Letting your daughter get tetanus is child abuse

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Some people are willing to suffer for their medical delusions. They refuse conventional medical treatment and that is their right.

Some people are willing to let their children suffer for their medical delusions. That’s child abuse.

No mother has the right to make her child suffer for her medical delusions.

How much to those children suffer?

Last year I wrote about Heather Dexter, the mother who boasted about her children’s near deaths from pertussis, whooping cough.

It’s not surprising that Dexter’s children got pertussis. It’s a relatively common bacteria that causes mild illness among older children and adults. It can be deadly to infants and small children and killed many before the advent of vaccines. Now it’s made a comeback and threatening children because their parents are in the grip of a medical delusion that vaccines, one of the greatest public health achievements of all time, are purportedly harmful.

And now courtesy of a different mother, Genna Graham Stead, tetanus is back. According to the mother’s GoFundMe page:

“Remy” is a 9 year old sweet and caring girl … She contracted tetanus, her case is a medical anomaly, she had no wounds, scratches or injuries of any kind. Initially, she was misdiagnosed with TMJ and tetanus was dismissed by 5 other doctors, before finally there was a confirmed diagnosis by the pediatric infectious disease specialist. Tetanus cannot be tested for, it is a clinical diagnosis and with its rarity and only showing minimal symptoms it was difficult to properly diagnose.

No, Remy is NOT a medical anomaly. Everyone is routinely vaccinated against tentanus, with boosters every ten years in adulthood PRECISELY because everyone is at risk of exposure at all times. Chlostridium tetani, the bacteria that causes tetanus, lives in the soil. Although tetanus is typically associated with puncture wounds, the bacteria can get into the body from abrasions that are too small to see.

Early tetanus is a difficult diagnosis in the best of times; it’s made even more difficult by the fact that most doctors have never seen a case of tetanus. It was nearly non-existent before parents were gripped by vaccine delusions. That’s why when Remy developed “lockjaw,” she was thought to have TMJ, joint pain in her jaw.

Tetanus is a terrible disease.

Tetanus … is an infection characterized by muscle spasms. In the most common type, the spasms begin in the jaw and then progress to the rest of the body. These spasms usually last a few minutes each time and occur frequently for three to four weeks.Spasms may be so severe that bone fractures may occur.Other symptoms may include fever, sweating, headache, trouble swallowing, high blood pressure, and a fast heart rate. Onset of symptoms is typically three to twenty-one days following infection. It may take months to recover. About 10% of those infected die.

Remy’s suffering is intense. She is awake but paralyzed.

Remy is on a ventilator to control her breathing, as the muscle spasms can restrict her airway. She is in a twilight paralyzed state, she is conscious and can hear everyone around her. She can squeeze our hand to answer questions and nod yes or no. The spasms are triggered by bright light, loud talking or excitement so she wears an eyemask and earplugs to subside the surroundings. She has a “projection” of 6 weeks in this state depending upon the control of the muscle spasms. When the doctors determine they can wean her off of the sedation, they will determine if she is still having the muscle spasms, if she is not then we can remove the ventilator and proceed with recovery and rehabilitation.

And that’s just the acute phase of the illness. She will probably need 6 months of rehabilitation to fully recover.

How is Remy being treated?

The treatment is extensive, they administer Tetanus Immune Globulin to isolate the toxin …

In other words, Remy is receiving antibiodies made by someone else; she can’t make enough of her own antibiodies fast enough because her mother wouldn’t allow her to get the tetanus vaccine. So much for natural immunity.

Her stepmother is furious.

…[I]f she would have been vaccinated like we asked and we’re battling you on she wouldn’t be in this position. None of us would. Now her father who has a 5 day old baby has to make a decision on whether he sits in the hospital and watches his precious, innocent daughter suffer a preventable disease or be at home helping his wife and bonding with his brand new baby… I’m devastated for my husband and step daughter. Yet you haven’t even shown any remorse and declined the vaccine they recommended as part of this treatment. Sorry but people need to know the truth. Yes Remy is the main focus here and we want to get her better. Thanks for everyone’s prayers. She’s in God’s hands which is the best place to be. We love you Remy. ❤❤

Anti-vaccine advocacy is a form of child abuse. Ignorant adults suffering from the delusion that they are “educated” about vacciness deprive their children of basic health care and those children suffer and die as a result.

There should be no exemptions for vaccination of children except if the children themselves have a medical contraindication. No mother has the right to make her child suffer for her delusions.

  • CantVax

    But what do you say to families like mine…where my children have reactions to vaccination such as stopping breathing (multiple times, with multiple sets of vaccines), seizures, brain swelling, permanent brain changes, serious muscle issues, cessation of both growth and weight gain (which resolved as soon as vaccination were stopped), and temporary paralysis of both legs? My children have permanent medical exemptions…both the two who were seriously, life-threateningly vaccine-injured, AND their two younger siblings, in whom we are trying to prevent the same kinds of outcomes (or worse – it is known, and has been communicated to us by 2 separate MD’s, that vaccine injuries present more severely in subsequent children in the same family) You know, MY children are unvaccinated, too…we are considered “anti-vaxxers” (though I don’t identify as such…to us, we simply stopped because we had to stop or risk harming our children further – which is what ANY good parent does, don’t you think?) It’s been VERY difficult for my children to endure the absolute onslaught of abusive language and open discrimination (we’re from CA, so they were effectively kicked out of public school) from all sides….family, strangers, media, peers, church! They can’t help that they can’t be vaccinated without risking brain damage, paraplegia, or death. You lump everyone who doesn’t vaccinate together, but there are many, many families like mine who simply CANNOT further vaccinate. Believe me, my family would vaccinate if we could do it safely. This has been a nightmare!

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      How can they be kicked out of school? Medical exemptions are easily available for those who have documented serious vaccine reactions.

      • 655321

        Kids generally don’t need to be kicked out of school after serious vaccine reactions, they’re either dead or brain damaged requiring assistance to perform normal daily activities..

    • Fevers

      Did you read the article? She specifically mentions that children with medical problems should be exempt.

  • VikingAPRNCNP

    So sad…..

  • BeatriceC

    You’re welcome. Some people do use their real names. Most don’t. I think in your shoes I’d have used my real name as well. I’ve been using this alter ego for a while online. There’s a story behind it that’s long and convoluted. 🙂

  • NoLongerCrunching

    That is absolutely awful. That poor child. It reminds me of a comment on Reddit I read a few months ago about rabies (hopefully these crackpots are at least vaccinating their dogs): https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/48ujhq/comment/d0mz5uq?st=IUJW1N83&sh=13754493

    • StephanieJR

      Well I’m having sweet dreams tonight…

      • Gene

        Bats don’t even have to bite you. They aerosolize their urine that can be loaded with virus. Bat in the bedroom = exposed!

        • StephanieJR

          At least I live in the UK!

        • Paula

          Scary! We had one flying around our living room a few years ago until my husband shot it with a pellet gun. Luckily it tested negative for rabies.

        • blueyedtexan

          Bat urine is not a vector.

  • Buddybirdaus

    The anti vaccination cult who refuse to vaccinate & think tetanus is nothing need to read the story of Remy. For her family here is another case & I hope it inspires you that recovery is possible & the medical team will be doing as much as they can.

    http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2013/06/06/3776327.htm

  • carovee

    I’m heavily influenced by good writing. I recall as a child reading a story where one of the characters steps on a nail but won’t tell his parents because he didn’t want to get into trouble. Then he died. Of tetanus. I cried and cried. Let me tell you, I march into the doctors office every 10 years and get my vaccine.

    • StephanieJR

      I remember watching All Creatures Great And Small, and when one of the vets got a cut when they working on a farm with tetanus, the utter panic in rushing away from Christmas dinner when they realised he needed a vaccine.

      • N

        But, But, But, I’m sure those books where only invented to scare you into vaccines! To brainwash you! Conspiracy!

        • StephanieJR

          …In the 1930’s?

          • N

            See? It all started that long ago. 🙂

          • Azuran

            Please, it’s been in the works since the government invented smallpox and use it as an excuse to inject them with ‘cow genes’ to make them more docile and stupid.

          • StephanieJR

            …That could explain breastfeeding rates, too! Big Milker’s!

      • sdsures

        I grew up on a farm, and you bet your arse that when I got a scratch on some rusty metal (as you can do from time to time on farms), off we went straightaway to the doctor for a tetanus booster.

    • LovleAnjel

      I remember the Great Brain books – in one, a kid lost his leg to tetanus, another a child died of diabetes. Those really made an impression on me.

      • sdsures

        Who’s the author of these books?

        • RosemaryAmey

          John D. Fitzgerald.

    • Heidi_storage

      I think I read the same story!

      • Heidi

        I did, too. I was trying to figure out what book it was and googling only brought up anti-vaccination sites. Sigh.

  • momofone

    It looks as if the GFM campaign has been taken down.

    • BeatriceC

      Oh! Any idea if the mother did it of her own accord or if GFM took it down for her?

      • momofone

        No idea. I clicked the link to see if comments were visible, and got the message that it was not available.

