Wednesday, May 5, 2010

immunizations controversy

Before I start, I realize this is a HIGHLY controversial subject. We all do what we think is best for OUR children, please do not take offense!

When my first two kids were born, the thought of not getting immunizations had never occurred to me. I did what I was told to do and left it at that.

When Otter was diagnosed with Doose Syndrome {a VERY rare type of childhood epilepsy} I found that some other parents whose children had Doose thought it was caused by immunizations. I know some people think this is an issue with autism as well.

Do I think that immunizing my child gave him epilepsy? No. But could it have? Maybe. We'll most likely never know. I tend to be a research Nazi. This is something I've chosen not to research. It's just too controversial and I don't want to be doubting myself all the time. When I was pregnant with The Baby I went back and forth trying to decide what to do.

For me, it has never been about choosing not to immunize, but choosing to hold off and not do so many so fast.

My dad's cousin is a nurse in a free clinic. I talked to her about it. She said if you would see the things she has seen, you would never choose not to immunize your children.

Now here's the part where I might piss some of you off. I believe the reason why some parents can choose not to immunize their children, is because of those of us who choose to immunize ours. So many people preach about not immunizing, but if we all stopped, then all these diseases would start killing our children. I do, however, agree that it may be too many too fast, but I suppose I'll leave that up to the professionals.

I came across this post a while back. A precious little 2 month old baby died of Pertussis, aka Whooping Cough. The P in DTaP. He wasn't even old enough to receive the vaccine before he contracted the sickness.

As for the flu shots, I haven't really decided. We all got them this year since I was pregnant, but I don't know if we'll get them again. We'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

All in all, it's about personal preference. I disagree with moms telling me I shouldn't immunize my children. Let us make our own decisions. I don't judge you, don't judge me. Like I said, we do what we think is best for our own children. As for me, I'll stick to the book.

{Please do not leave comments about the dangers of immunizations and why I shouldn't immunize my children. This is how I feel and I don't need to doubt myself any more than I already have. Thank you.}


Linked at Shell's.

17 cleansing comments:

Casey said...

I believe exactly what you do. I have to say it does bug me when people judge others for their choices. I have no problem with what you(general you) do for your child, it is what is right for your family but don't try to push me down for what is right for our family. In the case I totally agree with you though

Patricia said...

I agree with you, I don´t like to be told either. One thing that strikes me is that (you know the cyber world puts us closer) I´m in south America, Argentina to be more precise and here there´s no argument about vaccines or not vaccines, no one even thinks about not giving the kids the mandatory ones... then you have the flu ones and all but the mandatory, well... they are just mandatory and that´s it. I think it´s also a social thing, because the arguments about autism and epilepsy that you mention and I have read about in other blogs is just not relevant here, no one talk about that and there are as many cases as everywhere else.
Just my thoughts on your post.

Thanks for sharing!

Shell said...

You did an awesome job dealing with a highly controversial issue. Personally, I believe that the risks are too great to choose not to immunize. I think the reason that this is so highly debated is because it's something that could affect someone else's child. I am a big believer in acceptance of others' parenting decisions. Breast or bottle is hotly debated- but I don't care. But, whether someone chooses to immunize their kids could actually affect my kids, so I do get worked up about it.

Thanks for linking up!

Kmama said...

A big HUGE, outstanding AMEN to you. I agree with everything you said, especially the part about WE are the reason that others can choose not to immunize their children.

Jenn said...

I agree with you about everything you wrote!!! I immunized all of mine and never second guessed it till I moved and a couple of newly made friends STRONGLY apposed it and even went as far as sending me information on why I shouldn't have done it. Well...guess what, even if I did change my mind, I already immunized 3 of my kids, if there was going to be damage done, it was too late now. So why send me info regarding all the negative things that could happen when my children were already vaccinated? It's a hugely controversial issue, one that I think is a parents personal choice and outsiders should butt out!! Just my opinion!!! :)

Jessica said...

Preach it sista!! I agree! I got my vaccinated because I knew that if I didnt, they would probably end up getting something that would quite possibly kill them! I totally vaccinate!

Kimberly@PrettyPinkMomma said...

