These Parents Don’t Want You Near Their Newborn Without A Whooping Cough Vaccine And Good For Them

876380-004The Internet is all for vaccines. Sure, there are pockets of those who don’t believe in vaccinating their children, but a huge majority do. If the subject of vaccines comes up in any forum – parenting or not – there is always a huge amount of pushback against those who don’t believe in vaccinating their children. I agree with the pushback. I’m with science on this one – children should be vaccinated. But it’s interesting to see how the conversation shifts if parents talk about wanting adults that are around their kids to get boosters.

A husband made this statement on a Reddit parenting forum this week:

Wife is due in 4 weeks with our first child, asked my parents to get whooping cough vaccine. They refused so we had to tell them that they wouldn’t be allowed to see or hold their new granddaughter until she is vaccinated. It didn’t go well at all.

The gist of the story is that he asked his mom to get vaccinated against whooping cough as per the recommendation of his pregnant wife’s doctor. Grandma refused because she thinks the risks of the vaccine aren’t worth it. He explains, “I’ve read many of the discussions about vaccines here and thought I was ready. I tried to explain our reasoning behind needing to get vaccinated but she wouldn’t have any of it. I finally had to tell her that they wouldn’t be allowed to see or hold their new grandchild.”

Now, some may see this as paranoid – but I think it’s a new parent’s right to be paranoid about their kid. Also, the pertussis vaccine can come in a combo shot for tetanus, which adults are recommended to get boosters for anyway. Honestly, the couple is probably being a little too paranoid, keeping Grandma away for six months if she’s not in some super high-risk group. But this also may just be the first battle-of-wills that happens – and I support parents standing their ground.

The comments were mostly supportive of the father’s decision – it is a parenting forum. The bottom line is, as a parent you are allowed to set boundaries – it’s one of the first lessons you’ll learn. Some may see those boundaries as outlandish, but in this case I think that if parents are honestly so worried about the health of their baby that they would keep an unvaccinated grandma away – they are going to be nervous and miserable if they let anyone around around the baby that they deem to be a health risk.

When you’re a new parent, your life is basically riddled with unrealistic fears. I’m all about sanity. If being a sane parent means that you have to set boundaries like these to make you feel better in the first few months of your child’s life – so be it. If grandma or anyone else needs to see the baby that bad, they can research the vaccine booster and realize it’s not that big of a deal, get it, and be done.

(photo: Getty Images)

You can reach this post's author, Maria Guido, on twitter.
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    • Guest

      I feel like Grandma needs to man up.

    • Kelly

      Good for them. Anti-vaxers are always bitching that everybody should get to choose for themselves. Well, they’re choosing vaccinations so stay the fuck away if you don’t like it. It’s their home and their child.

    • Aimee Beff

      I’m totally behind dad’s paranoia here. My 1-year-old nephew is unvaccinated (cry) and plays with a bunch of other unvaccinated kids in his circle of friends; and I put my foot down about him being around the twins before they had their DTaP shots. I went through too much to have them to risk losing them to anything so preventable. He lives in another state so it hasn’t been a huge issue so far, fortunately, but yeah – I will be Crazy Gatekeeper Mom if I have to be.

      • Aimee Beff

        Also a shout-out to my in-laws who were all, “WHAT SHOTS DO WE NEED BEFORE THE BABIES ARRIVE, WE WILL GET THEM TOMORROW”

      • koolchicken

        Nice! My husband had to fight with his parents to get them to get a flu shot. As everyone knows last year was really bad for the flu and my son was a preemie with a heart condition. You would think it’s a no brainer to try and protect him but apparently not…

      • Kelly

        Good for you. I have hardcore anti-vaxxers in my family and they weren’t welcome to be around my son before he was vaccinated. My MIL got all ass hurt and started spouting about how if I really believed in vaccinations, then I wouldn’t worry because his vaccinations would protect him.

        Yeah, that doesn’t mean shit before he’s old enough to receive the vaccinations so they were told to fuck off. They were all too busy having the mumps to come visit my new baby anyways.

      • FormerlyKnownAsWendy

        Oh holy shit, that’s classic. I mean, mumps sucks, but…wow.

      • Rachel Sea

        There are a bunch of charter schools in my county with 0% vaccination rates. That is not a typo, they are literally whole schools, of a few hundred kids, with ZERO vaccinations. I don’t know whether to scream or cry.

      • Kelly

        It’s only a matter of time before something rips through one of those schools and kills some kids.

