Sunday, April 28, 2013


*Warning this post might piss you off and/or make you cry. It deals with unintentional pregnancies and pregnancy loss. I just need to get this stuff off my chest.*

I have been on my OB GYN rotation for several weeks and it has been really hard on me. At one point I thought maybe I would like to do OB GYN so that I could go on to be a RE, but I realized after only 2 weeks I could never surrive the 4 year general OB GYN residency I would have to do before specializing in OB GYN. In OB I saw a slew of women who were pregnant but didn't care about their unborn children. They did drugs, didn't take necessary prescription medications, and didn't take care of their chronic medical conditions that could harm their unborn children. One of the nurses said "If they loved their (unborn) babies" and the doctor replied "well the problem is a lot of the women we see in this clinic don't love their babies." 

I saw women with a diagnosis in their medical charts of "unwanted fertility" (each time I saw this I silently raged), because these women keep getting pregnant, not wanting to get pregnant, because they failed to use birth control but continued to have unprotected sex.

At this point I was thoroughly pissed off. I think of all you wonderful ladies who would do anything to have a baby and would make wonderful mothers, but don't have your babies yet. I wish I could pull out a magical wand and put all these unloved babies into your loving wombs instead.

Then I saw several traumatic events that broke my heart. While on labor and delivery I had a patient come in in labor with a pre-viability pregnancy (but close) . She wanted her baby so badly. I could relate to her. We couldn't stop her delivery and we delivered her tiny baby, who was alive for about an hour before passing away. I was crying in the delivery room with the patient.

A few days later in procedure clinic I had a patient come in from her anatomy scan where they discovered her baby had died several weeks earlier. We had to perform a D&E. I won't go into details on this, but it was incredibly upsetting. Right after this procedure we had an add on D&C for an 8 week missed abortion. 

I elected not to take participate in or shadow at either of the local clinics that perform elective abortions. For this I am very grateful because I imagine that that would have damaged me even more.

I am really distressed and down. I know from reading IF blogs how miscarriages and losses are much more common than is discussed in society, but seeing so much first hand has really affected me. I had always thought I would be so happy when I got pregnant, and I am, but I am much more terrified then I ever thought I would be... I am praying for all of you ladies who recently found out you are pregnant that everything goes smoothly and your babies grow healthfully and for all you ladies that are still waiting that you get your BFPs soon.


  1. I have my own version of this in my line of work. As a child psychologist, I have to interview all of my client's mothers about their pregnancies, etc. Many of them were unplanned, unwanted. The women did not receive prenatal care. You know how you hear stories about women not knowing they were pregnant until 7-8 months or even delivery? Those are my clients. They are so disconnected from their bodies for psychological reasons, that what seems impossible becomes possible. And then, I get to treat their children when they grow up as a result of an unwanted pregnancy. Those children now have their own wounds. It repeats. Oh wow. This was really depressing. Sorry.

    I should say that some of these women who didn't want their children then go on to have a new reason for living. That really happens too.

  2. I had the same frustration during my OBGYN clerkship. I am at an urban, safety-net hospital and most primips are about 16-17 I think. There is even a clinic for pregnant women w HIV and for pregnant women who use cocaine! (Plus staring at the fetal monitor all day is BORING!)I will tell you it was at least for me the second easiest shelf exam, right behind Psych. You are either bleeding or not, and if not, there are only so many reasons why not. (A slight oversimplification but you know...)

  3. I can't imagine how hard that would be. It gives me a new admiration for OB/GYNs.