A Personal Story

Submitted: Nov 3, 2005

Shared by: Emma from California

Age: 21
Weight: 195
Height: 5'5"

Did you have a pregnancy test? Yes
When was it taken? 3 weeks after the end of my last period
What was the result. Positive
If more than one test was taken please include info for each one. Total of 4, all positive

How was the pregnancy ended? Regimen of aspirin/vodka then pennyroyal/black and blue cohosh
Were you successful in using the herbs? yes
Would you try herbs again, or recommend them to a friend in the same situation? yes

Is there anything that clued you in that the herbs might be working before bleeding started? cramping

Is this your first pregnancy? yes

How many weeks pregnant were you when the herbs were started? 3 1/2 weeks
For how many days were the herbs used (total)? 5 days

Were you using birth control? No
What kind/method of birth control/contraception were you using? EC
Do you know how/why it failed? EC is only 90% effective (unknown at the time) and intercourse occurred on the projected day of ovulation

If you were not using birth control, please share why not- I had used the pill before but was not happy with the side effects. Also, I only saw my partner rarely which made it difficult for me to justify continuing birthcontrol. I was at Planned Parenthood for IUD information when I had my first positive test.

Did you experience any symptoms or signs of pregnancy? Breast tenderness, spotting which I believed were due to my period

Please include a summary of dosage information. Started with an aspirin/alcohol regimen, 2 tablets of aspirin every 4 hours (not during the night) a shot of vodka in the morning, one ~7 pm and 2 shots before bed, always trying to take the shots on an empty stomach. I did the regimen from Oct. 19-23 Herbal: 1/2 teaspoon European pennyroyal every 4 hours (including during the night) brewed in a tea, added 1 teaspoon blue and black cohosh midday 26 and continued until morning of 28. .

How did the herbs affect you? No physical side effects until cramping, stopped herbal treatment when I began to feel disoriented, but had miscarried by then

How did the herbs make you feel physically? No physical side effects, however I was on a restricted calorie diet (less than 1000 calories a day)

How did being pregnant make you feel physically? I did not know I was pregnant until I tested positive

If the herbs caused miscarriage -- how did you feel just before bleeding began? I started to cramp just before adding the blue and black cohosh. The cramping was very directed, as if only a single spot in my lower abdomen was being affected, I literally could pinpoint the location of the cramp. This happened on and off for a day; it was not continuous but came in waves, much more painful than regular menstrual cramps. Later that night, I began to bleed. For the week previous, I had be spotting. The spotting was mainly brown tissue (what I would normally call blood clots but brown) and some blood. I was told by a doctor that this was consistent with early pregnancy spotting. By the next day (Oct. 27) the blood flow had increased and the cramps had become less severe but more continuous; the cramps affected the whole of my lower abdomen and continued for the next couple days, decreasing in severity. That day I had my blood drawn for another hormone check and found out the next day that I had miscarried. The flowing few days (until Oct. 30) I continued to bleed but each day the flow would decrease.

Could you reflect on the process of a herbal abortion and write a paragraph about it.

This pregnancy was completely unwanted. I had talk with my partner when we first became lovers and we both agreed that should I ever become pregnant that I would have an abortion. It happened and I knew from the beginning that I wanted to end it. I was important that I would be the one responsible for the termination though; the thought of going to the clinic scared me that no words or other experience could possibly describe. My partner was very supportive during the entire process and sent me your as well as other websites on herbal abortion. I found it appealing because I could set my own regimen, as I'm sure by now you've realized how crucial that was for me, and I could start it immediately which helped to calm me about the entire situation. I do not want to ever have this experience again but ultimately it is positive. I found out a lot about myself and it has changed my view about abortion in general. The day after I tested positive, I was very desperate. Desperate to the point of considering using the proverbial coat hanger just so that it could be finished. Your information helped me and it gave me hope. You do a good service to women. Thank you.

Your Story -
I first was tested for pregnancy ironically while I was getting information about an IUD. I was not expecting this information and was shocked to hear the doctor say those words. It had only been 2 1/2 weeks since the day of conception and automatically thought that it was not true but the second test came out positive as well. They sent a nurse to talk to me about my options, but my partner and I had already discussed that it would be best if I would have an abortion should I ever become pregnant. I was pregnant, so I scheduled an appointment. I didn't know what to do, other than cry. I left the clinic and called my partner and told him the situation. I went home and cried more. I started to starve myself and exercised as much as I could hoping that if I induced enough stress on myself, that I would miscarry. The day after, I was desperate. I was determined that this pregnancy was going to end right then. I wanted to use a coat hanger and make sure that this was going to be finished that day. Fortunately, I called my partner and he talked me out of doing anything harmful to myself. I never felt such a panic or fear in my life; I just knew I had to do something or else I would simply stop functioning.

Later that day, my partner sent me some websites about herbal abortion. I started on a regimen of two tablets of aspirin every 4 hours and four shots of vodka a day (1 when I woke up, 1 when I came home and 2 before bed, all on an empty stomach. During this time, I had some spotting plus a fibrous discharge. I was told by a doctor that this was fairly typical for an early pregnancy. I continued with my aspirin and alcohol regimen for 5 days. I was not seeing the bleeding that should have accompanied a miscarriage, the spotting and discharged decreased, and started to use pennyroyal. I used 1/2 teaspoon of European pennyroyal (I found it at a local grocery store that sold many unusual food items anyway) and used it in a tea. Pennyroyal is part of the mint family and brewed into a very nice tea; it was like any other tea I had but did leave a strange after tasted I had this tea every four hours, including during the night. I continued pennyroyal for 2 1/2 days and then started to add 1 teaspoon black and blue cohosh. The cohosh was in a powder and it was a lot like drinking dirt and tasted quite the same. It would settle to the bottom of the cup which made for a disgusting last swallow, but taste wasn't a priority at the time.

Just before I added the cohosh, I began to feel very intense and directed cramps. During my normal cycles, I have very mild cramps but this were much more intense than any other I had experienced; I could pick out the exact place of the cramp in my lower abdomen. Later that night, I began to bleed. The next day, I continued with my pennyroyal/cohosh tea and my blood flow increased. I had seen a doctor and had my blood tested for a pregnancy hormone earlier in the week and was tested again on the second day of the combined tea. This day, had more mild cramps but they were continuous all day. It was more than a mild discomfort but I was able to fully function. The day after the second blood test, I felt disoriented about an hour after I had my tea and stopped drinking it; disorientation was one of the signs of an overdose. Fortunately, the doctor said that my blood test showed I had miscarried.

It was very important to me to do this myself. I was terrified of going to a clinic, especially if I had to go through vacuum aspiration. This pregnancy was never supposed to occur. It was unwanted in every sense. One piece of advice I found in doing research for an herbal method was to tell the embryo that it was unwanted and that it had to leave. At first I thought it was rather pointless and a bit childish. Then I understood. My body was going to fight to keep this embryo alive and I had to convince my body that I should not; this pregnancy should not occur and my body need to let me end it. It was important that I fully mentally acknowledged that I was ending this pregnancy. This was not a natural miscarriage. I was directing it and was going to see that it would end. Using herbs was my way of taking back control of my body and situation, which gave me hope I had lost when I first found out I was pregnant. This taught me about myself in ways I never thought existed. I never want this to happen again nor will I ever forget it, but it ultimately made me a better person.

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