Your Unvaccinated Kid Is Not Welcome To Play With Mine

I’ve got colds and flus on my mind. My daughter brought home her first ever “caught it at preschool” cold and promptly gave it to our 16-month-old son. The sound of his phlegmy coughs woke me up this morning and I immediately started mind-Googling the symptoms of whooping cough. Then I remembered he’s vaccinated against that one. What a relief! All hail the miraculous vaccine!

I know, I know, it’s not that simple, right? The greatness of the vaccine, that is. I was pregnant with our daughter right around the time that Jenny McCarthy was on Oprah warning us to trust our mommy instinct and declaring that her son developed autism soon after receiving the MMR vaccine. Declaring, in fact, that the vaccine caused her son’s autism.

My husband and I did not take these claims lightly and were appropriately freaked out. We did the requisite internet research and spoke with our midwife and future pediatrician. All three sources seemed to support vaccinations as a seriously important part of our child’s overall health. We decided to get the prescribed immunizations on a slightly modified schedule (the Dr. Sears one), but I still had a panic attack in the doctor’s office when our tiny, defenseless infant, whose little body had only known breast milk and amniotic fluid, was about to be injected with a mystery cocktail of chemicals and disease. It gives me the shivers even now.

But I’ll tell you what gives me the super shivers – the thought of my children becoming sick with a truly preventable illness, especially one that had been basically eradicated until just a few years ago. But of course, the fear that spread early in the last decade was far more powerful than the science behind vaccines (after all, what’s more powerful than fear?). We now have not-so-coincidental outbreaks of measles and pertussis and a whole new crop of unvaccinated children. And to be honest, I don’t want my kids playing with them.

I understand that since my kids are vaccinated, I shouldn’t really be concerned about them being exposed to such maladies, but there’s a bigger issue that I just can’t get past. It’s an issue I have with you, parent of the unvaccinated, not actually with your child. It’s a feeling that you’re not doing your part here; not holding up your end of the bargain. Vaccine efficacy depends, in part, on “herd immunity,” and by choosing not to inoculate your child, you are failing the herd. I hold you responsible for the unnecessary illness of babies who were too young to yet be vaccinated. I definitely blame you for your own child’s sickness – and I just have to remind you that it was preventable.

And now I’ll go and risk negating just about everything I’ve said so far by disclosing that I don’t like the flu vaccine. I don’t get one (except in 2009, when I was pregnant and the CDC told me that swine flu was practically targeting pregnant women), and I’ve never gotten the shot for my children. They were both theoretically protected by the vaccine I received while pregnant and still breastfeeding, but last winter we all went vaccine-less

I say this not to paint myself as a worthless hypocrite, but to offer proof that I’m not simply a “do as you’re told by the government” non-thinking type. Maybe if you know that I don’t get a flu shot every year, you’ll let my words in when I say you should opt in on the MMR vaccine. It’s a long shot, but I have to try. The health of the herd is at stake.

(Photo: iStockphoto)

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  • Abigail

    The part that I think is ridiculous is that just because he was vaccinated against the whooping cough doesn’t mean he won’t get the whooping cough. And don’t get me started on stuff like vaccinating against measles! Who does that?? That’s just stupid. Measles aren’t something to fear, and injecting your child with disease and poison just seems uneducated to me.

    • Abigail

      And I should follow that up by saying, if they invent vaccines that are better for our childrens’ bodies, and healthier for them, I might be all over that, but until then, I’m going to keep my kids healthy in my own way, and ignore the poison the doctors are offering.

    • Courtney

      Measles isn’t something to fear?! Please tell me you’re joking. Measles is incredibly contagious and deadly. Google it and read the legitimate websites (CDC, WHO), not the conspiracy theory nut-job ones. It’s the uneducated individuals like yourself who make people like me scared.

    • Jen

      I’m so glad Dr. Jenny McCarthy (of the prestigious Playboy University) has been listened to by you. If you genuinely don’t think measles are dangerous, please, keep your kid out of school.

    • Danielle

      Measles is most dangerous in kids who are Vit A deficient – do the research. And in our culture, with our awesome nutrient rich diets, vitamin deficiencies aren’t a problem – oh wait, sorry, I was thinking of somewhere else where they don’t pump their kids full of fat laden, sodium rich, corn based crap and call it food.

      My daughter’s daycare had a Whooping Cough outbreak last summer. Know who got it? ALL the kids – both vaccinated and not. My son, who has asthma and is NOT vaccinated, got it, and with nutritional support and megadosing with Vitamin C, he was barely sick. I did the responsible thing and gave my kids antibiotics so they wouldn’t spread it and kept them home until they were no longer contagious.

      When the chicken pox vaccine was first introduced, the MARKETING campaign touted it as a convenience for parents, so they wouldn’t have to miss work. People weren’t buying it so all of a sudden chicken pox is SO deadly and scary and the MARKETING campaign pushed all these ads with a tear streaked rubber duck and the scary statistic that 40 kids a year die from chicken pox. Really? 3 – 5 kids PER DAY die at the hands of their parents but unfortunately we don’t have a vaccine for that.

      About time to stop being lazy sheeple and follow the money.

    • Jen

      @Danielle: My mother works as a pediatric nurse. While it’s great that your kids didn’t have severe symptoms, many many children do. The death rate in young infants is especially high and they suffer incredibly before finally dying. I find it totally gross that you don’t seem to care about others and don’t care to actually educate yourself. I guess this explains all the entitled asshole kids we are seeing now.

    • Danielle

      @Jen – I’m an asshole who doesn’t care about anyone else and my kids are entitled? LOL, good to know. The fact is, you know absolutely nothing about me except what I’ve written here and your decision to extrapolate that out into insults, well, that’s about you my dear. What I haven’t done is attack anyone, including the author, for beliefs that I don’t agree with. It’s easy to have anonymous disrespectful discourse on the internet; it’s a lot harder to understand there is a real person on the other end of the computer and LISTEN and to hear other people’s perspectives and have a respectful, adult conversation. I see which route you’ve chosen.

      I personally find it gross to inject the DNA of other species in a cocktail of chemicals into my children’s bodies, but YMMV.

  • RighttoWorkMom

    I have no problem admitting my child is only partially vaccinated. I understand your frustrations with my family. However . . .

    I did not agree to be a part of your bargain. I do not expect you to vaccinate your child to save mine, and I won’t return the favor.

    I do not believe you would expect your child to play with mine if my child did have autism, so I am not going to worry about your child playing with mine because of vaccines.

    I am not expecting you to offer herd immunity. All too often parents try to dismiss the unvaccinated families as “relying on” other families to keep our children safe (granted, you have not done this). I take no part in that. I did my research, too, and I decided that I would rather risk a strain of the Varicella virus than risk the vaccine itself. I made the same choice about the MMR and HiB vaccines. My daughter has received all other vaccines, but on our own schedule and appropriate to her age.

    Did you know that in 1983 a child averaged ten vaccines by the time they are 6? Did you know that today that number is forty-three? That’s forty-three separate cocktails of chemicals, disease, and preservatives.

    I know that disease can be terrifying. I also know that vaccines are terrifying. Vaccines are not foolproof. Look at the first round of polio vaccines, or the first round of Rotavirus vaccines, or more.

    In any case, I am not asking you to not vaccinate your child because it aligns with my beliefs. I am not asking you to vaccinate your child so that I don’t have to vaccinate mine. However, I am asking you to respect my opinion. If you had been so unfortunate as to be one of the cases of complications when you vaccinated your child, I would not stand here and say, “Well, you knew you were taking a risk.” I wouldn’t point my finger at all of the information you had that told you that was a possibility. With that in mind, why on earth would you feel it’s appropriate to take such a stance against me? You said, “I definitely blame you for your own child’s sickness – and I just have to remind you that it was preventable.” Can you imagine how you would feel if I said that to you when your child developed shingles after getting the varicella vaccine – something that has happened all too often? Do you really think that’s a productive, appropriate response to a suffering child?

    • Jen

      Yea, that’s nice and all. And I’m sure you won’t feel responsible if your healthy child contracts a disease because you believe a Playboy model (who’s son doesn’t actually have autism) over the medical community. And I’m doubly sure you won’t feel responsible if your child infects a child who legitimately could not receive vaccination because they have/had a serious childhood illness and are therefore more likely to die of the totally preventable disease.

      I think ANY child who does not get the full round of vaccinations should not be allowed to attend school. If you want to make your child vulnerable that’s just great, I don’t want them in my school system or anywhere near my kid.