        • sdsures

          Now all we have to do is wit for a whiny bitchfest blog post from the mother… *eyeroll*

    • indigosky

      Huzzah! I had all my friends and in-laws report it. My husband has a huge Southern Baptist family, so that was 30+ people over 18 who could and happily did.

  • Danica Walker

    Thank you for writing this up. I’m hope that it will open the eyes of people who refuse to vaccinate. I don’t understand why any parent would want to risk their child’s life and subject them to needless suffering. This has been horrible for us as we were trying to get vaccines done. Watching her suffer is horrific.

    • momofone

      I am so sorry for her suffering ,and for your utter frustration and helplessness. I can’t imagine how awful it must be.

    • attitude devant

      Oh gosh, I’m so sorry. I keep imagining how helpless you feel.

    • Amazed

      I’m so sorry for what you, and she most of all, are going through. I hope she recovers as best and fast as possible.

    • ladyloki

      My friend, I am so sorry that the egg donor who did this to your daughter has the gall to continue to accuse you of wrongdoing to cover her own pathetic parenting. You are the beautiful Remington’s REAL mother, not that biological excuse for one. I hope that she gets better and you can get custody of her.

      And please make sure you are screenshotting the lies that creature is telling about you, to help you in court.

      • sdsures

        Make sure also to have paper multiple copies of any email exchanges between you and Remy’s female biological parent.

    • Sean Jungian

      Ach, I’m so sorry for her suffering, and for yours and her dad’s. I can’t understand who could stand by and see a little girl have to fight through this without all the help available to her. Good luck.

    • BeatriceC

      I’m so sorry to have to welcome you to Dr. Amy’s comment section under such horrible circumstances. Please know at least one person in SoCal is quite vocally on your side (we’re in San Diego County). I’m not sure what hospital your stepdaughter is at, but I’m at Rady a couple times a week. If she’s there, and if you or her dad need anything, don’t hesitate to ask. I can come up with a way to get you my personal email if you’d like.

      • Danica Walker

        Thank you. Unfortunately we are not in San Diego. We are three hours from where we live and of course her mother is about 40 minutes from where she lives… Well actually her mother recently moved into a trailer so who knows where she lives.. we hope to get her transferred to San Diego but there is no PICU at our hospital, so we would have to get her transferred to Radys.. it would be easier for us with a newborn and all our large family is in San Diego area..

        • BeatriceC

          I’ll keep my fingers crossed that you can get her transferred to Rady. They are an excellent hospital. I’m there so often because two of my boys have a rare, genetic bone condition and they require frequent doctor’s visits and surgery. I’ve lived in a lot of places (Winston-Salem, NC, Miami, Atlanta, Fargo, ND, Minneapolis, Portland, Seattle, Ft. Worth , TX, and now San Diego…these are just where I’ve lived since I’ve had kids) and I have to say that Rady is pretty much the best children’s hospital I’ve ever been to with the boys. If you do get her transferred, and need anything (food delivered, rides, stuff you forgot, etc), don’t hesitate to reach out. I’m pretty sure Dr. Amy could forward my email address or my real name, which I use on Facebook, to you if necessary.

          • Bombshellrisa

            You have lived in Seattle? Lots of us here that have called Seattle home : ) I think I know you on Facebook, we are in a group together.

          • BeatriceC

            Seattle was just for a little over three months. My groups on Facebook are mostly centered around the same issues discussed here. My profile picture would make it obvious it’s me. Actually, at least two people here have figured it out that way.

          • Bombshellrisa

            Let’s just say there was a bird I recognized : )

          • BeatriceC

            Sounds about right. 🙂

          • demodocus

            Not too many naked chickens running around

    • StephanieJR

      I’m so sorry for yours and your family’s suffering. I hope she has the fastest and easiest recovery possible. I wish you all the best for the future.

    • Mishimoo

      I’m so sorry, I hope that Remy recovers quickly and well with no lasting effects; it would be completely awful for you all!

    • corblimeybot

      I’m so sorry about what’s happened to your stepdaughter and to your family, because of this one negligent nutcase. You are all in my family’s thoughts. We’re pulling for Remy.

    • Bombshellrisa

      I am so very sorry for what your family is going through right now. You are a wonderful and caring mother, Remy is lucky to have you as her family.

      • Danica Walker

        Thank you so much. ❤️

        • corblimeybot

          And you guys have a newborn right now, too, right? I really can’t imagine how stressed out and exhausted you are right now.

          • Danica Walker

            Yes I was induced a week early due to high blood pressure… my blood pressure was great during the pregnancy up until the day my step daughter was admitted.. so I was one floor down from her. 3 hours from home and my family.

          • MaineJen

            OMG what a nightmare…how are you all doing?

          • Danica Walker

            Yes just had him last Thursday!

          • Bombshellrisa

            Congrats on your baby boy, I hope you both are doing well.

          • demodocus

            Congrats on your son and good luck with Remy.

          • sdsures

            Mazel tov!

          • BeatriceC

            Congrats!

          • Bugsy

            Congrats and best wishes!

    • Christina Maxwell

      I’m sorry that your family is in such a difficult and traumatic situation. Very best wishes to Remy and please know that there is a huge wave of support for you out here in internetland.

      • Danica Walker

        Thank you. I really appreciate it.

    • guest

      I’m sorry that you have to go through this, and that Remy has to go through this.

    • Eater of Worlds

      Does your husband have any legal recourse to get his daughter vaccinated? Can the doctors report this as child abuse and then get a judge involved so they can give the proper treatment (the vaccine) as well as get her vaccinated for everything else when appropriate? Maybe even get primary custody of his daughter, because it seems her life is at risk at her mother’s.

      • Danica Walker

        We already had a lawyer working on this prior to this, because she refused to work with us. She said she didn’t want her daughter around her new brother if he was being vaccinated… That’s the kind of person we’re dealing with . We’ve updated the lawyer on what’s been going on so things hopefully will be expedited.

        • BeatriceC

          I have to say I was curious if y’all could get an emergency custody hearing based on the fact that the mother is refusing standard treatment for a frequently fatal disease. I’m not a lawyer so I have no real idea how these things work, but I have no desire to jeopardize y’all’s legal case, so please don’t feel obligated to answer if you don’t want to.

        • Bombshellrisa

          That is awful. What harm could a vaccinated baby do?

          • Azuran

            Anti-vaxxers came out with the ridiculous idea that vaccinated child are actually carriers and VPD and constantly shedding the diseases.
            But unlike natural VPD, you don’t want your child to get it through a vaccinated kid because it’s genetic mutant, super dangerous VPD that causes a very serious variant of the illness without providing immunity, because GMO or something.

          • Bombshellrisa

            Oh god the “shedding”. Ok got it.

          • Sarah Connors

            I get SO sick of the “shedding” theory of theirs… In other words they wanna sound smart but have no effing clue what they’re talking about. Typical.

        • Eater of Worlds

          Good. Was she always this full of woo when she was with your husband or did she change? I always struggle to understand why someone would do such dangerous things to their kids.

          I hope that being here and reading our responses gives you a modicum of comfort. At least you can come to a place where you know there are intelligent people who understand how crazy this woman is acting and where you don’t have to fight or explain your side because we already support your side. And everyone here sincerely hopes that Remy recovers well.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      Congratulations on your baby! I am so sorry that you found us this way. I send my best wishes and thoughts for Remy. I am so sorry you are all getting through this. I hope she recovers without long term problems.

    • Anion

      I know I’m a little late here, but I wanted to give you my sincere best wishes for Remy’s recovery and congrats for the birth of your son!

      I’m a stepmother, too, and while my husband’s ex is luckily not as wackadoo as Remy’s mom, I know well the frustration of dealing with an ex who makes ridiculous decisions about the stepchild, the feeling of “What is wrong with that woman?!” My sd’s mom would do things like not give her daughter medicine because she thought (for reasons we still do not understand) that it was important to “see how high the fever would get,” or because she wanted to “boost [sd’s] immune system” by “letting her body fight it on its own.” And often, any time we, as stepmothers, even privately criticize such behavior, we’re told we’re trying to “interfere” or even viewed with suspicion because as stepmothers we can’t possibly love our stepchildren. Sigh. (None of that came from my husband, of course.)

      People tend not to believe that we truly love our stepchildren, especially if we’re noncustodial, so I just wanted to say to you (as one SM to another) that I’m so sorry you’re dealing with this, I know how hard it is, and I think you’re a great stepmom–and I bet Remy does, too. She is very lucky to have you in her life. {{{hug}}}

      • Danica Walker

        Thankyou Your support is appreciated:) it’s been rough

  • TheArtistFormerlyKnownAsYoya

    This poor little girl.

    • sdsures

      I’m grateful at least she’s covered by her dad and stepmom’s insurance. Can you imagine the nightmare if there was no coverage at all?

  • CSN0116

    The issue with hospitals is that they rarely allow people under “X” age to enter and volunteer or hang out. Another issue, I suppose, is that these things ARE quite rare and you’re right that society is not physically designed to promote interactions like this, so groups naturally congregate to totally separate spaces for interaction and socialization. I appreciate your encouragement and I will be looking for something non-hospital due to the limitations. Thanks!

