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Mothering › Mothering Forums › Baby › Baby Health › Vaccinations › I'm Not Vaccinating › Told the docs we're "delaying for a year" ... but it's a little white lie!
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Told the docs we're "delaying for a year" ... but it's a little white lie!

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

So -- I guess I have a pretty progressive pediatrician? 


When I told him at the 2 month well baby visit that I'd like to delay vax until he is 1 year old, he took it in stride, reminded me that they are most concerned about these diseases in infancy and that I risk not protecting him in the most vulnerable time.  I acknowledged -- persisting that I work from home, DS won't be in day care, and that I plan to support his immune system in other more natural ways (at the time I was still breastfeeding as much as I could with a low and dwindling supply).  No questions asked.


Today we had the 4 month visit (forgot to mention -- this is my first babe!) ... he just asked again if my intentions were the same and I affirmed that. 


However, I really have no intention on getting any of the vaccines - ever.  I probably won't even continue with the well baby visits as time passes .... all he did was weigh and measure him ... tell me how great i was doing and send me on my way.  I like him - but I dont need to know that DS is fitting to the correct statistical curve every 2 months.


Anyway -- I told them about delaying vax so that we'd be seen as long as I wanted ... and we'd have some record with them of DS initial development and our parenting (it seems to me they are into giving parenting advice and making sure we aren't abusing him or whatever ... I'm sure they see all kinds!).  I want to have more kids and I like this practice.


Has anyone else ever just stopped going to well baby visits on account of not getting shots and not really needing the dr. opinion otherwise?  Have they agreed to see your subsequent children?  I feel like, if he got sick in any way, i'd take him to a naturopath before I'd ever take him to a conventional doc ... so what's the point?  (DS was born by csection and was circumsized, so I saw reason for him to be seen to this point.)

post #2 of 12

I told my child's doctor we were delaying vaxxes until 2.  Because we really were.  Then I decided to delay them longer.  I take her to every well child visit and she has never given me any problems other than checking in with me what we are still not wanting to "start" vaccinating.  I didn't lie, I just changed my mind.  So can you.  I still might do some later in life, it's all continuing research and I think that should be respected on both ends.

post #3 of 12

Now at the ER I've had to tell them I was delaying vaxxes (with my ped's approval) but was going to start them "really soon" just to not have a stupid argument with an ER doctor about vaccination when none of the reasons I have ever brought her in had anything to do with vaccines or VPDs.  Head trauma (DH dropped her), stitches (from an indoor wound), possible glass in eye, but they STILL always bring up vaccine status in the ER.  That's the only time I've ever had to do the little white lie thing.

post #4 of 12

Mine are a little older, but they haven't seen a doctor for anything since September. Before we moved, we saw a family doctor who was VERY supportive of not vaccinating, and we really enjoyed going to see her for the well checks. Since then we have moved several times, and the kids have seen one doctor, and that was in September. He was a mean old man who was very critical of our decision not to vax, but he accepted it. We are interviewing a family doctor tomorrow, whom I will be seeing for prenatal care, and we are hoping the boys will be seen by her as well. They are very accepting of patients who ppick and choose vaxes, or don't vax at all, which I am thrilled about. We will do a few initial well checks, to make sure baby is gaining weight, etc, but will probably slack off after the first 6 months or so.

post #5 of 12
Our pediatrician ALWAYS does more than weigh and measure. They check heartbeat, reflexes, eyes, ears, etc.


Things like heart defects aren't obvious at birth, but a good pediatrician will pick up a heart murmur at 7-8 weeks, and I bet there are a bunch of other things that may crop up. Our pediatrician also checks to make sure development is on track--things like crawling, babbling, pointing, reaching, tracking with eyes, turning head towards sound, etc.

I do know a mother who completely missed the fact that her youngest child was showing signs of Asperger's. She wasn't a horrible mother. He was her 9th child in 14 years, and things like his lack of eye contact and speech delay and spinning got lost in the shuffle. His older sisters, not surprisingly, took care of him a lot, and they certainly didn't know that the fact that he loved to spin for 20 minutes at a time was a red flag.

Anyway, even though we stopped vaccinating our kids, we always bring them to the well-child appointments. (In our case, the pediatrician wrote a medical exemption for the kids, so we never get hassled about vaccines.).