      • Rachel Sea

        My county has had outbreaks of whooping cough, and H1N1, and babies and children have indeed died. It’s also an exceedingly wealthy area, which means international travel is not unusual. I will not be even a little surprised if these smug sacks of shit bring back polio.

      • Kelly

        Yeah, I keep waiting for polio to come back. I hope like hell it doesn’t happen but with all these rich, world travelers forgoing vaccinations… It seems like it’s only a matter of time.

      • SarahJesness

        In all fairness, aren’t most modern polio cases from like, Afghanistan or something? Not a favorite location for these types, but I get your point.

      • Kelly

        The hoity toity anti-vaxxers I know like to pay loads of money to go on “charitable vacations” where they “help” the “poor, uncivilized locals” in third world countries. Then they can pat themselves on the back and talk about how worldly their kids are.

        It’s a recipe for disaster.

      • SarahJesness

        But do they usually go to “scary” places like Afghanistan? Anyway, I always thought there were laws requiring vaccinations and such for international travel.

      • R Zhao

        I live in Asia and there are plenty of diseases here that you rarely find in the U.S., depending where you travel. There are not laws requiring vaccines, just recommendations.

      • pixie

        Last time I travelled I went to my doctor and pretty well told her to shoot me up with anything I might need. I only needed one shot, so it wasn’t that bad, but I would have sat through a dozen needles if it meant I was protecting myself and others. Not to mention I don’t think my parents would have let me on a plane without my boosters up to date and unprotected.

        I hate hearing about children dying from preventable diseases or bringing back diseases that haven’t been seen in a long time. :(

      • Teleute

        I knew a woman whose baby suffered permanent brain damage as a result of her refusing to get him the H1N1 vaccine. And she’d actually had the audacity to chastise ME for getting the vaccine while still breastfeeding my <6-month-old son.

      • Aimee Beff

        I was just reading an article about a woman who’s on an artificial lung in a coma and miscarried thanks to H1N1 flu … I just hope people start waking up soon to the fact that the consequences of getting these disease are way worse than vaccine side effects :(

      • Aimee Beff

        Oh my GOD. I can’t even imagine. D:

      • CW

        I suspect that’s a typo (e.g. someone forgot to send the data to the state) because even at Waldorf schools, the exemption rate isn’t 100%. I think our local Waldorf school is something like 60% have an exemption on file for at least one vaccine. And many of those kids with exemptions are selectively vaccinated rather than completely unvaccinated.

      • Rachel Sea

        Nope. It’s a network of anti-vaxing, whole food eating, homeopathic believing, entitled, rich jerks. When you get a bunch of rich jerks together, and they don’t want their special snowflakes exposed to the vaccinated bougeois masses, when they develop a culture of anti-vaxing in the greater community, they can effectively segregate their kids. The regular public schools, which are filled primarily with lower income kids have vaccination rates between 40-100%. The wealthier the school, the less they vaccinate. I can only assume they think their wealth insulates them.

      • Teleute

        Believe it or not, it’s a big thing in certain low-income, inner-city areas as well.

        I was first introduced to the anti-vax movement a few years ago by some former employees, and the hive-mind they all shared on this subject was astounding. Few of them owned computers, so I ended up printing out some statements from the CDC, which nearly everyone declined to read on the grounds that they’d already heard the “real” story from folks back home.

      • Rachel Sea

        I’m not surprised. All it takes is one community leader or one influential parent with terrible misinformation to spark a trend. There was recently a news story of a church which had been preaching against vaccinations, until they experienced an outbreak of measles.

      • pixie

        See, I find it almost understandable that it would be a big thing in some low-income inner-city areas. Less adequate education, less access to information (due to few having computers, as you mentioned), not having the money to afford insurance and/or the vaccines, to name just a few issues. There obviously should be things done to fix those issues, but those are issues for another day.
        In wealthy neighbourhoods, it seems almost negligent to strongly oppose vaccinations when the quality of education is often a lot better, nearly everyone has some form of health insurance, and everyone has access to information (or at least ability to easily access it). And obviously, it’s completely understandable if someone cannot receive a vaccine for other medical reasons, but those who can and don’t are putting those who cannot at risk.

      • NYCNanny

        Totally disagree on your point that “wealthy people think their $$ will insulate them…”
        Wealthier people tend I be more health conscious overall. They have better resources available to them, leading to a better grasp of overall health. Not saying this is fair, but your rationalization is dead wrong.