    • RighttoWorkMom

      Jen, your comment is so offensive it barely warrants a reply. I posted my opinion, so you attack me? I can see why, however. Your post demonstrates so little awareness of the real concerns and instead focuses entirely on the opinion of one celebrity whom you clearly don’t respect. I did my research. I spoke to countless doctors. I read articles, books, and more. Why don’t you do gather at least a tenth of that knowledge and maybe then we can talk like responsible adults (as opposed to your first post).

    • Jen

      Look, I’ve seen kids who legitimately can not receive immunizations die because of irresponsible parents like you. I’m tired of it. Every single study that links vaccines with things like autism has been refuted by the medical community. So, if you don’t want to get your kids vaccinated that’s great. I’ll hope and pray for them that they don’t get seriously ill. But I also think that you should keep your kids out of the school system because it is totally immoral for you to put the lives of other’s who don’t have the ability to make your choice in jeopardy.

    • RighttoWorkMom

      Jen, the medical community has outright admitted that the HiB vaccine and the MMR vaccine still use preservatives that include mercury. We have known for well over one hundred years that mercury is poisonous to humans. This isn’t rocket science.

      We’ve had hundreds of medications taken off the shelf because the FDA and the CDC are concerned about the number of children who become more ill or die because their parents have over medicated them, yet we want our children to have 4.3 times the number of vaccines we had when we were kids.

      In the 1950s we saw hundreds of children fall victim to polio because of faulty vaccines. In the 1990s we saw countless children experience internal organ damages because of faulty Rotavirus vaccines. In the 21st century we’ve seen children become more vulnerable to shingles because of the varicella vaccine, thousands of children receive the Gardasil vaccine when the very doctor who created it says they shouldn’t, and more.

      My point? I am not making an immoral choice to put other children at risk. I am making an educated choice to not put my child at risk for these problems. We are very alert to our risks, and we make our choices accordingly.

    • Danielle

      @RighttoWorkMom kudos to you mama for speaking and knowing your truth and making a responsible decision for your children. Too bad some people can’t respectfully agree to disagree. Cheers!

    • Andrea

      Righttowork: anytime someone shots down your argument with valid facts, you accuse them of insulting you.

      You are obviously not going to change your mind despite the overwhelming evidence that has been presented. So all I ask is that you keep your child away from mine.

      Good luck.

    • MeiMei77

      Allow me to paraphrase:

      “Sucks to be you, infants, who are too young to receive certain vaccinations and contract them from unvaccinated children!”

  • Eileen

    I had an MMR. I’ve never had any mental problems – nor have I had measles, mumps, or rubella (which have killed people in Britain since that quack who’s since been completely discredited and had his license revoked started going on about it).

    Every vaccine is a slight risk, sure; the question is whether or not the risk is worth the benefits. Polio? Hell yes. Flu? Maybe not, unless you already have respiratory problems. But anyone who doesn’t get her kids vaccinated isn’t welcome in my home, and not because I’m afraid of catching diseases – just because I think she’s an idiot whom I don’t want to know.

    • Lynn

      “just because I think she’s an idiot whom I don’t want to know”
      Ironic statement considering that more educated moms are less likely to vaccinate.

    • J.M. Becker

      No this is incorrect, just because you read something somewhere doesn’t mean you’ve been educated. Medicine is about scientifically verifiable facts, this isn’t creative writing, the facts are verifiable by proper studies. In the same regard, many people hold strong beliefs, which despite their appeal have never been scientifically founded.

      I think it’s completely appropriate to stay away from any person who doesn’t respect science. This isn’t about politics, although I admit they would likely not appreciate that I’m a radical leftist. I’m fully OK with hard conservatives, who can legitimately accept the scientific method.

  • squishyfish

    So…why exactly don’t you like the flu shot? It’s not “just a flu;” people die from influenza every year. Everything you said about herd immunity applies equally to influenza viruses as to MMR and other vaccines. I don’t mean to be rude, but as my husband is one of those at high risk for serious flu complications (and has had serious flu complications in the past!), I tend to view people who refuse to get vaccinated for the flu the same way as you view parents who won’t vaccinate their children.

    • Michelle

      I don’t get the flu shot. I also tend to be at higher risk for developing developing bronchitis or pneumonia following a bout with flu. I am always recommended a vaccine and I have never had one. I also work with children and live in a very large city where I use public transportation.

      I also take simple pro-cautions: I use hand sanitizer, but I don’t OVERUSE sanitizer. I wash my hands regularly with soap. I sneeze/cough into my elbow (rather than my hand) and encourage others to do the same.

      To answer your question, I don’t get the flu vaccine because influenza is constantly mutating and, the reason we have to get a new vaccine every year is because there is a new common strain every year. It seems senseless for me to get a vaccine yearly for something I might not even get that year. If I get it that year, the doctors and I will deal with it.

      I think your husband and others who are at risk for serious flu complications need the flu vaccine more than the general public. Any time a person gets the flu could kill them, but it kills very few people who are healthy.

      With other vaccines, the virus doesn’t mutate nearly as often. Some vaccines require booster shots. Some people will have to check to make sure they are immune against some viruses (like chicken pox) even having the vaccine(s). But, generally speaking, once you have the vaccine, you will NEVER have the virus. That’s not at all the same with the flu.

  • Victoria

    Working at a local community health center, I’ve heard both sides of this debate, and I’m still on the fence. It really is a tough situation; mom’s who are just lazy and don’t bother making their kid’s appointments for immunizations make me crazy, but there are thoughtful moms who have educated themselves and still feel that immunizations are potentially harmful. These moms shouldn’t be castigated and made villains, I think.

    If your children are immunized, there shouldn’t be any problem with them playing with other children; and you might have a chance to chat with their mom about it, and educate them a little. There are so many fear-mongering media storms about every issue that parents face, and it’s a really emotional issue. People take sides and attack each other, and that’s unfortunate, since it stops moms from listening to each other instead of that stupid McCarthy creature.

    • Pix

      Yay. :)

      A voice of reason that acknowledges that these things aren’t black and white. That there are solid, understandable reasons coming from multiple points of view and attacking the “other side” is not helpful.

      It’s amazing how quickly an intelligent worthwhile debate can turn into an unproductive argument between people who refuse to keep an open mind and hear what others have to say.

      (And I’m not saying this particular debate has disintegrated into complete uselessness yet. Just appreciating an open mind.)

      Thank you Victoria.

  • Jen

    Here’s the thing: I can respectfully agree to disagree. What I can’t do is countenance parents sending their kids who are not immunized into school to interact with children who are not immunized because they have serious medical issues that prevent them from receiving vaccines. I have a problem when diseases that were nearly wiped out in the developed world are now making a comeback and honestly, your arguments are either totally uneducated at best. Mercury is NOT in vaccines recommended for kids 6 and under except flu vaccine. Two seco of googling turned that up. When you put other people in danger you lose the right to be treated respectfully. Too many kids are dying as a result.

    • RighttoWorkMom

      If your knowledge begins and ends with a two second Google search and your mother, then we don’t need to argue any further. The only respectable part of your posts so far is that you aren’t pretending to know anything about this topic. You bash a celebrity as though she is everyone’s source, and you cite a google search as your main source of information. I’ll say it again: spend some time really learning about this, then we’ll talk.

    • Jen

      No, my only sources are not my mom and google. I’ve done research on this which is why I know you are both mis/uninformed and irresponsible. I’m simply pointing out that it’s easy enough to prove your assertions false with a quick google search. Like I said, do what you want. I’ll keep my fingers crossed for your kids and all of those they come in contact with.

    • RighttoWorkMom

      You know enough to point fingers and call names (uninformed, misinformed, irresponsible, asshole, entitled, did I miss any?), but not enough to know what’s being injected into our children. I’ve demonstrated my knowledge; can you do the same? Can you say something beyond, “Yes, it is” and “No, it isn’t”? Really, I welcome a friendly debate, but you aren’t friendly and you aren’t debating either.

    • Jen


      1) There is NO mercury in vaccines recommended for children under six. A fact I’ve already stated, but you seem to have missed.

      2) Measles is a disease that kills. It kills about .3% of patients in the developed world. However, that number jumps to 30% when the infected patients are compromised by other illness (ie: kids on chemo). In addition, it has a nine to twelve day incubation period during which time it is easily spread, but the infected party does not know they are infected. So basically, by the time you get around to treating your kid for the disease they’ve already infected whoever they are going to.

      3) Whooping cough kills approximately 295,000 people a year. Again, it has about a week of incubation during which it is both highly contagious and asymptomatic (if you notice anything at all it appears like a minor cold). Once again, kids who are immunocompromised are a LOT more likely to die from this disease than healthy kids, though untreated the disease can have grave effects for anyone.

