My experience with bisalp after Roe was overturned.

Disclaimer: I’m not a medical professional. I am AFAB and am sharing my experiences and knowledge. I am childfree and have never been pregnant. I am also based in Kentucky, and some information may not apply to your location. I originally didn’t plan to post this to Reddit so there’s some redundant information that I’m keeping in to signal boost. I booked my first appointment after the Roe leak was made in May and had the surgery last week. It took about a month to go from first appointment to post-op check up.

*General Information/Signal Boosting*

So until further notice, birth control is legal and covered by ACA. Some insurances consider bisalp as a form of birth control and will cover the cost. In Kentucky, you have to be 21+ to receive this procedure.

Kentuckians. Banning abortion is on the ballot in November to be added to the state Constitution. **Vote no.** Please. It’s badly worded and not being widely talked about. If added to the state Constitution, all the lawsuits and fighting to keep some form of abortion safe and legal in KY will be lost. **Vote no.** Spread the word. I know, I’m tired of being told to vote too, and I know there’s only one clinic in the whole state, but we have to fight for this.

Okay, so you’ve decided on permanent birth control and you’re ready to jump into action because time is likely short. First, find a doctor.

Here are some resources you can use to help find a doctor. These are from the childfree Subreddit. This information has been crowdsourced over several years.

– crowd sourced info from r/childfree

Another useful resource that also has a list of doctors is u/pagingdrfran on TikTok. She has several videos about sterilization with excellent info. She started collecting a list of doctors willing to perform the surgery after Roe was overturned. She notes if it was self or patient submitted.

After you find a doctor, ask to set up an appointment to discuss sterilization.

*The First Appointment*

Not wanting to have a biological child should be the only reason you need, but unfortunately you may need more to convince a doctor. Below is a very short reasons you may find useful during your first appointment:

I want to reduce my risk of cancer.
I have genetic disorders, illness, disease, condition, etc that I do not want to pass on.
I have a mental illness that would negatively impact my ability to be a parent.
If I choose to have a child, I will adopt or foster.
I am at risk for an unviable pregnancy.
I do not wish to be reliant on hormone based birth control.
I have suffered severe and unwanted side effects from hormonal birth control.
I have thought about this for a while and I am absolutely sure this is the best option for me.

You will likely be charged a visit fee to meet with the doctor. Be prepared and persistent. They will say things or ask questions to make sure you don’t regret it. I had to sign a paper saying I understood there were other methods and I am choosing a permanent option.

This stage sucks. You may get told no. You may have to start over. You may feel like you’re rushing towards a rapidly closing door. Be prepared mentally.

Side note, my doctor did not ask “if my husband was okay with this,” so that was nice.

*Pre-surgery*

This will vary I’m sure, but I had a pre-op appointment with my OBGYN that also preformed the surgery. She went over which of my medications I could take the night and morning before, what to expect, and answer any questions I had. I also had 2 phone calls with the hospital going over things like anesthesia rules, allergies, where to go day of, etc. Other than not eating after 8pm and not taking a vitamin the morning of, I had no major changes in my lifestyle or schedule before surgery.

*Surgery Day*

I arrived at my local hospital in the morning. I waited about 4 hours for surgery. In that time, I had some blood drawn, took a urine test, and had an IV hooked up. I was in a hospital bed for most of the wait so I took a nap. I wore a mask the whole time. I’m not used to do that and it hurt my ears, so you may want to have a different type or a mask extender for the day of. Hooking it around my glasses provided some relief.

One thing I dealt with is I have 2 ear piercings that were difficult to remove so I had to sign that they could be cut off if necessary during surgery due to a burn risk. Neither happened, yay! But, anyways, leave your jewelry at home.

I had fantastic nurses and doctors the day of. Overall, they were nice, professional, and I felt like I was in good hands. However, I had 3 interactions that were mildly annoying that I want to note. One, I was asked again if I was aware it was permanent and if I was sure. I would hope being in a hospital bed for 2 hours at that point and being poked and prodded would be enough of an answer, but I digress. I was also asked twice how many kids I have. While I believe this was meant to be an convo icebreaker, both replied with “oh” when I said “none.” Again, I’m sure no harm was meant, but it made me feel awkward. They could have asked if I read or watched anything good lately or talked about the weather.

Shortly before surgery, the anesthesiologist came in and gave me some stuff to relax. I was wheeled through the hospital, remember thinking the surgery room was super bright and then nothing. I appreciate I wasn’t asked to count or anything. I’m really glad that her, my initial nurse, and my OBGYN were involved with my procedure. They are excellent humans.

