I is for Immunizations

All April long, I’m blogging alphabetically about Adjusting to Life to Life with Baby Number 5. Click here to see all the posts in this series.

vaccine clipartI don’t think there’s any parenting dilemma that makes me crazier than immunizations.

The pro-vaccine crowd is quick to tell you that if you fail to vaccinate your children in the exact way, in the exact order,  and on the exact timetable they tell you, your child could contract a terrible disease, suffer, and even die.

The anti-vaccine crowd is quick to tell you that if you do vaccinate your children, the effects caused by injecting all those foreign substances and chemical preservatives into your very small child could cause some horrible consequences, causing your child to suffer and even die.

Dammed if you do. Dammed if you don’t.

In the eight years I’ve been a parent, I have never seen a good, balanced article that fairly weighs the pros and cons of each individual vaccine based on facts. All I’ve ever seen or heard is a bunch of fear mongering encapsulated in all or none mentalities. That makes me crazy.

Parenting is hard. There’s an endless supply of information and advice about what you need to do to be a good parent and raise a safe, healthy child. Many times parents will have to make tough choices, sometimes choosing between the lesser of two evils. Parents deserve to be able to make these decisions based on facts, not fear.

This is precisely why no one is capable of having a rational discussion about vaccines. Because regardless of which way a parent leans, they think they’re protecting their child from suffering and death. If you challenge their mindset by asking for supporting facts, even if it’s just because you’re curious or trying to make the decision for yourself, people freak out. They assume that by questioning their decision you’re suggesting that their child should suffer and die. No one can have a logical conversation when they think the alternative choice would cause their child to suffer and die.

Parents deserve better. We should base our parenting choices on facts not fear. And we should be offered information that enables us to do so.

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2 thoughts on “I is for Immunizations

  1. I really like how you tackled this topic. I am in the same boat as you. I vaccinated Michael at all the appropriate times. He had ear infections constantly. Then with Denai, well, after her 6 week checkup I didn’t take her back to the doctor till she was around 10 months old and even then it was just because I felt weird she hadn’t had a checkup and she was almost one. I wasn’t avoiding the doctor or immunizations, I don’t have much of an opinion about it. But Denai was healthy, never got even an ear infection, plus we moved so there was a lot going on. Now she is getting all caught up on vaccinations. Poor girl. She had four shots two days ago and is still exhausted from them!

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