A question for anti-vax parents

Going to Disneyworld copy

Anti-vax parents, you’re part of a group that has an amazing track record. You’re batting 1000!

In the more than 200 year history of anti-vaccine movements, you’ve never been right even once!

Now, in light of the latest anti-vax fiasco at Disneyland, I have a question for you:

Since you have once again been proven utterly, spectacularly wrong about vaccinations, immunity, measles and everything else, will this cause you to re-evaluate your ability to parse and understand the scientific data about vaccination?

I’m guessing no.

Prove me wrong!

  • MsKent
  • Cobalt

    Pediatric Insider post on the timing of the measles vaccine, breastfeeding, immune response.

    https://pediatricinsider.wordpress.com/2015/01/27/immunity-breastfeeding-and-the-timing-of-measles-vaccine/

  • Cobalt

    Disney should be posting stuff like this everywhere.

  • Bugsy

    Nah…why would it? Anything that could cause them to question their precious *belief* system?

    • Stacy48918

      But hopefully it might sway the on-the-fence, we’re-just-going-to-delay-for-a-year types.

  • junebug

    OT here is a silly article filled with homebirth gobbledygook that all (well, mostly) sounds reasonable if you don’t actually know anything about homebirth / only know what advocates parrot to each other.

    • junebug
      • Young CC Prof

        “Have you heard of back labor? You don’t want to go there! The time to start working on optimal fetal positioning is before you get pregnant. Practice good posture especially when sitting.”

        You heard it right there, ladies and gentlemen. Sunny-side-up babies are caused by slouching before you get pregnant.

        There’s a vegan Brewer Diet? You learn something new every day. (Astonishingly, the article’s diet section includes no mention of folic acid, the one nutrient most clearly linked to improved pregnancy outcomes.)

        • yugaya

          “”Ghost busting” refers to finding and clearing any negative emotions and thoughts that could have an undesirable effect on your birthing experience. “…”Unexamined, these seeds will grow roots and they’ll populate your birth experience”…”Birth is a process that is easily disturbed”…”If someone in your life is unsupportive, irritating, impatient or has negative feelings about normal birth, they do not belong in your sacred birthing space.”

          If “normal” birth is so powerful that it is to be trusted blindly, how come it is at the same time so fragile that you have to get rid of any and all opposition, even doubtful thoughts?

          Also she’s a complete bitch for victim-blaming stalled labour on women not doing birth the right way and lack of “normal” birth ability:

          “Sometimes what might look like a very long labor or “failure to progress” is really a woman working through these issues during labor to the best of her ability.”

          • Sarah

            I don’t understand how those things are mutually contradictory anyway. I did work through labour to the best of my ability, but as it was very long and stalled I required assistance. Once one passes the point at which one is capable of safely huffing the baby out and yet said baby is still in there, that’s what happens. I give as much of a shit about my inability to get the baby out by myself as I do about having below average ability in music, or my poor sense of smell.

          • yugaya

            They have to be, so that she can make a living charging people for massages/ teachings that supposedly prevent complications. Her insurance policy is that if your birth despite paying for her wisdom goes sideways, it’s still your fault because you were just not able enough:

            “CST removed mental blocks for my VBAC
            TheCST session helped remove mental blocks that were keeping me from going into labor. During the session I realized I had to let go and know that my son was going to be fine after the birth of the new baby. I didn’t even know that was a block until the CST with Evelyn.” ~Susan, VBAC mom 2 weeks pass her EDD”

            http://evelynojedafox.fullslate.com/reviews/#post64

          • sdsures

            Unbelievable the lengths to which these people go in rationalizations.

        • Sarah

          Yeah, no. I’ve got the posture of a ballerina when non-pregnant (all the years of ballet probably did that) and it didn’t stop my offspring from being back to back. They’re right about not wanting to go there, though. It stings a bit.

        • Bugsy

          Good to know! Especially considering that my posture is absolutely in the dumps but my son was pointed perfectly down. I guess he was just a fluke. 🙂

        • sdsures

          “The time to start working on optimal fetal positioning is before you get pregnant. Practice good posture especially when sitting.”

          I…uhm…erm…I have no words for that one. Does this involve psychically contacting the embryo once it’s in place?

      • Paloma

        It’s not as agressive as other sites or articles, but it does have more than a few signs:

        “If someone in your life is unsupportive, irritating, impatient or has negative feelings about normal birth, they do not belong in your sacred birthing space.” Translation: anyone who doesn’t agree with homebirth should be driven away.

        “Pregnancy is the time to gather your postpartum support. Identify your community resources: breastfeeding support, pediatric chiropractor, baby wearing, mothers’ groups, gentle parenting resources, etc. “. Because who needs an actual pediatrician when they can have a pediatric chiropractor?

        And my favorite: “Pregnancy is such an exciting and busy time that pregnant parents often forget that they will come out of it with a baby!” No! Really? I would’ve never imagined!! Well, sadly if they do go with a homebirth this could actually be wrong…

  • Phantomess

    I used to be an idiot anti-vaxxer, but I have changed my mind after more information. My daughter got her MMR and two other vaccines just last week as part of her catch up program. There is hope for misinformed people, if they’ll only listen to the science behind things rather than scare tactics.

    • Young CC Prof

      Hey, awesome! I’m glad you had the courage to reconsider your ideas!

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      I’m glad that you came around and all, but your last sentence is important.

      Why don’t they listen to the science? It’s out there, absolutely, but your implication is that they don’t listen to it. So, in your experience, why weren’t you listening to the science?

    • Kq

      Good job!

    • yentavegan

      Welcome to this side of reality. This blog site helped me recalculate and reprocess so much of the propaganda that had been clouding my intelligence.

    • Sue

      That is the reason many of us persist in correcting misinformation. Zealots and ppl with vested interests rarely change their minds, but people who can respond to reason often do. It takes maturity to acknowledge error and see reason.

    • Box of Salt

      Phantomess,
      thank you.

    • JJ

      I am so happy for your family! I changed my mind to about lots of things, including vax.

      I was worried about tetanus. One day, I was reading an anti-vax article about all I had to do to prevent tetanus was breastfeed for years, thoroughly clean every little cut, eat only healthy food ect. Then I thought, I am DONE with this! I cannot live like an OCD person anymore! I started looking for answers to my fears and read a lot on the Science Based Medicine blog. Really it came down to that almost all the doctors/scientists/public health organizations supported vaccines and I have a degree in sociology. LOL 🙂

      I have come to the conclusion that it all started with the first Bradley class (The teacher was anti-vax and married to a chiro) I was a fairly normal person until I was made very afraid of the medical community. I LOVE vaccines and I am so grateful to be on the other side!

    • manabanana

      Yay Phantomess!
      It’s hard to release onself from the cult – I get it. GOOD FOR YOU.
      One can only suspend belief for so long…. then it all seems like crazy.

      I live in/near a community of vegetarian, Prius-driving, locovore, baby-wearing, non-vaxxers (of which I was one, for a brief period of time). I really wish they’d come around. This place could explode with measles. SMH.

      It’s hard to answer what finally makes someone psychologically break from this cultish-community. It’s the ignorance, the willful ignorance of basic scientific principles. Of generally understood FACTS. It’s the fear-mongering of “all things allopathic.”

      It starts out with reasonable premises: don’t feed your kids whoopie pies and pepperoni pizza and coca-cola. Then it turns into: don’t use antibiotics, vaccines or petroleum-based skin lotions.

      Yeah, at some point. None of it makes any sense.

      Good for you. I’ve been there. High five! Can we all have a collective eyeroll now and get our kids vaccinated?

      • just me

        Hey don’t lump vegetarianism and Prius driving with the rest of that nonsense. Caring about animals and the environment is not the same as being a loony anti-vaxxer.

  • SporkParade

    Here’s what I don’t get. When parents refuse chemo for their children, even on religious grounds, the children are removed from their custody until they’ve been treated and then returned. Even though the only person being harmed is their child. But vaccine-preventable diseases can kill other people’s children! So why don’t we remove children from parental custody temporarily in order to vaccinate?

    • Young CC Prof

      I think it’s a question of the immediacy and severity of harm. As a society, we are reluctant to override a parent’s power to make medical judgements for their children (in many cases too reluctant, IMHO.)

      When the law has intervenes to force medical treatment, it is usually not sufficient to show that the parent’s treatment plan is suboptimal, but that the child is likely to suffer serious harm or die following the parent’s plan.

      Forced vaccination is going to make a lot of people upset, even those who get happily vaccinated on their own. Keeping the unvaccinated out of public schools, many jobs, and legally enforcing quarantine in the event of outbreaks is probably a better legal solution.

    • Sarah

      Shortage of resources to care for them during this period.