I woke up a short time later sore and coughing with a full bladder. I was given some extra pain medicine. The coughing was from the breathing tube rubbing my throat. I was able to change, drink water, and pee by myself and then cleared to go home. Someone else was required to drive me. I left with a folder of instructions, and to my surprise, photos that showed proof that the surgery was done! No, I’m not putting them on here. Yes, it was weird but also kind of cool. I’ve always wanted to see my ovaries, I guess. They also asked for permission to use my photos for teaching opportunities and I said that was fine.

By time I got home my surgery site was sore, but not overly painful. I had some ice cream for my throat, took my prescription pain pills, and had a wonderful nap. I had three cuts on my stomach, including one in my belly button. They were glued shut. I bled a bit for the first 3 days and was bloated. I would recommend old loose shirts and low rise undies or shorts during recovery. I also had quite a bit of bruising. I was able to shower the next day.

*Post Surgery*

The pain was never bad, I would rate it a 3 or 4 at the worst. I’ve had worse cramps. I think getting my wisdom teeth out was worse. Day 2 and 3 the pain felt like I had done a bunch of ab exercises. I was most comfortable laying down and I avoided twisting, bending down, and lifting. I was fairly tired from the pain meds, but I stopped them after day 4. At that point, some soreness was only noticed if I moved in certain ways. I could walk and get up normally. Sitting is slightly uncomfortable after a while. And as I healed, the wounds started to itch.

I have a desk job and returned 5 days after the operation. Other than some slight discomfort, I’m fine. My throat honestly continues to hurt more than the part that was operated on. I cannot lift anything over 10 pounds for at least 2 weeks. If you have pets, you may want to get someone to help you feed them if you bend down to do so.

Another note. I have a Mirena IUD that’s 4 years old and after consulting with my doctor, decided to leave it in to control my period. Removing the tubes will not stop periods, but an IUD has stopped mine except for monthly cramps.

*Post-op Appointment*

A week after surgery, I had a follow up with my OBGYN. She checked to see how I was healing. I didn’t know this, but my tubes were biopsied and thankfully came back clear. I have a bit more healing to do, but overall I’m about 85?ck to normal.

*A few more thoughts before I go.*

What I did not expect was the emotional part. Before I get to that though, I’m going to put this next part in CAPS for maximum clarity. I HAVE NO REGRETS. I DO NOT FEEL BARREN OR LIKE SOMETHING IS MISSING. I STILL HAVE NO DESIRE TO BE A PARENT. What I did feel was extreme anger and sadness that I felt my best option was to remove a part of my body because of a political decision that I had no part in making. The SCOTUS justices don’t know me and yet here I am slicing and dicing a part of my body to help keep my freedom of choice over what to do with my body. And having this all done during the 4th of July? It was tough mentally. I wish I had received the procedure earlier, but another doctor convinced me an IUD was the best choice for me, and it was until it wasn’t. I felt relieved, too, but it was overshadowed.

I also felt lonely, and I think this is intentional. Abortion, birth, and everything surrounding it is an emotional topic. I have friends and family than range from childfree, to fence sitters, to painfully struggling with infertility, to proud parents of 1 or more kids, to unknown because they haven’t shared their private business. I’m surrounded by people that marched in protests against SCOTUS to those that gleefully declared “best day ever!” I did share my story and experience with a select few friends, and it helped tremendously, but it’s also hard to know who to trust, who wants to take on that emotional labor, and those that have their own problems and don’t care about mine. There’s so much division in the US, and this is another way to fracture groups. TERFs, anti-abortion but pro-IVF, and “no one is forcing you to have sex” are some examples of creating infighting that I’ve noticed already. But, my main point is is that if you’re feeling lonely, you’re not actually alone.

I’m not going to go over every single reason why I had my tubes removed or why I don’t want children, so you’re going to have to trust me, however in my opinion, these were my options after Roe was overturned:

1. Drastically change my marriage
2. Move
3. Stay on IUD only and assume that would remain legal and I would be able to safely terminate an ectopic pregnancy
4. Have funds saved to travel for any abortions and hope it was legal and possible to do so
5. Sterilization for husband
6. Sterilization for me
7. Accept loss of body autonomy and increased risk of death

Six was the best choice for me. I am sharing my experience because I know others are making a list like mine above and trying to make a difficult choice.

I’m sure doesn’t need to be said but I am anyways, with all the new laws and changes, do not ask when someone is having kids, having more kids, or when their baby due. While I’m personally fine with sharing my story, no one should be compelled to explain that they’ve been sterilized or are carrying a dead fetus because of abortion laws. Be mindful, because politicians sure aren’t.

Good luck to you and sincerest wishes for better days ahead.

My experience with bisalp after Roe was overturned.