      • Rachel Sea

        These people think that their access to better doctors and better food and alternative medicine is better than vaccines. That is the same thing as thinking that their money protects them.

      • aCongaLine

        This scares me, holy shit.

        I’d expect a break out of like, polio, or something. (Fully understanding that polio is all but eradicated, and more likely it would be something else equally as antiquated and horrendous.)

        I wouldn’t teach there, ever.

      • kay

        whenever I see the lists of schools with low or non existent vax rates I think of them as a list of “where not to send my child”

      • Ptownsteveschick

        I would go ahead and send my vaccinated/exposed to everything child into that school, but I feel like it would be the equivalent of the settlers giving out small pox blankets to Native Americans…..

      • MaebykittyRN

        0%???? That’s a recipe for disaster. One outbreak could wipe out so many children.

      • evilstepmom

        How nice of them to gather all of the plague bearers in one place!

    • Rachel Sea

      Good for dad. If they are in any one of the areas which has had an outbreak, grandma is risking the baby’s life by refusing to vaccinate. A little bit of a sore arm does not trump a dead baby.

    • Shannon

      It’s one little shot to help prevent your infant grandchild from contracting a potentially fatal illness. Suck it up, Grandma. But seriously, had whooping cough as an adult, was miserable and had a nonstop cough for weeks. 5 years later, still cough like an asthmatic chain smoker when it’s cold outside. I would never wish it on my worst enemy, much less a teeny defenseless baby.

      • Rachel Sea

        About 5 minutes before it was discovered that adults need whooping cough boosters, I caught it (brought to work by a coworker whose kid’s school was closed due to an epidemic outbreak), which was chased by pneumonia, and pleurisy, and now I’m prone to getting both if I get a bad cold. Hate anti-vaxers so much.

      • pixie

        I had a mild form of 100 day cough when I was a kid. I was vaccinated and always up to date on my boosters, but somehow I still managed to get a mild strain. I remember it being absolutely awful and am now thankful that I was vaccinated and didn’t get it worse (as my parents were thankful then).

      • Surly Canuck

        Yeah, I got a mild form of whooping cough as a child. Years later, it takes me forever to get over any cough I catch, and I also sound like an asthmatic smoker so when my doctor offered me the booster last year, I jumped on that pronto.

      • ScienceGeek

        My husband got Whooping cough a couple of years ago. We caught it early, but it was still over six months before he recovered enough to do physical activity. I’ve had asthma my entire life, so I’m somewhat used to breathing difficulties, but his cough was terrifying.

    • pixie

      I’m really glad that my doctor makes sure I’m up to date on all my boosters, so that if know anyone who was having a baby, I could phone up my doctor and get them to give me a copy of my immunization record if need be (not that I know anyone in real life who is about to have a baby that I see on a regular basis).
      I’m also thankful that my family is all good with getting their shots when they need to and my boyfriend wants to be a paramedic so will need to get vaccinated against pretty well everything, so I would be covered if I got pregnant.
      Good for the father for standing his ground. Unless the grandmother has real medical reasons as to why she cannot get vaccinated, there is really no excuse not to if she really wants to see her grandchild.

    • Rachel Sea

      This is now my very favorite health website, and I wish all people would read, and comprehend it. It’s basically the Gospel of Autism/vaccine information. http://howdovaccinescauseautism.com/

      • pixie

        That is possibly the best thing I’ve seen all day.

      • Kay_Sue

        Thank you so much for sharing that. It’s so enlightening, lol.

      • ZachsMama

        That is insulting to every Autism parent. Doctor’s have confirmed that my sons Autism was caused by the measels vaccine. There are dozens of studies that prove the link. You sheeple and your unquestioning faith in the government and big pharma are what’s damaging our kids. None of my younger kids have been vaccinated, and they never get sick becuse their immune systems have not been beaten down. My oldest son gets colds all the time. I’m sorry that I listened to people like you, people who scared me into vaccinating when I was a new mom.

      • Lala

        Curious, what tests were done by your doctor to confirm it. I didn’t think there was definitive info out there as to what causes autism. It seems more like autism seemed to be identified more when the MMR vaccine was coming out. Doesn’t necessarily mean there is causation or correlation.

      • Kelly

        If that’s true I feel sorry for you and especially your son because it means your doctor is a quack.

      • CMJ

        No. There are not “dozens of studies.” Any studies that prove the link have been debunked.