  • Sarah

    Poor Remy.

    • corblimeybot

      I told my husband about Remy last night, and he was visibly emotionally sickened by this girl’s suffering. This is hellish.

    • sdsures

      When I told my husband, he was enraged on Remy’s behalf. He doesn’t suffer fools lightly.

      • BeatriceC

        MrC, who rarely gets emotional at some of the things from my anti NCB, anti-lactivism interests, got extremely upset at this one.

        • Bombshellrisa

          My husband too. He is still upset about the doula whose baby died that still encourages post dates home birth, now this.

          • Amazed

            Which one was that? I’ve lost count on these stories and tend to mix them together.

          • Bombshellrisa
          • Amazed

            Oh God, yes. I remember now. What can I say, I am not surprised. It’s worth a few tears, this festival of delusions.

          • Bombshellrisa

            The way my husband said “her baby died” just broke my heart. He lost both his parents to woo and he can’t tolerate anymore woo of any kind. Especially when that someone is was a tiny defenseless baby, who would have been fine had her mother labored and delivered in a hospital.

          • sdsures

            My husband’s mum is a nice person, but she’s woo as well. Not as bad as she used to be. She’s calmed down only because Dad’s Alzheimer’s has started to be more symptomatic and requires more time and attention. :'(

          • Roadstergal

            Ugh, my dad’s Parkinson’s has let my stepmom embrace and extend the woo. 🙁 She does love him and take care of him, but gah.

          • sdsures

            Gah! I’m so sorry.

            My (former) brother in law has early-onset Parkinson’s, and I’m sorry to say that its progression caused him to walk out on his family. They’re getting divorced. :'( 16 years… He’s changed. He’s just not the same guy. AND he’s refusing to take meds, claiming that “God has healed him.” :'( My sister has always been religious, but always vaccinated her kids and used doctors and hospitals in the normal way.

            It’s horrible to watch.

          • Roadstergal

            That’s super-sad. My dad got it relatively early (late 50s-early 60s), and it was under control for a good while, but it’s really hitting him hard these days. I think it’s finally affecting his cognition in a real and measurable way.

          • sdsures

            Oy. *hug*

          • sdsures

            Is there someone besides her who can insert some rationality into the dynamic of his care?

          • Bombshellrisa
  • Brooke

    I guess we should have all our kids wrapped up like the bubble boy to avoid “letting them” get sick. Otherwise it’s child abuse! This is ridiculous. There’s less than 1000 cases in the US per year, this is a medical anomaly, even if someone was unvaccinated their chances of getting tetanus is low. Like on par with the brain eating amoeba low. Are parents that let their kids go swimming committing child abuse? How about parents that let their kids go out during cold and flu season? Sorry kids no climbing trees or playing sports you could break a bone or something!

    • momofone

      Spoken like a person who cares more about protecting ideology than about preventing more children from going through the literal agony that this child is experiencing.

      • Sean Jungian

        I don’t think Brooke is actually committed to an ideology beyond “Dr. Amy Contrarianism”

        • TheArtistFormerlyKnownAsYoya

          I’m not convinced she isn’t simply trolling…

          • Sean Jungian

            You’re probably right, but with her “make one outrageous nitpicky statement then vanish” policy, she’s just about the least-dedicated ideologue I’ve ever seen.

      • Brooke

        Add profit to ideology and you essentially have people who support mandatory vaccines in a nut shell.

    • corblimeybot

      You are such a fucking low-life.

      • Brooke

        No that would be the person exploiting a sick child to get hits on her blog posts.

        • momofone

          Hey Brooke, since you’ve got some time on your hands, we’d love to see those sources we’ve been waiting on for months. Oh wait–I bet it’s time for you to go, right?

          • Brooke

            Sources for what exactly?

          • momofone

            Your claims about the c-section rate, for one thing. That’s a good place to start.

          • Brooke

            Oh you mean where referenced correctly that the c-section rate in 1970 was 5% https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1422801/?page=3

            Or where I correctly said the ideal c-section rate established by the WHO was 15% ? You’ll have to Google that one yourself since I cannot provide a direct link to the PDF at the moment.

            Or did you mean where I said the c-section rates in some other developed countries were closer to 15% (data source linked in this article)http://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2016/01/12/which-countries-have-the-highest-caesarean-section-rates-infographic/#163c1ecd44ff

            Who the hell actually has the energy to harp over something from a year ago that a complete stranger said online? You could’ve said “I disagree because…” and been done with it.

            I’m not judging you for having a c-section.

            I merely pointed out that WHO and some doctors/hospitals are concerned about rising c-section rates because of the increased risk of hemorage and infections following them. That isn’t an especially controversial idea, there’s been plenty of articles written about it over the past decade.

          • Irène Delse

            There’s a reason people are asking you for references: you make a lot of assertions but are well below average for propping them up with accurate data. Like that thing about the WHO recommending C-section rates: funny that you don’t give a lot even now… Maybe because now the WHO (grudgingly) acknowledge that the “15%” was basically a guess and that their new policy if to affirm the “importance of focusing on the needs of the patient, on a case by case basis, and discourage the practice of aiming for “target rates””?
            http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2015/caesarean-sections/en/
            http://www.skepticalob.com/2015/12/world-health-organizations-optimal-c-section-rate-officially-debunked.html

          • Brooke

            I don’t make any assertions. In fact I believe I said isn’t target rate something like 15% followed by a question mark. Problem is you people take everything as a challenge to your “expertise” and apporach everything negatively with a chip on your shoulder. That you ask for references again and again and again when “Dr” Amy doesn’t or rarely provides a source even when directly asked for one. BTW since she’s not on any hospital board or a practicing as a OB/GYN her opinion on the current c-section rate literally does not matter. Blogs are not a good source.

          • Sue

            “I don’t make any assertions.” asserts Brooke.

            Cue Monty Python:

            “Is this the five minute argument or the ten minute argument?”

          • Dr Kitty

            Oh Brooke honey, no.
            What you said was that 5% was the ideal rate, not 15%. And then you ran away and hid when asked to provide citations.

            Now that enough time has passed and no one can be arsed to go back and find your original comment you’re claiming it was an innocuous comment about a recommendation of 15%.
            It wasn’t, you said 5% CS rate was the ideal.

            I have an EXCELLENT memory for the written word, particularly comments that are so stupid they make me do a double take.

          • Brooke

            I never ran away and did provide citations. I originally said 5% (question mark) which was a typo and IMMEDIATELY everyone started posting that I was incorrect in a hostile manner. I admitted that the 5% figure was incorrect and that I meant 15%. I provided the exact same sources I just provided. Yes, WHO has changed their position. You could’ve just said that without being condensending. It would also help if “Dr” Amy actually provided sources on her blog instead of outlandish examples and attacking/divisive language. I get it. You NEED to be right to satisfy your own…whatever. But I’m over something that happened online a YEAR ago.

          • momofone

            She’s actually a doctor. No need for the quotation marks.

          • Dr Kitty

            Brooke, honestly, why do you post here?
            Are you a masochist?
            Do you honestly think you are changing hearts and minds?

            What is your motivation?

            I’m genuinely interested.

            You come here, post something…I’m going to be kind and say…less than comprehensively researched…get called on it, repeatedly, fail to convince anyone of your position because your arguments are ….not fully thought out and easily refuted….AND YET YOU KEEP COMING BACK.

          • J.B.

            I’m impressed by your American-south-like application of “honey” to convey “you blithering idiot”.

          • Sarah

            You’re mostly right, but as it happens someone could be arsed. Ta da.

            https://disqus.com/home/discussion/skepticalob/orgasm_for_pain_relief_in_childbirth/#comment-2379499368

            Brooke’s exact words:

            ‘ I’m not saying whose c-sectuons were unnecessary but statistically speaking the c-section rate should be 5%. Its 33%.’

            Still waiting for some receipts on that one Brooke.

          • Sue

            The c-section rate of 15% was not “established” by WHO – it was recognised to have been baseless, and withdrawn.

          • Sarah

            You said a bit more about 5% section rates, actually…

          • MaineJen

            What was the neonatal mortality rate in 1970, Brooke?

          • MaineJen

            Let me help you out…this source shows that overall neonatal mortality in 2010 is about half of what it was in 1990. I’ll keep looking.
            http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140673610607039

          • MaineJen

            Huh. It seems that the countries with the highest c section rates have the lowest neonatal mortality rates. Fancy that. It’s almost like…the “danger” of a c section is no danger at all.

          • Brooke

            Correlation doesn’t equal causation. Looking at neonatal deaths doesn’t even make sense because no one is suggesting c-sections are especially dangerous for babies, but they can have additional risks for the mother over a vaginal delivery.

          • MaineJen

            That’s kind of my point. c sections aren’t even correlated with increased mortality, especially when you control for pre-existing complications (obesity, diabetes, preeclampsia)

          • momofone

            You “merely pointed out” that you have no clue what you’re talking about, and you tend to disappear when you’re called out on that.

