What I Have Finally Decided - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-12-2006, 04:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Vaccinations have been my hardest decision regarding my sweet 10-week old DS. Circumcision? Easy decision. No. Midwife care? Infinitely more compassionate, intuitive and meaningful. Cloth diapers? I have better things to spend my $50 on each month besides disposables. Co-sleeping? I wake up refreshed every morning since I learned to side nurse. Vaccinations? Vaccinations! Vaccinations.....

I read the pro-vax studies and want to vax. I read the anti-vax studies and don't want to vax. When both sides pose a risk of lifelong brain damage and death, it is frightening to have to choose.

So far, studying back and forth, these are the things I HAVE been able to determine, and these are the things I have decided are true. I have no lingering doubts about these.

1. The HepB vax is unnecessary for an infant. This is a blood-born disease that will be passed on to my child through unprotected sex or contaminated needle use for drugs. My newborn is not going to be participating in those activities. A 30 minute old baby immune system should not be asked to deal with a disease he has no chance of getting. True, babies can get it from their mothers, but if I had passed Hepatitis B to my baby, a vax after birth would be too late.

2. It is illogical to give a child multiple vax all at once. I don't care how safe and effective studies have shown this to be, and I don't buy the whole "Less traumatic for the child this way argument." Would I, as an adult, be able to deal efficiently with pertussis if I was also trying to recover from polio, dyptheria, tetanus, and pneumonia? Not bloody likely! Why make my baby's body try to figure out 6 diseases at once? Nothing about this seems remotely right! No wonder childhood vax do not bestow lifelong immunity!

It also makes sense to administer vax one at a time so that if there is ANY reaction, mild or otherwise, one can determine which vax caused it. Period.

3. Mercury will not, in ANY dose, be injected into my child's blood stream. There's not a scientist on all of G-d's green earth that can convince me that there is a "safe" level of mercury. As my husband says, "they called them mad hatters for a reason." This stems from hat makers using mercury in the hat making process - hatters all slowly went mad over the course of their careers.

4. Manufacturers of the MMR vax say to start at 15 months. Why are we doing it at 12? Why are we injecting kids earlier than even the profiteering makers say we should? How does that make any sense?

5. Both sides admit the chicken pox vaccine is 70% effective at best. This disease does not scare me, the risks of complications from it are minute, and so I have no problem skipping this one.

So, these are the things I am finally at peace with when it comes to vax. It feels good to have reached some conclusions.
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Old 01-12-2006, 05:21 PM
 
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No Mercury for your child? Well, that basically eliminates all vaccines. Oh, except the MMR, right?

Good for her that her mommy won't let her little body be a dumping site for hazardous waste.

What really did it for me was when I read that they say measles, chicken pox, rubella et al are life threatening and I had had them all myself. And that Hib had killed so many kids, and I had never even heard of it before the vaccine. And that they are bringing more and more injections on the market each year (almost each month now) that we can't even keep up as to what they are supposed to do or prevent. And when I heard about those that are in charge of recommending the additions to the vaccine schedule have patents in most of their recommendations and stand to gain millions. And when I learned that our representatives and congressmen all have huge amount of stock in pharmaceutical companies.... I could continue, but I think you get the picture.
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Old 01-12-2006, 05:30 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry
This disease does not scare me, the risks of complications from it are minute, and so I have no problem skipping this one.
If you research all the supposed "VPDs" (I think that's a gross misnomer) and their prevention/treatment methods - in the context of today's better sanitation practices vs a time when people died from them - you will probably come to the conclusion that none of the diseases scare you.

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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Old 01-12-2006, 05:33 PM
 
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I hear you on the pro and anti vax information. What actually settled it for me was the closest to primary source I could find- CDC stats on disease and VAERS stats on reactions. Combine that with good information on how to treat the diseases and my answer was simple. Even the CDC admits that your chance of reaction is HIGER than even CATCHING the diseases and most of the diseases I'm honestly not afraid of after researching.

good luck!

