Scary Flu Outbreak Is Making Me Rethink My Anti-Vax Stance

Mom Moment 80

flu vaccineI thought I felt strongly about not giving my kids flu vaccines. While they have received the recommended/required vaccines at every age, albeit with a whole lot of trepidation on my part, I've always held firm in my position that I didn't want them to have any extra ones. They've never had a flu shot, as I feel their bodies are better off facing and fighting illness than being pumped full of chemicals to do the job.

Or at least I felt that. Now I don't know.

This year's nasty flu outbreak is terrifying me, plain and simple. Everywhere, from birthday parties I attend to the news headlines I read, there are stories of people who are sick and dying from the flu.

Not just infants and elderly people, but strong and healthy people who are laid up for weeks, fighting this thing. Many are even being hospitalized. And I'm scared. Maybe for the first time more scared than I am of just getting them the vaccine.

Still I debate in my mind. Plenty of people who do get the vaccine are still getting the flu. Some say it's less severe, while others say it took them down just as hard. Researchers say it's 62 percent effective. Is that effective enough for me to give them the vaccine? I'm not sure, but when 20 children have already died from the flu, it makes want to do whatever I can to protect them.

So I'm leaning toward doing it. In fact, in the middle of writing this post, I called my pediatrician's office and made an appointment for both of them to get it Friday afternoon. I'm pretty sure I'll keep it.

Of course now that I've waited, and we're smack in the middle of the season, I actually have to take them into the hotbed of it all. Surely there will be flu germs hanging on every surface of the doctor's office, and that alone almost makes me not want to get it for them. If only I could roll in there in a bubble ... and everywhere else too for the next couple of months.

Has the flu outbreak made you rethink your anti-vax stance?


Image via NHSE/Flickr

a mom's life, toddler health, autism


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nonmember avatar SueBradley

Julie, I felt the same way you do, until a good friend's healthy 4 year old almost died of the flu. And I, like you, was afraid of taking my kids into the pediatrician's office, where the flu germs are everywhere. The pediatrician's nurse confided in me that the best thing to do is to take them to a Target store pharmacy and get them the flu shot. She said not to take them to a mini clinic, the kind in drug and grocery stores, because sick people are there, too, just like the doctor's office. A Target pharmacy was the perfect place, and they got the shot (uneventfully, I might add) and I'm so happy I did it. I'll do it every year now.

nonmember avatar Missj

This whole movement has gotten out on control. I eat organic, unprocessed foods about 90% of the time, and I am fully aware of the dangerous chemicals out there. That being said, I find vaccinations to be essential. There are some chemicals out there that are necesary and really, any plausible damage the chemicals in the vaccine could do pale in comparison to dying from the flu. Chemicals are EVERYWHERE and while it's smart to avoid some chemicals, many are necesary and safe.

nonmember avatar Lindsay

I too was worried about the flu shot for my daughter because of the mercury. However they have a preservative free vaccine that does not have the mercury in it. We got our shots last week and she did not even cry. I feel so much better knowing she is protected

ruby_... ruby_jewel_04

I think your being paranoid. I haven't had one person I knew get the flu this year... I still don't vax. My kids are 9, 5, and 2. None have ever gotten the flu shot. And none have ever had the flu. My husband and I haven't had it in years either. We eat well, take good vitamins, and wash our hands like crazy. Seems to work well for us.

Deweymom Deweymom

Both my kids have gotten the flu vax since they were old enough for it. The generally get them in October near their birthdays.

That being said my 15 month old tested positive for the flu last Thursday and I'm headed back to the docs today with my 4yo.

So even WITH the vax you can still get some variation of the flu...just not AS bad.

tinyp... tinypossum

I got both my kids vaccinated early in the season, and I am glad I did. So far, they have not been sick but even if they do get the flu they will likely get a much milder illness than if they were not vaccinated. The hospitals in my area are closed to new admissions because they are overwhelmed with flu patients. The vaccine may not be 100% effective, but it provides some level of protection and I'm going to take whatever I can get to keep my kids healthy. 

CPN322 CPN322

I did not get the flu shot and caught the flu and have been dealing with it now for 14 days. It's awful. And I'm not sure where you live Ruby, but there's been a huge outbreak of the flu in Virginia. I felt like an idiot for not getting the flu shot(haven't in years and haven't had the flu in years) until my doctor told me that his wife got the flu shot and still got the flu and hers lasted 12 days!! So it doesn't seem like you are safe either way.

mommy... mommytojack0524

@ Ruby--"seems to work well for us"...until it doesn't. I can't take chances like that. We always think it's not going to happen to us. I couldn't look at myself in the mirror if I knew my son was very ill and I could've done something to help. I'm just now getting over the flu. You don't want it--trust me. And you definitely don't want your children to get it.

LoveM... LoveMyViolet

I think the media and Big Pharm is trying to make people paranoid. Where are all the facts on the people who have died AND had gotten the vaccine?? I find those facts very sparsely reported. Last week a 14 year old girl died in my area and guess what? She actually had received the vaccine! And in one article I read they actually reported that this is affecting the elderly the most severely. Most news reports aren't telling you THAT part of the story.
I didn't get the flu vaccine, neither did my husband or child. I'm not freaking out about the flu this year either. I believe that people that die from it or get severely sick have a compromised immune system on some way. Vaccine or not there is nothing to do about it. The vaccine is not a cure all like everyone is making it out to be.

tauru... taurusmom88

I don't get the flu shot, neither does my kid. I don't feel guilty about it. The benefits don't outweigh the risks in my opinion for my family atleast. We never get the flu. My son is 5 and has never had it. Okay, some people die of the flu, but more people survive it than die from it.

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