Child sweethearts Tara and Justin George were thrilled to find out they were expecting their first baby together.
The US couple sent ultrasound scans to friends and family – and named their son Griffyn.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Couple forced to travel interstate to get an abortion
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But at five months, her world fell apart after her doctor noticed there was no amniotic fluid around the baby.
The couple have been told the pregnancy presents two major issues.
The first was that the baby would either be stillborn or live only a few hours.
And carrying him through to delivery would put Tara’s life at risk as the mother-to-be had medical issues that could prove fatal for her.
So the couple made a heartbreaking decision to have an abortion.
Eventually, the couple were forced to travel abroad for termination due to local Ohio laws prohibiting redundancies.
Before the abortion, the couple were over the moon after 34-year-old Tara became pregnant.
Justin, a 33-year-old sports podcaster, was so excited about becoming a first-time father that he bought his son onesie with logos of his beloved Cleveland teams.
“All I could think about was just watching sports, taking it to games, just having fun, someone to play with,” Justin said.
“Just doing anything a father would do to his son. We were so excited.”
Tara said they’ve already picked a date for the baby shower and are “really looking forward to it.”
But as dr. Mae Winchester did an ultrasound, the couple knew their baby was in trouble.
Tests revealed the baby suffered from kidney failure and multiple heart defects, with medical records coldly describing it as “fatal fetal abnormalities.”
Tara was 20 weeks pregnant.
carrying the baby
One option was to continue the pregnancy.
The baby could be stillborn, but even if born alive, it would only survive a few hours at most, said Dr. Winchester.
But carrying the baby to birth would put Tara’s life in jeopardy.
She has a bleeding disorder and an autoimmune condition that puts her at high risk for bleeding, clotting, and preeclampsia — all potentially fatal complications.
“When you have a baby that’s never going to make it, a baby that’s going to face what could be a very difficult time in life, we really have to think hard about risking Tara’s life for that,” said Dr. Winchester.
have an abortion
The other option was abortion.
After much deliberation, Tara and Justin decided to have an abortion – both to protect Tara’s life and to save Griffyn from suffering.
“I can only imagine being born with no functioning organs at all. It would be awful,” Tara said.
dr Winchester told Tara that she thought she could get the abortion at home in Ohio.
This is despite the fact that just a few weeks earlier, in the wake of the Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v Wade, legislation banning abortions as young as six weeks of pregnancy had come into force.
But the doctor says she consulted with a hospital attorney, who said Tara couldn’t get the abortion because of Ohio’s new law.
“When I had to call Tara and tell her we couldn’t make it, it was really difficult,” said Dr. Winchester.
Tara said it was a horrible situation “because not only were we told no, but the next step was to think, ‘OK, well, who’s going to help us? What do we do now?'”
“I’ve literally never felt more helpless in my life,” Justin added.
dr Winchester then reached out to colleagues in nearby states to find a location as close as possible for Tara to receive the procedure.
This process took several days, partly because abortion laws in neighboring states were in flux.
“She had to wait,” said Dr. Winchester.
“And if anything happened to her during that wait, I would feel terrible.”
Across the border
Amid their grief, Tara and Justin drove nearly three hours to Michigan, where they spent two days to get the procedure.
Justin told jokes and sang songs to keep Tara happy, but he knew it was no use.
“It was devastating,” he said.
They had to pay for a hotel and they lost wage days working as a hairdresser and his work as a quality manager in a steel mill.
But the worst part, Tara said, was how “scary” and “worrying” it was to be in an unfamiliar hospital with doctors she’d never met before.
Six days later, on August 2nd, Tara received the abortion in Michigan.
Tara and Justin say they are telling their story to help women in states like Ohio who may also be experiencing a potentially dangerous pregnancy but don’t have the resources they do.
“We were lucky where we could miss work, we could afford to get a hotel, travel out of state. Not everyone can do that,” Justin said.
“I’m very scared for every woman out there who might not have family or support, who doesn’t have a car. What should she do?”
On September 14, an Ohio judge temporarily blocked the state’s abortion law, restoring access to abortions in the state for 14 days up to 20 weeks after fertilization.
Justin and Tara still want to have a family, but the changing laws in Ohio are making them “nervous” and “uncertain” because they “have no idea what the laws (are going to be) like,” Tara said.
“Our whole family is here; our friends are here; Our jobs are here,” she said.
“(We) are just trying to hope that something changes for the better so that we can stay here.”
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https://7news.com.au/lifestyle/pregnancy/devastated-couples-agonising-decision-to-have-abortion-at-five-months-pregnant-c-8331889 ‘Devastated’ couple Tara and Justin George make the agonizing decision to have an abortion at five months pregnant