The Founder of Early Options. The Pioneer of the Natural Abortion.
After her training at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Fleischman provided surgical abortions at an abortion clinic from 1995 to 1999. But she felt that there had to be a less invasive way to end an early pregnancy. So Dr. Fleischman created SofTouch®, a non-invasive medical abortion method and a natural alternative to surgical procedures. In addition, Dr. Fleischman sought to change the structure of a typical abortion clinic, which didn’t adequately protect a woman’s privacy and right to confidential medical care.
At Early Options, Dr. Fleischman is able to give women the privacy and comfort they deserve while undergoing a very common medical procedure: an early abortion. She has also pioneered a “Privacy in Practice” system that makes privacy a priority at every step, like scheduling one appointment at a time.
From being the only practice in America where a companion is allowed at a woman’s side during an early abortion, to providing 24/7 physician access – Early Options is in a class by itself. And so is Dr. Fleischman.
Dr. Fleischman received her MD at Harvard Medical School and her Masters of Public Administration from Harvard University’s JFK School of Government. Dr. Fleischman has trained faculty members of prestigious family practice programs in the Early Options approach, including Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, University of Pennsylvania, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and SUNY Downstate Medical Center.
A Personal Message from Dr. Fleischman to You
“I created Early Options because I feel that “how” abortion is provided and “how” we talk about abortion with each other is important. I’ve been providing abortions for nearly 20 years. I’ve been listening to women, from such varied backgrounds, in so many different situations, who have made the decision to end their pregnancy.
Being pregnant can be a highly emotional time. Women are often surprised by how vulnerable they feel. Conflicted feelings are the norm. Hormones are changing rapidly, making difficult feelings even more emotional. Even if you feel you are making the right decision, you can feel sad, conflicted, frightened, and lonely. This is understandable. The decision of whether or not to have a baby is a decision central to many women’s lives. In addition, it is filled with public opinion, designed to dictate how you should feel….”
Most women are worried about what’s involved in the abortion procedure. Sometimes it’s hard to sort out how much of being emotional is about the decision, and how much of it is just plain fear about actually ending the pregnancy. Too many women who have come to see me over the past two decades have described prior abortion services at clinics as “traumatic,” or have heard their friend’s stories of their bad experiences. This is a sad statement about the people who have been responsible for providing these services in the past decades. No matter what someone’s personal belief is about abortion, women deserve the highest quality of medical care.
I designed Early Options to provide some relief from these experiences that some abortion doctors have created. Here at Early Options, we are dedicated to “normalizing” your medical care. We strive to create a highly professional, but very personalized environment. Our doctors and staff are some of the kindest, most nonjudgmental, compassionate women you will ever meet. We pay attention to details. We schedule your appointment so that it can be completely private. When you walk in, you will not meet other patients in a crowded waiting room. You are taken immediately to a private examination room, where you will be from start to finish. Your companion can be with you for as much of the visit as you choose. You meet your doctor (with your clothes on!) and go over all of your questions, before you are prepared for a procedure.
There is no operating room. The SofTouch® method is a gentle aspiration abortion that’s very similar to the experience of getting your yearly Pap test. There is no recovery room. You can stay in the same room, until you’re ready to leave the office. You meet with the doctor before you leave, to talk about what to expect after the procedure.
We openly share our perspective on ending early pregnancy. We feel that it’s responsible to end it early, and that you should feel good about yourself making a hard decision. In our opinion, ending an early pregnancy is more like having a natural miscarriage – especially if you choose a natural abortion method. In the first months of pregnancy, it hasn’t had a chance to develop. You don’t even know if it would have been viable. It’s our opinion that there is nothing being hurt. The early pregnancy tissue does not resemble an embryo. It is indistinguishable from a small clump of mucus. You are welcome to look at it. We have found that women who look at the tissue feel tremendous relief. They have often seen photos on the Internet that have made them feel like the pregnancy is far more developed.
By providing quality medical abortion care, and by helping you to stop beating yourself up, we can help you to have a more positive emotional experience. While nobody “wants” to be in this situation, it can be a time of growth. This experience may help you to become clearer about what is important to you. You may get to know your partner in ways you didn’t know him before. You may see that you need to make some decisions in your life that you were avoiding. You may realize your life needs to head in new directions to make a wanted pregnancy possible in the future. It can also reaffirm that you are happy with where your life is at right now.
We are living in a time when women are having sex, enjoying sex, and experimenting with new ways of having relationships. Sex, at its best, is passionate. In its essence, we lose control. Birth control is far from perfect, and we make mistakes. But there is no reason to beat ourselves up so badly when it happens. Many women spent their lives fighting for us to be able to make new kinds of choices. It’s important to live a life of gratitude, and not regret. We are most proud when our approach and our services help you move forward with your life, and you leave our office feeling good about yourself and your decision.”