      The American Academy of Pediatrics, the CDC and every medical professional I’ve ever spoken with (and most of my family is in the medical field, so I’ve grilled a lot of pede’s nurses and doctors) all agree that while a very small fraction (way smaller than the .3% healthy kids that die from measles) do experience severe side effects, NOT being vaccinated against childhood killers like whooping cough, measles, mumps, rubella, et al is significantly more dangerous to a child’s health and a glance at the number of childhood deaths in countries that lack vaccines vs. countries that have them bears out this statement.

    • RighttoWorkMom

      I didn’t miss your statement. It simply isn’t accurate, so I didn’t respond to it. Thimerosol is still in many flu shots. It’s also still present in vaccines for children under the age of six, but the CDC argues that the amount is so small that it doesn’t warrant concern or reporting. ABCWorld News showed numerous doctors disagreeing with the latter.

      Similarly, it isn’t only mercury, although that is the obvious example, that is bad for children in vaccines. Look at the history involved. The U.S. has had special rulings dating as far back as 1905 in relation to personal injury claims on behalf of children as a result of vaccines. In 2010 pproximately $154 million was awarded in the U.S. in vaccine-related court rulings. In previous years this country was averaging approximately $68 million in court ordered awards.

      We have over 100 years of proof that not all vaccines are always good for children, that vaccines can go wrong, and that children can have undetected sensitivities to these vaccines, yet we are increasing the number of vaccines they are meant to receive on a regular basis. Rather than research this further, our government has decided that we aren’t allowed to sue over vaccine-related medical problems, regardless of whether or not there is a clear link between the injury and the cause. It’s like 1986 with the pertussis vaccine all over again.

      That being said, the courts have conceded at least once, with Hannah Poling, that vaccines were related to her autism-related brain damage. I’m not denying that she had too many vaccines in one day or that the vaccines still contained thimerasol. However, look at the bigger picture. Countless people accuse vaccine companies of contributing to autism because they use thimerasol, so the vaccine companies deny it – but take thimerasol mostly out of many vaccines (at least enough that they don’t have to report it, which is a problem in and of itself). Then these same companies start a big campaign for the flu shot. Everyone needs it! Especially pregnant women! Oh, and by the way, the flu shot contains thimerasol. Pregnant women, who are clearly and undeniably warned against getting mainstream vaccines, are told to get this preservative injected into their bodies on a regular basis. Meanwhile, autism and similar disorders continue to rise.

      Let’s try to have the same argument. I’m not arguing against the pertussis vaccine by itself. My child has had that vaccine because there isn’t any thimerasol in it at all (I checked). I’m also not arguing the Measles isn’t contagious, and I’m not arguing that Measles isn’t potentially fatal.

      I am arguing that it is my right to make an educated, informed decision about what is injected into my daughter’s body, and that’s what I’ve done. I don’t deserve to be insulted or disrespected because I am trying to avoid the litany of complications that can occur as a result of vaccines. I am trying to avoid giving my daughter 33 more vaccines than I received when I was her age. I am doing the same thing many other parents are doing, including you (if you have kids). I am taking the information I have available to me and making what I feel is the best decision for my daughter. The difference between us is that I am willing to respect the risk you are taking with your children, but you won’t return the favor.

    • Jen

      My problem is you are basing your “educated” decision on faulty information AND you aren’t just putting your own kids in danger. Stop pretending that your decision doesn’t effect the other children your kids come in contact with and realize that if one of them gets sick and dies it will be all your fault.

      Now to some of your points. The idea that the increase in vaccinations is related to the rise of autism diagnoses is laughable. One of the very first things anyone learns in science class is that correlation does not equal causation. The fact that scientists have not found ANY connection between autism and vaccines is enough (and Hannah Polling’s ruling was not that vaccines caused her autism, but that a low grade fever she got a few days later exacerbated an already existent neurological disorder). However, let’s also look at some other facts. While autism diagnoses have increased, the diagnoses of other learning disorders and MR have decreased: in other words as autism has become more well known (and the diagnostic criteria have changed) more kids are diagnosed with that instead of other disorders. Here’s a link to study:

      In addition, yes, of course, vaccines have on occasion caused injury to children and adults. So has tylenol. And candy. And car accidents. In fact the death rate for parents overdosing their kids on cough syrup is a lot higher than that for vaccines. BUT, because the government decided long ago that vaccines save hundreds of thousands of lives they would rather set up a system that keeps the lawsuit happy American public from bankrupting the manufacturers of vaccines.

    • RighttoWorkMom

      Jen, I’m going to say this one more time, and then I’m not posting on this topic again. If you cannot have a respectful debate, you are not going to debate with me. Your determination to use insults and offensive language only reiterates your lack of knowledge. If you had enough information to make your argument, you wouldn’t need to reduce the quality of your claim to such terms as “laughable” in addition to your aforementioned insults. If you are wondering why no one will listen to you as you attempt to persuade them to get vaccinated, perhaps you can start there.

    • Jen

      You’re right, I shouldn’t have said it was “laughable”. Because of a bunch of immoral opportunists we now have children dying because of frightened parents who trust fear over facts. It’s not laughable at all. It’s incredibly sad and scary.

      And, you have not actually been having a debate with me because every time I shut down one of your points, YOU resort to picking on my word choice because you don’t have any valid counter points. It’d be cute if it wasn’t so deadly.

      As I said, do whatever you want. But stop the fiction that this decision only effects you and your kids and realize that you could be responsible for the death of someone else.

    • Lynn

      Really? Who are ALL these kids that are dying because of my unvaccinated children who NEVER get sick even when pertussis was going around their school and VACCINATED kids were getting it??? I would really like to know. A link to a study NOT traced back to the makers of vaccinations that supports this please. I would LOVE to be educated. Speaking of education, funny how vaccination rates decrease among individuals with higher education. Most of the infectious diseases that kids are vaccinated against were almost completely wiped out BEFORE they started immunizing against them. Two seconds of googling also turned that up.

  • Best Auntie Ever

    Just curious, and for the record I am super duper I volunteer as a clinic escort pro choice in every way but…

    How much overlap do you think there is between the anti-vax coalition who seem to be perfectly willing for babies and children and cancer patients to die from preventable disease in order to prevent the non-experimentally verified possibility that their kid could develop autism and the anti choice “don’t abort your baby with down syndrome because kids with mental disabilities are super rewarding” crowd.

    I feel like there is some cognitive dissonance there.

    Also: I have a brother with autism. I love him to death and I can promise you that his weird did not come from MMR. It came from a long family history of black sheep types with anxiety disorders and OCD.

    • Lynn

      Deciding not to throw away a fetus with a congenital abnormality is completely different than wanting to keep a perfectly healthy child from developing a condition that is preventable.

    • Mummybear

      Can I just say, my very good friend is autistic and she is FANTASTIC. (oh, and she didn;t have the MMR as it wasn’t around when she was small) Stop talking about autism as though its leprosy or something!

  • Jessica

    I’m honestly not trying to continue a fight that clearly wont be won by either side. That being said I feel that there are some things that should be cleared up.

    The amount of mercury in vaccinations is negligible. Were it poisonous, we would not administer it to any patients, let alone children.

    Yes, it is your choice not to vaccinate your child, no one can tell you how to raise your offspring, it is always up to you. Unfortunately, when a child is not vaccinated they are put at risk of contracting a disease that would have been completely preventable. We live in a modern jet setting world where traveling from a Third World Country to a First World Country takes only a day. A disease can be picked up, carried and transmitted to you or your child in no time at all.

    Your child has won the lottery of life: they were lucky enough to be born to a family in a country where miracles such as vaccinations are readily available. Mothers in less fortunate parts of the world envy you. Some of these mothers have watched their children die because they could not afford to have them vaccinated.

    Finally, I would like to remind everyone that there is absolutely no evidence that suggests there is a link between vaccinations and the development of autism. The research referred to by Jenny McCartney was proven false long ago, and the researchers and doctors that had their names on it were punished by the medical community for providing false information. Its hard to get sensationalized information out of your head. Once you hear something may harm your child, it is always difficult to decide whether or not you really can trust it again.

    As a pediatrician I wish you all the best in regards to the health of your children, and I would like to reiterate that you are all absolutely free to make independent medical decisions concerning them. However, I would also like to say that I feel it is very important to vaccinate your child. I have seen the effects of preventable diseases, and watching a child suffer from an ailment as preventable as a broken arm is difficult not only for me, but for the families of the children who must also suffer with them.

    God Bless.

    • Ursula

      You’re a pediatrician? Of COURSE you think vaccines are perfectly safe! Why are parents supposed to bring their kids to you for ‘well baby visits’? Not to make sure the baby is well, but to give them vaccines. Without vaccinations most pediatricians would be out of business.

      There is absolutely NO research done to prove long-term safety of vaccines. What you learn in medical schools comes straight from the very people who manufacture the vaccines.

