Wednesday, January 7, 2009


The Vaccine Debate. No matter what you do - its scary. Vaccinate - scary. Don't vaccinate - scary. I hadn't really thought about this indepth until becoming pregnant and my OB reminded me to get my flu shot. My mind shot back to the two times i actually did get the shot and how sick i was afterward, for days. Casually I tell her this and that i doubt i will get one, especially considering it has mercury in it... and well, lets just say we didn't agree on this decision and i left there considering changing doctors due to her reaction! (BTW, very glad i didn't change doctors because i loved this group of OB's for the most part, even though we didn't/don't see eye to eye on all issues).

The debate continued between husband and i. what was the 'right' thing to do. for society. for our child. i did lots of online reading (which can be scary no matter what side of the fence you're on) and read books on this as well. Many online opinions were harsh, critical, and fueled with arguements on discussion boards. But one theme was consistent - everyone wants to do whats best for their child. We were no exception. I found The Vaccine Book by Dr. Sears to be my best resource. Its a pro vaccine book but (I felt) rationally looked at the pros/cons of each individual vaccine in a fair non-bias way. This book convinced me to get certain vaccines i thought of skipping for the kid, and others i realized had too many side effects for me to be comfortable with so we will either skip or delay those. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has concerns about vaccines or just wants to be more informed on this heated topic! The book can be pretty dry in parts but it covers everything you could possibly want to know... If you want to check out more on The Vaccine Book, go to Dr. Sear's website

Husband read the book as well. For the most part, we are following the Alternative Vaccine Schedule Dr. Sears presents in the book. (we made a few tweaks to it, eliminating a couple we are not comfortable with at all and delaying a few for the kids later years, before he begins school.) FYI, the Alternative schedule, if followed exactly, works in all vaccines but spreads them out over a longer period of time, also ensuring the kid gets no more than 2 shots per visit. It does mean you go to the dr more often, especially in the beginning but i have zero complaints about that. Mostly he's done well with his shots - no side effects until his 7 month ones. After the 7 month shots, he had a fever for a couple days after.

Our pediatrician has been respectful of our decision to not follow the standard schedule (while politely informing us of his opinion of why we should, and we of course, respectfully listened, he was doing his job) and has complied with what we wanted. I've heard horror stories of dr's who refuse some parents service! whew... Overall, we are feeling good with our decision and hope other parents are able to come to a conclusion they are comfortable with as well.


Vicki said...

I've had the same concerns re vaccines - never considered NOT doing them but wanted to proceed cautiously and wisely. Our ped has been great, was even the one to recommend doing them slowly! I was prepared to go there but didn't have to which was nice.

Elizabeth Leigh said...

Thats awesome your pediatrician has been flexible! Our doesn't really 'like' what we're doing but have been cooperative and flexible, good enough for me! and i was prepared to go there too! ha.

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