-Angela
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Old 01-12-2006, 05:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My research is by no means done. I still have a stack of books to read. It seems to me both sides can succumb to circular logic, so it takes lots of study to find what rings true. Logically,vax should work - homeopathy ha the same principle, like verses like, but then vax are piled up on babies in a big flood and contain all this crap that may be cheaper and easier for the manufacturer but doesn't seem the least bit acceptable. Antifreeze? Who the h#$& thought THAT was a good idea??
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Old 01-12-2006, 05:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I know I just posted, but the other side for me comes from my family being Rotarians and involved with providing vax to children all over the world with the goal of completely ridding the world of polio. My uncle has even served as President of Rotary International. It is difficult for me to look at the dwindling numbers of polio in some of the countries my uncle has visited and think "It's just a coincidence. Vaccines are useless." That is why I am studying so hard. I went back to the very first thread here and have been reading them, one by one, and all their links.
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Old 01-12-2006, 05:57 PM
 
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Sounds like your research is off to a great start! I started in much of the same place you are now when ds1 was born. The more research I do and the more become comfortable in my 'mom skin' the better I feel about not vaxing my children.

If you're up for more information on your journey, check out this website: http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/vaccinedangers4a/ She's a wonderful wealth of information and has series of classes you can get online regularly. I'm on the second session and loving it. GREAT resource and FULL of information.
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Old 01-12-2006, 06:00 PM
 
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I started out very much in your position, knowing in my gut that multiple vaccines administered simultaneously simply could not be wise. I thought I would permit the few, truly "necessary" vaccines for my son on an individual basis. I would encourage you to shift your research focus at this point to specific diseases and really examine all the available data before coming to a decision about any of them. Once you have done so you can feel a lot more confident in your decision to allow or not allow that vaccine.

Your books are a good place to start, but eventually you need to consult primary sources. The research articles themselves. The MMWR data from the CDC reporting on disease incidence.

A method that works for me is to start with a vaccine insert (these are available online from numerous sources, including the manufacturers' websites). You might start with Daptacel, which is a brand of DTaP vaccine. The package insert is found here: http://www.daptacel.com/support_file...DAPTACELVS.pdf

Read through the package insert and make note of what it says about how immunity is determined and how the effectiveness of the vaccine is determined. Review the tables of reactions and then look for citation numbers to tell you where this data about reactions comes from. The first table shows results of a study done in Sweden in the mid-90s. If you look up the citation (#14) at the end of the insert you will get an author's name and article title. Now you can go to PubMed and enter some or all of the title and get a link to at least the abstract. With some articles you can get the full text. As it happens, the full text of this particular article is available online from the New England Journal of Medicine. You have to register but it's free.

Read the article critically and see what jumps out at you. For me, some of the things that concerned me in reading that article were: (1) they never compared vaccinated children to unvaccinated children (i.e. a true control group) -- all of the children in the trial received some kind of vaccine; (2) only "healthy" children who were born full-term, had no chronic illness, no renal or heart problems, epilepsy, immunosuppression, etc. were included in the trial--yet in practice almost every infant regardless of health status or preemie status ends up receiving every vaccine once it is on the CDC schedule; (3) vaccination in the trial was delayed if the child had a fever or had recently (within 6 days) received any other vaccines, which we know doesn't happen in everyday practice; (4) children were dropped from the study (which included three doses at 2-month intervals) if they had certain reactions (fever, crying, seizures, shock, encephalopathy) to the first or second dose, meaning that the children who had the worst reactions received no further follow-up! That is the most chilling factor for me. This was supposedly a 2-year study on safety and efficacy...but any child who reacted so badly to one of the first two doses that they did not get a third, was not included in any of the final data. And of course, we know in real-life practice that children who experience "milder" reactions such as fever and crying will still be given further doses.