      Vaccines are miracles? Really? Can you actually prove that they work?

      Not a single vaccine in all of history has ever been proven to be safe or effective.

      Why do you think people in Africa hide in the bush for weeks on end when their government does a vaccination campaign, going door to door with military to force vaccinations? Because those vaccines (especially the polio one) KILL most of their children. And yes, now they’ve got autism there, too.

      Read this and weep (as I surely did):

    • MeiMei77

      Virtually nothing in medicine, traditional or otherwise, is 100% effective. It’s about risk management and limiting exposure.
      If you could die from a life-threatening disease, would you not take a medicine which has a 70-80% success rate?
      I guess this isn’t about being rational, though.
      Go on applying your dung poultices and hoping for the best, non-vaccers.

    • Lynn

      You forgot to add the most important part about the nice addition to your pay check for all those toxins you’re injecting into babies. Don’t tell me that vaccines don’t cause autism when I have witnessed a dear friends son go from a perfectly healthy two year old to profoundly autistic all within 36 hours after receiving 4 of your wonderful vaccines.

    • Julie Ann Hayes

      Do you have any idea of correlation and causation? Any medical knowledge or training? Anecdotal evidence and your opinion do not equal fact. I am sorry to hear of your friend’s situation but that comment shows a lot of ignorance.

    • cia parker

      I don’t understand why there are so many references here to Dr. Andrew Wakefield’s case study on twelve children who got bowel disease and/or autism shortly after getting the MMR being debunked and disproven. Wakefield accepted 55,000 pounds to conduct a study for a class aciton suit regarding vaccines and autism, a research grant for which he received no personal compensation. Wakefield’s hospital knew about the grant, the amount, and did not believe it was improper, but this was used by the GMC as a charge against him. All the children in the Lancet 12 were sick, and the parents agreed to all the tests being run on them in the attempt to help them. The tests were clinically indicated, and not just for research purposes, and the hospital administration knew about them and made no objection to them. But the GMC decided much later that the tests were unnecessary. The children were not referred to Dr. Wakefield through the litigation process, as was charged, the litigation study had not begun at the time parents started contacting Wakefield because of his expertise in gastrointestinal diseases. The Lancet study had been completed and submitte for publication before the litigation study was started. Wakefield needed control blood samples from normal children, and asked children at his son’s birthday party if they wanted to volunteer and give a blood sample. He had informed their parents beforehand, and gave five pounds to each child who volunteered. If you think about it, where would you go to get blood samples from normal children to use as a control? I don’t think this was unethical, just unconventional.
      So this means that there was no scientific fraud, no undisclosed financial conflicts of interest, no ethical breaches in performing tests on sick children, no complaints from patients or their families. The British Medical Journal is largely supported by advertising and grant money from the pharmaceutical industry. Wakefield’s main accuser, Brian Deer, lied about who paid him to bring the charges and attend the hearings. He said the Sunday Times had paid him to do so, but the Times denied having paid him for this purpose, saying just that they had bought some of his freelance articles. He must have been paid by Big Pharma to ruin a doctor and researcher who had brought to light the immense permanent damage being caused in millions of children by the MMR. This was an attempt both to silence the truth and discourage other researchers from pursuing lines of study that might very likely lead to their punishment and the ruin of their careers.
      Jen, Dr. Robert Sears thought you were being paid by Big Pharma to post the kind of comments that you do. Are you? Would you be likely to tell the truth if you were? That would, of course, be relevant information for readers to bear in mind if it is true. I get nothing from anyone, but I have a seriously vaccine-damaged daughter, and would like to warn others hoping to save other children from the same fate.

  • raven

    My two vaccinated nieces got whooping cough from an unvaccinated classmate. Do you know that it lasts for months? My oldest niece was hospitalized because she coughed until she vomited several times a day. For months on end. It was aweful. Watching my niece loose 40 pounds because whooping cough made her vomit constantly was scary and unneccessary.

    My pregnant co-worked got chickenpox from an unvaccinated classmate of her son. She was 9 months pregnant and her baby died. Watching her life fall apart over chicken pox was truly heartbreaking.

    These are people I know and care about. Please don’t tell me to respect your choice to give fatal illnesses to others. Both of these diseases are nearly totally preventable. You don’t want to vaccinate? That’s fine but you need to take extra precautions. Most illnesses like those have a fairy long incubation period.

    I don’t want to go back to a world where polio and measles are common illnesses and hundreds of children die from diseases we could have prevented.

    • Courtney

      @Raven: Thanks for reminding people it’s not just other children at risk when people choose not to be vaccinated. It’s your pregnant neighbor, your elderly grandparents, the man around the corner receiving chemo/radiation treatments for his cancer or any other person with a weakened immune system due to infection or age. That’s what people don’t seem to get. It isn’t just about your kid, it’s about all of the other people who can’t be vaccinated because of special medical reasons, but depend on the rest of us to be vaccinated to protect them. When will people in this world be less selfish and think about others for a change?

    • WVMountainMama

      They recommend vaccinations for the immunocompromised FIRST. Because you are elderly, or because you are pregnant, or because you have cancer, they recommend vaccinations to these people. I know of a baby in our state whose mother is donating a kidney for his transplant and the hospital refuses to do the transplant until he’s vaccinated, even though he is extremely immunocompromised and it’s the mother’s own kidney. He already reacted to the first dose yet they are insisting he keep getting vaccinated before they will do the surgery. It is so terribly beyond ridiculous the lies the feed the public about protecting those who can’t be vaccinated. Those who can’t be vaccinated due to a medical reason usually choose not to be vaccinated for that reason, not because the doctor told them they can’t be. Pregnant women can’t have the MMR vaccine, however, if their rubella immunities are gone until after they deliver, because it’s a live virus vaccine and can cause the same damage that the virus itself can cause to the fetus. If you are of child-bearing age, I recommend you get your immunity (blood titers) checked for measles, mumps, rubella, and chicken pox. If you don’t have immunity, get the shot BEFORE you get pregnant. And then keep getting your titers checked periodically to see if your immunity has waned since your last dose.

    • Ursula

      Raven, do you realize how illogical your argument is? Your VACCINATED nieces got whooping cough? Does that not clearly show that vaccines don’t work?

      Why did your co-worker get chickenpox? Because she didn’t have it herself as a kid. Yes, it is a tragedy what happened to her. But to blame an ‘unvaccinated’ kid for that? How did she catch it, did her vaccinated son get chickenpox?

      As with all vaccines, the chickenpox one doesn’t work. I have heard from MANY people that their kids got chickenpox (one THREE times) after getting the vaccine.

      Not a SINGLE vaccine in all of history has ever been proven to be safe or effective. Not one. The long-term studies don’t exist to prove safety. But there is plenty of evidence for harm caused by vaccines

    • Julie Ann Hayes

      Holy crap you are a moron.

    • Jen

      And…Ursula just officially proved she knows literally NOTHING about vaccines. Please stop spreading lies, rumors and misinformation. You are wrong, your conspiracy theories are completely off the wall, the “facts” you state have been proven false and you clearly don’t actually care about things like scientific evidence or research.

