Please help! We are freaking out here! - Mothering Forums
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I'm Not Vaccinating > Please help! We are freaking out here!
Graeme's Ma's Avatar Graeme's Ma 03:52 PM 12-22-2008
Dh and I do not vax and choose not to go to well-baby checks at a pediatrician's office. Ds (now almost 7mos) was born at home and has been very healthy so until recently he'd never been seen by a doc at all. Unfortunately, his eyes gunked up and the bm I'd been squirting in them just didn't do the trick this time. His eyes had gotten weepy a couple times since birth and bm always cleared them right up, but not this time. We have medicaid so we decided to take him in to the doc we were assigned to. I was nervous because I just didn't want to deal with any flack for not vaxing and birthing at home, etc. and it turned out that I had every reason to worry. The doc was nice enough and didn't throw a fit when I refused to sign the waiver (that states I'm aware that I'm putting ds at risk by not vaxing). She did, of course, try to convince me to vax but seemed satisfied when I just told her that I'd do more research on it. DH and I have done plenty of researching and are completely confident in our choice, but I just wanted to get the doc off my back. Anyway, she had never heard of anyone using milk to treat eyes, ears, etc. but didn't seem too taken aback by it. She prescribed an antibiotic (go figure) and sent ds and I on our way.

I figured that was the end of it all until the other day when I got a phone call from a nurse case manager from medicaid. She opened with "I was told by the office manager of GR Pediatrics that you've been putting breastmilk in your baby's eyes and refuse to immunize him." So immediately I started panicking. Of course, she had never heard of using bm to treat lo's and had never even encountered parents who chose not to vax. Anyway, she asked lots of questions and told me that I would have to find a new doc for ds, as that office did not wish to see us again. I felt like she was fishing around for clues as to whether or not we're bad, neglectful parents and I'm just waiting for a knock on the door from a child protective services worker!

Anyone out there have any experience with this kind of thing? Is it possible that CPS might actually come calling over something like this? We know that if they did come to our home, they would see that we're great parents and that we devote our entire lives to taking care of ds and keeping him happy, but we are just scared to death anyway! I just don't want my name, dh's, or ds's EVER to be associated with CPS in any way! I had a nightmare last night that they came and took my baby away and it was by far the worst dream I've EVER had! Any info or advice anyone has would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

Sheal's Avatar Sheal 04:11 PM 12-22-2008
I'm in Canada where vax is not an issue (except three provinces that have exemptions so that they do not superceed the charter of rights here). But, I did find this for you:

http://www.vaclib.org/exempt/michigan.htm

Get your vax exemptions in order and you should be fine. With your home birth did you have a midwife present, ask her for a copy of the records she has to back your file folder with your exemption.

As for BM treating eyes and ears, found this for you:

http://www.kellymom.com/health/illne...reastmilk.html

And this is an article I did on a research study about stem cells in breastmilk (I didn't do the study, just talked about it on my blog).

http://thenaturalmama.wordpress.com/...cell-research/
runes's Avatar runes 04:18 PM 12-22-2008
I'm pretty sure that if you're being "fired" from a doctor's practice, that they have to provide written documentation of such and to also say that they will still treat your child for 30 days, they can't just drop you like that.

In this case, though, since you got that phone call from your insurance company, in your shoes I would pre-empt you getting fired by firing them first. You can send the doctor's office as well as the insurance company a letter (certified would make it more official), that you were not satisfied with the care that your child received and that you will be finding care elsewhere. Before you send it, though...request a copy of your child's medical records.

Not vaxing is not illegal, so they can't call CPS for that. And since you went to the doctor to seek treatment for your child's eye issues, they can't charge you with medical neglect, either. They have no case. , it's stressful to think about being judged so much for your parenting choices.

I hope that you are able to find a doctor that is more open to parental choice.
MountainMamaGC's Avatar MountainMamaGC 04:25 PM 12-22-2008
I cant imagine. So awful.
buttercupmama's Avatar buttercupmama 04:32 PM 12-22-2008
In the case of not vaccinating, I feared CPS as well, but it's been 4 1/2 months since we were kicked out by the doctor, so I don't worry about it anymore.

Regarding the BM issue, well...doctors online seem to discourage the use of it in the eyes. I'm not saying it's good or bad, but you know your word as a mother won't mean much against a doctor.

