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Not only am a bad parent, I am also a bad child! - Page 2

post #21 of 31
Can I gently be a voice of dissent here?

We don't vax in our family. I haven't had a vax since I was 5, DH since he was 12, all of my youngest kids are unvaxed, and we stopped vaxing my oldest when she was 9.

I have an almost 17yo son who has been in and out of placements for extensive and extreme special needs. Most often he is in a group home type placement with 15-20 other young men, also with extensive special needs, in one housing unit. Occasionally he has been in hospital for months at a time.

He gets the flu vax.

I *do* have very strong reasons for NOT vaccinating. But there comes a time when I have to look at the bigger picture, and in his situation, because of the communal living scenario, it is pretty A) likely that he WILL get the flu in these placements, and B) crucial that they not have 15-20 practically grown young men, ALL of whom have varied levels of functioning, ALL vomiting profusely day after day.

I am aware of and willing to take the risks associated with not vaxing my family that lives in my home, for many reasons that are irrelevant to this discussion. When a family member is placed in a full time group living arrangement where they are MUCH more exposed to diseases such as the flu, I am hard pressed to understand denying the vax in that situation. To have an elderly family member who is ALSO living full time in a group living arrangement, I can't imagine A) being confrontational about the issue with my family member's caregivers and B) denying the vax in this situation.

Also, I have legal guardianship of my father, and I make all medical decisions for him as well. He is currently in a nursing home, and has been for about 9 years now. I started out very much against his being vaccinated for flu, because he had overmedicated himself for YEARS (he was a doctor). The nursing home kindly and persistently encouraged me to allow him to be vaxed, for all the reasons they gave you.

I absolutely do decline vax's for my healthy, immuno-confident family. We've weathered several VPDs and I'm ok with that decision.

But I'm on team nursing home for this one. I hope you reconsider.

Best of luck mama
~Theoretica
post #22 of 31
good for you!! your mom sounds awesome too.

i just had a convo with my grandma the other day (late 70s) and i asked her if she had seen the commercials basically making people feel guilty enough to get a shot "for their grandparent" or "to protect their children" ... i told my grandma that she was on her own i wasn't getting a flu shot and her response was, "well im not getting one either "
post #23 of 31
Except Theoretica, the evidence shows flu vaccines do not work ...

And the results of vitamin D supplementation is impressive.

http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/newsl...itamin-d.shtml

I personally had a rough couple of years being sick constantly and culminating in a bout with pneumonia in dead of winter. My vitamin D level was in 20's. I was taking 1000 IU per day.

I upped my D3 to 10,000 IU per day (oil form not dry form) and blood tested with my doctor until it was up to 70. I now take a maintenance dose of several thousand per day throughout the year, 5,000 IU daily throughout winter. Less in summer and none if I spend the day at the beach. (You make 10,000 IU per day if in a bathing suit in the direct sun and certain times of the year only the further you live from equator.) I live in MA where you cannot even make D from sun for at least half the year. The recs that you can make enough by exposing your hands and face to sun for 15 mins is completely wrong... and blood testing shows that.

I haven't been sick since for over 2 years now. Really huge for me.
post #24 of 31
Thanks for sharing your story! I'm surprised they would have that conversation with your mom when she gas dimentia, and you are her POA.

Something that came to me while reading this and the responses is the seemingly urgent need to extend the life of an already sick 90 year old woman. (From their perspective, anyway.) my grandmother is only 75, but she has Parkinson's and is cared for by my aunt and two hired caretakers. Even if she were in a group facility, I don't think they'd do the flu or pneumonia shots. There was a very good op-Ed piece in the NY Times a while back about all of the procedures and medications given to the elderly to lengthen life, and in some cases, it just lengthens suffering. We should allow our elders to make the choices they are comfortable with and not try to frighten them
into a decision they don't want to make.

Kudos to you for respecting your mother's wishes and being the guardian of her choices.
post #25 of 31
Theoretica, I was just about to post that flu vaccines don't work, and then I saw that Jane already said so.
post #26 of 31
I do agree that the flu vaccine is rarely manufactured to specifically target the correct flu strain, but I disagree with the statement that they don't work at all.

I realize I'm on thin ice with this stance in this forum, but as a nonvaxer I think it's important that misinformation, as well intentioned as it may be, be put into perspective.

Good luck OP
post #27 of 31
I don't think you are on thin ice. I was hesitant to make that statement at all, even here. I was kinda surprised to be reading this forum earlier today and find that all the discussions were overwhelmingly pro-vaccine here. The flu shot seems to be the only debatable one. So I think I am going to leave this forum. I don't feel up to a fight or having to write long posts with links to defend my position. I just wanted to add at least one voice of support for Jane, who stuck her head out by giving the dissenting opinion.
post #28 of 31
Theoretica- I didn't read Jane's post, but in addition to the manufacturers guessing about what flu strains to put in each year's vax, there have been a number of studies that show even when they guess correctly, flu (and pneumonia) vaccines in the elderly population are ineffective.

http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/cidrap/con...0cochrane.html

Quote:
An analysis of the best RCTs indicated that flu vaccination reduced the risk of flu-like illness by 43% and of actual flu by 58%.