            As for whether you judge me for having a c-section, why in the world would you think your opinion would have any bearing? I seek medical advice from medical professionals, thanks.

          • Brooke

            If you haven’t noticed, I usually post and then don’t respond period because I don’t have time for people that personally insult me.

          • Heidi

            If you feel so insulted here, don’t post here!

          • corblimeybot

            You’re right, no one has noticed that, because it doesn’t correlate at all to what you actually do.

          • momofone

            I’ve noticed that you tend to hit and run; you come in, make some claims, don’t back them up, and eventually do it again.

          • Unmutual One

            Your posting history on Disqus indicates you are only online to start arguments with others. Basically, a troll.

          • TheArtistFormerlyKnownAsYoya

            Why quote an old c section rate from the WHO? You know as well as anyone the 15% recommendation was abandoned years ago.

          • Eater of Worlds

            The WHO states that that is the ideal rate to prevent mortality, then goes on to say that it doesn’t include c-sections needed to prevent things like disability from lack of oxygen. In some other spot they actually put those two things together I believe instead of keeping them separate.

          • Charybdis

            PROBIT, for one.

          • Brooke

            Which PROBIT study? Sounds like you think you already have a source 😉

        • rosewater1

          Oh, and the mother pitching for GoFundMe $$ when her child is covered by her father & stepmother’s insurance isn’t? I’m sure you’re terribly upset about this. Right?

          • Brooke

            Insurance isn’t going to cover the mother’s lost wages staying with her child in the hospital and everything else that a long term recovery will take. And no I really really don’t care that someone might be conning people online or get personally upset about other people’s drama.

          • rosewater1

            Then let her say that and not use her sick child as a sympathy prop.

            And given the content of your posts…you don’t get upset over other people’s drama. Yep. Sure. Right.

          • Brooke

            That’s why I don’t respond after posting most of the time.

          • corblimeybot

            Not because you can’t handle being immediately refuted with evidence? Not because you can’t handle it when people point out how morally bankrupt you sound all the time? Not because you’re still struggling to provide cites for claims you made months ago?

          • Brooke

            I provided sources, originally and here again. How did I struggle? You’re really laughable and obviously just seeking an argument. You don’t actually prove anything by attacking me personally except that you’re extremely thin skinned and reactionary. I have zero problems with being “refuted by evidence” where there’s evidence, not personal insults, having images from my other social media accounts posted here or posts I made on Facebook taken out of context etc. That’s why I don’t respond. If you provide links first I can see them in my email notification and will be happy to look at them if they are actually applicable to what is being discussed. But seeing the first line of a response be condensing or insulting doesn’t make me interested in responding.

          • Sue

            “staying with her child in the hospital and everything else that a long term recovery will take.” says Brooke.

            So, tetanus is a bit worse than a cold, after all?

          • Who?

            Gee, don’t care a five year old is lying semiconscious between life and death, don’t care her mother, whose entire fault and responsibility that is, is trying to scam money out of others, but you don’t like Dr T writing a post about it?

            And why all about mother’s hassle-it is the child that’s ill, after all. But so what hey?

            Lovely.

            And as for you don’t get into others’ drama, pull the other one it has bells on it.

          • Pck

            I bet you are voting for Clinton.

          • Maeve Macken

            ^^^ I hope everyone votes for Clinton based on this issue. Trump questions vaccination because he is a conspiracy theory lovin ENTERTAINER.

          • Roadstergal

            All of the candidates have some sort of alt-med/pseudoscience in their background, which is disappointing. Clinton, Trump, Stein, Johnson, Sanders. But Clinton is the one who keeps it most in her personal life and out of politics.

          • Azuran

            If she did, that would make her smarter than you, and that would give her at least 1 positive thing she has done.

          • N

            I really am no specialist of american voting. Here in the middle of Europe, with all the people I know, we sincerely think Trump is a bit of a joke. A dangerous one. All the people I know hope for Clinton for president.

          • MaineJen

            As do we in the US. I hope she is going to win in a landslide.

          • Roadstergal

            The final debate last night was just painful to watch. Trump rambling incoherently, interrupting Clinton with endless whines of “Wrooooong!” like a petulant toddler.

          • MaineJen

            I couldn’t do it. Could. Not. Do. It. But on the upside, check out #Trumpbookreport 🙂

          • Roadstergal

            I saw that on FB this morning and adored it! Making Madison County pay for the bridge…

            About 3/4 of the way through, MrR said “We can watch something else.” I said that we had gotten that far, I was going to see it to the end!

            I did like that I stayed long enough to hear her answer to the last question.

          • Azuran

            I did. Mainly so I could laugh at the SNL parody.

          • BeatriceC

            I wound up not listening to it. MrC finished watching it while I watched the Criminal Minds episode where they introduce The Reaper, who, by the way, would make a better president than Trump, even though he’s one of the most sadistic fictional serial killers ever created.

          • StephanieJR

            And he’s more charismatic!

          • Sean Jungian

            Oh, he’s definitely a joke.

            I hope HRC wins my a landslide so historic that der Drumpf wets himself in humiliation.

            And I hope the dems take the Senate as well.

            The destruction of the ghastly Republican party can’t happen fast enough for me. For that, I do thank the bloviating orange shitstain.

          • Nick Sanders

            Unfortunately, the joke is on us.

          • demodocus

            my spouse is genuinely concerned that His Oranginess will try to stage a coup if he loses.

          • MaineJen

            I doubt it, he does not have the support of the military.

          • demodocus

            True, but logic is not my pet philosophers strong suit

          • I know he doesn’t have the support of my disabled Vietnam veteran husband or any of us here.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Take hope in the fact that any Trump threats for a coup are about as serious as his threats of a lawsuit.

            Remember the other week when he blustered on about suing the NYT for the stories on women who accused him of assaulting them? How far did that get?

            The Times called his bluff, and suddenly, it went away.

            He’s a total blowhole, cowering at the slightest resistance.

          • Roadstergal

            He’s a chronic liar, and I don’t use that term lightly. He continually, endlessly spouts the most bizarre and easily-disprovable lies, over and over, literally all day long. It’s like he lives in a reality in his own mind that’s always just what he wants it to be, and that needs no internal consistency.

          • Sean Jungian

            Those on the “alt-right” who DO support a Trumplet Revolution are far too fractious and cowardly to actually do anything. The infighting between the different hate groups alone would keep them from succeeding at much of anything they tried to accomplish. They’re far more comfortable bullying people online or in huge rallies egged on by the head bigot.

            Another thing to take some comfort in: these groups are all watched very closely by our government and police forces. I suspect we might see an uptick in thwarted attempts at violence, but we’ll see.

            In any case, I do think it will fall short of widespread violence.

            On the other hand, though, we just finished 8 years of unabashed racism; prepare yourselves for (8, hopefully) years of naked misogyny. But it won’t matter.

          • corblimeybot

            Trump says vaccines cause autism, you idiot.

          • Roadstergal
          • Brooke

            You’d be incorrect on that one

          • Roadstergal

            Oh lord, yes, you have Stein written all over you. Unless you’re a single-issue marijuana voter, in which case, Johnson.

          • corblimeybot

            Bingo. Brooke’s an INDEPENDENT THINKER!!!!!!!

          • Nick Sanders

            Fuck off, dude. You want to talk about the election? Fine, the post about it are right there. Not here.

          • Pck

            Don’t shit your nappy, Nick.

          • Daleth

            The mother’s lost wages are her own damn fault for refusing to vaccinate her daughter. People donating to her campaign are basically paying her for having made that potentially deadly decision.

          • Karen in SC

            vaccinations are a boon to families where both parents work. I bet many parents lost their jobs or a large chunk of income when the chicken pox would make the rounds. My mother never worked so it didn’t matter we got them all (way back in the 60s)

          • corblimeybot

            I suspect my husband or I would lose our jobs now if our daughter had chickenpox, and either of us missed that much work. If we didn’t lose our jobs, we still couldn’t pay rent.

            I never thought of that angle when our daughter got her shot; only thought of how fantastic it is she’d never have chickenpox. But it IS true.

          • Daleth

            That’s a great point.

          • J.B.

            When my grandmother and her brother caught the childhood diseases for which there are now vaccines, they would be quarantined for 3 weeks. imagine that several times for multiple kids.

          • Azuran

            If she didn’t want to lose wages, she should have vaccinated.

          • LeighW

            If she’d neglected her so badly she’d been hospitalized, then asked people to donate money to cover her time off work would you sat the same thing? Because to most rational people not having your children vaccinated is almost the same thing

          • N

            What I think is really shocking: If the girl was not vaccinated, as a lot of unvaxxed children around here, because, life is hard, no time to think about getting appointments, no money, what ever, I mean, those parents wouldn’t have refused the vaccination now as part of the treatment (if I understand everything correctly.). Why continue to refusing it?

          • corblimeybot

            This mother has an ideological stand against vaccination that she values more than her child’s life. She’s not the same type of parent as the unprivileged, overworked parent who really can’t get their kid to a doctor. 🙁

          • N

            Yes. She plays in a different league. And yet. I mean the girl is already suffering hell. Could die. What on earth could the vaccine make worse now? Make her autistic? Give her ADD (is that the right abreviation for the right english words?)? Cancer? What?? I mean even if i believed in those “dangers”, better a surviving child that no longer suffers, with ADD than this. No?

