Hello, I am new to Mothering.com and I would really appreciate your opinions and advice. I have a 10 month old, and I have been researching the vaccination issue for several months. I have found pretty compelling information for both sides of the issue. I don't feel comfortable vaccinating and I want to make that my decision. I am having trouble with my decision now, because I still have fear that she could get sick and possibly die. No matter how much evidence I read and/or hear, I still feel very afraid. I hope that some of you can relate, and can help me calm those fears. What helped you overcome that fear? And what makes you feel totally confident about your decision? Thank you.
I should mention that even though I have done some research on vaccines (but not nearly as much as some people on here) the main reason for declining vaccines was more religious than scientific. Then again, perhaps if the evidence that they are safe was there I would have more to think about... but it isn't lol.
Regardless of your reasoning I feel that the most important thing is that YOU have peace with your decision. It doesn't matter what your family, friends, or society thinks. We are each responsible for ourselves (and children up until a certain age.)
I think the most important thing is some sort of centering-prayer, meditation, automatic writing etc. Realize your own fears and know that you are doing what you believe to be best for your family. As far as feeling 100% confident... I don't really feel 100% about anything, lol. I just try to accept that and move forward from there.
You're right, I need to pray about it! Thank you for responding. I just want to be sure i'm not making a looney decision. I also know that sometimes our instincts can be wrong. I just need a little reassurance from more experienced non vaxing moms.
Instincts, ie gut, may be wrong, but the heart never is. Trust your heart.
Are you afraid of all the diseases for which there are vaccines, or only certain ones? If it's all of them, more research is needed. If it's only some, let us know, and we'll give you statistics that will probably make you feel better, and prevention and treatment options.
Have you read the CDC's Pink Book? http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/index.html
Under the section, "Secular Trends" for each disease, it discusses the prevalence of the disease. A lot of them are very reassuring. For example, there haven't been any cases of polio in the U.S. since 2000, and all the cases between 1979 and 2000 were actually caused by the old live virus vaccine. Only about 30 people get tetanus per year in the U.S., and most of them are over 40 or drug users. Hepatitis A is usually so mild in children, that 70% of the cases in children are asymptomatic (no symptoms at all)! I WANT my children to get hepatitis A as children, when it is mild, and develop lifetime immunity, so that they don't have to worry about it as adults when they travel.
I know how to treat pertussis with sodium ascorbate, and I also know the pertussis vaccine is absolutely useless. I know how to treat measles with vitamin A and rest. I know to avoid acetaminophen (Tylenol), I know not to try to lower fevers, and I'm not afraid of fever with any illness (brain damage doesn't occur below 107.6 F (and that's not a typo).
So just let us know which diseases you're worried about, and I think we can help you feel better.
This thread appears to have caught the attention of the spam filter and disappeared. It is restored now :).
Sorry for the inconvenience, every one - thank you for the PM's about it.
Welcome to Mothering, SerenitysMom!
Daughter of Him, Wife and Mother to them ,
One more on the way Fall 2013
I agree with ma2two - can you be more specific about your fears?
As for myself - I will never feel totally confident about my choice to remain vaccine free, not because I really believe that vaccinating would be better, but because as a mother one of my greatest fears is losing my children. But at the end of the day, know I have done hundreds and hundreds of hours of research on this and not vaccinating is actually the safer choice IMO. I also find that when I allow myself to get caught up in the propaganda and mainstream media bullshit - i begin to doubt my choices. That is when I need to reevaluate why I made the choice I made in the first place with nobody's voice in my head. I always come back to my original choice :)
If the people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny." Thomas Jefferson.
Thanks for all the responses! I have looked on the CDC website and have seen that all the diseases rates are low, and that many of the outbreaks have occurred in fully vaccinated individuals. I felt confident at first. Part of my issue is that I tend to doubt my judgment, as well as hearing pro arguments that make you doubt what you previously thought. But what really bothers me is that even though the rates are low, how do I know that my daughter won't be one of the few unlucky ones? That is my biggest fear. The diseases that particularly concern me are HIB, Pertussis, Measles because they're still around. I believe good nutrition prevents colds & flus, but how do I know that that is sufficient enough to protect her from getting a deadly or disabling form of one of these diseases? I know that the vaccines don't always work since outbreaks occur in the vaccinated. However, I am not completely educated about "herd immunity". Is it that because most children are vaccinated that the disease is in control, or are the diseases just gone for unknown reasons? If Herd immunity really works, then is that enough proof that my child is safe from ever coming in contact with a disease?