  • moto_librarian

    Poor anti vaxxers. Your selfish, arrogant, ignorance has come to its logical conclusion: the reemergence of lethal, vaccine preventable diseases. And now you are finally feeling the effects of being shamed and ridiculed for your moronic and dangerous stance. The “sheeple” are tired of seeing innocent children maimed and killed because of your actions. Yes, you are directly responsible for this, and as someone who vaccinated not just to protect my children, but all children (and immunocompromised adults), you deserve every bit of criticism that you are getting after years of poaching off the herd immunity that we have provided for you.

  • GiddyUpGo123

    I read that some schools in So Cal are now prohibiting students from attending unless they can provide documented proof of MMR vaccine. It’s about time! Now if only ALL schools would do the same thing, measles outbreak or no measles outbreak.

    The clause that allows people to avoid the vaccination requirement if they have personal beliefs against it is bullshit, bullshit, bullshit. If schools would just abolish that idiotic clause and tell parents their kids can’t go to school if they’re unvaccinated, I think it might be a good first step towards defeating the anti-vax mindset.

    Of course, lots of anti-vaxxers are homeschoolers too, so maybe not. But at least it would help keep measles and pertussis outbreaks out of the schools.

    • Box of Salt

      “I read that some schools in So Cal are now prohibiting students from attending unless they can provide documented proof of MMR vaccine.”

      Per state law. It goes with allowing the Personal Beliefs Exemption, and requiring tracking them no matter how small the school.

      http://eziz.org/assets/docs/IMM-1080.pdf

      Section 6060 (p7 of the pdf)

      “The local health officer shall determine whether the pupil is at risk of developing the disease and, if so, may require the exclusion of the pupil from that school. . . until the completion of the incubation period and the period of communicability of the disease”

      The one school I know that’s hit the news is Huntington Beach High School (Orange County, 24 unvaccinated students). Santa Monica High may soon follow as their baseball coach has a confirmed diagnosis. Sadly, I can no longer provide a link unless I pay the LA Times for a subscription.

      This is how we prevent the classrooms emptied by disease outbreaks we old farts grew up with: exclude those who choose to be susceptible.

      • SporkParade

        NY has the same law. It’s basically a milder version of a quarantine. I believe it dates back to the Spanish Flu. In any event, it didn’t quite work during swine flu since the disease turned out to be pretty mild, so the sick kids who were old enough to be home alone snuck out to go hang out at public places, such as the mall.

        • Box of Salt

          SporkParade,
          I’m sorry, but I am compelled to remind everyone the H1N1 (swine flue) pandemic began in March 2009, and because it had not been predicted it wasn’t in the regular flu vaccine for that year. The vaccine against H1N1 was not available until November (which was after my own kid had had it).

          In any case, flu vaccines are not on the list of what’s required for school, and therefore not subject to this particular law. Not in CA, and not in NY.

          • Box of Salt

            ^flu
            I can spell. I can’t proofread.

          • SporkParade

            Yes, perhaps I wasn’t clear. The law in NY allows authorities to prevent the spread of disease by forcing children to stay home from school, either because they have the disease in question (such as H1N1 that year) or because they are potential vectors due to their unvaccinated status (such as during last year’s measles outbreak and this year’s seasonal flu).

    • Amazed

      Knowing how some anti-vaxxers are trying to obtain false documents that their kids are vaccinated when they’re as pure as driven snow, I wonder just how many of those vaccinated kids who caught the disease proving that the vaccine wasn’t effective were, in fact, unvaxxed.

      • Gozi

        False documents? That should be jail time.

        • Amazed

          Oh yes!

      • Cobalt

        You’re right, and I really wish you weren’t.

        Not only are they refusing to vaccinate and are therefore transmission vectors, but they are also screwing up the dataset that allows the rest of us to develop protections and keep ourselves safe.

      • Liz Leyden
        • yugaya

          All the centuries of moral coding and social ethics seem to be completely lost on these pathetic little individuals. 🙁

        • JJ

          What is wrong with people!?

        • GiddyUpGo123

          Fortunately most of the people responding to that first thread seemed morally opposed to the idea of falsifying vax records, even though they were anti-vax themselves.

      • yugaya

        oops wrong comment box 😀

        • Amazed

          Not quite. I was the one who broached the subject, after all. And I do agree with your post.

  • Laura Thomas

    “unvaxxed,breastfed, and homeschooled”!? Why did you lump them all together?! I breastfed and homeschooled and completely vaccinated all of my children at all the recommended times! Perhaps, “Homebirthed, attachment-parented, and unvaxxed would be more like it,” although there are some that would take exception to that, too. You just can’t win with satire :(. (But I did think the line, “We’re going to Disneyland” was hilarious!!)

    • Trixie

      Because anti-vax parents are the last people who should be teaching science to children. And unfortunately there is a strong correlation between certain types of schooling (Waldorf, homeschooling) and being anti-vax.

      • SporkParade

        And people who homeschool so they don’t have to vax.

        • Gozi

          If I decide to homeschool my children will still have all their vaccinations.

          • SporkParade

            And we thank you for it. I wonder if any parents choose not to homeschool simply because interacting with other homeschooling families increases their children’s level of exposure to unvaccinated kids.

  • NatashaO

    I have always thought that there should be some consequence to choosing not to vaccinate your child. Higher insurance premiums? Exclusion of coverage for vaccine preventable conditions if you choose not to vaccinate? Being barred from public school? I don’t know…. it just seems that if you choose not to support the community good by vaccinating, then you should not benefit from the community good on the flip side. But how to make that work without punishing the children, who are the real victims here….

    • Hannah

      I dunno, the exclusion of coverage might work… I mean most anti-vax parents, at least that I’m aware of, seem to think the illnesses won’t happen to them, and panic most if/when it does and it’s bad. They’re typically over- or at least hyper- protective parents, and kid will get treated if they’re seriously ill (mostly… I am aware some anti-vaxxers are also anti-medicine, but most don’t seem to be), and then parents will be stuck with the bill. Parents get punished after the fact, kids ideally still get help they need because hyper protective parents won’t refuse doctor.. they’ll just cry persecution by insurance companies after the fact. Sadly, this probably isn’t going to happen… a bit too idealistic maybe

      • NatashaO

        Some employers now charge extra premiums to employees who smoke. Maybe extra premiums if you dont vax?

      • Bugsy

        ” I mean most anti-vax parents, at least that I’m aware of, seem to think the illnesses won’t happen to them, and panic most if/when it does and it’s bad”

        Really good point – that’s what I’ve seen with my anti-vax friends. They panic over any remote sign of illness, yet believe that they’re taking the healthy approach but not vaccinating. It’s the image of control, I think?

  • Box of Salt

    I am reposting the link to the LATimes from my reply to attitude devant below.
    http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-california-measles-outbreak-78-cases-20150123-story.html
    “The vaccination status is known for 39 [of 68] of the patients. Of those, 32 were unvaccinated, one had received partial vaccination and seven were fully vaccinated.”

    This outbreak is a direct result of the failure to vaccinate.

    No, there are NOT more vaccinated cases, although that may change as the disease continues to spread to secondary cases. The vaccine did not fail, for most of those who received it – think about how many people visited Disneyland over those few days, and be thankful that the initial numbers are as low as they are.

  • Francesca Violi

    I was thinking: isn’t this association Disneyland-measles outbreak very bad for Disneyland brand? Didn’t anyone try push them to voice pro-vaccinations? Something like, “Dear Disneyland, I was thinking of taking my kids to your park but now I perceive it as a risky place. I would appreciate if you speak up to encourage all families in vaccinating children – something like Please parents, we want
    our park being safe and fun for ALL families and children… DO
    vaccinate yours! Do not bring easily preventable and very contagious
    diseases in our funpark!” Even if the anti vaxxers boycotted Disney, wouldn’t it be a minor damage compared to the majority of sensible people associating Disney with hazard and disease?

    • Box of Salt

      Disneyland has offered vaccines to their employees, blood tests checking for immunity, and put the employees who aren’t immune on paid leave. They are doing the right thing. I don’t have a specific link for this, but it’s mentioned in this latest LATimes article:
      http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-california-measles-outbreak-78-cases-20150123-story.html

      Exactly how do you want them to deal with the visitors?

      • Cobalt

        With commercials, aired during primetime and all over their channels, that they want Disneyland to be safe for all children. Bring up the Make A Wish kids.

        They can’t force the public to get immunizations, of course. But they can be pro-vax, and they can be public about being pro-vax, and hopefully get boycotted by those idiots.

        • Box of Salt

          Superbowl opportunity!

          Not going to happen.

          It’s So Cal. We still have Dr Jay Gordon and Dr Bob Sears, and a lot of people with a lot of money who don’t want to hear the message.

          • Bugsy

            As a mom who has spent the past 2 years fighting the attachment parenting/anti-vax mantra I inadvertently absorbed from his diehard followers, I have one thing to say:

            I
            HATE
            DR.
            SEARS.

        • Francesca Violi

          Yeah, I meant something like that. I didn’t even know the Make a Wish programme, it is very relevant actually!