Overall, the authors write, "Our findings show that according to reliable evidence, the effectiveness of trivalent inactivated influenza vaccines in elderly individuals is modest, irrespective of setting, outcome, population, and study design. Our estimates are consistently below those usually quoted for economic modeling or decision making."
This article DOES say that the outcomes for preventing flu COMPLICATIONS is better in group home settings.

These numbers are simply not good ENOUGH for many people to risk injecting the elderly.
post #29 of 31
Thread Starter 
Well, we (Mom's doctor & myself) have agreed that, not only will she not receive any vaccination, she will not receive any antibiotics nor any other drugs to extend her life should she become ill.

This may make me a monster in some people's eyes and that is fine. But, you don't know my Mom. You don't know what her wishes have always been regarding her health needs and choices. Mom, when she was in the best of health did not "do" vaccinations and there is no way I would go against those wishes just because she is in a group setting or not in a group setting.

You may feel this is placing her at greater risk. Well, in the several years since she had her first stroke, she has been in group settings (retirement living, assisted living, dementia care and, now, skilled nursing care). When those around her, in group settings, became ill with influenza, pneumonia, colds or Norwalk virus, Mom stayed healthy and never suffered so much as a sniffle or upset stomach.

So, at the advanced age of 90 (she's obviously been healthy enough to reach this age!), we will not do anything to extend her life, whatever my befall her. It is simply about comfort measures from now on.

She is permanently wheelchair-bound, totally incontinent and has a 3-minute memory span. Most days, she doesn't remember any of our names (and, sometimes, doesn't even know who we are). She doesn't remember Dad is dead (as are her parents and other people she asks about regularly).

What, exactly, is the longterm quality of life that we would be offering her as regards getting a flu shot, to "possibly" prevent an illness she has not had before? She certainly will not be better for receiving the shot.

Should she get the flu, she will be cared for and kept comfortable and Nature will take its course. THAT is what medical intervention is, when a person is like my Mom. It is about respecting what THEY have always wanted.

Thank goodness our doctor believes the same thing.

P.S. I have a written statement, signed by the nursing home director and charge nurse, as well as Mom's doctor, promising that Mom will not receive ANY immunizations or any other medical treatment without my written consent.

P.P.S. The person that admitted Mom to the nursing center is not a doctor, she is a social worker.
post #30 of 31
Good for you!

You need to keep an eye on the staff.

My Aunt was a lifelong vegetarian who became senile. She broke her hip at the age of 85 and the staff kept giving her steak and hamburger. They just looked at me and said "She is eating it", shrugged, and walked away.
post #31 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by grahamsmom98 View Post
Well, we (Mom's doctor & myself) have agreed that, not only will she not receive any vaccination, she will not receive any antibiotics nor any other drugs to extend her life should she become ill.

This may make me a monster in some people's eyes and that is fine. But, you don't know my Mom. You don't know what her wishes have always been regarding her health needs and choices. Mom, when she was in the best of health did not "do" vaccinations and there is no way I would go against those wishes just because she is in a group setting or not in a group setting.

You may feel this is placing her at greater risk. Well, in the several years since she had her first stroke, she has been in group settings (retirement living, assisted living, dementia care and, now, skilled nursing care). When those around her, in group settings, became ill with influenza, pneumonia, colds or Norwalk virus, Mom stayed healthy and never suffered so much as a sniffle or upset stomach.

So, at the advanced age of 90 (she's obviously been healthy enough to reach this age!), we will not do anything to extend her life, whatever my befall her. It is simply about comfort measures from now on.

She is permanently wheelchair-bound, totally incontinent and has a 3-minute memory span. Most days, she doesn't remember any of our names (and, sometimes, doesn't even know who we are). She doesn't remember Dad is dead (as are her parents and other people she asks about regularly).

What, exactly, is the longterm quality of life that we would be offering her as regards getting a flu shot, to "possibly" prevent an illness she has not had before? She certainly will not be better for receiving the shot.

Should she get the flu, she will be cared for and kept comfortable and Nature will take its course. THAT is what medical intervention is, when a person is like my Mom. It is about respecting what THEY have always wanted.

Thank goodness our doctor believes the same thing.

P.S. I have a written statement, signed by the nursing home director and charge nurse, as well as Mom's doctor, promising that Mom will not receive ANY immunizations or any other medical treatment without my written consent.

P.P.S. The person that admitted Mom to the nursing center is not a doctor, she is a social worker.
I do not think that makes anyone a monster. *hug*

I think what you are doing is great. You are doing what your mom would have wanted...not what you may want (if it was different from what she would want) and that is very noble, indeed.
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