          • demodocus

            When i was a kid there were 2 diagnoses, ADHD, and the less common ADD. (My brother was diagnosed with the latter.) Dunno if they’ve changed that over the last 20 years, though

          • N

            Thank you, demodocus, for the two abreviations. I will keep them in mind.

          • RubyRed

            They sort of have. Now it’s all considered ADHD, but with different types. I was diagnosed 2 years ago and I’m classified as ‘ADHD, primarily inattentive type’, which would have been called ADD years ago.

          • sdsures

            There IS nothing worse than watching your child suffer and die from something YOU could have easily prevented. This mother is a sociopath who cares more about her ideology than her own child.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            Where is “around here”? If in the US, vaccines are available for free through the “Vaccines for Children” program. http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/index.html Usually the provider is the local health department, or a community clinic.

          • CandiO

            Yes it is and their parents still have to lose a days work to take multiple buses to get to that health department where they will face a long wait (been to a health dept lately?, they get budget cut first!).

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            You know, I’m reminded of a passage I read in a book once “It made me embarrassed to be a liberal”. That’s how I feel about stuff like this. Several buses to get to one? Maybe if you live in some rural area. Most health departments have offices located in business districts where most of the transit lines go, and in larger areas, have several offices around the city. I’ve worked for health departments that had clinics in housing projects, recreation centers, and the like. Lose a day’s work? Again, look at a health department’s schedule. Here is the schedule for one office where I worked; note Saturday clinics. http://co-tricountyhealth.civicplus.com/DocumentCenter/View/46
            Here’s another one with extended hours: http://www.bouldercounty.org/family/pregnancy/pages/clinicinformation.aspx When I worked at the latter, immunizations were offered at another location, and all clinics were open until 7. Now just the one takes patients until 6, finishing up around 6:30 or so, due to lack of demand! That is actually a good thing; it means more people have insurance. Note that Denver Public Health has some in-school clinics: https://www.google.com/search?q=denver+in-school+immunization+program&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8

            Yes, I’ve been in a health department lately, have you? I worked in several health department immunization programs. As I said above, one place I worked actually closed for lack of clients as more people got insurance coverage for IZs. Unless you came in the last clinic before school started, the wait times were no longer and in some cases shorter than at a doctor’s office.

            It’s too bad people have such negative ideas about health departments.

            Here’s a community health center in my area, as you can see, open 3 nights a week until 8 PM. This is also for low-income patients. https://clinica.org/locations/pecos/

            Here’s more: http://jeffco.us/public-health/documents/immunizations-documents/shotsfortotsandteens_3clinicflyer_eng_spa_-2016/

            Yes, getting health care for your kids takes some planning, no matter what your income level.

          • Azuran

            I see you still have a lot of problem realizing that your own experiences are not the experiences of 100% of the population.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            I would put my expertise far, FAR above yours in this area. I have worked for health departments in three different cities across the US, and for several different health departments in the metro Denver area. I had a CAREER in public health, specializing in immunizations. I know how public health agencies work. You don’t even live in the US.

            Show me some CREDIBLE evidence that the NORM is as CandiO described. I’ll wait.

          • Azuran

            All I’m saying is that your own personal experience does not apply to 100% of the US population. You are just unable to overlook your own privileges.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            “All” you’re saying, right. My privileges? WTF? I’m talking about public clinics for people who can’t afford to pay. I’ve done far more in that area than you have, of that I am sure.

          • Azuran

            Good for you. Doesn’t change the fact that it’s entirely possible, like CandiO said, that some people cannot take the time to go there (because yea, people sometimes work 2 jobs, don’t have cars, don’t have access to public transportation, might not have babysitters etc etc etc.) You are just dismissing this possibility because you haven’t seen it. But your experience does not apply to every one.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            No, I didn’t dismiss any possibility. I showed you how many clinics have evening/Saturday hours, and mobile clinics to accommodate those people you say I “dismiss”. H*ll, I told you about a HD where I worked that had IZ clinics at housing project offices, recreations centers. I also recall some at churches and other sort of public buildings.

            You know how many people work two jobs? Here’s some stats: http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2014/01/21/states-people-working-two-jobs/4719485/
            “n 2012, roughly 5% of the U.S. working population held more than one job at the same time.” State with the most people with two jobs? South Dakota, followed by Vermont, Nebraska, Kansas and Maine. These are all states with significant farm economies. When I lived in “Big Ag” countries, I did know some farmers who had one (or more) other jobs at other times of year.

            Here’s a graph showing car ownership by household. https://www.quora.com/What-percentage-of-USA-households-own-a-car
            Here’s a metro Denver public transportation map: http://www3.rtd-denver.com/elbert/SystemMap/ And this system is supposedly not as robust as that in other cities. Chicago’s is fantastic.

            Babysitters? Aren’t you supposed to be taking the child to the clinic? I’ve never worked in any kind of pediatric office, public or private, where siblings were not welcome.

            I spent a career immunizing kids and trying to improve immunization rates and access to immunizations. I resent your implication that I’m some sort of borgeoise that has no clue.

          • Azuran

            I’m not sure what you are trying to prove here with your stats. No matter what you do, some people are not going to be able to get there. And no amount of stats will change this.
            (Also, yea, babysitter, because taking your 4-5 kids with you through public transportation to get your baby vaccinated car be really impossible)

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            Oh, Jeez, Azuran. No matter what I post you’ll come up with some objection. No matter how hard we work to make it convenient for people, you’ll jump my case cuz you’re pissed off at me for my ideas about c-sections, which I should have never posted to such a hostile group.

          • HelloKitty
          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            I am trying to show that providers try to make vaccines as accessible as possible. You, OTOH, want to come up with reasons why people can’t possibly ever make it to the clinic. Perhaps you’d like to set up door to door vaccines, like Chicago did.

          • Acricket

            Sonja, Azuran’s responses to you have nothing to do with your ideas surrounding c-section. You come off as incredibly defensive when discussing public health clinics. No one here is putting down your work with public health offices. I for one have a deep appreciation for your and your colleagues work as I am skirting poverty myself and am scrambling to find a place to get my daughter her next round of vaccines. I do not doubt that the offices you have worked in have bent over backwards and seen decreases in use over time. But your comments seem to imply that because these major cities on this hand have had this success then Beatrice’s experiences on the other hand couldnt be true. I dont know if that was an implication you meant, but that is the way your comments came across. I am hoping the public clinics here where I am have programs like you have listed out though. Off to google!

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            Ahh, “defensive”, LOL! The cardinal sin of mental health. God forbid when people are attacking you that you should choose to defend. There actually was a pretty big “discussion” about C-sections on another thread where I disagreed with several people.

            I don’t know who Beatrice is, I don’t think I responded to anyone with that name.

            I’m glad you’re going to see what services are available for you. THAT was my original point. One can go on and on about why someone can’t get vaccines, but what good does that do? I would suggest you Google your county health department, and also Federally Qualified Health Centers near you.

          • MaineJen

            You know why most people have 2 jobs in Maine? Because the economy is mainly tourism-based, i.e. seasonal and at- or below-minimum wage. And rich people like to have their summer places up here, so housing prices and property taxes, along with other prices, are sky high. (Thanks, rich people!) Add to that a collapsed lumber and paper industry, and yes, people are struggling to make ends meet. How easy would it be for someone in a rural county up north to get to a clinic when they’re trying to raise a family while working 2 jobs? Not very.

            It’s not all prosperous farmers who keep a second job during the winter for extra cash. Jesus Effing Christ.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            I was going to give a thoughtful post agreeing with you till that last line.

          • MaineJen

            Well I will put a dollar in the swear jar. But you sure are making a lot of assumptions that are not based in fact.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            “Check your privilege” is so trite! You know nothing about my background.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            Back in the early 1990s, after the measles epidemic in the US which caused >150 deaths, mostly to babies and ~11,000 known hospitalizations, and was due mostly to lack of vaccination, the feds adopted a policy to improve immunization coverage. This included requiring health departments to do more “outreach”, and so forth. We tried a lot of things at the health department where I worked. Some things worked, some didn’t. We sat around at a lot of clinics at malls on Saturday mornings, at voting polls on Election Day, etc. Off site clinics didn’t work too well. No one wanted to go to the mall and get immunized. The feds were working on this idea that people would see the clinic, set up in full public view of shoppers, and jump in line. In reality, focus groups showed that, surprise! People wanted to get their health care at a health care providers office during the week. What our clients did want and did like a lot was the late afternoon/early evening clinics. Even with that, it took a few tries to get it right. We started out doing clinics from 6-8 PM. Guess what? People didn’t want to go to the clinic to get immunized after dinner. They wanted to do it before dinner then go home. So we settled on taking patients until 6:45, so everything could be finished up by 7 PM. We were busiest from about 4-6 as people got off work, picked up their kids, and came to the clinic, which we kept at our facilities because people didn’t want to get immunized at malls, polling places, school registration events, etc.