  • Mrs Crewe

    Those like Andrew Wakefield and Ms Tennpenny should face criminal prosecution for child endangerment and manslaughter. The lies and fake studies they push scared people into not protecting their children from preventable disease. It has resulted in a young person dieing from measles complications in South Wales, and other children developing life altering disabilities as a result of catching the disease.

  • Gozi

    I just want to say that I am glad Dr. Amy allows people to post viewpoints that oppose hers. She is not afraid to be disagreed with. I was just on another board about a different topic and all my comments stayed in moderation limbo then finally deleted. How cowardly! !

    With that said, I can mostly understand the homeschool movement. I work in the public school system and I cannot defend what goes on there. If I could, I’d homeschool my own. Of course, I don’t buy into the idea that people should look down upon children who aren’t homeschooled.

    • FormerPhysicist

      I think it depends where you are. My children are better off being in public school and we do some enrichment at home.

      • Cobalt

        My kids are definitely better off at their school than homeschooled. But I think the option of homeschooling is important, and may well be the best for some situations. Like you said, it depends on where you are.

        • Gozi

          In some situations children are better of in public school. It depends on that student’s personal needs. Some students don’t have the support at home that would make homeschool a good choice. I failed to clarify that I wouldn’t blame anybody for choosing homeschool instead of my local school district.

          • just me

            I think unless you have a teaching credential and can ensure all of the social benefits of public school (gasp! Mingling with minorities) you should not be homeschooling. Meaning 99.9% of people aren’t qualified. I’m highly educated and I’ve taught at the college level but I have no training in child education and no credential and I wouldn’t dream of homeschooling even in my major subject. I think it’s an insult to the teaching profession that people think anyone can do it. And most aren’t nearly as educated as me. Plus the whole social experience.

          • Cobalt

            Good teachers and enriching social environments aren’t guaranteed at public schools. If your local middle school has a drug problem (mine did), your kids might be better off at home. Or if it’s just a crappy district. There are cheap or free curricula available online in most states that meet the same criteria as what is taught in schools.

            Homeschooling doesn’t always mean anti-science conspiracy nutjobs. Sometimes it’s just what works best for a particular family. If the kids meet the set standards, who am I to judge how they got there?

          • Gozi

            I am completely for vaccinations. I have several family members who grew up during the time of no vaccines and-or the time before social programs to help pay for them. I can readily talk to people who remember suffering from childhood diseases or helping their parents try to keep their sibling alive during their struggle with whooping cough, etc.

            Before I started working with my local school district, I was mostly against homeschool. But now I see classrooms that get almost nothing accomplished because of behavior issues. That is a huge problem. I see special education students who are not nearly receiving the services promised in their IEPs. In my own experience, the children who are academically behind are being left there and oftentimes passed to the next grade and the next. I had a classroom of fifth-graders who had no idea how to think of a sentence and write it down. They had no idea what a subject or a predicate was. Students who are above average and-or gifted are held up to an extent by all the behind students. Especially in elementary school, their class time is mired by too many students who don’t care and parents don’t care.

          • Gozi

            Sorry, technical difficulties

          • Gozi

            shown in class. My children have watched movies at school with all of the “bad words ” in them. I don’t approve of some of the holiday celebrations. That alone isn’t a reason for me to homeschool.

            By the way, my school district gets a D rating on a A to F scale by our state department of education. They must not think it is great either.

            Homeschooling is a major commitment. It isn’t for everyone. Some people who can’t be bothered to check their child’s folder, help with homework, or send their child to school with clean clothes and a bath think they are committed enough to homeschool.

            Sorry this was so long. Sorry for the errors, typing on my phone.

          • Trixie

            You keep your children home to protect them from bad words?

          • Gozi

            What? I never said I kept them home. I said I’d homeschool them if I could but they go to the local public school. I wouldn’t blame a parent for choosing homeschool over MY school district. I cannot speak for anyone else’s. And I said the movie issue was no reason by itself to consider homeschool. I also think that if a parent is having problems with their local school district then they should try to work with the district before taking their child out.

          • Amazed

            Looks like we have a major talking of cross-purposes where concepts are concerned, then, and not so much about the substance. To me, homeschooling means schooling that takes place at home, period. No public schools. What Stacy and OBPI Mama are describing is the very natural desire of most parents (in my experience) to have fun with their children while teaching them. I enjoyed it when I was a child. I even practiced it with the Intruder (although the measure of success with a kid teaching a kid is highly questionable, we did have great fun and he even learned something!). I don’t think I know parents who didn’t do this. Not a single one of them referred to it as homeschooling. Additional lessons at home for older children are not homeschooling for me either. They can be great (they were for me because they weren’t SHAPED as lessons). But schooling takes place at school.

          • KarenJJ

            That’s probably why I send my kids to school then. Mum’s still got a potty-mouth…

          • Ennis Demeter

            Too often homeschoolers avoid standards, though.

          • Gozi

            I’ll admit that I don’t know all the ends and outs of homeschooling, but I thought students were periodically tested if homeschooled? I didn’t think you could just pull your child out of school and claim to homeschool them. Doesn’t the laws for homeschooling vary from state to state?

          • Guestelehs

            Not sure exactly where to put this but I really enjoyed this essay by a man who was homeschooled.

            My mom would write up a list of things to read, workbooks to complete, and so on, and the length of my school day was up to me. If I chose to wake up early and hit the books, I was done at noon; if I loafed, I’d be “at school” until dinnertime. It felt so adult, which is an intoxicating feeling for an 11-year-old.

            So I’d spend my days learning math, science, literature, and whatever else I decided was interesting, and when my dad came home from work, he’d give my brother and me the occasional history lesson. That was the majority of my homeschooling experience.

            The remainder was populated by the strangest people I have ever met.

          • JJ

            It depends on the state. In CA you can sign a affidavit that essentially sets the home up as a private school. You don’t have to do any testing or check in with anyone.

          • Amazed

            They are trying to sneak their way here with American textbooks and all. American? Please guys. It isn’t the USA here. When they start prattling about the top notch universities their children are going to attend, I’m like, Yeah. How they imagine that would happen is beyond me when their American programsare not adjusted to the system here and naturally, they don’t meet any official requirements here? These people cannot even obtain an elementary school diploma for their children? They don’t seem bothered by that at all… or the fact that many of them are glaringly illiterate. And they are teaching kids how to spell, avoiding any standards, and just insist that we don’t understand them? Please.

            Of course, most of homeschooling parents here belong to a sect determined to protect their children from the evil outer world and keep them safe from the “brothels” of public schools where girls only think of boys and so on. I don’t know about the USA but here, most of the parents homeschooling not because of a child’s specific needs but their own beliefs are just like this. They do sound like members of a cult, hailing their children’s success to no end (which, objectively measured by the content of their own boasts, isn’t greater than your average child’s success) and degrading children from public schools in forums and on TV. Maybe if they are forced to accept some standards, things will change. But they don’t want standards. They want the diploma but aren’t too crushed by the fact that for now, they aren’t getting it. After all, all the world top universities are waiting for their children, offering to sponsor their education and so on.

            For now, they are a very tiny minority here but a very vocal one. And one that I don’t like. I suspect it might be because homeschooling isn’t yet established here and they feel obliged to sing the hymn of its superiority. Maybe it’s different in countries where it’s integrated into the system. I don’t know.

          • yugaya

            I love my expat moms mailing list – no matter how many times I repeat it they fail to understand that their children, even though they are native speakers of English language, even though they are attending English language kindergartens are NOT kids who are undergoing simple monolingual language acquisition, and that ESL materials and methodology adjusted for local language as the dominant language of environment are far more adequate than usborne and what else not.

            Usually when they are done with early literacy and start encountering problems that arise from the discrepancy between multilingual situation at hand and curriculum designed for mono native speakers I will start getting emails asking for recommendations. 🙂

          • demodocus’ spouse

            The only family I know reasonably well that homeschooled did so because Mom was crazy religious. Sadly, not an exaggeration in either adjective. Her son sends his kids to public school.

          • Lisa P

            Absolutely, that is exactly why I am homeschooling. I am homeschooling to avoid completely inappropriate standards. I am former teacher and lawyer. I worked for various school districts for a number of years. I have yet to meet a teacher than thinks Common Core standards are developmentally appropriate for young children.

          • just me

            That’s my point. Using free cirricula is not the same as having years of training and a credential to teach children. That’s an insult to the profession.

          • rh1985

            I was homeschooled through a distance learning program so the lessons were prepared by teachers (it still exists and is now an online school). School couldn’t meet my needs (severe anxiety). Homeschooling worked great for me. If I think homeschooling will be best for my daughter, then I will homeschool her too, if not she will go to school. I think it was my parents’ decision to make for me (though I had been begging them for years!), and mine to make for my child when the time comes.

