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We all have reasons why we do or don’t vaccinate, and to get straight to the subject of this matter, my reason is the law of compensation. I am referring to the universal law of compensation and not the Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 that was passed by law for compensation.
The universal law of compensation is a law widely taught by science, religion and mostly as a general life lesson. It is also known as, what you sow you shall reap, what goes around comes around, karma or for every action there is a reaction (Newton’s 3rd law F1 = -F2). I realised that ignorance is in fact not bliss, and that this law is as precise and exact as the law of gravitation. Experiencing the impartiality that this law of nature holds has put me on a more conscious choice making journey taking full responsibility for all the products that I use and consume. This is the main reason I chose not to vaccinate and it is based on an ethical approach, however it’s not the only reason.
In the past it was only me to consider, but then I fell pregnant and my choices naturally began affecting another being. I started doing more research on vaccines and children’s illnesses and soon became aware of the fiery debate out there regarding vaccines. I mentioned in the beginning that everyone has a reason why they don’t and why they do, and that choice I feel should by pure human consideration be respected. Sadly, I found that this is the one place where there is very little respect for the personal choices that each person is allowed to make. Most who make up the group who chooses to vaccinate believes that the people who choose not to, pose a serious threat to society and they have their very concrete evidence. Then most of the group who chooses not to vaccinate believes that the people choosing to vaccinate pose a very serious risk to the future of society and they have their very concrete evidence. This overall makes it difficult since we feel we are directly affected by each other’s choices. I found that within each group the degrees of knowledge greatly differed among the “choosers”, worryingly majority within the two groups made their decisions based on very basic knowledge either choosing to vaccinate because it is what is done or their doctor advised them to, and those choosing not to because of articles and comments on social media, the autism claim, conspiracy theories etc. Fortunately I have met a few true researchers, and many who are on their way to more informed choices.
This is by no means meant to be a pro or anti vaccine writing, I truly hope it won’t invoke a side debate on how ethical I am regarding all the factors that needs to be taken into account when wanting to be so “pure and ethical”. So I ask that you take from it what resonates with you, and if it unintentionally stirs something please trust that it is what I say, not intended.
The core reason why I don’t vaccinate, isn’t what gets the debates heated. This is because there is no denying in how these vaccines are being manufactured and those ingredients that are used for it, such as fetal bovine serum, human diploid cells (MRC-5, WI-38), cell cultures and vero cells. It is a very personal choice for each person to decide to which degree ethics go. I never wavered at the choice based on this aspect, so therefore I won’t write about this aspect, since this might also be seen as a religious reason for not vaccinating.
A few weeks before my first born was due I informed the medical professionals involved with my birth of my decision not to vaccinate as to prevent anyone from ‘accidently’ vaccinating my new born, although parent consent is needed. I was very quickly attacked with all kinds of insults. I then started doubting my decision mostly because I felt so insulted and patronised, but I also doubted that I knew everything I needed in order to make an informed decision. What the doctors told me was opposite to that which I had read. I initially felt at peace with my decision after speaking to vaccine injured children’s parents, watching a few documentaries and reading some articles. You see I had made up my mind even before doing the research and only did it for assurance and support. I couldn’t then foresee what I still needed to face and the impact that would have on me and possibly my child. The truth was, I knew too little about the vaccine story and had I known more then, I would have been by far more confident about my decision.
I needed more than reassurance, I needed knowledge and information that I was sure about and that I could internalise. Being pure and natural was not the case anymore, I needed to be informed and confident. So I then started to seriously research, with all the heart in me, I started to make an informed conscious decision that was backed. It’s taken a lot of tears, and it still does. I keep my decision fairly private but when needing to state it, it is not an easy decision to explain, not with the dogmas out there. Especially not because “Where is your medical doctors degree?” I say this with all due respect, a mom’s love and concern for her child is all the degree you need. This is where the patronising starts, because a doctor will strongly disagree with me. Talking about doctors, those incredibly honourable men and women who chose this profession to help others. They are to be respected for their concern for children of parents choosing not to vaccinate and for their dedication to the idea of eradicating diseases and protecting people. I have a very approachable doctor who I admire for the time he spends explaining medical matters to his patients. Though sceptical about alternative healing methods he writes about consciousness, he practises yoga and he questions the true intentions behind some medication, knowing the business of medicines. I especially felt that I can talk to him about my concerns in order to get expert opinions based on the facts. I presented him with other doctors’ papers who has done research on vaccines. He then explained the diseases to me as I have asked, and often agreed on aspects of vaccines such as their safety and risks, but he still firmly believes in the efficacy of vaccines. The other doctors have either refused me as patient or given me all kinds of lectures or papers to read. The point I want to make is due to the fact that many of us fear the subject of vaccines, simply out of lack of knowledge, we turn to our doctors for answers. So when you do, this is what you can expect, so approach the matter with an open mind as to help you not to get overwhelmed with all the information that will be presented to you. They will tell you that your chances of having an adverse vaccine reaction is nominal compared to the greater chance you have of contracting the disease and dying or suffering disability from it, obviously all based on medical studies and databases i.e. stats. They will probably also tell you that driving your child in a car poses a bigger risk than vaccinating them. They will refer to medical research and papers that prove that the chemical ingredients are safe, that the autism connection was proven wrong, that vaccines have eradicated diseases such a small pox, that if you choose not to vaccinate your child will pose a threat because of herd immunity, that you could be held liable for culpable homicide if something happens to your child and that child welfare can take your child away because of negligent parenting.