          • momofone

            The NORM, as you put it, depends on where you live. The norm for a metropolitan area is public transportation and possibly more varied options in terms of available clinic hours. The norm where I live is health department closures and two hours in any direction to see almost any kind of medical specialist.

          • CandiO

            Yes I live in a rural area. No they do not have easily reached health departments. No in fact the local health departments do not have extended hours or Saturday hours. And yes I have worked in local health departments. I did the majority of clinical hours for my graduate degree in local health departments (4 in at least two different districts in my state), in fact seeing FAR more patients per day than I ever have in private/ corporate owned practice. Not everywhere in the US is like where you live, though I wish it were so.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            Rural public health is something I’m not very familiar with. Even working in an Illinois agricultural area, the HD only served the cities, not the outlying areas. At one point, the voters of said outlying areas voted on whether to be included and they voted “no”.

          • swbarnes2

            If you are trying to argue that 100.00% of people can reach these clinics, you need to stop, because you can’t possibly show that. It can’t possibly be true.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            Well, it is hard to imagine how someone in an urban area couldn’t possibly ever, ever access an immunization clinic. I mean how do they get food or clothing?

            Medicaid provided non-emergency transportation.

          • MaineJen

            Not being able to imagine someone else having difficulties with something that appears *to you* to be simple is the height of priviledge.

          • momofone

            I think your perspective may have more to do with what’s available where you live than with some lack of “direness” for other people. You are fortunate that that’s the case for you.

          • momofone

            In my (very poor) state, many health department locations have closed or are operating reduced hours due to budget shortages. Where I live, in a very rural area, there is no public transportation/no taxi services/etc. If people don’t have their own transportation, they rely on friends and family members, and that means having to pay for gas. For a trip to a health department 30 minutes away, that could easily mean $50 in gas and a full day off work, which means going without electricity or water for many people–and that’s if the driver can take off work too, which many can’t. There are no extended hours or weekend hours. People are lucky if they have access to any hours. Some schools have clinics come to them to do flu shots, but I’m not aware of any that do the required vaccinations FOR school. There are no personal belief exemptions here, so vaccination has to be done before school, and I am grateful for that, but also keenly aware that it means much larger sacrifices for many people.

          • corblimeybot

            Where I live, the low-cost clinics are good and full of hardworking medical professionals. There is also a major medical system located in my town. But getting to and from one of these clinics CAN be an all-day affair in itself.

            I live in a mid-size town (NOT rural in the least) with an okay bus system, but you’ve lucked out bigtime if you don’t have to take multiple buses and then walk for a bit to get to one of these clinics. (I’ve been to the low-cost clinics and the major medical system’s clinics, and they do all require lots of bus riding and lots of walking. ) Then you get there and wait for the rest of the day to be seen.

            None the fault of the clinic employees, they’re great. But if you can’t see how this would make visiting the doctor an incredibly arduous experience for many poor people with shitty jobs and kids, you lack empathy in a way which seriously disappoints me.

          • Heidi

            My experience with large cities in the South is that they have AWFUL, absolutely AWFUL public transportation. A bus might run a few minutes early and you missed it and you are at least an hour waiting for the next one. The medium sized and small sized cities have even worse and possibly no public transportation!

          • BeatriceC

            I used to be a middle school teacher in an extremely high poverty school (99% free/reduced lunch…there were a couple kids who were the children of faculty/staff that didn’t qualify), and the overwhelming reason why our kids were un- or under vaccinated was access to care. When you don’t have a car, getting to a doctor’s appointment is literally an all day affair by bus (at least in Miami, where the bus system is horrible). Most of the pediatricians who serve that neighborhood are massive clinics and the wait times are very long. The parents have to decide between losing a day’s wages and getting their kids to the doctors. Frequently, the need to eat, pay rent, and pay the power and water bills win that debate. We frequently talked about how we could go about lobbying the county to bring a mobile vaccination clinic to the schools, but it never went anywhere, at least while I was there. I can practically guarantee you that if this had been the child of *any* of the parents of the students I taught, they’d be falling all over themselves to authorize whatever treatment necessary, and feeling incredibly guilty for choosing to go to work so they could pay the rent instead of getting to the doctor’s for shots. It’s a hellacious choice to have to make.

          • N

            Upvote this. And if parents have a difficult time themselves with reading and writing in the language of the country they live, it is even more difficult to find a doctor and call and make an appointment…

          • Brooke

            If you don’t want to give her money, then don’t. I personally think its wrong to post someone’s GoFundMe page for a very sick child just to ridicule them or prove a point. That doesn’t help anyone.

          • Roadstergal

            It’s not a GoFundMe for a very sick child. It’s a GoFundMe for a mom who made her child very sick.

          • sdsures

            That’s what I found suspicious.

          • Azuran

            If it makes 1 parent vaccinate their child against tetanus, then yes, it helps someone.

          • StephanieJR

            It’s actually encouraging me to find out if I need any boosters; the last ‘standard’ vaccinations I got were in high school, and I got some before we went away on holiday.

          • You appear to have missed LeighW’s question:

            If she’d neglected her so badly she’d been hospitalized, then asked people to donate money to cover her time off work would you say the same thing?

          • LeighW

            ….. having her child vacinated would have helped.

          • Nick Sanders

            She wouldn’t be missing wages if she’d done her damn job as a parent in the first place.

          • MI Dawn

            Then maybe the mother should have gotten her daughter VACCINATED and then this wouldn’t be an issue, would it? I’m sorry. My heart breaks for the child, but the selfish, stupid mother gets no pity from me.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            I care about people conning others online, just as I care about them doing it in person or on the phone.

          • Danica Walker

            Unfortunately lost wages are a consequence of not being a responsible parent and vaccinating your child . If the go fund me would have said that’s what the money was for it would be a little different.. but yet it said medical expenses. My husband and I are loosing our wages as well. Part of life and we will get through it.

          • Heidi_storage

            By the way, I hope you and your new little one are doing well. What a stressful thing to happen at such a time!

          • Danica Walker

            Thanks! Little one is doing good.. breast feeding is a little slow due to stress but we will overcome it! 🙂

        • corblimeybot

          You only care about the feelings of the mother who allowed this CHILD to get a deadly disease. Does this girl mean nothing to you? Because you ONLY care that her suffering isn’t exposed for what it IS.

          • Brooke

            I don’t think the CHILD should be exploited her or the GoFundMe page, but at least the mother is getting money for her treatment not using this to create ad revenue on her blog.

          • momofone

            For her treatment of something preventable, and not for further prevention. It’s unimaginably horrible to consider, but possible that she could get it again if not vaccinated.

          • Roadstergal

            No, the child’s treatment is being covered under dad’s insurance. The mom is actually continuing to refuse the full and appropriate treatment for her child’s painful and potentially deadly infection.

        • corblimeybot

          As a matter of fact, I suspect there’s a very personal reason that you are SO obsessed with how negligent mothers are persecuted!!!! for their negligence. It is the biggest theme in your disjointed comments here and your disjointed comments on Dr. Amy’s Facebook page.

          The only tool you have in your belt is “Dr. Amy hurt the mother’s feelings when she did something horrible, but come on, it’s not like her type of awful parenting USUALLY results in literal death or anything! So quit being a bully!”

        • MaineJen

          Actually the mom is exploiting her sick child to get money through her gofundme. This child has health insurance already. Try again.

          • Brooke

            Two wrongs don’t make a right.

          • Charybdis

            Three lefts do…

        • Charybdis

          What about the person who is stated a “GoFundMe” account to cover the child’s medical expenses when the child is already covered by insurance? Or that this same person is okay with the child receiving numerous tetanus immune globulin which is made from the blood of vaccinated people but refuses the recommended vaccine? How about the fact that she lists “dog boarding” as a expense that needs covering by GoFundMe?

        • Sullivan ThePoop

          Well, we all think the mother is disgusting

    • N

      But Tetanus can be prevented, the brain eating amoeba not. And a broken bone can heal, if a real doctor sees to it.
      I once met parents too afraid too vaccinate their children AND to afraid to let them play in the dirt. They had to wear gloves all the time…
      Would one not think, that all those things you mentioned, like broken bones, the brain eating amoeba, catching a cold, and a lot more are bad enough? Our kids suffer enough through these things? Why not at least prevent them from what we can, like Tetanus?
      Oh, O know, I won’t get a discussion-worthy answer… I just lost a couple of minutes of my precious time writing this… 🙁

      • corblimeybot

        You’ve hit on something important about Brooke’s “reasoning” here. She seems to think ALL disease is an unpreventable lightning strike from God, like N. fowleri actually is.

        • Brooke

          No I’m an atheist.

          • Nick Sanders

            Metaphor, ffs.

          • corblimeybot

            My mistake; I should have remembered that you’re too simpleminded to understand basic metaphoric speech.

          • corblimeybot

            Hey Brooke, while we’ve got your attention: Did you scroll up and see the comments from this poor child’s actual stepmother? An actual family member, who knows and cares about the girl? Do you dare to talk shit to that poor woman’s face?

