Vaccination. I just don’t know. Do you?

21 Feb

I am pretty passionate and pretty vocal on a lot of parenting subjects or issues.  I’m not sure if you quite got that from my blog so far? 😉

Attachment parent. Lactivist. Co-sleeper. Baby-wearer. Delayed solids. Early education. 

Everything I do, I tend to do by both instinct and research and I always feel like I am learning. Where my kids are concerned, I am NOT apathetic. I feel like I owe it to them to do the best for them. To do the best, I need to research.

One thing that I have never been able to decide on, or feel confident about, is vaccination.

On the one hand, I believe in herd immunity, and on the other hand, have you HEARD of all those vaccine injured kids?

What to do?

When I had Alex, I was young – 24 – and the only one of my friends who had a baby. I had no one to ask about vaccination so I started reading about it online – on message boards, on websites, in books, in pamphlets. I talked to my doctor, my chiropractor, my massage therapist.

No one agreed. SURPRISE!

I am uncomfortable vaccinating my children. I am equally uncomfortable not vaccinating them.

On the non vaccinating side there are websites like Mercola and whale.to and message boards with tons of people who are anti-vax who will spout statistics until they are blue in the face. They will tell you that doctors get kick backs and are duped and that the government has a conspiracy and that the evidence isn’t really evidence.

On the vaccinating side there are websites like the CDC and message boards with tons of people who are pro-vax who will spout statistics until they are blue in the face. They will tell you that non vaxers are crazy fear mongerers with no medical knowledge to back them up and no real evidence to support their claims.

Um.

Who to trust?

I know it sounds silly. Like wouldn’t I just trust the doctors? Because they are doctors.

But kids have DIED from vaccines. They have suffered very serious consequences.

It’s funny because I have friends and family who are doctors and they are intelligent and know what they are talking about and I also have friends who are into natural healing and who are intelligent and know what they are talking about. AHHHH. Confusion reigns supreme.

So back to the I. Don’t. Know.

Because I don’t. Know that is. 

So I just sort of do a bit of this and a bit of that.

I delay and I don’t vax according to schedule, but I do vaccinate. I don’t like the idea of babies who are 2 months or whatever the recommendation is to get a shot of five vaccines at one time. No thanks. I hadn’t done much research at the time, but as soon as my doctor said “five at once”, I was like “stop the presses, hang tight here, let me think”.

So my doctor thought I was some sort of a crazy hippy. So what? I wasn’t doing THAT to my baby at that time. I needed to think. I needed to read. And I eventually did it. Just at a (much) older age.

Additionally, I didn’t do chicken pox and didn’t do many of the ones that are “new” and not on the schedule. I’m not so interested in my kids being the test generation of a new vaccine.

And I delayed the MMR until well after two years. I get that the study was shot down  and not well done in the first place but just in case… I wasn’t taking any chances.

My kids are pretty caught up at this point. I did get the letters from public health and Alex was almost medically suspended from school at one point (I really do delay), but they are now at the point where they can attend school without me using an exemption.

And soon enough, I will need to decide about Gardasil. Once again, my gut says “no way, not a chance”, but really, I just don’t know.

How do YOU feel about vaccination? What do you do?

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4 Responses to “Vaccination. I just don’t know. Do you?”

  1. jg February 22, 2012 at 2:09 pm #

    Have you noticed how they’re targeting men in the new Gardasil® commercials? For me this is a sure sign that Merck has successfully penetrated the minds of women in North America and needs to open up a new target market. If the key benefit to administering Gardasil® is for cervical cancer protection, then what benefit does it serve for a cervix-free population (dudes) to be inoculated?!

    I am sure they’ll argue (and frighten us into believing) that inoculating men will help eradicate the virus, which will, in turn, protect women, but let’s be clear, Gardasil® is product manufactured, marketed (to death) and sold for the purpose of generating a return on investment–you and I were never inoculated against a couple of strains of HPV implicated in cervical cancer and here we are, grown women. Just fine.

    I am so dubious of big pharma at this point, I just can’t imagine a situation where I would feel comfortable administering any more unnecessary immuno-stimulants to my child.

  2. A Ventography! February 22, 2012 at 9:33 pm #

    My gut also says, “no way, not a chance” to Gardasil. In my opinion, this vaccination was fast tracked and I am not willing to allow my children to be guinea pigs. – Leah

  3. Sharon February 23, 2012 at 1:45 am #

    My sister didn’t vaccinate her son (BTW – she lives in Ontario and they can’t actually kick you out of school for not vaccinating). I delayed with some of the vaccines – both of my kids had reactions to two different vaccines. Son No. 1 didn’t get his MMR booster until he was 9 b/c of his egg allergy and even then we had it in a hospital setting. I feel the same way as you in that I don’t agree with doing so many different shots all at once.

    I believe that doctors are fallible and that pharmaceutical firms are a business that needs to be profitable and that sometimes mistakes can be made and that bottom lines are important to them.

  4. Deanna T. February 25, 2012 at 2:50 am #

    I was also a fence sitter on the whole vaccination thing. I let myself be talked into letting my babe get the first shot, and then she had a relatively severe reaction and had to be referred to a specialist. After that I stuck to my guns and delayed their shots until they were older. At 2 months old, even at a year old, they can’t communicate well enough to tell you what’s going on. My kids were at home with me not in daycare, so I took my chances. – SASS

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