Once I started doing this kind of methodical research on each illness and vaccine, I came to realize the science is not nearly so solid as a lot of people would like to believe. Try searching the MMWR with keywords like measles or pertussis and "outbreak vaccinated population". The emperor truly has no clothes.
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Old 01-12-2006, 06:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry
I know I just posted, but the other side for me comes from my family being Rotarians and involved with providing vax to children all over the world with the goal of completely ridding the world of polio. My uncle has even served as President of Rotary International. It is difficult for me to look at the dwindling numbers of polio in some of the countries my uncle has visited and think "It's just a coincidence. Vaccines are useless." That is why I am studying so hard. I went back to the very first thread here and have been reading them, one by one, and all their links.
For me, I had to take that out of the equation. I didn't have enough time to do justice to the question of if vaxes were ever useful. Instead I only looked at the decision at hand. Would vaxes for these diseases be the best decision for my child here and now. Fact of the matter is that there is nearly zero chance of my child getting polio. Therefore vaxing for it would not be in her best interest. Ethically my responsibility is to make the best decision to protect MY child. For me it was clear that she was safer if I did not vax.

-Angela
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Old 01-12-2006, 06:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry
It is difficult for me to look at the dwindling numbers of polio in some of the countries my uncle has visited and think "It's just a coincidence. Vaccines are useless."
This is the real conundrum, isn't it? I don't think it is correct to say vaccines have no effect. They do have an effect. For example, look at chicken pox. The rate of chicken pox illness has declined drastically since introduction of the vaccine. I think it is more or less true that most vaccines do have a suppressive effect on disease incidence. But like you said, for chicken pox it is not 100%...it is more like 70%. The researchers following chicken pox vaccination in the 90s were really confused for a while because in the first year it was given, the effectiveness was near 100%. The second year it went down a little--even if they only looked at the data for kids who had gotten the shot within the past year. The third year it went down still more. They finally figure out (based on a Japanese study, IIRC) that in the first year they were observing vax/disease rates, the vaccinated kids were still being exposed so frequently to wild pox that they were getting constant "boosters". As the incidence of wild pox went down, the incidence of "breakthrough" disease went up. Not only that, but the rate of shingles went up. Turns out adults need to be exposed to wild pox regularly in order to prevent shingles (a painful skin condition which is a re-manifestation of latent chicken pox virus present in the body of anyone who ever had chicken pox as a kid). So in the final analysis...I read in some article (no link, sorry) that this whole problem of breakthrough chickenpox in kids and higher shingles rates in adults would be solved if every man woman and child would just get a chicken pox/shingles vaccine (they're pretty much the same thing) every 3 years for the rest of their lives :

Every vaccine ever administered has had unintended consequences, and I'm referring to beyond just the health status of the individual receiving it. Every one. Rates of measles and pertussis have shifted from affecting school-age children, who would get the disease, get better, and retain lifelong immunity, to adults whose vaccines have worn off, and to little babies too young to be vaccinated and whose mothers had no antibodies to protect them. That's undisputed. Going a little further into speculation land, the theories on polio and SV-40 and cancer, or smallpox and polio and HIV, will blow your mind.
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Old 01-12-2006, 06:28 PM
 
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Alisaterry you go girl how would we feel if we held down our babies for shots that ultimatly caused siezures and even death and the papers they give you to read on the shots when you take your kids to get them say there is a chance of this happening.
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Old 01-12-2006, 07:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wednesday - thank you for all of your extra resources. I am actually very fond of PubMed - when I worked for the University of Washington in the Environmental Health department, I had unlimited access to PubMed and all the full research articles. It was through PubMed research that I first made the decision to try a homebirth (it ended up as an emergency transfer, but that's a story I've gone into on other boards).