      • lovelyfairy

        oh please.. do you just listen to the main stream media?

        Here’s 80 peer reviewed studies for you to chew on, by Drs and PHds, proving a link and proving without a doubt if you only get your info from one side of an issue, there’s some gaping holes.

        http://adventuresinautism.blogspot.com/2007/06/no-evidence-of-any-link.html

      • Ptownsteveschick

        I’m pretty sure it is insulting to parents of children with Autism to insinuate that it is better to have their child possibly die of a preventable illness than to grow up and live with a manageable condition.

      • MaebykittyRN

        No one knows exactly what causes autism. There is no medical test to figure out what causes autism. I’m sorry you were given bad information, but it sounds like you have a bad doctor. Also, there is not one single scientifically sound study that proves a link between autism and vaccines. It just doesn’t exist.

      • aliceblue

        It’s a painful test – for the Dr. S/he has to reach into his/her ass and pull it out.

      • lovelyfairy

        oh please..

        Here’s 80+ peer reviewed studies for you to chew on, by Drs and PHds, proving a link and proving without a doubt if you only get your info from one side of an issue, there’s some gaping holes.

        http://adventuresinautism.blogspot.com/2007/06/no-evidence-of-any-link.html

      • lea

        Err, no. What is insulting to every parent of a child with autism is the thoroughly debunked myth that their decision to vaccinate their child caused their autism.

      • Myra A Cottrill

        Sheeple? That’s rich. I won’t resort to name calling, but I will gently point out that in some circles, eschewing modern medicine, sound science, and common sense is just unwise. Anecdotal evidence is the weakest form of proof.

        I genuinely hope you live in a community full of us sheeple, so your kids are somewhat protected by herd immunity.

      • Teleute

        You have my pity vote, ZachsMama.

      • RayneofCastamere

        I have high functioning autism, and, even though all of that stuff about vaccines causing autism is pure bullshit, I would far rather be autistic than have to suffer through measles, polio, smallpox, etc. It’s insulting to my parents, who raised not only me but also my brother who has autism, to say that they damaged us by protecting us from dangerous diseases that could have killed us.

        And, by the way, the term “sheeple” automatically makes your argument sound like it’s coming from a raging conspiracy theorist. Just a heads up.

        But hey, I have autism, and even though I’m high functioning, according to most people like you I am suffering from a fate worse than disease and death so what do I know?

      • G.E. Phillips

        This was the best thing I have read all day. *SLOW CLAP*

      • RayneofCastamere

        Thank you. I often get frustrated at how autism is thought of less in terms of what the person who actually has autism feels about the whole thing, but in terms of what everyone else thinks. Because who cares how WE feel about the situation. We’re abnormal, we can’t understand how the people around us feel about it. We have no right to talk. We’re the problem. As if we are just burdens to be dealt with instead of people with thoughts and feelings and wants and desires who just happen to perceive the world in a different way than everyone else around us.

        Sorry about that. I’ve dealt with…people in the past.

        I’m just grateful I had parents who tried to, and for the most part succeeded, in teaching me how to handle this strange world I had trouble understanding while also teaching me how to use my differences to help me succeed. For the most part, I think I’m doing all right.

        And by the way, even if the bullshit pseudoscience about vaccines was true, I’d far rather be the way that I am now than to have to suffer through polio, measles, smallpox, whooping cough, and all those other, oh so wonderful things. There are far worse fates than autism.

      • Amber Starr

        I would rather have an autistic child than a dead one.

        And, for the record, I’m glad that you posted this. You rock.

      • talonsage

        I have both and you’re right…it’s much better having a live, autistic child than dealing with the death of the other.

      • Amber Starr

        I’m so sorry to hear that. I can’t even imagine having to go through the loss of a child. I just feel like it is such a slap in the face of parents of autistic children to say “Well, I would rather risk having my child die of pertussis or be completely disabled by polio than have a child who is *gasp* autistic”. I would imagine that raising a child with autism isn’t easy, but at least your child is there to love and hug. The risk is definitely NOT worth it in my eyes.

      • Heather C

        As the mother of an autistic son, THAT attitude is far more damaging. When people tell me “vaccines cause autism” I just look at them and say to myself, “That person would rather risk a dead child than an autistic one. What does that say about them?”
        And then I walk the fuck away because I don’t need those shit mittens in my life.

      • Karen Milton

        SHIT MITTENS. Marry me.