    • ciaparker

      It’s too bad that your nieces were hospitalized and lost a lot of weight when they had whooping cough. On the good side, they didn’t die and suffered no permanent ill effects. Goddess’ baby was killed by the DTP. My fully vaccinated 9-month old daughter caught whooping cough at a La Leche League meeting, it didn’t even occur to me that she might be in any danger among tons of toddlers and babies. But the shot isn’t very effective, and she caught it anyway, and coughed horribly for over a month. But she recovered just the way your nieces did (though without being hospitalized). She had had encephalitis from the hep-B vaccine, and had delayed speech. But she had started saying uh for up when at the slide at the playground, and uff for dog. When she got the DTaP booster at eighteen months, these two words immediately disappeared, and she didn’t say them or any other word until she was almost three, when she started saying baby repeated syllables, like ba-ba, poo-poo, mama, and so on. I think the booster further damaged her brain. She was diagnosed with suspected autism, later confirmed, when she was twenty months old.
      It’s important to try to accept that several things can be true at the same time. The DTaP has a 30-70% rate of efficacy. It might prevent pertussis or it might not. It has a high rate of damage, even in its new acellular version. It has killed or disabled thousands. Ginger Taylor of the Canary Party and the blog Adventures in Autism, has a son who became autistic after the DTaP. Sometimes people who get pertussis die of it, nearly always babies under four months old, although even in that age group, most of them recover without suffering damage. It used to be a killer disease, but has evolved to be a relatively mild one in most people. The disease has become more common, even in totally vaccinated populations. The decision to vaccinate or not must be respected, as there are good reasons both for and against (although I come down on the against side).
      Even vaccine defenders admit that the varicella vaccine for chicken pox is a very reactive, dangerous one. It’s the same thing: chickenpox is usually a mild disease which usually confers permanent immunity. On rare occasions it can disable or kill, especially young babies or fetuses, as in the case you mention. But you cannot demand that everyone take a dangerous vaccine which might kill or damage them hoping to prevent them from transmitting chickenpox to the people you care about. At most you should take the vaccine yourself before becoming pregnant if you are willing to take the risk of the vaccine and are extremely afraid of getting the disease. I had an Indian friend who caught it from his girlfriend’s daughter, was hospitalized for several weeks, put on an ice bed, and nearly died. My father caught it as an adult, but didn’t have a bad case, and recovered just fine. I know people who have had bad cases of shingles (from the chickenpox virus lodging permanently in their nervous system). I had it when my daughter was nearly two, two little lines of lesions on my chest and left upper arm. They weren’t very painful, and went away in a few weeks. My daughter caught chicken pox from my shingles, and I was glad. She had a high fever and vomiting for one day, hundreds of pox all over her body, but little itching. She recovered after two weeks with only one chickenpox scar next to her nose. I am extremely glad that she now has permanent immunity to chicken pox, and glad I refused the varicella vaccine. Again, there are risks on either side, but it is immoral to demand that other people vaccinate against any disease. In another era, your pregnant co-worker would probably have had chicken pox as a child, and would not have had a problem when she was pregnant.
      There is an outbreak of measles in Europe this year, 26,074 cases so far, most of them in vaccinated people. There have been only nine deaths .03%. If there is a similar outbreak here, it will involve exactly the same calculus. The measles vaccine or the MMR are both very dangerous vaccines, and you cannot compel someone else to put themselves or their children at risk because you only care about yourself getting the measles and not whether they die or get autism or bowel disease from the vaccine. Go get the MMR yourself, and let others make their own decisions!
      I had a college roommate crippled by polio, but at that time, fifteen years later, she was happy and cheerful, and had a lot of friends. My autistic daughter doesn’t have any friends. Same thing, everyone must be allowed to make their own decisions regarding vaccines. No vaccine is safe.

    • WVMountainMama

      How can you be sure that your nieces and your pregnant coworker contracted these illnesses from unvaccinated children? Just because they were around unvaccinated children who had these diseases does not mean that perhaps they caught it from the same source as the unvaccinated child (another classmate, perhaps) or even a totally different person altogether, like an adult at Walmart who was sick. Correlation does not equal causation. Unless the unvaccinated child with the illness was the ONLY person that these people were ever exposed to in public, there is no way to prove they are who caused your nieces and coworker’s illnesses. I don’t want my unvaccinated child to catch whooping cough or chicken pox either. But I don’t live my life in fear that he will. I cannot prevent a disease even with a vaccine (as proven by your nieces who were vaccinated). But I can prevent a vaccine injury. So I go for the one that is in my control (not vaccinating) and not the one that is out of my control (the disease itself).

  • Leigha

    Part of the problem with this debate is that we are living in an era where literally every person alive has grown up in a world with vaccines. Even our grandparents and great-grandparents had a select few. Because of this, we tend to forget WHY they’re necessary. If you were living 200 years ago, you would likely have given birth to not 1-4 kids but 8-20, and if you were lucky, maybe half of them would live to adulthood. The rest would die of smallpox, diphtheria, tuberculosis, whooping cough, or the flu. Notice how we have vaccines for all of those? That is WHY you haven’t had several kids die from them, and why none of your neighbors have either. Smallpox has even been eradicated thanks to vaccination. No one in the entire world has gotten it in nearly 40 years. Compare that to the millions upon millions of people who died from it before that.

    To put real numbers to it, here’s a collection of statistics I read recently that I find absolutely astounding. Most people are aware of the polio epidemic of the early- to mid-1900s, which ultimately led us into the era of vaccination. In 1916, there were over 27,000 cases of polio in the US. At the peak of the epidemic, in 1952, there were 57,628, over twenty thousand of whom were left paralyzed. Then a vaccine became available. In 1955, there were under 30,000 cases; in 1956, less than 15,000; and in 1957, less than 6,000. Even more amazing? In the ENTIRE TIME from1960-1983, there were just 210 cases of polio. Someone pointed out that faulty vaccines led to people getting polio. This is true. In 1955 a faulty batch of vaccines caused 200 cases of polio and 11 deaths. Further, the switch from killed to attenuated virus may have been responsible for half of the cases between 1960 and 1983. To be perfectly honest? I’d rather face the odds of being one of the 300 people to be infected by the vaccine in 30 years than one of the 60,000 to get it naturally in ONE year.

    It has been shown, about as conclusively as possible, that the measles vaccine does NOT cause autism. Any correlation is likely nothing more than the fact that the vaccine is given at the same time as autism is normally detected, combined with increased awareness resulting in more diagnoses. What is definitely true is that NOT getting a measles vaccine can cause measles, not just for your unvaccinated child, but your aunt on dialysis, your pregnant best friend, your elderly father, and your babysitter’s too-young-to-be-vaccinated baby.

    The absolute worst thing about the trend of avoiding the measles vaccine is that measles is particularly dangerous for babies and pregnant women. I guarantee you my kids will be vaccinated, but if they died before they were old enough to receive the vaccine because someone felt it was unnecessary for them to get their kids vaccinated, I would not be very happy, to say the least.

    And trust me, it’s not an exaggerated concern. Thanks to the officially debunked autism rumors, measles has returned in somewhat limited amounts in the US and to a significant degree in Europe. France had 5,000 cases in just the first few months of last year. Complications from measles are fairly common, and 1-2 in 1000 die. That is much higher than the risk from the vaccine. Seizures from high fever can occur in about 1 in 3000, but febrile seizures aren’t uncommon in general (2-5% of children have them–note the vaccine-associated incidence falls between those numbers at 3%). The more severe complications, which could either be associated with the vaccine itself or an allergic reaction, occur in about 1 in a million doses.

    Is it really worth the risk, allowing your child to potentially be one of the handful per 1000 that die or suffer permanent brain damage because of measles, to avoid being the 1 in a million that suffer serious side effects from the vaccine? Is it worth the risk of your kid causing an unimmunized baby to die from measles? If you can honestly say that yes, the astronomically low odds of something bad happening outweigh the guilt you would feel if your decision resulted in your child or someone else’s dying, then go right ahead. But don’t come near any of my kids, at least until they’re old enough to be vaccinated.

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  • Ursula

    There is a HUGE problem with this article. IF vaccines work, then your kids should be protected, right? So, why are you afraid to let your kids play with unvaccinated kids? Logic would say, that it is the UNVACCINATED kids who are at risk, not the vaccinated ones.

    Of course, as has been shown over and over, vaccinations don’t work at all, and vaccinated kids are MORE likely to catch the very diseases they’ve been vaccinated for.

    The recent whooping cough epidemics in California were among FULLY vaccinated children. A new, mutated form of whooping cough has emerged. And the experts agree, that the mutation is a direct result of vaccines. What do they suggest? Vaccinate for whooping cough (with the old vaccine, which caused the problem to begin with)! Very logical, I’m sure. Logical for the vaccine manufacturers, really, as they’d lose money if you stop vaccinating.

    Of COURSE your pediatrician tells you to vaccinate! He’d be out of business, if people stopped vaccinating their kids. Vaccinations are his bread and butter.

    Nobody can convince me that injecting babies and young children (or anybody else) with toxins, foreign DNA and infectious bacteria and viruses will make anybody healthier.

    Plus, a baby’s immune system is non-functioning until around one year of age. They rely on mother’s milk for immunity until their immune systems mature enough to kick in.

    So, injecting babies with vaccines to stimulate their non-existing immune system is going to do nothing other than cause inflammation of the brain, and making them sick.