I think my bottom line is that I would vax without any further research or hesitation if they didn't load them up with crap. I would prefer my child have two weeks of measles rather than a lifetime of autism. I think we have simply exchanged acute illnesses for chronic ones, and it makes me angry that I have to make this decision in the first place.
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Old 01-12-2006, 07:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry
I would prefer my child have two weeks of measles rather than a lifetime of autism. I think we have simply exchanged acute illnesses for chronic ones, and it makes me angry that I have to make this decision in the first place.
THAT is exactly what it came down to for me. I have taught autism spectrum kids. It's something new. They weren't out there in any kinds of numbers when I was in school. They are now. I can deal with my child being sick for a week or two because I decided not to vax. I can not deal with my child being sick or impaired their whole lives because I vaxed.

-Angela
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Old 01-13-2006, 12:39 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry
I know I just posted, but the other side for me comes from my family being Rotarians and involved with providing vax to children all over the world with the goal of completely ridding the world of polio. My uncle has even served as President of Rotary International. It is difficult for me to look at the dwindling numbers of polio in some of the countries my uncle has visited and think "It's just a coincidence. Vaccines are useless." That is why I am studying so hard. I went back to the very first thread here and have been reading them, one by one, and all their links.

Alisaterry, I was looking for information on polio a while ago and searched and searched (finally had to ask where to find a particular thread). MT bumped up a few really interesting threads that I thought I would share with you in case you are interested:

Polio: 1/1000 "infection" rate. Scientific discussion.
http://www.mothering.com/discussions...000+scientific

By request. Polio Statistics and related thoughts
http://www.mothering.com/discussions...istics+related

"What will you do when your child gets polio?"
http://www.mothering.com/discussions...ah+polio+child

I hope my links work! And I hope I read your post right in that you are still unsure about the polio vax. I was researching it because dh said he was comfortable with our choice not to vaccinate, but had some concerns about polio and diphtheria (which I never checked out)...

It's all a little overwhelming at first, but I believe you will come to trust your ds's immune system. Humans have done some amazing things in the medical realm, but nature is even more amazing. IMO, it's better to trust nature!
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Old 01-13-2006, 04:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Mammom - I just finished reading Momtezuma's Polio research. Fascinating! And a bit infuriating, that Sabin's vaccine did in fact work, but at a very high price.
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Old 01-13-2006, 05:33 AM
 
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I'm glad to hear you are muddling your way through the mountain of information available and making some sense of it. It's so easy to get overwhelmed and throw up your hands.

Quote:
2. It is illogical to give a child multiple vax all at once...Would I, as an adult, be able to deal efficiently with pertussis if I was also trying to recover from polio, dyptheria, tetanus, and pneumonia? Not bloody likely! Why make my baby's body try to figure out 6 diseases at once?
It's funny you later mention polio because my first thought when reading this was, "then she needs to know that the polio vaccine contains 3 viruses of polio."


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I know I just posted, but the other side for me comes from my family being Rotarians and involved with providing vax to children all over the world with the goal of completely ridding the world of polio. My uncle has even served as President of Rotary International. It is difficult for me to look at the dwindling numbers of polio in some of the countries my uncle has visited and think "It's just a coincidence. Vaccines are useless."
As already mentioned, you can't act on what may be generally doing good things and "works" for other parts of the world. That would be like vaccinating children in the Congo for the chickenpox because there's an epidemic of chickenpox in the U.S. Kwim?

And first, imo, the polio vaccine is just a bandaid for bigger health problems these societies are facing. Secondly, many (maybe most) of these populations wouldn't have polio if we didn't give it to them in the first place via vaccination. Thirdly, with all them saying part of the benefit of giving a live-virus vaccine is that it sheds to those who haven't been vaccinated, also vaccinating them, why is there still such a huge problem in certain populations? Did anyone EVER think that if we left it alone, it would've run it's course and gone away permanently WITHOUT our Western medical intervention? Just a thought. If polio is of interest to you, you might consider reading The Virus And The Vaccine, which is about the history of the polio vaccine. The River is about the polio vaccine and the introduction of HIV into our population.