      • Viv
      • ScienceGeek

        How about YOUR unquestioning faith in lawyers and the people who work for them?
        Andrew Wakefield, the ‘doctor’ who claimed MMR causes autism was paid $500,000 by a legal firm trying to sue ‘big pharma’ for vaccine-related injuries. The entire paper was for profit.
        Much like when Wakefield INVENTED ‘autism colitis’ so he could charge people like you for ‘test kits’. Kits your so-called ‘doctors’ used to ‘confirm’ that your son’s autism was caused by the measles vaccine.
        You were scammed. I’m sorry that made you think your child is damaged.

      • talonsage

        Pucker up and kiss my vaccinated, autistic, mommy to an autistic vaxxed kiddo’s butt.

        Also kiss my Auntie to a MEDICALLY NECESSARY UNVaxxed autistic niece’s butt. That’s right, she’s NEVER had a single vaccination, because she is quite literally allergic to almost EVERYTHING. She CANNOT be vaccinated (No doctor will vaccinate her, bc it’s too dangerous TO HER) AND she gets sick all the danged time.

        Chibi, MY VACCINATED kiddo, on the other hand almost NEVER gets sick, EVER.

        I mean just so long as we’re comparing anacdata…

      • MamaLlama

        I was just going to post that! Just saw it today! Haha!

      • Amber Starr

        I think that I just peed a little….

        Nope. I know that I did. This is brilliant.

    • Teleute

      Before my son was old enough to get the flu and H1N1 vaccines, I wouldn’t let ANYONE handle him who hadn’t had both shots. The problem was that H1N1 was in short supply, limited to caretakers of infants <6 months old, pregnant woman, medical personnel, and the severely ill. There were a lot of hurt feelings at Thanksgiving and perhaps one or two of my friends were pissed, but I really couldn't have cared less.

      If someone's going to get their feathers ruffled over the expectation that they be properly vaccinated before handling YOUR baby, then they're probably not someone who ought to be around your baby anyway.

      • Kelly

        Right? I can’t imagine getting mad about not being to hold someone else’s baby for any reason. Even if I thought the reason was silly, I have enough class to respect the parents’ decision, especially if they are people I care about.

        But people are crazy. I have a friend whose baby was born premature. One of their relatives showed up to the hospital obviously suffering from a nasty cold and expected to be let into the NICU to hold the baby. It wasn’t some random, crazy relative either. The woman is a teacher with a master’s degree and is supposedly a fully functioning member of society. So nuts.

      • Teleute

        I’m totally blown away by how presumptuous people can be when it comes to holding babies. I have NEVER asked to hold someone else’s baby — I wait to be offered or else ask if they “could use an extra pair of hands.” Some parents will hand you the diaper bag, others will hand you the baby.

        I hated being asked if people could hold my son. He was always much happier on the floor or seated next to me than in somebody’s arms — including my own. I also had a scary experience when he was two months old that likely contributed to this aversion; his uncle DROPPED him, but his girlfriend sprang into action just in time to CATCH him before he landed on his head. That girl (who was soon dumped for another chick) remains my hero, wherever she is.

      • Layla

        Totally agree. People need to relax and not get their panties in a bunch. The parents are the one who make the decisions no matter what! Babies can’t speak for themselves. AS the parent you are the only one protecting them!

    • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

      What vaccine risks could possibly outweigh the risk of whooping cough?

    • kay

      The best part is that if Grandma would ask her dr she might find out they she’s gotten it and not know-my husband went to get his whooping cough shot before the baby was born and turns out he’d had a tetanus booster recently and that had the whooping cough vaccine in it. He couldn’t remember why he’d gotten the tetanus shot and had no idea it was also for whooping cough.

    • rrlo

      Serious question, can you pass whopping cough if you are not exhibiting symptoms of whopping cough?
      While I get where dad is coming from, I am wondering how many people the kid will come across without the vaccine. Do even the nurses and doctors at the hospital have the whopping cough booster?

      • anne

        You sure can. You’re contagious days before the start of symptoms. Dad is completely justified in his worries.

      • pixie

        To work in the medical field you pretty much have to have your boosters up to date.
        A lot of illnesses are contagious well before a person shows symptoms, such as the common cold, as well as whooping cough and many other diseases children now get vaccinated against (common cold isn’t vaccinated against, I know, but it’s notorious for being contagious well in advance of showing symptoms). People can also be carriers of illnesses without ever getting sick/showing symptoms themselves. It’s why some of these things can be super scary and hard to pinpoint exactly where it was contracted from.