          • KeeperOfTheBooks

            *shrug* DH and I don’t have teaching credentials, but he has an MS and I a BA in our respective fields. We’re planning on homeschooling because our local school system, stated politely, sucketh wastewater on an epic level in terms of academics, and we can’t afford private schools. Fortunately, academically, we balance one another out in weaknesses/strengths, and plan on using online or, come high school, community college classes for those areas we can’t responsibly teach at home. (Lab chemistry, for example, comes to mind.) In our state, high school (and yes, that includes homeschooled) kids can go to community college for free and receive full credit–yay!

            For the record, DH and, therefore, our kids belong to a minority ethnic group. Race isn’t an issue in our decision to homeschool. Our disgust with the local educational system is. We plan on taking full advantage of the fact that in our state, homeschooled kids can participate in extracurricular activities in their respective districts, which allows them to simultaneously mingle with kids of all sorts of different backgrounds and experiences while getting a better education than they’re likely to receive in our district. We have nothing against most of the teachers in our district: they’ve been handed the proverbial bum rap by a corrupt and generally asinine system. We have the opportunity of offering our kids a better education than they can, though, so we plan on taking it. Should we have a kid with special or different needs, we’ll re-evaluate at that point and on an ongoing basis.

            Finally, as I’ve mentioned here before, my husband makes regular business trips to one of the more impoverished countries in Africa. You can bet we’ll be vaccinating our kids with any vaccine they offer us. Any number of his coworkers there would have their heads explode if he tried to explain that yes, the MMR vaccine is widely and cheaply available here, but no, parents don’t all take advantage of it. Measles is a nasty disease, especially if you have an overall lower standard of health than we are so fortunate as to generally enjoy here. Everyone there knows people who’ve lost a child to it; some have themselves. Many Americans have no idea at all how privileged we are. At. All.

          • Samantha06

            So very true. Only the privileged snub their noses at modern medicine. They are sorely in need of a reality check..

          • OBPI Mama

            When we homeschooled last year, I feel like my kids got MORE socializing done than now, when they are in school. We did lots of playdates, lessons with friends, visiting science museums/zoos/etc with other friends, gymnastics/swimming, co-ops. We were WAYYYY more on the run than now. Now that school takes up a lot of the day, we stay at home in the evenings and weekends because they just want to relax. I fear over-scheduling my children so I’m figuring out one thing a year they can do (whether it’s Awanas, boy scouts, baseball, etc). When we homeschooled, we had more time for “extra-curricular” activities and so we did them.
            It’s just a pro of homeschool and a con of schooling. I’ve realized there are plenty of both (vice versa too). Sending them to school has been a better fit so far, but I do miss certain aspects of homeschooling.

          • Amazed

            Or maybe it has something to do with age? As children grow, their attention span grows as well and they are capable of and frankly, they should take more “theoretical” knowledge and the fun part should start getting smaller. The homeschooling mothers I mentioned in my post, the ones whose kids did have a solid body of knowledge according to my mom claimed the same thing. But they were indeed educated and their kids were YOUNG. Just like yours. When the kids grew older, mothers realized that school was a better fit.

            It’s the reverse of some of the other kids that come to my mom, their mothers armed with the idea that their kid should be the new Professor of the World. At age 5? Please. At this age, you SHOULD provide entertainment if you want to teach anyone anything. Two little girls my mom is teaching now have a special dance they only play in her living room in the interval (they come for 2 hours and they need a break). That’s fine. But so far, my mom has encountered more problems trying to convince parents that their small kids should be allowed to be kids. Which does NOT include having English lessons three times a week and no, the kids won’t be hopelessly behind if they miss on said three times. Give them time to rest and actually take in the knowledge you’re cramming into their poor heads!

          • Trixie

            Overscheduling is one thing. But what I like about school is that the people they spend all day with aren’t necessarily exactly like us or exactly who I’d handpick for them to have a playdate with. Public school should teach you to interact with a variety of types of people.

          • Amy M

            Yeah, my husband taught middle school English for years (now he’s gone back to school to be a guidance counselor) but he never considered homeschooling. I have a science degree and work in science, but that does not mean I am qualified to teach it, especially beyond a certain level. Not to mention, I do biology, I was never great at chemistry and physics.

            We are happy with the public schools where we live and figure we can add enrichment outside of school. Husband and I are big readers and we’ve done our best to instill love of books in our sons. We take them to museums, get them science based toys and foster their love of learning, which I hope they keep forever.

            I can agree that for some kids, in some situations, if the parents are qualified, homeschooling can be a good thing. It is certainly not for everyone—moreso the parents as teachers, than the children as students.

          • Box of Salt

            “It depends on that student’s personal needs.”

            Some children will not respond to performance evaluations by the same individuals who provide them unconditional love.

          • Stacy48918

            “Some children will not respond to performance evaluations by the same individuals who provide them unconditional love.”

            Shoot, my son doesn’t even eat his dinner as quickly or completely for me as he will for his babysitter. I HATED the little bit of homeschooling I did with him. I would much rather just be his mom and not his teacher too. I enjoyed teaching him to read, but beyond that it was a drag. I can’t wait to get him enrolled in public school.

          • Who?

            My kids went through a fad of wanting to be home schooled-I used to tell them that they were way too good at manipulating me for me to be able to successfully teach them what they needed to learn. And that I didn’t have enough moves to keep one step ahead of them if I had to school as well as raise them. Perhaps that was the attraction?

            I don’t know where they got the idea but they were quite persistent about it for a while there.

          • Amazed

            Raising my hand here! And one for the Intruder please!

            Both my parents are very well educated. My mom is an English teacher who has been known for “saving” kids who looked hopeless. Including teaching children whose mothers, also very educated women, thought they were doing great teaching them at home. They might have been since my mom confirmed that the children did have a solid body of knowledge. The moms just didn’t do as great as my mom did, by their own confession.

            Teaching her own kids? A lost cause. It was very hard for us to separate Mom from Lady Teacher. And I’m being generous to our young selves. The truth is, it was impossible. I have always marveled at people who said things like, “Oh your English must be perfect! Your mom…” Please. She did try and I did not respond. You try teaching someone who thinks that mom should be mom and teacher should be teacher. It won’t work.

            For the record: both our parents helped us with our lessons in every subject we needed. They found us qualified teachers when it looked like there were some real problems. We simply wouldn’t let Mom go all teacher on us. And I cannot remember a colleague of hers, a single one, who successfully taught their own kids for a prolonged period of time. They sent them elsewhere where boundaries would come naturally.

          • Laura Thomas

            Do you regret the years your mom spent home schooling you? Do you wish she hadn’t? Just curious…

          • Amazed

            Yes. Yes, I do. And yes, I do. I hated it when she tried.

            For the record: I adored being… I wouldn’t say homeschooled but what Stacy and OBPI Mama said they did with their small children. When I was small, my mom, dad, and elementary teacher grandma taught me to read, taught me things of history and biology. My interest in history which reflected on my choice of education and career was sparkled by the episodes of our history my dad told me at bedtime. Even English with my mom was fun then. But when I grew up a little, things changed. I wanted my home to be home and not school and we weren’t this good at separating the two. Now, my mom is a great help (I am a translator, after all those years I swore I’d never open an English book again.) I go to her whenever I smell the whiff of a problem. But her attempts to teach me made my education in her subject suffer. I did not want her to be my teacher and I felt I could not go to her for a problem with my English either. It was bad enough that well-meaning relatives were constantly bemoaning my lack of interest in utilizing her help. It felt like I proved them right each time I encountered a problem, so I struggled on my own. As a result, I hated English for many years.

            I agree with Gozi that public school do make a line that keep some students back. But I see no problem with that, unless the level is dangerously low. Public schools are not meant to produce genii but assure a level of knowledge. From there, you’re on your own. Now, the other kind of problems, violence, drugs, and so on in the schools are another thing and a cause for great concern!

          • KarenJJ

            I went to a pretty rough public school. There were drugs and violence. A motivated student with family support and enough social skills to maintain some friends will still do OK. Looking back I realise my teachers were looking out for me too. My high level maths class towards the end of my school years had 6 students in it and we had to go to another school to sit our final exam but I still went to the university I wanted and did the course I wanted. I’m still in contact with my best friend from school (who has done incredibly well for herself with a high up government job – her mum was a cleaner and her dad a labourer).

          • Amazed

            Thanks for posting, Karen! It was very interesting to read since it’s an experience I never had. My experience consisted mainly of a decent secondary school that never demanded too much effort on my part to keep floating with the current and stay on top, mostly. When I was admitted to a prestigious high school, it was quite the shock to me that I was now in a competitive environment with people who were just as smart as me (we all entered via exams, as there was no other way here. Mind you, I didn’t make the very top school. Brains can only take you so far before laziness impedes the enterprise.) and most of them, unlike me, were motivated to learn. It took me about two years to realize that from now on, competition it would be so I sat on my you know what and took up to the task. The teenage rebellion choosing this period to strike didn’t help either. I credit my high school with teaching me to put effort in whatever I did. Granted, my secondary school failed miserably at that but then, it wasn’t there to bring out the genius in me. It was to give some level of knowledge to everyone which it did.