I would try to find a more holistic or natural doctor if only to back you up in your choices. Try not to worry yourself into the ground. I know it's easier said than done.

I also suggest getting a feel for people before you say too much about anything. Our pediatrician didn't seem to understand the value of BM at all, he was even belligerent about the vaccination issue. I should have found a better doctor before my DD was born. Save us a lot of grief.
PiesandAbrosmama's Avatar PiesandAbrosmama 04:42 PM 12-22-2008
Yes I have encountered being "fired" from my kiddos doc's before. Sorry mama it's so hard to be on the "other" side when it comes to the health of our LO. Anyway this is what I have done the last 8 years of mothering.
1st I write down all illness in the "sick Chart" that if I have to (I don't do baby well checks or vax or use antibox much) go in to the walk in clinic I am armed with my chart. This looks very good as to my care of my child. Next I just say I do parenting my way with lot's of research and concern. I leave out some details such as the BM in the eyes and all because there really is no reason for me to get in a debate. I don't argue I smile and say kinda what you said about doing more research. I think you have to be strong but not deffensive, and armed with your facts if asked. This way in no way are you a negalgent parent and only doing what you and DH think ist he best. ANd also be ok with not being liked, just be polite and plugged in!
Good luck and the dream is to find a Dr. like Sears that would work with you as an AP parent
applejuice's Avatar applejuice 04:48 PM 12-22-2008
1993: I was turned over to CPS from an ER for suspicious things as cloth diapering and breastfeeding past six weeks. I did not even mention not vaccinating. I lied, and said he was up to date.

Looking forward to your CPS thread.
RGsMom's Avatar RGsMom 04:56 PM 12-22-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice View Post
1993: I was turned over to CPS from an ER for suspicious things as cloth diapering and breastfeeding past six weeks. I did not even mention not vaccinating. I lied, and said he was up to date.
What has this world come to when such things are taboo?

I have no experience, but hope you will be able to find a good doctor. They are out there and we were blessed to find one. She encourages vax, but knows it's out choice and hasn't questioned us since our first encounter. There are many more out there like that and I pray you find one soon!

As far as the gunk in the eye - is it just a blocked tear duct? or was it an actual infection that she gave you a rx? Our DD had blocked tear ducts when she was young, and then they came back when she was probably around 7-8 months just for a little bit and then got better again.
buttercupmama's Avatar buttercupmama 05:11 PM 12-22-2008
Wow, applejuice, that's really sad.

I had to lie about BFing I didn't even realize just how unpopular it had gotten. I had always read good things about it on the internet, so I figured all medical professionals would recommend it. Boy was I wrong. But I at least wanted it known that she gets BM, so I lied and said we use both BM and formula. I think they were satisfied with that. I figured if they were going to call CPS for us, I wanted to at least pretend I was compromising on something, as stupid as it was.
spero's Avatar spero 05:16 PM 12-22-2008
OP, I suggest looking at family practitioners, rather than pediatricians. We were recently "fired" by a ped practice and switched to a FP, and I am so much happier!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheal View Post
Get your vax exemptions in order and you should be fine.
In the US, exemptions are needed for school and daycare only.


Quote:
Originally Posted by kidspiration View Post
You can send the doctor's office as well as the insurance company a letter (certified would make it more official), that you were not satisfied with the care that your child received and that you will be finding care elsewhere. Before you send it, though...request a copy of your child's medical records.
The doc's office is required to forward all medical records to whomever the OP chooses for care.


Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice View Post
Looking forward to your CPS thread.
I'm sorry for your horrible CPS experience aj, but do you think that the above statement is really going to help anything?
applejuice's Avatar applejuice 06:32 PM 12-22-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by spero View Post
I'm sorry for your horrible CPS experience aj, but do you think that the above statement is really going to help anything?
I think I forewarned the author of the OP. If I have not been helpful, I am sorry, but then, I do not think CPS will be very helpful either. Not vaccinating one's offspring is considered child neglect in the medical community even though it is not illegal. So the doctor has the "legal obligation" from his/her viewpoint to report the incident and so does the health care establishment.
PaigeC 10:53 PM 12-22-2008
I'm so sorry you are going through this. I haven't even given birth yet and this type of thing worries me. I hate to hear that wonderful mothers have to lie to get these uneducated, misinformed "professionals" off your back.