    • Sarah

      Um, I’m sorry, but this kind of misinformation is precisely why it’s so difficult to make an informed decision on this issue. It’s very difficult to find any argument against vaccination that isn’t hysterical, based on unfounded conspiracy theories and plain untruths. I follow the advice of my paediatrician and child health nurse, because so many myths are perpetuated by the anti-vaccination lobby. (And, on that issue, do you really believe that paediatricians would be ‘out of business’ if kids weren’t vaccinated? The child mortality rate in Western societies was much higher before these diseases were eradicated. And it just seems ludicrous to me that every paediatrician is uninterested in the welfare of children and vaccinates purely for financial gain.)
      Vaccinated kids are far less likely to catch these diseases than unvaccinated kids – why do you think diseases like measles, mumps, polio and diphtheria are so rare today, when they were so common a few decades ago? If what you say is true, we should be seeing an increase in these diseases.
      Where I live, in Australia, outbreaks of whooping cough are primarily affecting adults, whose vaccinations have worn off, and unvaccinated BABIES whose parents have no choice in the matter because they’re too young to be vaccinated. Several babies have died, many have spent weeks in hospital, suffering brain damage because of oxygen deprivation.
      If vaccinations do ‘nothing other than cause inflammation of the brain’, why don’t we see millions of babies in Western societies with inflamed brains, and again, why is the incidence of these diseases down? The majority of children have no reaction and don’t catch the disease – some children do have a mild reaction, and a very small percentage have a more severe reaction – this is the information that parents are given by health professionals, and I don’t see how it can be disputed.
      You say that a baby’s immune system is ‘non-functioning until the age of one’ – nonsense. It is very weak until around 6 weeks of age (which is why it’s important to ensure that there isn’t a high risk of babies being exposed to diseases like whooping cough and measles). If it was ‘non-functioning’ until the age of one, formula-fed babies would die of the first cold they came into contact with. Not to mention every scratch and mosquito bite would get infected (and ultimately kill them). I frankly don’t see how this widely inaccurate notion actually supports your case anyway….
      It’s so sad to think of all the millions of children in developing countries who die before they reach school age who are just crying out for vaccines while increasing numbers in the West resist them – and we’re given license to resist them by the fact that we’re the beneficiaries of all of the developments of modern medicine. It’s because of things like vaccines that our children are unlikely to die of communicable diseases, vaccinated or not. I fear that as more and more parents of healthy children choose not to immunise, it will be very young babies and immunosuppressed children and adults who will pay the price.

    • whiteroses

      This. Also- how do you explain my incredibly healthy 7 month old who has been on formula since the day he was born? If a baby’s immune system didn’t exist until 1, then we’d have infants dying from the common cold.

      It’s nice, I suppose, to just assume that all these big bad doctors don’t care about their patients and only vaccinate them because, hey, 50 extra bucks! But speaking as someone who comes from a family full of health professionals, I can attest that such a thing couldn’t be further from the truth. My grandfather distinctly remembers watching his grandfather, a country doctor, work himself to the bone during whooping cough and measles epidemics. Despite his best efforts, children still died. It didn’t matter how hard he worked, there was literally nothing he could do to say some of those lives. Diseases that are preventable due to vaccines used to wipe out entire communities. What about the Flu Epidemic of 1917? Modern medicine is truly a miracle and allows us to have life expectancy past eighty, whereas in previous centuries people would be lucky to live past forty.

  • Rachel

    This post is very disheartening to me. Obviously we all love our children and want what is best for them. When are kids are involved it’s easy for emotions to run high. I think it’s fair to say that everyone of us posting here are doing so because we have strong feelings about vaccinations whether it is to give them to are children or not too. Or maybe because we are on the fence about it. Scared what will happen if you vaccinate and scared what will happen if you don’t. Why do we have such strong feelings about it? Because we love our kids!!! This is not a matter of being irresponsible or selfish or stupid. Please don’t bash another mother for doing what she truly feels is best for her children when you are doing no different! Those of us who choose not to vaccinated our children do so for the same reasons that those of you who choose to vaccinate do. We want to protect our children from harm and so do you. So we have that in common, great! :) So what is the deal with all of the insults and attacks on character? How is that productive? It’s not. Saying that someone is an idiot, uneducated, an asshole, or irresponsble because they decide not to vaccinate is not just unfair, it is counter productive to the the most important issue which is the safety of ALL of our children and the community. If you feel that vaccinations are necessary, fine. Then fight with the manufacturers to make them as safe as possible and less toxic so that more parents might decide to vaccinate. If you feel that vaccinations are harmful, fine. Fight for more more studies to be done and more education about the risks to be exposed so that parents can make an educated decision and not be ostracized about choosing to not vaccinate. Just stop fighting with each other. We are all just doing the best we can with the information we have. Now do as your mother once taught you and treat others how you would like to be treated.

  • cia parker

    As others here have commented, to the extent to which vaccines are often effective in protecting against disease, a vaccinated child is protected and is in no danger from unvaccinated children. Unfortunately, vaccines are often ineffective in conferring disease protection. The pertussis vaccine is notoriously ineffective (30-70% effective), while still being one of the most dangerous of the vaccines, even in its new acellular version. My baby had had the DTaP vaccine at 2, 4, and 6 months of age, and still got pertussis at a La Leche League meeting in January when she was nine months old. Most of the children who got pertussis in California in 2010 had received all the vaccinations considered appropriate for their age. On the good side, pertussis has evolved over the centuries and, while again fairly common, is no longer a very serious disease. It’s only dangerous in infants less than four months old, in whom the vaccine doesn’t work anyway (see Manitoba study). Parents should be careful to keep young babies away from possible contagion, and if infecton occurs anyway, resign themselves to walking around with the baby on their shoulder all night during the coughing phase to help them cough up the mucus from undeveloped airways. Antibiotics are useless once the coughing has started, but anthroposophic remedies Pertudoron 1 and 2 are useful.
    Children must contract and overcome many diseases the natural way in order to educate their immune system to mount a strong, appropriate defense against invaders. Vaccines confuse the immune system with many strange microbes and chemicals which suddenly appear in the blood, having bypassed the usual lines of first defense in the airways and digestive tract. Vaccines are supposed to provoke the immune system into an inflammatory response and produce antibodies. Unfortunately, many people’s immune systems react with excessive inflammation (encephalitis) or chronic autoimmune inflammation (resulting in asthma, autism, ADHD, learning disorders, seizure disorders, allergies, bowel disease, or diabetes).
    My baby was given the hep-B vaccination at the hospital when she was born, even though Congress the year before (May 1999) had declared this vaccine to be so dangerous that it recommended a moratorium be placed on its use. My baby reacted with four days and nights (from four to eight days old) of constant, inconsolable screaming (vaccine-induced encephalitis) and was later diagnosed with autism. I had tested negative for hep B, she was in no danger of contracting the disease, there has been no case of any child contracting the disease from casual contact with other children. Protection would wear off long before the child engaged in risky sexual behavior or illegal drug use, the primary modes of transmission. The only reason for giving this vaccine to infants their first day of life is greed for profits, despite its having caused many thousands of cases of autism.
    I had a college roommate who had been crippled by polio when she was three. She had to use a wheelchair or walk with braces and crutches. But she was happy and cheerful, and had many friends. She was on her way to an independent life, unlike my daughter who is moderately affected by autism, thanks to the hep-B vaccine and a DTaP booster at eighteen months.

  • cia parker

    I just read a comment here that Andrew Wakefield’s study had been debunked. This is not true. Read Wakefield’s Callous Disregard to learn more about the controversy than was broadcast by the media last January. Wakefield did a case study of twelve children, nine of whom had developed autism and bowel disease shortly after getting the MMR. Brian Deer, an independent journalist who was paid by Big Pharma to bring the charges against Wakefield, has been discredited himself and shown to have lied in much of his published evidence. His conduct was so egregious that Fiona Godlee, editor of the British Medical Journal, is reopening the investigation into Wakefield’s study. Several of Wakefield’s former attackers are now citing his work with approval and saying it was appropriately and professionally done. Hundreds of thousands of parents in the U.S. support Wakefield’s findings, having seen for themselves how their children, like the Wakefield Twelve, were walking, talking, socializing, until they got the MMR, when they suddenly became very ill with autism and bowel disease.
    All three vaccines, the measles, mumps, and rubella, while especially devastating given together, are each very dangerous in their own right.
    Until the 1980s, measles was considered a relatively mild, common childhood disease. I had it when I was six: at that time, in the 1960s, everyone did. The child should stay in bed for two weeks, in a darkened room, but complications like pneumonia and meningitis are very uncommon. Vitamin A greatly reduces the incidence of complications. The measles vaccine virus often lodges indefinitely in the digestive system, wreaking its havoc. Hundreds of children have gotten measles in infrequent outbreaks in the U.S. in recent decades, and they have all recovered. Parents must decide for themselves whether to incur the considerable risk of death or permanent damage from the vaccine or the slight risk of death or permanent damage from the natural diseases. Rubella is completely harmless to children, and is only sometimes dangerous to the fetus of pregnant women in the first months of pregnancy. Maybe we should return to isolation of vulnerable groups for the sake of allowing everyone else to acquire permanent immunity from natural exposure.
    Someone observed here that pertussis lasts a long time. That’s true, my vaccinated daughter caught it and coughed up sheets of mucus at the end of every thirty-second coughing spell on one breath for over a month. She gave it to me: my mother had taken me for lots of DTPs when I was a child, but they had worn off long ago, and I coughed for over two months. But we were not in danger, it was an inconvenience more than anything else. ‘The vaccine presents the considerable risk of causing asthma and other types of immune system damage. Here, as in the case of all the other vaccines, parents must read a lot and make a difficult decision.
    Dr. Bob Sears, in The Vaccine Guide, says that there are a lot of credible studies that support the hypothesis of vaccine damage, and if they are eventually proven to be unassailable, that would mean the damage caused by vaccines would be greater than the danger presented by the return of vaccine-preventable diseases. He is very conservative in his approach, and in my opinion, vaccine damage is no longer just a hypothesis, but a fact. My baby got the hep-B vaccine, encephalitis, autism, bang, bang, bang. And that’s a fact.