          • Sue

            Bright and well-motivated kids tend to do well anywhere – especially with a stable family life and parental encouragement. Ironically, the parents who can’t provide that sort of environment probably would’t be able to homeschool either.

          • KarenJJ

            I’m thinking of some of the advantages of going to a low socio-economic school:

            Peer pressure – it was not about clothes etc. Spending too much money on fancy designer clothes was considered showy and stuck up.

            School uniform was non-compulsory and kept very simple, practical, comfortable and easy to access – blue jeans and a white shirt.

            Different culture and backgrounds – the school had a lot of indigenous students as well as students from non-english speaking homes and refugees.

            More acceptance of some differences – eg homosexuality.

            Back in the 70s-80s the government targeted some schools that were classed as ‘disadvantaged’ and pumped some money into their facilities. So we had a swimming pool and a some old but decent manual arts equipment.

            We had our own part time community police officer to help improve relationships between the school and police.

          • Trixie

            Yes to this. My first grader would not respond well to my teaching him at all.

          • Amazed

            But in many cases, it isn’t “the support at home that would make homeschool a good choice”. You’re making it sound that “support” is all that matters. With your credentials, it might be so for you (or not, as my mom found out on a lesser scale). But for many, many supportive and educated parents it just doesn’t work because having the knowledge is one thing, giving it to someone else is quite another and learning how to do it is so time-consuming that often, it isn’t worth it.

          • Gozi

            I used the word support to cover many issues so I could make a shorter post. I have a much longer post about this subject below.

          • Trixie

            Only in some situations? I’d say in MOST situations children are better off in school. I’m a very supportive parent, and well-educated, and I’d be making a terrible mistake to try to homeschool them.

          • Gozi

            I elaborate more below.

      • Laura Thomas

        I’ve done a variety of homeschool and public school options among my six kids. Both my husband and I are teachers, although I haven’t been in the classroom in a long time and am in nursing school currently. However, my preference is homeschooling for several reasons. My oldest child who had the most homeschooling is a sophomore in college and considering attending MIT for a Master’s in Science Writing because she has keen critical thinking skills. I think that is partly how she’s wired, but also because it is something I strongly emphasized and encouraged in her homeschool curriculum. I certainly have really enjoyed the arts program in my younger kids’ elementary school, though. There are so many variables and seasons to consider!

        • Being homeschooled by parents who are professional teachers is light-years away from being homeschooled by someone with eccentric views who barely got through high school and that was years ago.

          And, depending on where one lives and one’s circumstances, in the drive for academic excellence, one forgets the social aspect of being in school. While there are some excellent homeschooling parents out there, [1] it still remains unsupervised to a large degree, and [2] the children can be isolated from their peers, if their parents want to maintain tight control over them for possibly negative reasons.

          • Laura Thomas

            Although you make some valid points, there are too many variables among home school families to make such generalizations. In over 25 years of observing homeschooled kids, including my own, I have observed that most kids who have been homeschooled leave home, get a college education or a good job, socially integrate well into society and become productive, functioning members of their communities, at least in my area. Most of these kids’ parents were not school teachers, either, and they did vaccinate their children!

          • Trixie

            My homeschooled relatives are severely behind in science and math and critical thinking in general and this has hindered their ability to find good jobs.

          • Gozi

            So are a good number of the public high schoolers in my area.

          • Trixie

            Sure, there are public schools that don’t do a great job of those things. However, these relatives are affluent enough to live where there are very good schools, and didn’t take advantage of them.

          • Ennis Demeter

            There is no measurement of homeschooling’s effectiveness, so there is no way of knowing how most of the students fare academically or socially. It stands to reason that untrained teachers, as most parents are, won’t have desirable results.

          • Gozi

            I understand your point, but what about all the undesirable results in public schools? I am not suggesting to do away with public schools, but homeschool could be the right option for some families.

          • Laura Thomas

            Except when those home schooled kids go to college and excel in their studies and outperform most of their public and private school educated peers. I have talked to non-teacher home school parents who are quite proud of their kids who get Master’s degrees in statistics and engineering at top universities by the time they’re 24.

          • KarenJJ

            And i know some kids that did the same from low socio-economic public schools.

          • Laura Thomas

            I’m just responding to the idea that success among home schooled students can’t be measured, not excluding the kids from low income areas who reach that measure of success.

          • Amazed

            But what you’re doing is saying that homeschool children you know can serve as a valid measure for success of all homeschooled children. That’s just your experience. I can say the same thing about the kids from high schools here, in my country. Most of the kids graduated high school I know have graduated from te top universities here and abroad and can be considered successful adults. So what? My very subjective experience isn’t an objective measure of all high schools. It doesn’t show anything but the fact that I was born to parents of certain educations, grown in a certain environment, attended certain schools and universities and of course, happened to meet people who also attended them. It says something about the level in my own high school and some others. It certainly doesn’t say anything about the high schools that took the ones who could not pass the exams (that was the only way of entering top high schools back in the day).

            Same with homeschooling. I am sure success can be measured. But your claim that your own experience is that measure cannot be valid.

          • Trixie

            Sure, it could be measured. It isn’t very effectively because the homeschool movement tends to resist government oversight.

          • yugaya

            “Except when those home schooled kids go to college and excel in their studies and outperform most of their public and private school educated
            peers.”

            There is this national statistic over here that says the same about private schools vs state ones and indicates that private education is far more superior (criteria including: competence annual testing, number of students with higher level graduation achieved in more subjects, number of students passing advanced foreign language exams, number of students admitted into university directly without taking extra entrance tests, overall number of those who obtain university degrees).

            No one mentions that private schools are also used as means of social, economic and racial segregation, and that the underperforming state school next door is the one where all the kids who are not rich enough or white enough end up by default.

            Homeschooling is probably a great option, but the numbers are not in its favour because homeschooling itself is superior to formal education, just like private schools in my country are not superior to state education because they are private and they teach their students better.

          • KarenJJ

            To be honest I think of home schooling similarly to the way I think of homebirth. With clear judgement (is it right for the kid, is it right for you?), low educational risk, high levels of risking out to the professionals, correct screening of educational standards being met along the way and a well-trained attendant, likelihood is that homeschooling can go OK – still might have a disaster on your hands – but likelihood is that it will be OK.

            The only homeschooled kids I’ve come across were nasty little bullies in a gifted education group and meeting them put me right off homeschooling and gifted education groups. I’m sure they’ll be fine educationally as their mothers were VERY motivated to make it work and the kids will probably grow out of that phase – it certainly happens in public school too – but it didn’t endear me to the idea.

          • Young CC Prof

            But with home schooling, you can generally try it for a short time, and then try something else if it doesn’t work out, without anyone suffering lasting harm.

          • KarenJJ

            True – it’s not a great analogy and nobody is going to die from a decision to homeschool.

          • Who?

            They’ll probably end up in politics.

            Gifted education groups were always a nightmare, the kids may or may not be okay but the mothers are usually impossible.

        • Francesca Violi

          I know school here in Italy is different from the USA, and I live in a relatively wealthy area with good public school. Nevertheless I try to share my view on why I think public school is good. What I see is that at school my kids do not only learn maths italian and history, but also: get used to deal with adult models and views other than (and different from) their parents and relatives; experiment social skills like interacting with their peers and deal with their diversity (in skills, heritage, social condition, disabilities…); sistematically work with their classmates and are encouraged to cooperate and help each other… In a word, they broaden their horizon of experience, and deal day after day for years on end with tha fact that it is not all about them. And I find it really valuable, I think it counterbalances the temptation of many families to treat their precious children like little kings, and fuel narcisism and sense of entitlement.

          • Laura Thomas

            We have a wonderful elementary school in our neighborhood that I am very grateful for. There are definitely benefits to a non-home school education.

    • Trixie

      The irony here being that anti-vax parents are the last people who should be teaching science or critical thinking to children….

  • Dr. W

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/i-dont-vaccinate-my-child-because-its-my-right-to,37839/

    Another modest proposal.

    The writing reminds me of Dr Amy.

    • Trixie

      I’m convinced the Onion writers must be readers here.

    • rational adult

      Chillingly funny

  • Cobalt

    Anti-vaxxers should be consistently held to their bizarre theories.

    Vaccines are unnatural? No more electricity, phone, internet, no grocery stores, no motorized transportation or indoor plumbing for you.

    Diseases are better because natural selection should be the arbiter of life and death? No medical care developed after 500 CE for you.

    Herd immunity isn’t your problem? Then no herd benefits for you. No police, no ambulance, no fire department, no public school, no day in court, no OSHA, no SSI, no public assistance, no disaster relief, no consumer protections.

    Vaccines are secret government mind control conspiracy? Should have ANTI-VAXX tattooed on your forehead so we can all be warned that you are not only a disease vector, but also a fool.

    • Samantha06

      I think not vaccinating your kids without a sound medical reason should be considered child abuse.