I thought you might want to see this: http://www.momvaccines.org/index.html

Michigan has a great base of anti-vax folks that can even help you. From my research choosing NOT to vax is absolutely NOT neglect. Many CPSs know this so I hope you don't get any further calls at all.

And breast milk? I actually learned about this in my Bradley class - I would hardly consider it an obscure practice. Of course, that ped went to med school where they learn to dispense drugs not health.
Theoretica's Avatar Theoretica 11:11 PM 12-22-2008
This is THE reason we decided to work with an MD from day one with our kids. No, we don't agree on hardly anything as far as vax, circ, abx, whatever...but we've found one who at least respects our right to disagree, supports bfeeding (pushes vitamins, but whatever) and has now known our family for well over a decade so he'd back me up any day to CPS...and has done so. There are rare times kids NEED an MD, and having a working relationship with one is MUCH more preferable to walking the minefield of a new MD during a medical situation. JIMHO, this is why it's important to do the wbvs, NOT because of the charting or shots or whatnot, but to get that relationship going with the ppl you'll be working with off and on for the next 20ish years.

Specific things by themselves aren't an issue that they'll call in CPS about, it's combining it with the MD's perspective that you won't do wbvs, AND you do this 'crazy' thing putting BM in the baby's eyes (could be a clogged duct, my DS had to have hers surgically opened at 18mos...it was BAD, but never did abx for it?), AND you novax, AND...and...and...and the ultimate AND...they don't know you AT ALL. They don't know what kind of a mom you are, they just know what they see on paper. And it matches OTHER people they see on paper who genuinely are at risk for neglecting their kids.

The fact that you are medicaid makes it even more important to get 'on track' so they don't get worried. Remember, they are used to dealing with ppl who JUST DON"T CARE, not people who have researched the decisions they are making. So, here's my thoughts....

Start to ped shop ASAP. With Medicaid you can get a meet and greet appt no sweat. You describe yourself as looking for an MD who respects your decision to DELAY VAX 'for now'. You are NOT anti vax...not to THEM at any rate. Take your bb in for a wbv. It's not that big of a deal, and since it's paid for by medicaid you don't have to pay for it. Most peds that I've encountered support breastfeeding, especially younger peds. Call your local LLL and get some MD recommends. Don't discuss cosleeping (if they give you the back to sleep speech just nod and smile) and generally agree with what they say at the wbv. Let them know there was a 'personality conflict' at your previous MD, so you are looking for someone you can connect with.

HTH...good luck!
Bellevuemama
applejuice's Avatar applejuice 03:03 AM 12-23-2008
I did what Bellevuemama did. It worked pretty well for my four children. He is well regarded around town, so it helped, even in the ER when I was surrounded by seven police officers and detained for over ten hours.
milkybean's Avatar milkybean 06:34 AM 12-23-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by spero View Post
The doc's office is required to forward all medical records to whomever the OP chooses for care.
Not all, actually. Just what THEY feel is necessary for continuation of care.


OP I'm sorry this happened. Yeah, I wouldn't ever tell an MD about b'milk being used for eye stuff. I'm sorry you mentioned it to them.

Can you try to find anyone in your Tribe area that has a recommendation for someone who will take medicaid? Can you try to find an ND in your area who will work with you financially?
tanyalynn's Avatar tanyalynn 07:29 PM 12-23-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice View Post
I think I forewarned the author of the OP. If I have not been helpful, I am sorry, but then, I do not think CPS will be very helpful either. Not vaccinating one's offspring is considered child neglect in the medical community even though it is not illegal. So the doctor has the "legal obligation" from his/her viewpoint to report the incident and so does the health care establishment.
But a lot of states have specific laws that state that non-vaccination cannot be the sole reason for a CPS investigation. Abuse of power and governmental agencies not following the law are different topics, of course, but there are some protections out there, so it's not an automatic jump from doctor-is-discontinuing-care-due-to-vax to CPS-will-come-harass-me.

OP
applejuice's Avatar applejuice 07:47 PM 12-23-2008
I agree. However you should also know that the reporter of the abuse (doctor, nurse, teacher, etc.) are exempt from legal liability and so is the CPS agent.

Non-vaccination may be exempt from being the sole reason for a CPS file, but it is not hard to conjure up another reason for CPS intrusions.

