In which I make a decision about the H1N1 vaccine

I posted our decisions about the H1N1 vaccine as a status update on Twitter and Facebook. I have now had more than 33 people comment with their decision for and against, citing articles and blogs, medical journals and newspapers. The best thing about it is that it showed me that people are truly evaluating it, researching and considering their options. It has been interesting reading and I thought I’d expand a bit on my thoughts here.
(Sadly, I will respond without any citations, alarmist or otherwise. I feel like people are about to drop dead of Too-Many-Contradictory-H1N1-Articles-Itis and I don’t wish to contribute to that pandemic.)

I am not anti-vaccine. I assumed that I would be anti-vaccine since a lot of people that have a similar parenting style to ours are anti-vaccine. But after doing my research and identifying the Canadian system and ingredients and schedules, I felt comfortable with the tinies receiving all of their shots with few exceptions. We never receive the flu shot and I excluded the chicken pox, I believe.

So when the H1N1 virus hit pandemic in Canada, I really considered it. I see the benefits of vaccines, truly.
It came down to a risk vs. benefits. And for me? The risks at this point in a relatively or comparatively untested vaccine outweigh the potential benefits. The side effects, particularly for small children such as seizures, concern me as do many of the ingredients overall. The debate rages over everything from the live virus inoculation to mercury to testings and concerns about runs on the clinic for the shot.
We are not in a high-risk group. Yes, my children are young but we lead a fairly quiet life with a small circle for them. They don’t go to daycare. We don’t have a ton of play dates. We are being wise – Vitamin C, water, rest, plenty of hand washing – and also, of course, praying. The vast majority of people do NOT get the flu and of those that do, the vast majority of them do NOT experience a serious case even requiring hospitalization. The precaution of the vaccine seems excessive given the risk of acquiring the disease to me.
Even though we don’t have the collective immunity built up yet, H1N1 isn’t any more deadly than the usual flu or, for that matter, riding in a car. I really considered it seriously after those two beautiful children in central Canada were victims of H1N1. But I came back to this decision with full confidence.
Because the media reports so exhaustively on swine flu right now, we have lost all sense of proportion. More children and people die of many other things not in the news cycle right now.
What about you? Will you be getting it? Have you given it a lot of thought or preferred to just ignore it?
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  • Catherine

    Oh my gosh…I can’t believe you posted this today! Just yesterday I did some research of my own and came to a decision myself. I was originally buying into the whole media hype and attempting to get h1n1 vaccines for my two boys. I have a cousin who had a bad experience with a vaccine on her little boy and she is now very leary…anyway, she asked me to research the vaccine before I got them for the boys. I did a quick search online and found tons of resources…some looked reliable and some looked shady. I read a large number of them, most of which listed over and over again some very alarming statistics and facts that I was not aware of. I came to the realization that my boys just don’t need the vaccine. They are healthy, we stay home most of the time, and I am still nursing one of them. I am also thinking that in the future they won’t be getting the seasonal flu shot. Thanks for your thoughts on the matter…I love reading your posts!

  • Megan@SortaCrunchy

    I am so glad you have come to a good decision for your family! I know it is causing no small amount of unrest and unease for so many families.

  • Mary

    I am getting it as soon as we can get some. I resesarched it and I feel 100% confident in the vaccine. I don’t want to risk the H1N1 infection. This is the same virus that wiped out millions in 1917-1919, but it is weaker this time around. Viruses are insidious things..they are smart, mutate and spread like wildfire. I think this is the source of the reason that the swine flu has been played up in the media so much. “The Great Influenza” by John Barry is a great book on the history of the outbreak. I will spare you the awful details but it was truly biblical in proportions.

    That being said, I think your approach is fine and appropriate for your family. I don’t besmirch anyone who decides not to get it unless they have not researched their facts. You have. What upsets me is when others say they aren’t getting it because of some rumor or “something I read on the internet” kind of reason.

  • Karen Johnson

    I applaude anybody who does their own research instead of gobbling up just what they hear thru media. That’s a huge part of good parenting…considering the issue as it pertains to your own unique family, and as followers of Yeshua, what the Word of God has to say about those things.

    I found it so sad to read on that several pregnant moms went and got the H1N1 vaccine and THEN they looked at the ingreds list and were scared for themselves and their unborn. Makes no sense to me.

  • harmonylichty

    Sing it sister! The media is totally out of control on this issue. I’m glad your Tinies are going to be safe & health & H1N1 Vaccine-FREE!! Good Decision.

  • Gina

    Yep, that’s my take, too. :-)

  • melissawisley

    I agree with every word! I am against pretty much any vaccine from the research that I have done and have decided not to vaccine my son for now and as for the flu shot and H1N1 never had one and have not had the flu for over 15 years. I take probiotic, Vit D, and ester C everyday, drink water a lot exercise and stay away from processed foods as much as possible. It seems to work for me!

    • Sarah Bessey

      Wow! You’re a lot healthier than me! Ha! :-)