Lastly, if all the chemicals were taken out of vaccines and it was just the antigens being injected, I still wouldn't vaccinate. The extent of the negative effect on the developing immune system is unknown. We were not meant to acquire diseases via injection into the muscle, having it directly enter the bloodstream. What mixed signals is that giving our immune systems about how to fight off invaders?

Good luck with the continuation of your journey.
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Old 01-13-2006, 08:18 PM
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Congratulations on having come to any conclusions at all -- it can be difficult with all the information that has to be processed. Our decisions have been similar to yours.
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Old 01-14-2006, 12:39 AM
 
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I'm in the process of these decisions myself. It's a very frustrating and emotional decision...congrats on making peace with youra I'm not there yet, but feeling closer lately.

You mentioned that the combo vaccines are out for you. Does this mean you won't vax for those diseases or you'll try and get them seperate? (I assume no DTaP since it contains trace amounts of mercury, but will you get the MMR seperate?)

My problem with that is taht the child would be getting 3 times the other junk in the vax. DH is scared of these diseases (and I guess I am a little too...I mean, complications ARE possible). Thing is the vax scare me more (but not him).....
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Old 01-14-2006, 12:47 AM
 
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My problem with that is taht the child would be getting 3 times the other junk in the vax. DH is scared of these diseases (and I guess I am a little too...I mean, complications ARE possible). Thing is the vax scare me more (but not him).....

The thing is the disease are over and done with in a week to 10 days. Vaccine reaction is a life time.

Guess I just don't see what there is to be afraid of? Especially measles, mumps and rubella. Those are the easiest. I had them all. And so did my dh.

Maybe if you got yourself a book that told you about how to treat them naturally it would take away that fear. Gosh, the older your child gets the more relaxed you'll be about it. Then when he does get something you'll just let him work it out and he'll be all the stronger.

I am so glad we are passed that issue. Good luck to you and your dh.
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Old 01-14-2006, 02:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm currently reading Stephanie Cave's book "What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Children's Vaccines." She says every vaccine is available in a form that does not contain mercury, especially single dose vials rather than multiple dose vials. She also includes a modified schedule.

I am thinking that I will skip the MMR entirely, but I am still researching that. I don't know enough about Diptheria, Tetanus or Pertussis to feel comfortable skipping those vaccinations. However, I have currently delayed DS' vax until he's 6 months, so I have 4 months to research and change my mind. I would prefer to do them one at a time rather than together, should I decide to continue and have them. Cave has recommendations for reducing possible reactions, such as liquid vitamin C the day of and after a vaccine is administered.

Of course, this is my first of many books, so I still may reach different conclusions when the time comes.

My DH said he trusts my judgment, which is nice but I wish he would join me in my research and help me reach conclusions....
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Old 01-14-2006, 10:37 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry
I think my bottom line is that I would vax without any further research or hesitation if they didn't load them up with crap. I would prefer my child have two weeks of measles rather than a lifetime of autism. I think we have simply exchanged acute illnesses for chronic ones, and it makes me angry that I have to make this decision in the first place.
I agree with you about the exchange of acute illness for chronic illness, but even if vaccines could be proven perfectly "safe," i.e. absolutely free of any toxic ingredients or contaminants, I STILL wouldn't vax. The mechanism of vaccination itself--injecting antigens directly into muscle, where they enter the bloodstream--provokes an immune system response that is different, and less complete, than the response when a person encounters a disease antigen through the respiratory system or mucous membranes. This is why antibodies from vaccination do not persist as long as antibodies from having the disease, and why babies born to vaccinated mothers don't get much immunity to diseases mom was vaccinated for, as opposed to diseases mom actually had. This is also why there's a concern about vaccination and auto-immune disorders.
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Old 01-14-2006, 02:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry
My DH said he trusts my judgment, which is nice but I wish he would join me in my research and help me reach conclusions....
So there with you, mama.

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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