    • Jen

      I’m really curious where you are getting this information from. There is absolutely nothing that I can turn up that indicates Godlee is opening an investigation in Deer’s claims. I do see a lot of information about Godlee opening up more inquiries into Wakefield and his associates previous studies as more evidence has surfaced of even more falsification of information. I also haven’t seen a single article (aside from non-medical anti-vaccine stuff of course) stating that Wakefield has been vindicated and nothing to show that anyone in the medical community views him as anything other than the worst kind of fraud.

      And that investigation into further misdoings by Wakefield and colleagues by Godlee and the BMJ was just announced at the beginning of last month. I’m pretty sure any more recent turnaround on Godlee’s part would have been heavily reported (unless of course they’re ALL in the pocket of Big Pharma).

  • goddess

    You say: “but there’s a bigger issue that I just can’t get past. It’s an issue I have with you, parent of the unvaccinated, not actually with your child. It’s a feeling that you’re not doing your part here; not holding up your end of the bargain.”

    How DARE you! Our oldest son died from adverse reactions to his DTP vaccines a s a baby. His cerebral cortex started turning to mush. He never sat up, walked, talked fed himself or was potty trained. He suffered sever gastritis and reflux, painful contractures of his tendons necessitating 2 surgeries on his hip[- the second of which gave him a septic infection that killed him at 6 yrs old.

    If I am choosy about which vaccines my other 3 children have received I guess I could say YOU are enjoying herd immunity gained by the sacrifice and death of my child. I’m feeling like you’;re getting it all pretty easily.

    You have nothing on those who lost THEIR child in order to give YOUR child immunity.

  • ciaparker

    I agree with Goddess, the problem is that the people who are indignant about those who choose not to vaccinate their children are denying that vaccines often cause serious damage. By mindlessly accepting the medical propaganda, designed to further its own agenda, people like this are saying that those of us who have suffered vaccine damage are mistaken or lying. I understand it’s more comfortable to believe that vaccines are safe in the vast majority of cases, that they are effective, and that they have saved millions from death or disability from diseases like smallpox, polio, meningitis, and so on. It’s a belief system that actually ranks as a religion, and all the evidence to the contrary is discarded without giving it further thought. But yes, this means calling those of us with damaged children liars. My baby got the hepatitis B vaccine that I had said I didn’t want her to get, reacted with encephalitis, and autism. This is a fact. Read Judy Converse’s book about her son who suffered the same reaction. She testified before Congress in 1999, when Congress recommended a moratorium be placed on the vaccine. But the combination of pharma profits and this belief system have insured that this extremely dangerous, needless shot is still being given to newborns.
    Many babies have died, many have been permanently damaged. An old friend told me last week her first grandson reacted to a vaccine with an epileptic seizure at nine months old. It was diagnosed as demyelinating epilepsy. There is no safe vaccine. If you look up VAERS reports, every vaccine has caused many cases of death or permanent disability. It would be better to read books like Wendy Lydall’s Raising a Vaccine-Free Child for extremely well-referenced articles about the havoc caused by the smallpox vaccine, the countless deaths, and the inefficacy of the polio and diphtheria vaccines. She recommends homeopathic treatment for the serious diseases, treatment more readily available and better respected in Australia, where she lives.
    I posted a comment yesterday which I would like to revise. Whistle-blower David Lewis published an article last month defending Wakefield in the British journal Nature. He also wrote a letter on the same subject which was printed in the BMJ. Fiona Godlee in response is calling for another investigation hoping to prove that many researchers connected with Wakefield were part of a giant conspiracy to commit fraud. She is not at this point admitting that Wakefield was right, but I think that her present endeavor will have the opposite result of what she intends.

    • luvmylittleone

      Angela…. I just wanted to let you know that your child is NOT 100% safe if they are vaccinated and are around non vaccinated children. I know this because my little boy has had all his vaccinations and just caught a horrible case of Pertussis (whooping cough) from someone in his school who was non vaccinated. Because he had been vaccinated he was very sick for two weeks before his pediatrician even tested him for Pertussis. He had been on 2 rounds of antibiotics, steroids, breathing treatments (and even an ER visit) none of which was helping because he wasnt on the proper treatment for Whooping cough. The experience of this infection was frightening and stressful. Its something you DO NOT want to experience and I pray we will never experience again. He has been sick for 3 weeks now and is finally getting better. His pediatrician was immediately contacted by the Health department. We were then contacted by the health department via phone and in person to make sure that my husband and I were taking our round of antibiotics and getting the Whooping cough vaccination so that we did not spread this highly contagious and dangerous infection. I myself have a disease that causes me to be immuno suppressed so now I am freaking out that I may catch whooping cough as well. I think it is great that the Health department was so quick to respond but I am confused as to why the health department doesnt do this same type of thing with people who do not vaccinate. Yes, I am upset right now that someone elses beliefs about not vaccinating have affected the well being and health of my own child who HAS been vaccinated against some of these sometimes deadly infections. I never really thought about vaccinations and the importance of them until this recent experience. I have to say that I am freaked out now about having my little boy around children who are not vaccinated now. I dont care what parents say about me and my thoughts now in regards to my fear. Perhaps if they experienced this with their child or loved one they would see our feelings as Valid. And, let me just add that I am also upset with parents who send their children to school sick as well. Why should my child who I try to do everything to keep healthy be forced to be around a child who is SICK? Common sense tells me that you dont want to spread germs/illnesses so you do everything NOT to do this…Im floored at how many people lack what I feel is common sense. I am floored at how many times I have seen several children out and about and in my little boys classroom hacking, sneezing, running noses, etc. Guess who gets sick every time there is a sick child in his class? My son and me! While I RUN faster then you can imagine while seeing sick individuals in public places, I cant pull my son out of class every day when there is a sick kid in it. Its not fair ! Sorry I got off track there….Back to the vaccinations though…..I feel that it is fine if parents choose not to vaccinate their children but I also feel that we, as parents of vaccinated children, should have the right know if there are un vaccinated children in a school/classroom and/or how many my child will be around. It should be my choice to decide if I want to risk the health and well being of my child by being exposed to non vaccinated children. Maybe I would rather Home School if I knew that there were a lot of non vaccinated kids in a school knowing now that even a vaccinated child isnt safe. I apologize if I sound like a witch but Im really upset over this right now. My little boy was so sick with an infection that was almost never seen for many years. I applaud your story and I agree with it completely. I AM scared now to have my child around non vaccinated children and I have a valid reason to feel this way.

    • Kellie

      First of all, I’d like to say how sorry I am to hear that your son got terribly sick and went through all that. It certainly sounds terrifying. Next, I’d like to ask how you know for sure that your son caught pertussis from a non-vaccinated child? If your fully vaccinated child was able to get the disease, don’t you think that he’s able to spread it as well? What I mean is… maybe he got pertussis from another fully vaccinated child that also caught it. It just goes to show that the vaccinations are not 100% foolproof.

      For instance: Jonas Salk, the creator of the polio vaccine, made a public statement admitting that over 2/3s of the cases of polio reported between 1966 and 1976 were CREATED by his polio vaccine.redOrbit (

      So, if polio was actually spread through the vaccine itself, it’s presumably safe to say that other preventable diseases are spread through their vaccines, hence the vaccinated population spreading the diseases they are trying to prevent, blaming the unvaccinated population.

      Most of the diseases were also declining before the first vaccine was ever injected, so the vaccines alone are not fully responsible for eradicating disease.

    • Kellie

      One more thing….. there are many more unvaccinated children in the public school system than you think. It is not mandatory, as many would believe, and more parents are choosing not to fully vaccinate. Not to sound awful, but your fully vaccinated child may be sitting in the middle of 2 partially-vaxed or unvaxed kids and you would have no clue, or even a right to know about it.