I have been there, more than once.
midnightmommy's Avatar midnightmommy 07:51 PM 12-23-2008
The woman at Medicaid was probably just trying to make a bit of stink. We found out that not vaxing is pretty common here. (In the sense that four of fifteen kids in my son's pre-k class last year were not.) We had a doctor in the Spectrum ER call SS on us two years ago because we didn't vax. The SW came down handed us info on free vaccinations in Kent County, shrugged his shoulders, and walked away. Honestly, your person at Medicaid was probably just upset about having to assign you another doctor if you didn't find one yourself.
Graeme's Ma's Avatar Graeme's Ma 02:54 AM 12-24-2008
Thanks, guys. I still am not sure what route to go here because I feel completely secure in my choices, but I feel like being honest to any kind of medical professional might be a bad idea. That SUCKS!!! I don't want to lie about bf'ing, vaxing, cosleeping, etc... I want to stand up for myself and tell everyone why I do things the way I do, but I don't want to be harassed about my decisions because others disagree with them. That is the main reason I have for trying to keep a distance from docs altogether. I have my beliefs and they just will not even consider that they may be valid. It's incredibly frustrating. I'm a new parent but have done my homework and feel like I'm making the right choices. Thank goodness for places like this where (if nothing else) I can get a little support from peeps who feel the same. Please cross your fingers (or pray or whatever is your thang) for us that we get through this without being unnecessarily harassed and belittled and have no unwanted CPS visits. It's really difficult to stand up to an "authority" on these matters. I have a really hard time not getting all flustered and just "losing it" when I talk to these people. I can't keep my thoughts straight because I'm so worried, panicked and just caught off-guard when I'm confronted with these kinds of things.

I printed off a bunch of stats and things of that nature just in case CPS comes to my door. I guess it'd be easier to pull out some info than to try to quote stats of the top of my head, but it's just such a bummer to have to worry about something like that. It feels like my time could be much better spent hanging out and playing with my baby than freaking out and crying over the stupid keyboard over this crap. UGH!!! What an enormous waste.
LisaJP's Avatar LisaJP 03:44 AM 12-24-2008
You poor thing!! Big hugs to you for taking such good care of your little one, and heck with everyone else (the allopathic weirdos)

Anyway, I wanted to share some 'remedies' with you, since we see a Natural Dr and a ped chiropractor:

both say that breastmilk is excellent for ear, and like buttercup said, I have not heard of it for eye use.

BUT...my ND does swear by 500 ppm Colloidal Silver by Herbal Healer Academy: you simply put some on a q tip and dab the edge of the eyelid with it. It doesn't sting, nothing. You put it on like you are putting on eyeliner almost on the inside of your eye. Anna had a slight runny eye and it was red (when she was about 3 mos), and I called Dr Kim and she said that was the best. You can get it a nutrition store, but the cheapest is about $25 because it's in the strongest formula (she told me that the weaker formulas arent even worth taking, just an FYI since i know it's expensive).

I only had to do that with Anna once and by morning she was fine. I also use CS for any earaches for myself and dh. You are supposed to put it in water for internal use, but I use it undiluted topically. Good Luck!!
MountainMamaGC's Avatar MountainMamaGC 04:06 AM 12-24-2008
BM work great for eyes too. My dd had a gross green goopy eye infection at 6 weeks old. BM cleared it up in 2 days. My mom says to squirt it in the eyes and nose every once in awhile as a preventative measure for colds and infections.
Graeme's Ma's Avatar Graeme's Ma 03:02 PM 12-24-2008
Thanks, Lisa. That's really good to know. I actually have some colloidal silver still from ds's birth (I had retained a bit of placenta and infection set in...long story!) and it worked great! I'll definitely give that a try if they eye thing happens again. Thanks!
Emmeline II's Avatar Emmeline II 03:42 PM 12-24-2008
There is some CPS info in the first link of my siggy including a link to a CPS familiar lawyer referral service.

Also, though "exemptions" are for school, you can give one to the Dr. anyway for their file.

