“We were on such a high with the pregnancy. We were buying clothes, we had the name picked out, we were planning a baby shower, parties and stuff,” said Justin George of Brook Park, referring to his wife, Tara’s, pregnancy.
However, their world came crashing down at Tara George’s 20-week ultrasound appointment.
“Our doctor did her own scan to look at everything, and she pretty much was like, ‘We need to have a serious conversation. We are noticing things with the baby that are extremely dangerous for him and for you,'” said Tara George.
Her OB-GYN said their baby would not likely survive once he was born, so they were left with two options.
“We could see if he could make it to a point to even have him at all and not have anything dangerous happen to me as far as my health since I have a blood clotting disorder,” she said. “Or the only other option would be to go through and terminate early.”
A difficult decision was made even more so by Ohio’s Heartbeat Bill, which bans abortions after six weeks of gestation.
Tara George said the Cleveland hospital told them they couldn’t terminate the pregnancy because she was past that time.
“Knowing Tara’s health was on the line and the baby’s chance of survival was slim, I really thought that in Ohio, everyone said that they were gonna do anything to protect the mother. I honestly never even thought twice that they would say no to us, and then when they did, we had to start finding other options,” said Justin George.
The couple contacted doctors in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Illinois and Maryland before deciding on a hospital in Michigan.
“We got a call shortly after saying unfortunately they weren’t going to be able to help me. The next
morning, thankfully, they called back and said they worked it out,” said Tara George. “They were able to take us as long as we could get there by a certain time, which ended up happening.”
She is still recovering both mentally and physically, but she said there are other women going through similar situations.
“With everything going on in Ohio, unfortunately, there are a lot of women that are feeling very scared and very nervous to even try to have their own family because heaven forbid something happens to them,” she said.
The Georges want to try to get pregnant again but say they are hesitant due to talk of Republican leaders looking to further restrict access to abortion, including banning travel across state lines for the procedure.