      • Allie

        I have a problem with people who deny their young children the benefits of Tylenol and Advil. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s child abuse, but when you make decisions for another person, you have to weigh all the facts and generally accepted best practices carefully and choose what that person would want if they could choose. Denying a child safe and effective pain and fever relief because you are a whack job is just plain unfair and cruel.

        • just me

          Yeah I’ve read msg boards where people were like “oh if it’s under 102 we let their body fight it”. What? At our house 99 gets a dose. For both them and us (we enjoy sleeping at night).

          • Sue

            The way I think about it is, if I ever get a fever from some viral illness, I feel achy and miserable, so I take something to relieve it. Kids also look and feel miserable with a fever – shouldn’t they get some relief too?

          • rational adult

            I agree and I will extend this to teething. I felt terrible when my son was still a little too young for Advil and cutting his teeth. When I have bad tooth pain I want hydrocodone! I hated not being able to give him ibuprofen and tylenol wasn’t helping. By the way I did not try an amber teething necklace. 😉

          • wookie130

            I will admit to this and then quickly run to bury my head in the sand. I have tried the amber teething necklaces…with both kids. You would think I would learn how useless they were after the first child, but noooooo…

            Tylenol and ibuprofen actually work, and we all get to sleep. It’s a win-win, believe it!

          • rational adult

            Well even though they didn’t work I bet your kids looked adorable in them. So there’s that 🙂

          • Cobalt

            If your kid is miserable, you’ll try almost anything to help. Even the woo stuff. The amber is ineffective but not dangerous in and of itself. The necklace part could easily be dangerous, that’s where I would focus my worries.

            I’d put my money on the Tylenol though.

          • I’ve always found that locally applied substances work better for teething kids than paracetamol or ibuprofen. [I’m going through this right now with my 7 month old grandson who is cutting 3 teeth at the same time] There are gels containing hyaluronic acid; [believe it or not] some forms of ear drops which contain local anesthetic can be rubbed on the gums, or, good old-fashioned whisky can help temporarily.

          • SporkParade

            I was just telling my husband yesterday that his job is to stop me from using alcohol to treat teething pain when the baby gets to that stage. I used it as a mouthwash when my first wisdom tooth was coming in (as per the advice of my mother channeling her grandmother), and it worked great!

          • rational adult

            The locally applied stuff seemed to wear off quickly and so after a couple of nights of getting up every 2 hours to reapply due to howling miserable baby we went back to oral meds.

          • fiftyfifty1

            Teething is a mystery to me. Some babies seem to have an absolutely miserable time, while others don’t bat an eye. Both of my kids teethed without giving any signs whatsoever, not as babies, toddlers or as children. They say they can’t feel it/can barely notice it. I remember getting new teeth as a child and it being a painless event. My mother says that none of us sibs displayed any signs as infants–new teeth would just appear. Something genetic?

          • rational adult

            I wonder too. I will also admit that I’m quick to ascribe many likely unrelated symptoms (diahrrhea, appetite change, etc) to teething. There are many other reasons a baby might be cranky.

          • S

            My first had a lot of pain with his first two (came in very crooked) and his first molar, which caused a big blister. Didn’t notice the rest.

          • just me

            Right, I mean why not?

          • Dr Kitty

            Which is great until your child has a febrile convulsion!

            Our kiddo ended up with a fever of 41C a few weeks ago (yay pneumonia!) and was delerious and rigouring and miserable despite paracetamol and ibuprofen and ice lollies.

            That was grim, and I don’t know how anyone could watch their child be that sick and not want to do everything in their power to may them better.

            48hrs of amoxicillin later and she was a different child BTW- all good.

          • Box of Salt

            41C??????
            If I converted correctly, that’s over 105F.

            Wow. Glad she’s better!

          • Dr Kitty

            Yep!
            Visit to A&E and a chest X-ray, but all good with few days of antibiotics.
            Much parental anxiety though!

          • Montserrat Blanco

            I am really glad he is doing fine.

          • Kesiana

            I don’t understand people who refuse all medication to begin with, but aren’t high fevers treatable by a COLD BATH anyway?! It shouldn’t be that hard to keep someone from dying of a fever!

            Granted, being immersed in cold water sounds like pure hell when already super-feverish, but it’s probably better than dying.

          • Lukewarm baths are better; less traumatic to the system.
            I advise my daughter that if one of the grandkids is running a fever, give a single dose of paracetamol. If, after 4 hours, the fever returns, go to the doctor. Children do sometimes run fevers briefly for no apparent reason. Persistent fever is a sign that something else is going on.

          • Kesiana

            Oh, that makes sense! Thanks; as a writer, you never know what random knowledge will come in handy. XD

            My fantasy-world characters are largely still stuck having homebirths, but thanks to this site I know what spells the healers will need to keep more of them alive…

        • Who?

          One of my anti-vax contacts had a sick school age child-hot and horrible, feeling very unwell. After three days of keeping him home, using various home remedies-most memorably an old sock draped around the neck) she dosed him up with Panadol (Tylenol in other places I think). Guess why? She was going to work and needed to send him to school.

          Apart from the general irresponsibility of sending your unvaccinated and undiagnosed child to school, how mean is it to dose them up for your convenience but not otherwise.

          • Samantha06

            Now I think that’s abusive! I bet she never took him to a doctor either. Bitch.

          • Who?

            Quite. She’s in my extended circle, gets quite heavily defended because she’s ‘doing her best’, whatever crap that entails. Worst thing is she is an early childhood teacher, goodness knows who she is influencing.

          • Samantha06

            I guess “doing her best” means what’s best for HER, ’cause she sure isn’t thinking about her child! What a piece of work..

          • Who?

            It feeds into her martyr complex to have to do all this fiddling with food, and medications, and activities and all the rest of it. And she has more than a touch of perfectionism, which doesn’t seem to sit really well with the reality of children.

            It must be hard to raise kids this way, especially into their teens. Teens need to rebel, and if absolutely everything is important to you-what they eat, what they otherwise consume (even before we get to alcohol and drugs), as well as all that other stuff about school, activities, nice friends etc, it gives them a smorgasboard to rebel against. It’s hard to not sweat the small stuff when nothing is small stuff.

            I feel sorry for her, and the kids, and her long suffering husband-who must at some level be complicit with her-but she is a nutcase.

          • Samantha06

            What a shame. She obviously lets her skewed beliefs get in the way of common sense! Hopefully her husband can maybe get her some help or something!

        • Cobalt

          Yes, not what you would want in their situation but what they would want if they could choose.

        • Samantha06

          I totally agree about the tylenol and ibuprofen. Good God, I’m not up on the latest “trends” so I didn’t realize tylenol and ibuprofen were on the list of poisons too! Good grief, these folks are insane. I feel so sorry for their kids.
          Sort of OT : There was video posted online of a woman in BC who missed the ferry and had a full-out temper tantrum complete with foot stomping! She looked to be about 25 years old. It was New Years Eve. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a child behave like that much less an adult. My first thought was “serious mental health issues and attachment parenting victim.”

          • prolifefeminist

            My sister has completely bought into all things woo. Her oldest daughter (17) was staying with us recently and she got a migraine, so I offered her some ibuprofen. She was so grateful! She told me that when she gets period cramps or migraines, her mom won’t let her have tylenol or ibuprofen because it’s “toxic.” Utter bullshit. She said her mom once found a bottle of tylenol hidden in her dresser and reamed her out over it (my sister is a real nut job in more ways that one). After my niece told me that, I promptly drove to Walgreens and bought two bottles of motrin and tylenol and gave them to her. No one should be denied pain relief. It’s cruel.

          • Mel

            I was in high school during the “anti-drug” movement that lead to a zero-tolerance policy on students carrying ibuprofen since…it was a drug. A) I learned to carry single-serving sealed packets of Motrin. B)The teachers thought it was so stupid I remember an elderly teacher closing her eyes (CYA teaching :-P) while verbally instructing a student where to find the teacher’s stash of Motrin in the teacher desk…

          • Kelly

            I always sent my students to the bathroom if they needed to take medicine and told them to never tell me again.

          • Yeah, same here. My mom was afraid my Tic-Tac habit would be mistaken for pills.

          • Samantha06

            Yes, I agree. You are a good auntie for taking care of her! What does your sister do if she gets a headache or something? Bite on a stick? It’s awful to see a family member buy into that crap, and have to see their kids suffer for it..

          • Just about anything is poisonous if given in the wrong amount. But I do agree that while a lot of people know that aspirin can have side effects, the same people overlook the dangers of NSAIDs, taken in too large amounts.

          • Samantha06

            But I think parents would be extra cautious about the dosages for their child so they wouldn’t be overdosing. At least one would hope. I did have friend recently who took a huge dose of tylenol. A lot of people don’t realize the effects on the liver.

        • Des

          I disagree, I don’t give my older daughter tylenol unless her fever is over 103 OR she’s uncomfortable. She tends to run high fevers but feel fine (happy, playing, in no way uncomfortable). Over 103 she gets a dose, usually ibuprofen because that’s more effective at lowering her fevers, no matter how she feels. If her fever is intent on being high though, nothing will take it down more than a degree or 2.

