According to some clinics, people are now seeking long-term contraceptives after the repeal of Roe V. Wade.
People in Minnesota have made significant changes to their reproductive systems since the Supreme Court’s decision almost two months ago. While the SCOTUS ruling didn’t ban abortions in Minnesota it did get Minnesotans to think about what ifs.
More than 20 Minnesotans commented on Reddit posts about the impact of this ruling.
Three women shared their intimate details about why they decided to use long-term contraceptives. We also discussed the factors that influenced their decision. MinnPost gave permission to MinnPost to allow the women to use a pseudonym and a first name due to sensitive topics, such as the discussion about sexual assault.
One woman living near Rochester said that many of these what-ifs seem far-fetched. The country’s recent history has changed, according to the woman who requested that we not use her name.
“I didn’t think this would happen. And I didn’t think (former President Donald Trump) would be elected. It was a shock. I was mortified. “I don’t doubt that they’re going to come after birth control access access next,” she said.
People of color and those with lower incomes will bear the brunt of the ruling, said Dr. Rahel Nados, an obstetrics and gynologist and director of Global Women’s Health in the University of Minnesota Center for Global Health and Social Responsibility.
Many people are now opting for long-term contraception, such as vasectomies and tubal ligations.
Big life changes
There is growing concern in Minnesota about the future of Minnesota’s abortion laws, especially for those living in Greater Minnesota.
Melissa, a woman who knew she needed long-term birth control, had previously had a bad experience using an IUD. This made it difficult to find the right type of birth control for her, she explained.
Although her partner was open to a vasectomy, Melissa decided on a salpingectomy in 2018. This is a procedure that involves the removal of one or both of a woman’s fallopian tubes.
She said, “I am also an rape survivor.” “I told my partner, you can have that surgery if your wish, but I’m the one who caused it. If we split up, you die, and I move on to someone else, or if my partner is raped I could still get pregnant. So I’d prefer to just get the surgery.
Melissa said she was happy with her decision, particularly considering the overturning Roe V. Wade.
“I have no regrets. She said that it was a relief because she doesn’t want children. The world can be stressful. Like periods can be late due to stress. However, they might also be late if you are pregnant. It’s not because it’s too late. I don’t need to worry about the future and put extra stress on myself. Would I be able get an abortion? Would I do that? You have a million questions in your head during a pregnancy panic.
Sarah of Austin, Minn. wanted to change to an IUD to replace birth control pills after the Dobbs ruling. She called Owatonna’s Mayo Clinic to learn that it would take three months.
Because she wanted to have children soon, she ended up not receiving it. She now pays around $12 per month for birth control pills and her insurance does not cover it. She is concerned that her birth control pills may be at risk.
“Honestly, it scares me. She said that there are many other states that are pursuing that contraceptive and that it is not guaranteed that she will be able to continue using it. “I don’t know if it will be accessible, and that’s a frightening thought for me and all women.”
This decision will affect not only the reproductive plans of people but also other aspects and health. One woman, Erin (a survivor of breast cancer), is unable to use hormonal birth controls such as the vaginal rings or pills because her breast cancer was hormonally driven.
So, my concern is whether I want to get a tubal and then have my period in two months. Then I will need to consider another more invasive procedure. Or do I want to go on ovary suppression medication, which can be difficult to tolerate. She said they can cause a lot pain and other issues.
She is terrified of the possibility of becoming pregnant as it increases her chance of developing cancer again. Now she can decide whether to have the tubal or a hysterectomy.
“I don’t want to get cancer again. It’s not something I want to do again. She said that she just wanted to do my best to make it less likely in the unlikely event we lose our rights in Minnesota.
Inequitable Access and Results
Nardos pointed out that restricting abortion access does not necessarily mean less unintended pregnancies, or fewer abortions. However, it could cause harm to the child bearers.
“I have seen women with septic complications come in because they tried to perform abortions on their own in countries that don’t allow it. Nardos stated that it is one of the dangers for maternal mortality.
According to this 2018 study, the U.S. has the highest maternal mortality rate of all developed countries.
Black women are three times more likely to die from abortion in the United States than white women. Black and Native women are at higher risk of maternal death due to low access to healthcare, systematic racism and poverty, gender-based violence, and higher associated risk of developing medical conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and hypertension. These factors can all complicate the outcome of a pregnancy, Nardos stated.
She said, “What I am really concerned about is a Supreme Court decision that creates States that don’t permit these services to occur, they’re obviously gonna disproportionately affect women who don’t possess the resources to travel further or seek care outside their state,” These same factors that have led to such huge disparities in maternal outcomes will continue to be a problem.”
According to Dr. Christy Boraas of M Health Fairview Women’s Clinic, Minneapolis, more people are visiting Minnesota clinics for contraceptives from out-of-state and in-state. She is also the medical director at planned parentalhood and an abortion provider at Whole Women’s Health, Bloomington.
Boraas stated that since the Dobbs decision we have received many more requests for appointments relating to permanent contraception, or what some call permanent sterilization.
A bilateral salpingectomy is the procedure used to remove a female baby’s gender at birth. Many people face barriers when it comes to getting the procedure.
The federal requirements for procedures are different for those who receive care under public assistance insurance than those with private insurance. The minimum age for those with public insurance is 21. Patients must sign a form and wait for 30 days before they can have the procedure.
“Without insurance coverage, a permanent contraception procedure is not possible for patients who have given birth to a female. It costs thousands of dollars. Boraas stated that just turning on the lights in the operating room costs a lot of money.
Vasectomies may be a better option.
Vasectomies are sometimes considered by some people, but they are not covered fully by private insurance, unlike bilateral salpingectomies.
Although it was great to have the tubal-splenectomy covered by insurance Melissa believes that the vasectomies do not place the burden of prevention on the woman.
Whole Women’s Health had difficulty finding qualified staff. This, combined with the busy schedules of physicians, caused delays and problems with scheduling. Boraas states that scheduling conflicts can be difficult to manage when you combine this with busy physician schedules.
Baraas stated that there is always a fear that she will face repercussions for what she does. Caitlin Bernard, Indiana’s far-right critic, was attacked for providing abortion to a 10-year-old rape victim.
She said, “It’s difficult to see what’s happening” to her. “Personal safety is not a post- Dobbs issue. Providers in restrictive states have always had to think about this.
Concern about the future of reproductive right
Republican-led state legislatures also passed laws aimed at Planned Parenthood and pharmacists. Many are worried about what could happen if Minnesota is red in the next election.
Erin believed Walz’s high approval rating during COVID would boost his chances of being reelected. She’s now hearing that Scott Jensen, the GOP’s gubernatorial nominee, might be able to win in November.
She said that Jensen has made it very clear where he stands on certain issues. “I still believe Walz will win, and that we would have an extra layer of protection. But I don’t want to get cancer again. It’s not something I want to go through again. “I just want to do my best to make it less likely that we lose our rights in Minnesota.”
According to Dr. Christy Boraas (a doctor at M Health Fairview Women’s Hospital in Minneapolis, medical director at planned parenthood and provider of abortion at Whole Women’s Health, Bloomington),