      • rrlo

        Hmm… I guess it’s time to look into whopping cough booster. Not sure if I have it. Glad that there is an inoculation, less glad that it requires a booster.

      • Karen Milton

        At the hospital where I work employees are notified when our vaccinations need updating, so my tetanus/pertussis is updated frequently. We’re strongly encouraged to get the flu shot, and as soon as next year it will be mandatory for all hospital workers. My job isn’t fancy or anything, but I do spend eight hours a day taking health cards and forms from people and then handing them back without gloves, and we’re to use alcohol sanitizer between each patient interaction. I don’t want their ailments and they don’t want mine, so I certainly have no problem complying. Sometimes people hold their health card in their mouth when they wait in line. In their mouth and then handed to me. Vaccinations, please.

      • pixie

        My boyfriend wants to be a paramedic (he’s currently trying to get into school for it) and was pretty much told that once he gets a job in the field (or maybe even one he starts doing co-op for the program) he’ll need to make sure to have everything up to date, including flu shots.

      • Karen Milton

        I’m just a registration clerk, nothing fancy, but apparently that job includes handling other people’s saliva. I think it makes good sense for everybody working in health care to get immunized. People come to see us because they’re already unwell, there’s no need to hand them the flu on top of it.

        I have a plexiglass barrier. It’s nice and all, but I still have to touch the patients’ hands and belongings so it really serves no purpose. It’s a fracture clinic so we see an extremely large demographic (everybody has bones). A great many of the patients arrive with/are children, so they’re right in front of me to register. I swear, something like 75% of kids under the age of six lick the plexiglass. They put their face on it. On purpose. I’ve started saying “you know you’re not the only kid to do that today, right? You’re not even the tenth kid to do that today”. Parents are always suitably grossed out.

      • http://www.twitter.com/ilikeswears Dusty

        Doctors will lose hospital privileges if they let their vaccines lapse.

      • Tinyfaeri

        It’s more about the amount, duration and quality of the contact. People you pass in the grocery store are not going to be holding the baby, kissing him or her, etc.

      • ScienceGeek

        Even when you are exhibiting symptoms, it can be weeks before you reach the ‘whoop’ stage, so it can be easily misdiagnosed as a chest infection or very bad cold. While I’d hope that nobody would hold a baby under those circumstances, it’s not always the case.

    • The Kez

      I made my parents and my inlaws get vaccinated before my first child was born. Got some push back from my mother in law, but a couple of days of screeching “why do you want to kill your grand baby?!?!” sorted her out. It doesn’t hurt and it is free for new parents and grandparents where we live. Suck it up and do it.

      • Alexandra

        LOL I love this. wish I could do it to my MIL just to do it. She hasn’t refused to do any vaccinations though, so she may wonder what the hell is going on,…..

    • Ptownsteveschick

      I got my whooping cough vaccine updated this year. I didn’t have to ask my parents to do it because they regularly injure themselves and have gotten updated vaccines recently. I’m more worried currently about the outbreaks of norovirus and flu at the hospital my husband works at. Making him shower every night when he gets home doesn’t always go over well at 1am when he has to be up at 6.

    • Kara

      My midwife has already told me I will be getting this vaccine in my third trimester. I was a bit surprised at first but I know she’s just looking out for the baby.

    • MaebykittyRN

      I insisted that all four grandparents and both aunts get their pertussis vaccines updated. I live in an area of the country that has a pertussis outbreak almost every year because of anit-vax lunatics. Luckily, all family members obliged.

    • EX

      Oh crap. Here I was all proud of myself because I got my husband and my mom (who will be helping to take care of the baby) to get their TDaP and flu shots but I forgot about the in-laws who don’t live nearby but will certainly want to come see the baby in the early days. I hadn’t even thought about asking them to get shots. Crap, crap, crap. A new thing to worry about and I was already starting to freak out about the fact that my baby is due during the peak of cold and flu season…

      • http://www.twitter.com/ilikeswears Dusty

        Talk to your doctor about it. My OB told me to request vaccines from anyone who will be in constant contact with baby, mainly caregivers and anyone who resides in the same home as the baby.

      • EX

        Thanks. I will. I am normally so not a germaphobe but my fear of my baby getting sick (while she’s still a newborn) is scaring the shit out of me.