          My little one though? She’s miserable anywhere over 99.5, so it’s something for her every time. They’re each so different. But there’s nothing wrong with letting a mild fever run its course.

          • Des

            Here’s a link from the mayo clinic outlining fever care. Medication isn’t advised for fevers under 102 in kids over 3: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/fever/in-depth/fever/ART-20050997

          • Dr Kitty

            http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg160/resources/guidance-feverish-illness-in-children-pdf

            I prefer the NiCE guidance on feverish illness in children under five.
            You medicate to treat pain and distress, not to bring down the fever.
            So, if your hot kiddie is well, just strip them off, but if your not kiddie is distressed and tachycardic, you should give them some medication to make them feel better, and if it doesn’t you should seek medical advice.

          • Elizabeth A

            Possibly the most mind-bending thing I’ve seen as a parent was the day that we took our feverish, tachycardic son to the ER, because he was acting like a little old man having a heart attack. Half an hour after he received tylenol, he was bouncing off the walls. Totally fine.

          • Dr Kitty

            Oh that’s super common.
            SOP in the kids ER I worked in was for the triage nurse to give every child with a fever max doses of paracetamol and ibuprofen for their weight, get the parents to strip them to their underwear, and have them eat an ice lolly.

            The ones that perked up and stared running about by the time the doctor saw them were the ones you knew could go home, and to be honest, that was the majority of them. “I swear they were sicker than that when we got here” and “that child is making a liar of me” we’re very common statements from parents.

            The ones that stayed sick and miserable were the ones you wanted blood tests and xrays on, and who you were thinking of keeping in.

            This most recent time with my kiddo, we made it as far as the X-ray, which thankfully showed a pneumonia that wasn’t too bad and got to go home because her temp was down to 37.6C and she kept the oral antibiotics down.
            If we hadn’t found a source, the X-ray had been worse or she had been vomiting we’d have been staying in for sure.

          • KarenJJ

            I made the mistake of giving my toddler ibuprofen before taking her to the emergency room. She bounded about like there was nothing wrong and was climbing all over the chairs of the waiting room. I stuck it out to get her breathing checked (my main concern) and sure enough the triage nurse heard “crackles” and she was diagnosed pneumonia. We got sent home with some antibiotics.

          • KarenJJ

            When I get a fever my instinct is to warm up so I head under the blankets and crank up the heating. But I get really odd fevers (can be triggered by cold or cooling conditions) so I don’t know if other people feel like that or not.

          • Dr Kitty

            No that’s normal.
            Paradoxically, when your fever is going up you feel cold, when it is going down, you feel hot.

          • just me

            Guess I’ll have to disagree with mayo. It also says no meds for adults under 102. Seriously at 100 I’m incapacitated and miserable. My pedi is fine with ibuprofen or acetaminophen so we are too. I won’t let my kids suffer. The only time one of my kids had a high fever and felt fine was when she had roseola at about 15 mo and she was 102-103 before we realized it.

          • me

            I think your “normal” temp makes a difference too…. I tend to run cold (97 degrees F is normal for me). So at 101 I’m miserable, so I take something. I give my kids tylenol or ibuprofen if they seem like they need it. I only check the actual temp in case they end up needing to go to the doc, so that I can report what their temp was. If they feel hot and are obviously ill and miserable, they get some relief regardless of the number on the damn thermometer. Now, I have had them be in the 103-105 range before appearing all that sick, but I’ve also had them acting like death and “only” 101. I think it depends on the kid and what it is they are battling. And pain is ALWAYS treated regardless of whether it’s accompanied by fever.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            I won’t let my kids suffer.

            It doesn’t say that.

            The Mayo doesn’t say not to give medicine if they are miserable. They said don’t give it for fever. And you shouldn’t.

            If the fever makes the kids miserable, then of course give them meds, but give it because they are miserable, not for the fever.

          • guest

            I usually realize the fever when it starts to annoy them.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Our older guy is miserable when his temp is 98.7. Our younger guy … hard to know when he has a fever because it never slows him down.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            We don’t give ibuprofin for any fever. We ONLY give it when the kids are feeling bad, regardless of the reason. It helps them feel better. Granted, our older guy especially is really miserable when he gets a fever, so that’s when we give him medicine.

          • Kq

            Same here. Never Tylenol tho – it had never worked at all for me and has made him immediately puke it up even if he isn’t puking sick. Don’t know if there’s an acetaminophen allergy or something but nothing with it flies for either of us. Ibuprofen works like a dream though.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            For us, tylenol is just not all that effective. Not near as much as ibuprofen. If someone is really miserable, we will use tylenol between ibuprofen, but it is not as good.

            But again, we do medicine because the kids feel lousy, not to reduce a fever.

          • Mishimoo

            My kids are the same, they projectile vomit seconds after having paracetamol but are fine with ibuprofen (which works wonderfully). It’s so nice to know it’s not just mine.

          • KarenJJ

            Nobody has ever been thrilled when I’ve suggested this – but I will because I also have kids that vomit from paracetamol.. You can get kids panadol in suppository form. So yes, ibuprofen is great, but when my kids need something to bridge the gap between ibuprofen doses and they can’t take paracetamol orally I will sometimes give them a panadol suppository. Also if they are in pain from vomiting and can’t even take ibuprofen orally. It’s getting harder to convince them as they get older, but sometimes they are desperate enough to let me give them one.

          • Mishimoo

            I used to use them in the same situation, but even though I was using them correctly, the kids still managed to figure out how to pass them in seconds (before the suppository had time to open) so I gave up.

            I use cool cloths + airconditioning to help moderate their fever when it starts going back up before their next ibuprofen dose, and take them to the doctor as needed.

        • guest

          Their kids are breastfed shouldn’t they be naturally immuned against colds too!? LOL

        • Samantha06

          I agree. I worked in pediatrics too, and it’s awful to see a child absolutely miserable with a fever.

    • Sue

      They don’t get what ”natural immunity” is. When you get exposed to a foreign antigen, you naturally mount a natural immune response. If the antigen is from a vaccine, you generally don’t have to get the infection to become naturally immune. Neat, isn’t it?

      • GiddyUpGo123

        Exactly! It’s such a mind-bogglingly stupid argument. So, if you want to avoid getting a disease, the first thing you have to do is get the disease, so you can develop the antibodies to avoid getting the disease. What the what now?

  • Stacy48918

    Unrelated plea for thoughts/good wishes/prayers, whatever it is you do…

    The great-grandson of my great-aunt (not exactly sure what that makes him in relation to me…) is not doing well. He was born at 27 weeks in March 2014 to a druggie teenage mother (her 3rd baby in 4 years) and has been in the hospital his entire life. The last month he has been deteriorating and now he’s on a drug cocktail, 90-100% FiO2 and still only satting in the 80s, sometimes dipping into the 50s/60s. The doctors are worried he may only have a few more days to live…

    Just makes me so furious. His poor little life, absolutely wasted.

    These stupid women that risk their healthy babies at homebirth. Gah! And I had to give my kiddos back to their dad today, so I’m missing them too. Just a bit blue on a Friday night. Quiet here at work and no one to talk to.

    • Mishimoo

      Oh, poor baby!! Thinking of him 🙁

    • Samantha06

      I’m so sorry Stacy… thinking of the little one..

    • Who?

      Thinking of all of you.

    • Cobalt

      Heartbreaking. Poor little guy, and everyone that bears witness.

    • Amazed

      Poor kiddo… Thinking of him and you. And, as ungracious as it is, wanting to have his mother by the neck and shake her hard!

      • Cobalt

        And offer some contraceptive counseling.

      • Siri

        Why? If she’s a teenager, she’s just a kid herself. For all we know, she could have been abused as a child. It’s not exactly normal to be on drugs and keep getting pregnant with children she may or may not be able to care for. Have some compassion.

        • Siri

          Plus, according to the blog she chose a c/section against medical advice to give him a better chance. And supplied breastmilk for him. So why the judgment?

    • Trixie

      Sorry, Stacy. Thinking of him. And you.

    • rational adult

      This is heartbreaking. The little fellow is in my prayers.

    • Dr Kitty

      Thoughts are with you Stacy.
      I think the baby is your parent’s cousin’s grandson, which makes the baby your second cousin once removed (I think).

      • fiftyfifty1

        yes, second cousin once removed

      • Stacy48918

        Yes, he is my mother’s cousin’s grandson. Thanks for that.

    • prolifefeminist

      So sorry, Stacy. Love and prayers for this little guy and all who love and care for him. Hope today is a little less blue for you too.

    • Stacy48918

      Thanks all. Feeling a little better this morning/afternoon. Last night was just one of those “hug your babies” nights and mine were too far away.

      I forgot in the original post, but if you’re interested, here is the blog for my second cousin once removed (Thanks Dr. Kitty & fiftyfifty!). williamthewarrior.blogspot(dot)com His grandfather maintains it.

