctors
Ruth Conniff
JANUARY 24, 2023

…. In the 13 states including Wisconsin with abortion bans on the books, women are three times more likely to die during pregnancy, childbirth, or shortly after giving birth, according to a report by the Gender Equity Institute. “These are preventable deaths,” says Dr. Kristen Lyerly, an obstetrician/gynecologist from Green Bay and a plaintiff in Attorney General Josh Kaul’s lawsuit against the 1849 ban. Babies born in states that have banned abortion are also 30% more likely to die in their first month of life.  So much for the “pro-life” utopia.

Continued: https://wisconsinexaminer.com/2023/01/24/how-are-wisconsin-women-doing-under-the-1849-abortion-ban/

Because of Wisconsin’s abortion ban, one mother gave up trying for another child

December 9, 2022
Selena Simmons-Duffin

The moment Kristen Petranek knew she would stop trying to get pregnant came in May, while lying on her couch in Madison, Wisconsin. That's when she saw the news pop up on her phone about a leaked Supreme Court draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade.

Petranek, 31, and her husband Daniel have two children – a 7-year-old son and 4-year-old daughter. Her pregnancies had been hard on her body, she says, and risky, because she is diabetic. But she and her husband still planned to have more kids – they wanted three. "I have three brothers and he has one brother – we kind of liked [a number] in the middle of that," she says.

Continued: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2022/12/09/1141404068/wisconsin-abortion-law-pregnancy-risk-miscarriage

USA – As Coronavirus Rages On, So Does Anti-Abortion Harassment and Extremism

As Coronavirus Rages On, So Does Anti-Abortion Harassment and Extremism

by Micaela Brinsley, Ms. Magazine

In clinics in North Carolina, Wisconsin and Kentucky, anti-choice protesters have continued to show up at clinics that provide abortion services, refusing to comply with the pressure for people to practice social distancing and shelter-in-place.

Witnesses have reported protesters gathering in front of clinic doors, walking up to patients, and even “shoving unwanted pamphlets and gift sacks into confused patients’ hands” and through car windows—blatantly ignoring public health recommendations for people to stand six feet apart from one other.

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2020/03/25/as-coronavirus-rages-on-so-does-anti-abortion-harassment-and-extremism/

Trump’s anti-abortion rhetoric is getting out of control

Trump’s anti-abortion rhetoric is getting out of control
His latest lie is that the mother and the doctor decide whether or not to "execute the baby" after it's born and wrapped up in a blanket.

Adrienne Mahsa Varkiani
Apr 28, 2019

President Donald Trump’s anti-abortion rhetoric is getting more extreme by the day.

At a rally in Green Bay, Wisconsin, on Saturday night, Trump described a violent scene, claiming that a doctor and mother together decide whether or not to execute a baby after it’s born.

Continued: https://thinkprogress.org/trumps-anti-abortion-rhetoric-execute-baby-later-abortion-f0997b13c664/