      • Karen Milton

        In-laws requests = your partner’s job. It might be possible to just say that there was a breakout of whooping cough close to where you live and you want your bases covered. I don’t think that’s unreasonable.

    • Justme

      A co-worker of mine had her daughter and SIL pull this stunt on her…as in, the baby was born and Grandma received a text telling her she was not allowed to hold the baby until she got her shots.

      I’m all for properly vaccinating and protecting your child, but most of the time, the birth of a child is not a surprise – there’s enough time to give a grandparent a heads up about the shot before the little tyke makes the grand debut.

    • Mananieto

      In my country its considered illegal to not vaccinate your kids. If they end up at the emergency room and they havent had their vaccinations they will call social services and take away your child. Its considered child abuse!!!! This is a 3rd world country!!! Yeiiiii for us!!! I asked all of my immeadiate familly to get the whooping cough vaccine before visiting. They give it for free.

    • KarenMS

      I was strict about the flu shot; a few people didnt get to see my daughter for several months bc of it but everyone understood. Looking back, I can’t believe everyone was so reasonable.

      • Karen Milton

        I can’t believe they didn’t go get the dang flu shot.

      • KarenMS

        I was ok with it. They weren’t immediate family, just friends who didn’t have to change their lives for my baby. If my mom had declined the shot, I would have felt differently.

      • Karen Milton

        Fair enough. I’m glad it wasn’t a big drama-filled situation. I personally didn’t care for too many visitors when my kids were newborns, so this would be a nice way to stagger the visits a bit.

    • C.J.

      Considering that vaccination rates are going down and outbreaks are going up I can understand new parents being afraid and asking people to get vaccinated. My younger brother had whooping cough just before he was old enough to vaccinate, From what I remember ( I was 8 ) it wasn’t fun.

    • JL

      My twins were 12 weeks early and we told anyone who wanted to see them in their first year of life they had to get the flu shot and the TDaP. Everyone but my BIL’s family complied. They showed up one afternoon during cold and flu season when my two were about 5 months old and only home for about 2 months from the NICU. My husband said they could come in, but they weren’t allowed to hold either twin. They brought their 2 year old who had a raging cough and runny nose. I lost it. They still pull this now. We got together with them for a birthday two weeks before one of twins was to have surgery and their girls (they now have 2 kids) had terrible colds. They nearly cost our son another 3 months of waiting because they think my kids need to be exposed to “day care germs”.

      • Lackadaisical

        Before surgery is definitely a time when it is reasonable to keep germs away. I can understand the day care germs reasoning if both twins were healthy and not about to have surgery but even then it is not their call to make. Flu vaccines aren’t a big thing where I live but I didn’t take my snotty kids anywhere near friends kids in the special care unit just as I kept them away from my mum whenever they were poorly and she was going through a delicate part of cancer treatment.

    • LadyGwyn12

      I am going to start by saying that I have a phobia of needles. Like, passing out and hyperventilating type phobia. My very best friend is having a baby in June, and I mentioned to my mom about needing a pertussis before the baby is born and I was going to ask my doc about it at my yearly visit. She reminded me that I had had my tetanus shot last year, and that I was covered. (I don’t know if my doctor mentioned the whooping cough cause all I heard was shot, and I was panicking.) I hate shots, and was willing to get one to protect my friend’s newborn. I can’t see grandma’s objection. You can’t “catch” autism, and even if you could, Grandma’s too old to be worried it. (I feel the need to point out that my friend did not ask me to get the shot, I was doing it of my own accord, after reading about needing booster here and other places.)

    • ScienceGeek

      I’m Australian, so perhaps the vaccination schedules are different, but my kid got his DTaP at 2 months, not six. If Grandma is that adamant about the risks to HER, surely she can wait that long.

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    • trav

      This is going to be the tip of the iceberg, more and more preventable diseases are going to come back worse then ever before and they were preventable. Best policy is to get vaccinated. While it can cause problems, how will you feel if your because your child was not vaccinated and they caused the death of others ! I gather many don’t care if their stupidity kills!
      I am old enough to remember the polio epidemic that killed my cousin. This was before vaccines, it was a gruesome death, and now polio is also on the up rise!

    • Blown Wish

      People don’t realize what the world was like before vaccines. I have an autistic son and made the mistake of thinking vaccines had something to do with it. And I was not alone. This was reinforced by many other moms in the program my son was e rolled in. Sad.