          • Sarah

            Surprise

      • Brooke

        There’s risks to vaccinating as well. Dr.Amy is doing the same thing as most anti-vaxxers and posting a emotionally compelling story, (unfortunately I personally think she is more interested in blog hits than actually getting parents that do not vaccinate to change their minds but anyways) to promote her “agenda” without giving everyone the full story that this is actually pretty rare. I object to the idea that parents “let” their child get sick because although they didn’t vaccinate they have no control over viruses, fungi, bacteria that their child comes into contact with, vaccines are not 100% effective.
        The brain eating amoeba can be prevented by not letting your kids swim in lakes, rivers and creeks, using nose plugs if you do. No one blames the parents of children killed by brain eating amoebas though. Maybe because letting your kids swim in natural bodies of water isn’t a issue that’s been politicized.

        • Roadstergal

          “without giving everyone the full story that this is actually pretty rare”

          Hey, that’s a good place to start. Tell me, Brooke, what was the incidence of tetanus in the US pre-vaccine? What is the incidence of severe adverse reactions to the tetanus vaccine?

        • Nick Sanders

          There’s risks to vaccinating as well.

          And not a single one of them compares remotely to the risks of tetanus.

          I object to the idea that parents “let” their child get sick because although they didn’t vaccinate they have no control over viruses, fungi, bacteria that their child comes into contact with, vaccines are not 100% effective.

          “It can be inferred from protective antitoxin levels that a complete tetanus toxoid series has a clinical efficacy of virtually 100%; cases of tetanus occurring in fully immunized persons whose last dose was within the last 10 years are extremely rare.”

          http://www.cdc.gov/VACCINes/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/tetanus.pdf

          No one blames the parents of children killed by brain eating amoebas though. Maybe because letting your kids swim in natural bodies of water isn’t a issue that’s been politicized.

          N. fowleri infection is inherently rare. Tetanus is only rare because of the vaccine.

        • corblimeybot

          You seem really obsessed with brain-eating amoebas. Did you just learn about them on TV? Is this the new thing to which anti-vaxxers are going to compare their bullshit “plight”?

        • Sue

          “Brain-eating amoeba”, says Brooke
          Will get you by hook or by crooke
          Swim in lake, river or creek
          And within a week
          You will realise you were mistook.

        • N

          “… they have no control over viruses, fungi, bacteria that their child comes into contact with,…”

          Is that not another reason to vaccinate? We don’t have control over what our children come into contact with, so lets protect them as good as possible where we can.

          And yes vaccines may not be 100% effective and may have risks too. But why still refuse the vaccine now as a treatment? I mean, if you would think that swimming aids are useless and dangerous, the moment your child is in deep water and about to drown, would it not be time to use a swimming aid to help her get out of the water? What could be more dangerous than drowning/suffering hell for weeks and month/dying?

          And things that are rare: that is only statictics for me. If the rare thing hits me, I don’t care if it is a rare thing. It hit me. If I could prevent it hitting me, I would.

          In ten or twenty years from now, if that girl survives, what will she think? What will she tell her mother? My sister is still enraged because she thinks our mother didn’t send her to the doctor often enough as a teenager. Or because our parents didn’t help her with the diet the doctor proposed her for trying to loose weight…

          And for Doctor Tuteur and her agenda, … well lets take homebirths for example. Search her blog here and you will find many, many babies that died or were injured during homebirth. So THAT can not be so rare, even if she writes about every injured or dead baby in the US, it seems a lot to me. And for vaccines, well would she write about a child infected with tetanus if the parents were crying in the hospital like: Oh we are so sorry, we didn’t know this could happen, if only we had taken a day off from work to vaccinate her, of course you can do it now if you think it could help. Please do everything you can to help her, ….??? No, after more than a year of reading here I’m under the impression that she only writes about very privileged people, who THINK they are very smart and EDUCATED and know everything, and out of there privileged situation can more or less do what they want.

          • corblimeybot

            I know you know this, but Dr. Amy has often posted sympathetically about people who were honestly hornswoggled by alt-med/anti-vaxx/lay midwifery charlatans. I don’t think it’s a character flaw of Dr. Amy’s that she lacks sympathy for remorselessly neglectful and abusive parents.

            Brooke is obviously insecure about her poor parenting choices. She knows in her soul that all these risks Dr. Amy talks about are 100% real and could happen to her own children due to her own actions, and all she can think of in response is, “But I don’t want people to blame ME if my medically idiotic choices seriously harm my children.”

          • N

            Upvoted.

        • Michael McCarthy

          The brain eating amoeba can be prevented by not letting your kids swim in lakes, rivers and creeks

          Can it? Maybe you should tell that to Lauren Seitz’s parents.
          “The center’s channels are man-made, and it gets its water from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities Department and two wells on its property. The center has announced that it disinfects all water with ultraviolet radiation and chlorine, and it added more after the water tests.”
          http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/08/03/my-vacation-with-a-brain-eating-amoeba/

          • Heidi

            I don’t know if it was THE brain-eating amoeba, but there was a woman who had run out of contact solution and used the water out of her shower to soak her contacts in. She temporarily went blind from some sort of amoeba. I think people have died from using tap water in their neti pots, too.

          • Michael McCarthy

            I think people have died from using tap water in their neti pots, too.

            Yep, in Louisiana, from Naegleria fowleri infection from tap water.

          • StephanieJR

            Oh god no.

        • J.B.

          N fowleri has been in the environment a long time but thanks at least partially to climate change its range has increased and has made it through water treatment plants. After several deadly cases Louisiana increased required disinfection.

          But I bet you’re also anti chlorine.

        • corblimeybot

          I just wanted to repeat other people’s comments that you’re a blithering moron for not knowing the difference between “not 100% effective” and “useless, worthless, 0% effective”.

        • Sarah

          You are sure as hell not trying to NOT let them get sick. Vaccines are effective to whatever percentage, so if you don’t choose that, you are basically allowing your children to get sick. Because we have something to prevent it and you won’t do it.

      • kilda

        exactly. If there was a vaccine against the brain eating amoeba, and people let their child go swimming without vaccinating against it, yes, that would absolutely be neglect, even though it is thankfully a very rare parasite.

    • rosewater1

      Want to take your kid swimming? Do it safely.
      Go out during cold & flu season? Take precautions. (Good handwashing, for one.)
      Climbing trees? Don’t climb onto branches that won’t hold your weight.
      Playing sports? Wear protective gear.

      See how easy it is?

      THIS CHILD COULD DIE. As in not living. Do you get that? And it didn’t need to happen.

      NONE of your examples hold water when you compare the risk this child will face fighting the disease.

      I truly don’t get it. How can you sanction this???

      • Roadstergal

        “Go out during cold & flu season? Take precautions”

        Including, ya know, the flu vaccine…

        • Brooke

          Flu vaccine doesn’t prevent you from getting a cold or strain of flu not covered by the vaccine.

          • Roadstergal

            Yes, and seatbelts don’t protect against cancer.

            BTW, your statement is not wholly true. A nontrivial number of flu vaccine recipients get anti-stem immunity, which does indeed protect against almost all strains. I’ve seen people at my work seroconvert to anti-stem.

          • Heidi_storage

            Hey, question. So I have gotten a flu shot every year for the past 10 years, and plan to continue to do so. I know the flu virus mutates a great deal, but is there a point at which I’ve got a decent chance of being immune (or less susceptible, anyway) to strains other than the current year’s vaccine?

          • Roadstergal

            It’s possible. But it never hurts to boost – the response is polyclonal, so it can always get a little better. 😀

          • Heidi_storage

            Thanks! Like I said, I plan to keep getting my jab. I think my three-year-old has internalized the “shots are good” thing a little too well; she’s gotten hold of an oral syringe and keeps on coming up to me, announcing that she’s giving me a shot, and then stabbing me with it. At least I get a (pretend) bandaid afterward.

          • demodocus

            you too, huh? Mine prefers a popsicle stick

          • sdsures

            LOL cute! You’re an excellent mum!

          • sdsures

            We already know this. What the flu vaccine DOES do is make it so when you catch the flu this season (say, a strain not covered by the vaccine), the period of being sick may be shorter and less intense.

            That’s life and death to someone who has asthma like me. It is NOT trivial.

          • Azuran

            oh right, so if something isn’t 100% effective against everything, it is just not worth it. Like seatbelts, what useless pieces of crap

          • Bombshellrisa

            Yeah, like birth control, none of them are 100% effective so I guess they aren’t worth using (I am being snarky if you can’t tell).

          • Heidi_storage

            I can, but Brooke probably can’t.

          • N

            What, use birth control? Like condoms? But … “every sperm is sacred. Every sperm is great. …” 🙂

          • StephanieJR

            Thank you for the earworm.

          • Heidi_storage

            I’ve always been fond of “Look on the briiiight side of life…” and “The Inquisition! What a show!”

          • Eater of Worlds

            No one expects the Spanish Inquisition.