Just take your time. You can vax at anytime if you decide to, but you can't take it back once you start.
I knew long before I had children that I didn't want to vaccinate. Once I had my first baby, I admit, I was nervous about it, and thought that I might do a few at 2 years old. That thought left me pretty quickly, and I did more research and really realized that my kids would be healthier in the long run if I work towards strengthening their immune systems, instead of permanently altering them with vaccinations. The ingredients in vaccines are absurd. Just plain ridiculous IMO. To inject that into healthy newborn babies is beyond logical thinking, and "they've" done a great job in somehow convincing us that this poison is "saving" our children's lives. I call BULL. Today's kids are getting sicker and weaker. At the very least, we need to step back, stop complying, and demand healthier vaccines without dangerous neurotoxins, GMO's, animal and fetal tissues.
You're doing a great job mama. You'll make the right choice!
I think I'm comfortable by default with my decision to stop vaxxing bc the risks of vaccine injury were a reality for my DD (albeit mild compared to some) and I think we've got a far better "fighting chance" at treating the illness than trying to prevent it through artificial means. At this point I'm told she's a very high risk for seizures if we continued to vax - I know of no disease out there that can match that risk in my DD so it made the decision easier for me. Coming here is helpful when no one in your own real life is even remotely crunchy or questions vaccines...nice to have like minded people to bounce ideas off of! Hopefully you can be more comfortable with your choices whatever they may be.
But what really bothers me is that even though the rates are low, how do I know that my daughter won't be one of the few unlucky ones? That is my biggest fear. The diseases that particularly concern me are HIB, Pertussis, Measles because they're still around. I believe good nutrition prevents colds & flus, but how do I know that that is sufficient enough to protect her from getting a deadly or disabling form of one of these diseases?
Your daughter is 10 months old now, so you shouldn't worry about pertussis at all. Most likely she WILL get it at some point, and then you will treat it with sodium ascorbate. If you don't treat it with anything, she will still be fine, but it will last a lot longer, and be a lot harder on her. Pertussis is not dangerous past 3 months old. In fact, in the 2010 California pertussis outbreak, there were over 9,000 documented cases, and 10 deaths. All deaths were in infants under 3 months old, and 9 were under 8 weeks old.
Measles complications occur in children who are deficient in vitamin A. So just feed your daughter a reasonably healthy diet, and if she gets measles, you can supplement vitamin A during the illness. Breastfeeding is very protective against HIB. Because of the HIB vaccine, HIB rates have gone down, to the point that other strains of bacteria (not covered by the vaccine) are more common now anyway.
It sounds like you have everything cleared up for now, and that's great. Any decision we make can weigh on us, but at the end of the day, we can't live in fear. You've done research and will likely continue to do so. You do your best to protect your baby, and leave the rest up to God, nature, or whatever you believe.
What helped me a lot was not just researching the vaccines, but the diseases- how easy is it to contract, what are the treatment options, etc. Good luck!! :)
"Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect." ~Mark Twain
It's certainly not easy in the beginning because there is so much conditioning (media) around us to believe anything outside the norm is totally unacceptable and is not the "right" way; however, that is totally not true. There's no way to know ahead of time if a child will have a severe reaction to vaccines or what the consequence will be in the future or effect the vaccine is having, but of course the media will never cover those kind of things, only how glorified vaccines are.
There are unknowns or what-ifs with any decision that is made (vaccinating vs. non-vaccinating), but IMO, there are too many unknowns and what-ifs when it comes to vaccines. I personally don't agree with introducing toxins willingly into the body, especially a growing body.
I understand how you feel you doubt everything you're thinking and what's truly in your heart, but it will get easier as you see your little one grow stronger and stronger and pass through those more "risky" ages of certain illnesses, i.e. pertussis, either never contracting it or contracting it and being cared properly to cure it and come along fine and even stronger afterwards. As time goes by, you will realize it's not as hard as it seemed in the beginning. We underestimate the strength of our own bodies and its ability to do its job.
Either way, you can always decide to vaccinate at any time if you choose down the road but you are doing the right thing but researching as much as you possibly can to come to a decision you feel comfortable with.
Loving WAHM to my two little handsome DS's, '08 and '12, and loving wife to DH, '07.