Through all of this, remember (if it’s not out of fear of being labelled a quack) they are doing what they believe and trust is right. If you have more pressing questions regarding vaccines, the chances are they will throw more medical jargon and studies at you, to which you don’t have access to or knowledge of and mostly that were funded by the pharmaceutical industry. This is most likely were some parents feel their questions have been answered and that they are okay to go ahead, but if you are still not feeling at ease, especially confused about all of the contradicting information, then do a little more research for your own peace of mind. Now, regarding that little more research.
This is such a wide field, and where do you start? The history of vaccines, though interesting, might be far too overwhelming. I would suggest starting with something as simple as looking at the vaccine schedule that is of relevance to you or your child. Look at what each vaccine is for, I would advise you not to go into too much detail regarding the diseases straight away, because this will lead you in a whole other direction. Make a list of each applicable vaccine on the schedule, what it is for and then the ingredients in it. Do some research on a few of the ingredients and take matters from there. If you decide that you are at ease with this, then you have done more than most people and I think that is wonderful.
If you are not at ease with this, then I’d suggest you look at the history of vaccines, listen to or read literature by medical professionals that have concerns about vaccines and watch some documentaries. If after this you decide not to vaccinate. I would strongly recommend you then start to do some research on the diseases, what risks they pose and the treatments for them. Find a doctor that agrees with your choice and supports you. Look at basic home remedies for your child and how to handle the common fever, cold or illness and always be vigilant about your child’s general health. I am not suggesting this because you are not vaccinating, I am suggesting this so that you carry on with your journey towards making conscious informed choices. I would suggest this even to parents who choose to vaccinate.
Regaining the confidence that you are your child’s best physician, because you know them best will bring you much peace and could help give your doctor valuable information. I am under no circumstances suggesting that you don’t need doctors. If you find a doctor that you trust, he/she will be an invaluable person on your journey with your children’s health.
Being one of the only people in my community and circle who decided to go on this path, I felt scared at the prospect of being alone at this, I found immense peace and support when I became part of a social group who shared the same choice in decision making as I did.
Having support from a community, real people you can phone and be in contact with was of crucial importance to me, and I would personally recommend this, since we are by nature social supporting beings. I have two suggestions of caution for anyone who is researching or about to research this field. The first is to be aware of the emotional fear invoking debate underlying the vaccine debate. It is the disease injured versus the vaccine injured. You are so often bombarded with visuals and stories of these, and it is heart wrenching. This brings full blown emotion into play and this is what I think causes all the fiery.
The truth is it happens on both sides, they both pose a threat. There are people who die from the effects of vaccines and there are people who die from the effects of illnesses. Ultimately this is where you are going to have to make peace with your decision. Your choice being whether you would be more at peace with nature or medicine being the cause of a possible injury or death to your child. I also caution you to choose your research material carefully. There are a lot of unbiased, unscientific material out there, articles written on waves of emotion or as propaganda. When you read articles such as these, always keep mind of its source. Remember no matter how sure you are about your choice, it is still a choice that everybody should be able to make for themselves and be respected for it, because if possible injury dare I say, lead to disability, it will be a journey walked by those parents and not the advisors of choices. Your and your child’s health is your responsibility. I salute you on your journey towards informed and conscious choices. May the truth be with you.
I have attached links to some really helpful websites, documentaries and other info. http://www.nvic.org/ www.thevaccinereaction.org
NVIC (National Vaccination Information Center) was established during the early 80’s. It holds a wealth of information regarding vaccines, so it is a wonderful website to start with research, they also have recommended books to read and very helpful information regarding all the diseases.