Sometimes I will hear other mothers (usually online) freaking out about vaccinations. Here are some of the comments I've heard recently about vaccines:
1) Worried about autism (despite study being discredited)
2) Want to spread vaccines out, not give them all at once
3) Want to skip certain vaccines (usually varicella) since the diseases aren't actually that harmful
4) Want to postpone vaccines
5) Angry and distrustful of doctor for not knowing all inactive ingredients in a vaccine
I read these comments and I just feel frustrated, both as a mother and a doctor. How could these mothers be so stupid? So selfish? Don't they realize these vaccines are safe? Don't they realize the only reason they can even contemplate skipping a vaccine is because the rest of us "risk" our kids? Don't they realize that the kids who can't be vaccinated or do not achieve full immunity are at increased risk because they fail to vaccinate?
Of course, when I'm at the doctor, waiting for my child to get her vaccines, the thoughts in my head are very different:
"OMG, what if she gets a reaction to these vaccines? What if she gets a fever and is awake all night? What if she's cranky for weeks? What if they KILL her?"
"She's so small... maybe we should postpone the vaccines till she's older."
"Why do we have to get so many vaccines at once? This is cruel and inhuman. Maybe we can spread them out?"
"OMG, what if she now becomes autistic??????"
Ultimately, we always get the vaccines. But I do believe most mothers feel that fear when our kids get their shots. That's why I'm sort of resentful of moms who can't man up and go through with it.