In the future I would say "we're religiously opposed to the practice of vaccination" and "no, I will not discuss my religious beliefs with you.
spero's Avatar spero 11:51 PM 12-25-2008
I know a mama here who used breastmilk to clear up her husband's pinkeye.
Down2Earth's Avatar Down2Earth 12:13 AM 12-26-2008
In "The Baby Book" by Dr. Sears it talks about putting BM in a baby's eyes for an infection. When my baby's eyes were gunky when she was about a week old, I gently massaged the tear duct and did the BM and it cleared right up.
elizawill's Avatar elizawill 08:06 PM 12-26-2008
wow, that is scary to read for sure. in your shoes, i would just take extra precautions like pp's have mentioned by getting your documents in order, etc. i think breast milk in the eyes makes perfect sense. in the summer when my children get red eyes from chlorine in the pool, we put a couple drops of cow's milk in their eyes (i'm serious). it neutralizes them and works better than visine.
milkybean's Avatar milkybean 09:02 PM 12-26-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by spero View Post
I know a mama here who used breastmilk to clear up her husband's pinkeye.
I tried to do that. But it turned out he didn't have pink eye, he had a horrific sudden case of closed eye glaucoma which required an emergency laser procedure to reduce the pressure. Awful awful awful. I totally believe in putting b'milk in eyes for pink eye, but just be sure it's pink eye first. (I never talk about it b/c it was so random and RARE...and we didn't mention what we had been putting in his eyes at that awful 5+ hour opthalmologist appointment...)
Pariah's Avatar Pariah 09:46 PM 12-26-2008
I'm another that successfully used breastmilk for a clogged duct in my DS...it was in the first few weeks, and that cleared it up right away. My midwives told me about it!
Gitti's Avatar Gitti 09:52 PM 12-26-2008
If CPS should come to your door, DO NOT LET THEM IN.

Tell them you have nothing to talk to them about and they must have a warrant to come in.

That is your best protection. Because they can't get a warrant for not vaccinating. And they only want to come in to find other reasons or causes to make a case of your child.

I have read many things about CPS. They are not there to find out how great your child is taken care of, they will only look for reasons to put you on their file.

It may seem to you that you can simply let them in because you have nothing to hide, but they will start a file on you and they will look for things you would never consider negative. They will overlook everything positive.

There is nothing they can come back at you for if you don't let them in.

Please read this -

http://familyrightsassociation.com/c...parents_guide/
Britishmum's Avatar Britishmum 09:59 PM 12-26-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Graeme's Ma View Post
Thanks, guys. I still am not sure what route to go here because I feel completely secure in my choices, but I feel like being honest to any kind of medical professional might be a bad idea. That SUCKS!!! I don't want to lie about bf'ing, vaxing, cosleeping, etc... I want to stand up for myself and tell everyone why I do things the way I do, but I don't want to be harassed about my decisions because others disagree with them. That is the main reason I have for trying to keep a distance from docs altogether. I have my beliefs and they just will not even consider that they may be valid. It's incredibly frustrating. I'm a new parent but have done my homework and feel like I'm making the right choices. Thank goodness for places like this where (if nothing else) I can get a little support from peeps who feel the same. Please cross your fingers (or pray or whatever is your thang) for us that we get through this without being unnecessarily harassed and belittled and have no unwanted CPS visits. It's really difficult to stand up to an "authority" on these matters. I have a really hard time not getting all flustered and just "losing it" when I talk to these people. I can't keep my thoughts straight because I'm so worried, panicked and just caught off-guard when I'm confronted with these kinds of things.

I printed off a bunch of stats and things of that nature just in case CPS comes to my door. I guess it'd be easier to pull out some info than to try to quote stats of the top of my head, but it's just such a bummer to have to worry about something like that. It feels like my time could be much better spent hanging out and playing with my baby than freaking out and crying over the stupid keyboard over this crap. UGH!!! What an enormous waste.
I'd put your energy into finding a lawyer familiar with the law on vacc and dealing with CPS, and briefing him/her right now on what happened, just in case.

I don't believe that any number of papers on the values of natural remedies would convince an overzealous CPS worker. Even though we know we're intelligent parents, the truth is that mainstream America would sneer at the notion of breastmilk as a remedy for pinkeye. Just think about it, most Americans die at the thought of a baby actually - gasp - drinking breastmilk. Uisng it to cure something that you could use a drug for would make you look like a lunatic to many CPS caseworkers or judges. Sad, but true.

I'd also put energy into cleaning your house - I mean, really cleaning. And line up friends, teachers, your minister, etc, to call on if CPS were to turn up. Also, research the law on what to do if they show up. From what I've always understood, unless they have a warrant, you should send them away and ask them to make an appt, to which you will turn up with your lawyer, minister, child's teacher etc.

Once you have these safeguards in place, you will sleep much more soundly at night.

HTH
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