      • Cobalt

        I read some but had to stop. It’s so tragic.

    • Mel

      I’m so sorry. Keeping both of you in my prayers.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      I am so sorry that you are going through this. My thoughts are with you.

  • Captain Obvious

    Don’t forget to order your Anti-Vax calender which includes “Melanie’s Marvelous Measles”

    http://avwos.thespudd.com/super-sexy-anti-vaccine-calendar-featuring-super-sexy-anti-vaxers/

  • just me

    Problem is they’re not all homeschooled…disrupting many lives in Calif for people who were exposed to these fools’ unvaccinated kids.

    • JJ

      I hope they bring medical-only exemptions to the state. I live in an area with high percentage of vaccine personal belief exemptions.

      • just me

        Yeah it should be only for things like real allergies or immunocompromised who can’t have vax. Our local assemblyman tried to tighten the criteria (dr note required) a few years ago but failed.

        • just me

          Ok, I was wrong. That law *did* pass. But I guess it’s just too easy to get the dr sign off.

    • Hannah

      I moved Cali to UK just under a year ago due to marriage. I’m seriously considering either asking for the MMR as soon as they’re legally allowed, and/or not taking them back until they’ve had it. On the other hand, measles has gotten big in the UK too, so not sure how much difference it’ll make. Whooping cough though, they’re not going to Cali til they’ve had that.

      • Dr Kitty

        UK routine vaccination schedule is DTPaP+HiB and rotavax at 8,12 and 16 weeks, pneumovax at 8 and 16 weeks and meningitis C at 12 weeks, with MMR, HiB, pneumovax and men C at 12 months, and DTPaP and MMR at 3-4 years, with flu annually from age 2.

        Hep B and BCG are based on risk factor or at parental request.

        https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/315489/PHE-Routine-childhood-imm-July-2014-03.pdf

        GPs will usually be only too happy to arrange accelerated vaccination at parental request.

        • Hannah

          Thanks so much! Good to know DTPaP comes early, and that we can probably get accelerated 🙂 Be nice to not have to wait two years til they’re one to visit home again 🙂

          • Dr Kitty

            You’ll also be offered free flu Vax at any point during pregnancy and DTPaP between 28-32 weeks, which should give baby some protection from pertussis before they get their first shot.

            The UK is BIG on vaccinating.
            GPs have targets to meet to try and ensure herd immunity.

          • Israel is also very pro-vax. Our health system, if you take the supplemental package [about $20 a month], gives all immunizations free. For travelers, the Ministry of Health provides free immunizations for “exotic” diseases.

          • Hannah

            Good to know. I’m still a bit paranoid, having lupus and knowing neonatal lupus is a thing, so that personal rule will stand. But good to know that when I go in and say I WANT EVERYTHING, they’ll probably listen

      • Trixie

        The one you’ll have to either pay for privately or look elsewhere for is Varicella.

        • Dr Kitty

          A lot of private clinics offer varicella vaccination (two doses separated by 6-8 weeks) at £70 per dose, plus appointment costs, but some NHS GPs will give private scripts and allow it to be administered in their clinic. Worth asking about if you’re keen.

          If there is someone in the household who is on chemo or otherwise immune compromised, and if that person has not had chicken pox, then your child is entitled to FREE varicella vaccination in the UK, but that is obviously less likely.

          If you want travel vaccinations, hepatitis A and typhoid are free in the UK, but rabies, Japanese encephalitis, yellow fever, and antimalarials are on private scripts. Most of my patients opt for doxycycline for malaria because it is the cheapest!

          You can also get three months of any regular prescription medications on an NHS prescription (£10 in England, free in the rest of the UK) before you travel, which is good for trips to visit family if you’re on BP, thyroid, diabetes meds and things like that. Some GPs will have a relatively open mind about what constitutes a “regular” prescription, so you might be able to get a supply of painkillers and hay fever tablets and things you use from time to time.

          • Hannah

            Thanks for this!! We do have private insurance through DH’s work, though we haven’t had to use it yet, so should be ok on that front (will be for maternity care though when time comes, after some of the things written here!). On the other hand, NHS might give it anyways as I do have lupus so am considered immune compromised. But I also got chicken pox as a kid, so might not if they consider me immune already. Lupus gets lots of weirdness and inconsistency with policy, I’ve discovered, depending on the doctor. But we ended up at a GP practice that also supplies all the rheumatologists to the local hospital, so every GP there is either also a rheumy or has a specialty in the field. Needless to say, I told DH when we eventually buy a house, it has to be within their catchment area.

          • Wren

            Please get the chicken pox one. I meant to, but kept delaying. My daughter had the typical course, but my son had a truly terrible time. High fever, pain and nearly taken to hospital at one point. Another boy in their school ended up with seizures and was taken to hospital. My son says he would happily have had 10 shots to avoid that, and knows he could now get shingles too. I feel so awful for delaying it.

            My sister was hospitalised for pertussis as a baby, after having one dose of the vaccine. It’s among my early memories. I was thrilled to see that the UK schedule is faster for that one than the U.S. one. You can bet my two had that one the day they were old enough.

  • ArmyChick

    Idiots putting immuno compromised people like me at risk due to sheer ignorance.

    Thank you so much.

    • Hannah

      Me too. And people get surprised by how angry it makes me…

    • Young CC Prof

      Right now in the USA, there are thousands of children fighting cancer. Most of them are expected to recover. Many would die if exposed to measles, whether previously vaccinated or not.

      Those children deserve to live, and not only that, they deserve to have as much life as they can while fighting a serious disease. They should be able to go to school, to the mall, to freaking Disneyland. They shouldn’t be trapped in their homes by other people’s stupidity.

      • PrimaryCareDoc

        Something like 70% of Make A Wish trips are to Disney World and Disneyland

        • rh1985

          It makes me so sad to think of the kids who can’t go right now and maybe by the time they can it could be too late. 🙁

      • Amy M

        These people piss me off to no end. I was looking at a Disney measles thread on mdc and some jerks were actually saying things like: oh if your baby is too young for fax or your child is immunocopromised you should stay home and it’s your fault if you go out and said child gets sick. That made me want to wring someone’s neck. aRE YOU KIDDING ME!! Your disease vector is a menace but everyone else should stay home? Got that backwards lady

    • KarenJJ

      Yup. Sucks. My kid too. We’ve had some measles alerts in the suburb I’m in.

    • EastCoaster

      Yup, me too.

      Nothing, nothing, nothing makes me angrier than anti-vax nonsense. Such hubris.

  • Who?

    What my anti-vax contacts will say:
    *it’s not really measles, it is a measles like illness, that the vaccine would not have prevented
    *even if it were measles, I had it and I’m okay (questionable, but whatever)
    *I’m not, you are-oh look, a butterfly…

    • T.

      I had measle and I am ok.
      I was just lucky.

  • Amy

    That picture is perfect.

  • Someone

    Of course, not! These people now feel validated in their nonsensical beliefs because, gasp, even some vaccinated people caught the measles. The notion that no vaccine is 100% effective and that herd immunity only works with high vaccination rates is beyond their level of comprehension.

  • attitude devant

    But they don’t admit they were wrong! I’ve seen many people claim that the outbreak is not because of the anti vax movement. It’s because the vaccine is ineffective! Wtf?

    • Box of Salt

      This needs to be repeated, and often (and will need to be updated as more cases are reported):

      “The vaccination status is known for 39 of the patients. Of those, 32 were unvaccinated, one had received partial vaccination and seven were fully vaccinated.”

      http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-california-measles-outbreak-78-cases-20150123-story.html

      ****This*** outbreak is running rampant among the under- and unvaccinated.

      Deal with it.

    • Sue

      Ironically, MMR is one of the most effective vaccines. It’s easy to be critical ofpertussis vax, even though it’s MUCH better than nothing. But MMR – vaccine failure is very very uncommon with a full course of vax (well over 90%).

    • Box of Salt

      Did they miss the reports pointing out that most of the cases are unvaccinated?

      2 doses of MMR = 99% immunity against measles.
      (Reposted)
      http://www.cdph.ca.gov/HealthInfo/discond/Pages/Measles.aspx

  • Burgundy

    On the other hand, if you are fully vaccinated, now is a good time to go to Disneyland. My friend took his family there today and it was great. He post a picture of Main Street with very little people.

    • Cobalt

      I was wondering about that. If I had the time, money, and all kids post-MMR I’d probably be there now. Disney is probably passed about being a “plague zone” right now.

      Instead I’m home with a baby that hasn’t had the MMR yet, afraid one of these idiots is going to sneeze somewhere we might go.

      • rational adult

        Disney is probably furious. I wonder how this will hit their bottom line.

        • Box of Salt

          It will be a minor dip, and only at this particular park.

          And they’re already fighting back: the ad I see on this site right now is for So Cal residents (like me) discount passes. Yeah, that’s every year, but right now it’s also every ad. Maybe I should stop searching for news updates about it.