Another important factor--it gives the pediatrician a baseline idea of what your child looks like healthy, so when they see your child sick, they notice what might be different. They weigh your child when you bring him in sick, too--if they notice an unexpectedl weight gain or loss, that can be very important.
post #6 of 12

i started with selective vax on my first, who had spent the first 2 weeks of his life in the hospital and on many drugs.  the relationship he and I developed w/ my pedi was something I would never regret spending time on.  when my son was 6 months old, Boston Children's told me he was 'crawling lopsided, evidence of brain damage' and were really panic inducing on his crazy one foot/one knee crawling.  my pedi, who had been observing us, seen our rashes and everything else, shrugged and said 'they never seen healthy babies, let alone precocious ones.  i think his crawling at 6 months and climbing (up the table, windowsill, everywhere in the office) is amazing.'  turns out, he was right.  i did the full-on interview for early intervention, and they said my 6 month old moved like an 11 month old, but was verbally delayed, like all boys.  pedi's vote- he's too busy crawling to talk.  give him time.   when my pedi heard a heart murmur, you better believe i took that seriously, b/c i trusted him.


after that wonderful support, i brought in all my non-vaxxing babies for well-baby visits so that he could see them, interact with them, know us all.  i brought in all my homebirthing babies within the first week, my other hospital baby the 3rd day after she was born (they forgot to run all the tests at the hospital, and he told me to go home and rest, that they weren't that urgent), and because we've built up this relationship, when i had to miss a couple of baby visits w/ my last one, he was understanding.  but i do think it's because we have a dialog.  a running one.  


last visit he laughed at me and told me that eggs were off the no-no list- something we had discussed back on my first baby.  and also doesn't worry that i have smaller babies at one year, b/c it's a pattern w/ my kids.  vit D hits the important list, he laughs at my sunscrenn phobia, fermented veggies getting hype?  he encourages the kids in their listing them as a favorite food.  having a careprovider who knows you, your children, their idiosyncrasies (tick allergies?) and that you have a mutual respect and trust for is really such a relief for a growing family.  i'm afraid we're moving, and don't want to look for another health care provider!


be open, honest, and direct.  when i shifted from delayed to non, i asked at one point about the Hib vaccine, and he said directly 'she's old enough that it's not a real risk'.  this sort of honesty is rare, but many doctors probably don't feel like they can be honest about these things for fear of repercussions.


my kids adore their doctor, and he finds it amusing that they dress up for him and think it's some sort of special treat to meet and talk to him.  

post #7 of 12

I never took 3 out of 4 of my kids past their 2mo check....i figure, i'm trying to keep them healthy, why take them to an office filled with sick kids and germs just to pick something up.  

post #8 of 12
Originally Posted by nukuspot View Post

Now at the ER I've had to tell them I was delaying vaxxes (with my ped's approval) but was going to start them "really soon" just to not have a stupid argument with an ER doctor about vaccination when none of the reasons I have ever brought her in had anything to do with vaccines or VPDs.  Head trauma (DH dropped her), stitches (from an indoor wound), possible glass in eye, but they STILL always bring up vaccine status in the ER.  That's the only time I've ever had to do the little white lie thing.

That's a great point I never even thought about!  Guess since I was a pretty resilient kid and never got hurt bad enough to need an emergency visit so I've never put any thought to how I'd handle the vax question with ER docs for my DD.  Granted I don't even have a clue on dates for my vaxes and I've made them up when I did need a visit to the ER as an adult.  But thus far DD's vaxes have been:  Hep B with pedi (opted out of doing in hospital) at about 3 days old, pentacel/rota/pcv at 2 mos with a pretty drawn out mid-hi reaction (low grade fever on and off for almost 3wks, waking every hr after having slept through the night, major diarrhea and spitting up), skipped the vax at 4mo visit due to cold, went back at 5mos for pentacel only (less reactions than first round but still enough to make me feel horrible), and at her 6mos appt I declined all.  Pedi was only really OK with the rotavirus being skipped bc she didn't think it would be effective at her age anways.  I gave her enough explanation that I was undecided and would return in a mo to get her 3rd pentacel, but I haven't made that appt and I don't plan to.  Next well baby is at 9mos, and we'll go to that and I'll have to sign waivers again (and every visit thereafter) that I'm refusing vax.  So long as I'm not feeling harrassed or pressured I'll contnue to do the well baby.  I had no intention of ever vaxing for chickenpox or MMR, and I'm confident that with what she's got now, she's fine.  I'm leaning more towards no vax with subsequent kiddos, at the very least delayed. 

post #9 of 12

Both of my boys were born via c-section. Both of my boys are intact. Both of my boys are not vaccinated. I went to the appointment just after birth, and to a couple of the infant appointments. Once they were one, I only went once a year around their birthday for full physicals. In my opinion, we don't need a doctor unless we are sick or we have concerns, so there's no reason to go. My firstborn has epilepsy, so we see his neurologist every 6mo. 