  • cia parker

    luvmylittle one:
    Your experience bears out what I have said. Both your child and mine got whooping cough even though they had been appropriately vaccinated. The pertussis vaccine is only 30-70% effective, which means that about half of those who get the vaccine can still catch and transmit pertussis, as our children did (mine gave it to me!)
    Since the vaccine is very dangerous, you can read here of the experience of some women whose children it damaged or killed. It causes SIDS, asthma, seizure disorders, and autism (it caused the autism of Ginger Taylor’s son, and the fourth booster made my daughter lose the only two words she was speaking at 18 months).
    The disease is not usually dangerous except to some newborns. There is no allopathic treatment for it, antibiotics do no good once the coughing has started. It was scary and dramatic, but not dangerous in my nine (and then ten) month old daughter, or in me, as it is not dangerous in most of those who get it.
    It would be wise to quarantine babies less than four months old if there is any whooping cough in town, since both vaccinated and unvaccinated people can give it to him. It is unfair to demand that others take the very real risk of damaging or killing their child by giving him the vaccine just on the not very strong hope that it will have the effect of protecting your child.

  • Lisa

    If parents would feed their babies and children a true healthy diet and trust in God instead of in the government, doctors, science that changes over the years, and pharmaceutical companies there wouldn’t be any of this anger and turmoil over vaccinations AND children wouldn’t need vaccinations. Isn’t that the best concept of all? So learn about nutrition and healthy diet and about the immune system. Oh another very important thing is to make sure you and your children are eliminating 2-3 times a day (preferrably 20-30 mins after a meal). What goes in MUST come out otherwise you will run into trouble.

    • Melissa

      You can’t be serious. As long as people eat a healthy diet they will never get sick? I want to live in your fairy tale world, can I??

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  • Chad Burdick

    How much logic does it take for idiots to understand if you truly believe the vaccine works how is your child in risk of exposure from an unvaccinated child. If anything your petri dish you call a child is the danger to the unvaccinated children keep your ignorance to yourself it’s not even good propaganda your playing off peoples fears with completely fallacious comments.

  • josie

    Dear author, i believe every mother wants the best for her kids. So do I. And the best for my kids is to be not vaccinated! I just have one question for you – if your children are vaccinated- how come that you are scared that they will get some sickness from not vaccinated kids??? And your view on this thing is so uneducated.

  • Katya

    My unvaccinated kids get sick maybe once every two years…and when I mean sick, I mean a cold or a stomach ache. They have high immune systems!

  • Michelle

    I love this. My son has many health issues and even needed a liver transplant. He is now 18 months and I can’t imagine letting him play with unvaccinated children. Mostly because these preventable illnesses are even more deadly to my immune compromised and suppressed child. I think we’ve gone too long with these deadly diseases suppressed for people to realize why we started giving vaccinations in the first place, because these are awful illnesses, life changing, threatening and absolutely horrible. I hope this new fad of not vaccinating ends soon.. They are trying to prove links between induced labor and autism.. And microcondrial disease. Not vaccines.
    And I also want to say, all of you anti vaccine parents in an outrage, do you allow your children to have fast food.. A happy meal? Yèah.. That stuff is straight up chemicals. Disgusting. And then you turn to the same medical professionals you undermine by saying they’re poisoning your child.. When that same child is sick. You expect them to fix it, and make it better with their meds… You’re making life changing choices of things you’re reading on google, by people who don’t know what they’re talking about. Not everything in the Internet is true!!! Realize it. Most anti vaccine websites don’t even site real names, cases, people or full truths, or even in some cases any truth…

  • Nicole W.

    ….and I don’t particularly want your recently vaccinated child playing with my unvaccinated child with the possibilities of vaccine shedding. My husband is a physician and we have spent countless hours researching this subject – and no, there were no Jenny McCarthy books involved in our research. We don’t have full confidence in the safety of vaccinations at this point, and believe strongly in informed consent and the rights of all parents to choose for their own families. My husband allows this in his practice and encourages families to diligently research before choosing. He will vaccinate or not vaccinate as families see fit. Of course he also views his practice as an opportunity to help families shape their health and nutrition to encourage strong immune systems instead of just waiting for them to come ask him for a prescription when they’re already terribly ill. So, no, I’m not worried about you not wanting your child to play with mine. There are plenty of educated parents whose children are both vaccinated and unvaccinated who are quite happy to let their children play with mine. Move along.

  • WVMountainMama

    Unfortunately if it were the unvaccinated kids getting these illnesses, your post would be a bit more valid. But since it’s the vaccinated kids coming down with these illnesses, the problem instead lies with the health care (sick care) system in our country. When it first came out, the MMR vaccine was said to give lifelong immunity to the recipient, the same way contracting measles, mumps, or rubella naturally would. In the 1980s they realized that outbreaks were happening due to waning immunity from the vaccines and they added the booster dose officially to the schedule in 1989. Since then they have realized that even the booster dose is not sufficient to give lifelong immunity and are guessing immunity is starting wane after 4 years since the last dose but may possibly last up to 10 years in some cases. The best way to protect the herd is to allow our children to catch these diseases in early childhood and have lifelong immunity that way. In a population that has natural immunity against an illness, only 67% need to have that immunity to protect the rest of the population. In a vaccine-induced herd immunity scenario, upwards of 95-100% of all those in the population must be vaccinated in order to protect the herd. And even then it’s not guaranteed as no one knows when the vaccine will wear off on a given person. To keep your child from playing with an unvaccinated child is just as absurd as those parents who don’t vaccinate who don’t want their children around vaccinated kids who recently had their nasal flu shot or MMR and chicken pox vaccines that shed the live viruses. Stop worrying about the diseases we have medicines and knowledge of immune system boosters (like vitamin C and D) to help deal with now and start worrying about the diseases and conditions we CAN’T treat in this country. I can’t imagine telling my children they can’t play with a child because they have HIV or hepatitis. Why I would keep them from playing with a child who doesn’t even have a disease but could potentially come down with one at some point in their life? And so could their vaccinated best friend.

  • Ashley

    Its pretty upsetting to me that you would juge other parents based on their beliefs on some pretty terrifying chemicals and hardly tested vaccines pushed by the medical industry. If your kids are in fact vaccinated then what does it matter to you if I choose not to expose my children to the possible side effects of many many vaccinations and chemicals that were never intended by mother nature to go anywhere near a peraon, let alone a child. Also as a parent I would prefer we all avoided the herd mentality and made decisions based on our individual children. There is no one method that works for everyone because we are all different and so are our children and I don’t know about anyone else but I prefer mine that way and your insinuation that life would just be better if we all just followed the herd seems closed minded and frankly not very well thouht out to me. I’m sorry if that sounds rude but I feel like this article is a little on the rude side. P.s. look up the measels vaccine. Its been known to cause mass outbreaks of measels in the vaccinated parties. Do your research

  • Ashley

    Its pretty upsetting to me that you would juge other parents based on their beliefs on some pretty terrifying chemicals and hardly tested vaccines pushed by the medical industry. If your kids are in fact vaccinated then what does it matter to you if I choose not to expose my children to the possible side effects of many many vaccinations and chemicals that were never intended by mother nature to go anywhere near a peraon, let alone a child. Also as a parent I would prefer we all avoided the herd mentality and made decisions based on our individual children. There is no one method that works for everyone because we are all different and so are our children and I don’t know about anyone else but I prefer mine that way and your insinuation that life would just be better if we all just followed the herd seems closed minded and frankly not very well thouht out to me. I’m sorry if that sounds rude but I feel like this article is a little on the rude side. P.s. look up the measels vaccine. Its been known to cause mass outbreaks of measels in the vaccinated parties. Do your research

  • Natural Born Daddy

    I just LOVE getting called a bad parent for not vaccinating by people who probably can’t even name one vaccine ingredient.

    I’M a bad parent because I don’t let strangers inject my children with
    aluminum phosphate, formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde, 2-phenoxyethanol,
    Aluminum hydroxide, bovine extract, polysorbate 80, Aluminum potassium
    sulfate, ammonium sulfate, sodium phosphate, thimerosal, aluminum
    hydroxide, calf serum, neomycin sulfate, lactalbumin hydrolysate, hemin
    chloride, mineral salts, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, potassium
    aluminum sulfate, sodium borate, soy peptone, yeast protein, amino acid
    supplement, formalin, MRC-5 cellular protein, neomycin sulfate,
    phosphate buffers, polysorbate 20, Chicken embryo, Chicken kidney cells,
    monkey kidney cells, Rhesus fetal lung tissue culture, & Human
    diploid tissue cultures, and the list goes on…

    Vaccine DEATH
    & injury is a REAL THING! It’s not some made up fairytale. What more
    proof do you need than this: There is a National Vaccine Injury
    Compensation Program!!! Since 1989, and as of Jan. 2013; over 2.5
    billion dollars have been paid out from this vaccine caused injury and
    death compensation fund. $2,550,640,666.73 compensated BY THE

    But vaccines are completely safe, right?!!! Right?!?!

  • Alice

    You do realize that you can get whooping cough even if you have been vaccinated, right?