You are so right! The fact that majority do immunize does make it okay for those that choose not to. I agree that too many too fast may not be good but I also chalk that up to I may never know. Either way, with my kids whats done is done. I have to trust in my doctors advice because she is the one that went to medical school, not me. As for the flu shot I get them the regular flu shot but I held off on the Swine Flu vaccine. I don't know whats gonna happen next year because my pediatrician told me that the swine flu and flu shot will all be combined into one shot next year. That I think is too much at once.

Jenny said...

You are right. Everyone should make their own decision like you said.
We did get flu shots and we all got the flu. So sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.
I hear you though...

Tammy said...

It is a very personal decision! We chose to give our children immunizations. Our first pediatrician worked in the ER during her residency. Like you said, she was amazing what she saw. I always trusted here. It's hard when you are a new mom but my kids have stayed healthy. I am on the fence with the flu shot too! We got one this year too, but I take it on a year to year basis.

Aphrodite's Mortal Friend (ME) said...

Good for you for saying your true thoughts- me, I would rather polio stay far far away and for what it's worth, I have to trust the people who make these decisions cause they know far more about it than I do (just as I would expect them to trust me in my profession).

Much More Than Mommy said...

I read this nodding the entire time! Very, VERY well said!

Lisa said...

I had mine immunized and I would do it all over again.

Jayme said...

I agree! You need to research, do what's right for your family. I am a fan of delaying some and separating some vaccines. I first started researching it when my 25 weeker was supposed to get her 2 month shots, a huge amount of vaccines- before she was even supposed to be born. She wasn't even 3 pounds yet! I felt her little body just wasn't ready.
In the past, we've gone without flu shots, but this year we got them because Ryan was undergoing chemo and already had a compromised immune system.

Miss Fit said...

We watched the tail end of the war on vaccines a few nights ago and had a good discussion afterward. I agree it is a personal choice and I respect that. Also, my kids are vaccinated because we thought they may go to school and/or have a good chance of being around of a lot of other kids. Although, we ended up homeschooling.

I didn't think of the fact that so many people do vaccinate that those who shoose not to may or may not suffer any consequence. I did however think about what the effect, on those who choose not to, would be and if they do get sick, it wouldn't be a threat to the vaccinated. I think What we fear is an epidemic.

BTW, never got a flu shot. Haven't seen the need. Do they suggest flu shots for just the family of a pregnant woman now? Or the pregnant woman as well? That's interesting.

What I don't like and never will is anyone telling me what I should do. Vaccinations, parenting, marriage...unless I ask for advice of course but even then, I'm careful 'cause there's always this kind of expectation that I'm going to do it.

WonderWomanWannabe said...

Excellent approach to this touchy subject. My baby gets all her vaxes, we just kind of spread them out a little more than is the norm. I'm a big supporter of people parenting how they see fit; I really dislike those moms that try to roast other moms who have different opinions than them. We are ALL raising our children in what we believe is the best for them. How is that bad parenting?
Again, GREAT post, Messy Mommy!

J said...

I plan to give my kids all of the vaccines that I got. Autism spiked between the time of my birth and now and I can't believe it's just vaccines making that happen, especially not the same MMR, etc. that my siblings and I received. That said, I do think the research that addresses vaccines coming out AFTER diseases were already starting to fade out is *really* interesting. If we had stopped vaccinating at that time we might be immune to those things by now but after generations of vaccs, I wouldn't be surprised if we are now even MORE vulnerable to those illnesses.

My husband and I are both currently in the high risk group that the media (not yet our doctors) recommend get flu shots but I don't believe in them, especially new ones that don't have time to be tested. I want chemicals that go in my body to go through trials for years, not be pumped out just in time for flu season. I feel the same way about chicken pox and other non-fatal illnesses, that we are weakening our kids immune systems by not letting them contract normal illnesses that would only cause them a week or so of discomfort.

Definitely have to weight the risks. The flu or chicken pox is SO unlikely to kill you but obviously shit like polio is another story! I've looked into it a good amount and most evidence does point to the fact that unvaccinated kids only do OK because everyone else IS vaccinating.

I will be spacing out vaccinations, to see any possible reactions if they do occur (so that I know what specifically caused it) and to give his immune system time to recover between shots.

sanjeet said...

You are right. Everyone should make their own decision like you said.
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