26 December 2007

The Right To Choose


I lay on the office room table as instructed, expecting an ultrasound and prenatal physical. Noticing a technician strapping my wrists down sent me into a panic. I could not move. With a loaded needle in hand, the technician told me to be quiet and injected me with some kind of tranquilizer. Still, I fought, screamed, and cried "No", as Dr. Bernard Rosenfeld forced his hand between my legs and murdered the twins that were within me.

How did this happen?

Lets go back a few months.




I was in an abusive marriage trying to get away.




When I told my paternal grandmother, she said, "You made your bed, now you lay in it."



When I told my mom, she said, "Don't worry honey, he will change."



When I called a shelter, they said, "We will never have a bed available to you because you do not have any children, and you are not hispanic."



When I went to a lawyer, he said, "You have to stay with someone else during a year separation before you can get divorced. If you get an apartment, your husband can enter any time he pleases because of the joint property law in Texas.

When I asked one of my best friends if I could stay with her, she said that she "was dating one of my (then) husband's friends who worked with him in the Coast Guard." So she let me know that staying with her was not an option.

When I told my then-husband that I wanted a divorce, he told me that if I left him, he would shoot me, and then turn the gun on himself. I believed him.

So I started 1988 joining my then-husband in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

February 1988, Shaun, a friend and co-worker's of my then-husband who was one of the few who knew of the spousal abuse, phoned and said, "I thought you were going to leave Richard.".

I replied, "I am. I just need to find a time to get away without his knowing.

Shaun replied, "Don't do that. Let me talk to him.

I replied, "I have no where to say yet."

Shaun replied, "You can stay with me.

I replied, "What will people think.

Shaun replied, "Who gives a f*** what people think.

I have absolutely no idea what Shaun said, but next thing I knew, Richard said I could leave under certain conditions...
  1. I had to co-sign a new car loan for Richard
  2. I had to take my name off the lease so he could have a roommate and get money from our apartment
  3. I had to let Richard decide what I could take

Richard then escorted me to the South Carolina boarder where he let me know that I could come back any time.

So I euphorically felt free for the first time in years as I drove to Port Lavaca, Texas, on 28 February 1988.

The next month, I felt like I might be pregnant and went to the Port Lavaca Clinic for a test. The test showed up negative.

My breasts were growing and tender, so I went back for another test. Still, the doctor said I was not pregnant, and had me go to the hospital for an ultrasound. The technician said, "let me check your abdomen first." There we saw twin fetuses. I was pregnant after all.

I went to Dr. Kirby Smith for a prenatal exam. I had Champus insurance, since my then-husband was Coast Guard, but Dr. Smith said that I had to pay the $800 dollars first and then have Champus reimburse me. I did not have $800.

Shaun and friends were pressuring me into an abortion. I told them that I did not want an abortion. I was looking at options like adoption & keeping the twins.

I was concerned though because I knew I would need medical care.

A friend told me about Houston Women's Clinic, and to check it out. They had counceling there, and would do prenatal exams, which I called to confirm. Plus, I checked the doctor out, and he was board certified and had excellent credentials, and it would only cost $300 for the ultrasound and prenatal exam.

It was early May when Shaun drove me 2 hours to Houston Women's Clinic. At the clinic, the councelor did not even talk to me. She talked to Shaun. Then Shaun asked me for my credit card, which I gave him. Next thing I knew, I was taken into a room and told to completely strip, and put on a hospital gown, which I did. After a wait that seemed to take forever, the doctor entered, and really did not say much. As I stood there, he leaned against the cabinet looking me slowly down then up as I told him I wanted an ultrasound.

The doctor replied that he would do an ultrasound, and someone would be in to get me.

When a nurse came in and told me to follow her, I thought we were going to a room for the ultrasound. I was curious when she asked me if I needed to urinate, but I thought she was just being conciderate.

Instead of going for an ultrasound, she took me to a room where they strapped me to a bed, drugged me, raped me, and murdered my twins.

They ignored my "no's", screams, and cries.

Afterwards, they led me out to the waiting room to Shaun. Shaun said, "I did not think you would get an abortion." ...like it was my choice.

When I called back after the stuff they injected me with wore off, to complain & ask why, I was told that the doctor changed his mind about the ultrasound and he did not owe me an explaination, and then the nurse called me a baby and said I cried during the entire rape. O.K., she used the word procedure, but to me, it was a rape.

When I asked for my medical records, the nurse told me that they did not have to give them to me.

So then I proceded to write a letter to the medical board.

That letter never got finished. With the twins, a part of me died also. A part I have never been able to get back. And this doctor is still practicing.



2 comments:

  1. Helen,
    I read this and found it to be quite disturbing.If this happen as you say it happen, Why would you not Sue this Doctor?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous, I am not a lawyer. To be honest, I started to write a letter to the medical board, but suing did not even cross my mind.

    What would be gained by suing? Money would not undo the damage, and it would not bring the twins back to life. So what would be the point of suing?

    My friends kept telling me to "drop it and let it go"...the "what is done is done" attitude. They told me that maybe it was for the best. There was nothing I could do that would undo what was done.

    The reason I blogged about it was because this doctor is still practicing, and I do not want what happened to me to happen to anyone else.

    Granted, this happened almost 2 decades ago, and it probably would have helped more women if I had written about it sooner, but I was not emotionally ready to publicly reveal my pain on this subject in this blog, though I have written about it in some forums.

    I tried to get my medical records from them to see "why"...but I was just told that "the doctor changed his mind, and he did not have to explain anything" to me.

    I have tried since then to get my records again, but now they say that they do not have my records.

    ReplyDelete