I had one doc with my firstborn who refused to see him after a few months because we weren't vaccinating. 


I had a doc in the new practice who asked me every time I came in if I had reconsidered and was ready to vaccinate. When my firstborn started having seizures, we went to the ER and then had to follow up at the doc office. Our doc wasn't available so we just saw someone in the practice. This person told me that my son started having seizures because I didn't vaccinate him. It's now documented in his chart that this doctor is never allowed to see him, or my other son, at any point in time. 



The doc in the new practice retired, and our current doc hasn't question us not vaccinating at all, in fact it's never come up in discussion. He's very thorough, so I know he's read the chart. *shrug*


Our current doctor doesn't have any issues and hasn't pressured us to do anything different. 


I am honest even at our ER visits, because doc's tend to assume that children are vaccinated so they don't look for things that are normal childhood illnesses. My firstborn had whooping cough at 6mo and chicken pox at 18mo. I was grilled about where I had been, who I was hanging out with, etc. But I got a correct diagnosis and was able to get appropriate treatment. That being said, I'm also quick to mention exactly why we are at the ER, and the fact that vaccines don't have any bearing on that reason, and I wouldn't vaccinate a child who was sick, anyway. (Doc's don't really like me. lol)

post #10 of 12

DD was born at the hospital and we took her to her first visit. We then decided we were going to delay vaxes while we educated ourselves more. We did a checkup again when she turned one. Then we had DS at home and took him in for an initial check up when he was a few days old. Now DD is 4 and DS is 18 months and we still haven't vaccinated, still read about different vaccines to keep educating ourselves, but I think we have come to the decision that we will most likely never vaccinate and we don't go to visits. All they do is measure the kids and give us random advice. At the end of the visit with DS (our last) I realized right before we got up to leave that the doctor had some other kid's chart the whole time....that was reassuring...

post #11 of 12

Two of my friends w/a bunch of kids didn't vax any of them and told docs and other medical professionals, on the rare occasion any of them needed health care, that the child in question had all the vaxes they needed (which was none! ha.) winky.gif

I like that strategy.

post #12 of 12
It's great if you can have that wonderful family doctor that listen to you and remembers your kids and you have a great relationship with.

But, the reality is most of us find ourselves (for locality or insurance reasons) in a ped practice like mine. A big practice with 10 peds and you never know which ped you'll get. You see them, maybe, once a year and let's face it they have NO idea who you are. You're just a face and a bill. My kids are on that doc's patient list, but we haven't been back in 3 years. I have educated myself and know what normal development looks like. I pay attention to my children and would notice if something was different. I feel I can treat any cough or cold at home. (Personally, I think if a mom had 9 children in 14 years and didn't notice that her child was spinning for 20 minutes at a time and not making eye contact than she has had more children than she has the ability to take care of. But, I'm sure that's a hot topic and completely off topic.)

I like having some sort of doc "on call" if something ever comes up that I can't handle. Overall, I'm not very impressed with docs. Most don't do much other than prescribe antibiotics when their ear drum is red. (Me: But, doc, I thought that most ear infections were viral and antibiotics don't help viral infections. Doc: Well, that's true. You don't have to use the antibiotic if you don't want to. It probably won't help, but it won't hurt. Just call us if the problem doesn't resolve itself in 5-7 days. Me: So, why did you give us the antibiotic in the first place?)

Anyways, my opinion is feel free to do what's best for you and your kids. At a year, you can say, well, we've decided to continue to delay vaxes. We'll let you know when we change our mind. As far as the ER goes, if the reason I'm bringing them in is completely unrelated to their vax status (ie a fall or the like) I will completely lie and tell them my children are completely vaxed. Personally, I would not risk some pro vaxing halth care worker taking things into their own hands (ie reporting us to Children and Family Services or worse).
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