          • sdsures

            “Iiiiiif a sperm is waaaaasted, God gets quite iiiiiraaaaate. …” 🙂

          • rosewater1

            If you are looking for 100% safety you aren’t going to find it. I don’t think anyone here will claim that vaccines are a panacea that will shield us from all illness.

            But, this didn’t have to happen. This child didn’t have to be this ill. Just like Heather Dexter;s children didn’t have to suffer with whooping cough. But, both these mothers knew better. Both these mothers thumbed their noses at modern medicine because they knew better.

            Remy’s mother is now depending on the modern medicine that she scorned to save her child. It is going to cost thousands-if not millions-of dollars when all is said and done. And she could still die.

            Is it worth it? To take that risk? To gamble with your child’s life?

            Yes, you can get the flu even if you get the flu shot.

            Yes, you can get tetanus even if you get the vaccine.

            But why-why make the odds greater? Why????

            Hopefully Remy’s mother has enough of a soul left that she is guilty for her role in this.

            And one question for you, Brooke.

            Why are you here?

            You rail against Dr Teuter trolling for readers. You clearly agree with very little that is written here. Why then are you bringing more traffic to a website that espouses philosophies that you clearly disdain?

            There are a multitude of blogs & websites where you could find people who would appreciate you.

            This isn’t a smug question or an attack. And I’d really like to know.

            Why are you here?

          • Sue

            Must be to edumacate us.

          • Eater of Worlds

            Teaching swimming and wearing a life vest don’t guarantee that someone won’t drown.

            Choosing strong branches for tree climbing doesn’t mean someone won’t fall.

            Playing sports with protective gear doesn’t mean your child won’t get injured, including severely. Just look at all the injuries with football and hockey.

            You can’t possibly say, however, that none of these precautions don’t help mitigate risk. The flu shot does that. The flu mutate so fast it’s tough to keep up with, that’s the only reason why the vaccine isn’t “effective” at preventing it. It works really well against what strains are in the vaccine.

            I can die from the flu. I make damn sure I get the vaccine, because it lowers my chances of getting it. I got the four strain vaccine because it means that I won’t be getting those four strains and I won’t be dying from one of them either. If the flu strain wafting past my face is similar enough to the ones I am vaccinated against, I can get some help from that and I might not get the flu as badly as I could if I wasn’t vaccinated, and that lowers my chances of dying.

            So, yeah, getting the flu vaccine is exactly like learning to swim and wearing a life vest. It can save my life and it can reduce my chances of drowning and it might not do anything. I bet you won’t prevent your kids from learning to swim and wearing a life vest because those things might not do anything to prevent drowning.

          • corblimeybot

            I’m sorry, i somehow forgot about this ridiculous comment in which Brooke acted like that colds and the flu are basically the same level of severity, and also accidentally farted out a tautology.

          • Sarah

            Oh no it’s not perfect. Might as well just not get it at all then. NOTHING prevents you against a cold, and you have a pretty good shot at being protected from the flu, so why would you not take any percentage of protection over zero percent?

    • Hilary

      Because that is so totally the same thing.

    • lilin

      “There’s less than 1000 cases in the US per year, this is a medical anomaly”

      Gosh, I wonder why the number of cases is so low. Like the number of cases of polio. And measles. And whooping cough. And smallpox.

      Could there be some factor I’m not thinking of that caused the mortality rates for all these diseases to plummet? Let’s think, Brooke. Perhaps you and I could come up with a reason.

      • Sarah

        Increased formula usage?

    • Sue

      The person who posted as Brooke
      Was so cranky, that her voice shook
      “Getting tetanus” she told
      “Is no worse than a cold”
      What silliness she could cook!

      But Dr Amy, and her readers
      They are health literacy leaders
      They know Brooke’s just foxin’
      About tetanus toxin
      There is really no need to heed ‘er.

      • MaineJen

        Well played.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      Tetanus is deadly. There is a 10% chance she will die and she might have disabilities for life. The tetanus vaccine is nowhere near that death or disability rate, the death rate for the tetanus vaccine is less than one in a million. It is so unfrequent in the USA because most people are vaccinated. There is no published case of tetanus in someone that has received five doses of the vaccine, which most children get at 6 years old (depends a little on the country). My son has already had four doses at age 2 and I have had eight in my lifetime.

      You have no idea how it feels like to be near death. Of course I do not take drowning lightly, I swim very well, as does all my family and my two year old is already attending swimming lessons. I take all the possible measures to ensure safe swimming and bathing, to decrease drowning risk: we do not have a pool, when we go to a pool one adult is always in charge of our son, my son does not stay in the bath alone, etc, etc.

      You can avoid water, but it is much more difficult to avoid cuts and scratches. Playing in the park without the vaccine is a dangerous sport, much more dangerous than swimming with an adult looking at you all the time. I am able to take my toddler out of the water in less than five seconds. I am not able to avoid him getting a minor cut from a fall at the park.

    • Daleth

      The reason there are fewer than 1000 cases a year in the US is because almost everyone is vaccinated against tetanus. This poor child is not a medical anomaly–she’s an example of the reason we invented a tetanus vaccine in the first place.

      And if there were a vaccine against brain-eating amoeba, you refused to get it, and you let your kid go swimming in warm fresh water (ponds in Georgia, etc.), then you are a bad parent–just like you’re a bad parent if you drive your kid around without a car seat.

      And if your kid gets brain-eating amoeba, doctors recommend using the vaccine to give her a better chance of surviving and not being disabled, AND YOU STILL REFUSE, then bitch, I myself will go down to the courthouse and help any rational relative of that child file for custody, gratis.

      • guest

        If there were a vaccine against brain-eating amoebas, one person I knew would still be alive today. It may be rare, but that doesn’t mean the lives of the victims can be dismissed so casually.

        • Daleth

          I’m so sorry. How awful.

          • guest

            It was terrible. One day she was there, the next week she was not. Didn’t even get to finish college.

          • sdsures

            I’m so sorry.

      • Danica Walker

        The infectious disease dr told us less than 20 cases a year. Since the bacteria is all over the place It only makes sense it’s due to people being vaccinated!!

    • MI Dawn

      OK, Brooke, why don’t YOU get tetanus and deal with the agony. WTF, woman? Are you totally heartless that this child has to be artifically paralyzed, on a ventiltor, in a dim room with earplugs and eyes covered? Holy crap. THIS IS A PRVENTABLE ILLNESS THAT THERE IS NO REASON FOR THIS CHILD TO HAVE SUFFERED!!!

      I’m so glad I don’t know you in real life. I’d be horrible tempted, and then arrested for bodily assault.

      • corblimeybot

        She is determined to prove that there is no sense in which she cares about the lives and suffering of children – only the preferences, conveniences, cult beliefs, and feelings of their parents.

        • Mishimoo

          Of course! Children ARE property after all. /s

          • N

            Can’t be. My other “property” (car, chairs, TV,…) is behaving ways better than my children.

          • sdsures

            It wasn’t so long ago that certain people believed that black people made good farm equipment. :'(

    • Maud Pie

      This woman willfully rejected vaccinations despite overwhelming evidence that the danger of vaccine preventable disease far outweighs the minimal risks of the vaccine. Unlike the horrific illness her daughter now suffers, the censure her mother faces is not physically painful life-threatening; more significantly that censure is a direct consequence of her own irresponsible arrogance.

      These attention whore medical Luddites who take to the Internet to proudly proclaim their rejection of sound medical practice, and then whine when they receive criticism, are creating a new definition of chutzpah.

    • Azuran

      And it was 100% avoidable with a very simple, effective and save vaccine. No need for bubble wrap.
      And it’s rare because almost everyone is vaccinated, you idiot.

      • BeatriceC

        Random off topic question for you, since you’re a vet.

        MrC’s daughter and her wife have this adorable mutt that’s most likely an Australian Shepherd mix of some sort. The dog had some major lung congestion for a week and the vet prescribe a cough syrup. The congestion got worse and they took her to the emergency vet. The dog had a collapsed lung. Lots of testing later and they found a bulla on the inside of the lung. The vet wants to surgically remove that part of her lung. I’m way out of my element here, and they’re just super overwhelmed (the dog is like a kid to them), so they’re not able to answer any questions.

        I’m curious what causes something like this, and if it’s just a one time thing or if this could be something that could affect the poor pup’s life long term. Can you point me in the direction of any information? When I search, I just find human stuff, not dog stuff.

        • Christina Maxwell

          Not a vet. Search “pulmonary bullae dog”, tons of info.

          • BeatriceC

            Oh! I didn’t even think to add “pulmonary” and was using “canine”. Thanks.

        • Azuran

          Oh god, definitely that’s a very serious case that I’m guessing is being followed by a specialist (I know I would refer something like that and never consider doing that kind of surgery myself.)
          Generally speaking, causes of bulla are various and rarely found on a specific case. Sometime they could be congenital defect, or secondary to lung trauma/chronic disease/infection. It’s either possible for the bulla to have formed secondary to the infection the dog seemed to have in the previous weeks. Or it had been present for a long time and ruptured following the illness. Once ruptured, it allows air to go around the lung.
          Medical management is generally unrewarding with a very high rate of recurrence because to heal properly, you need proper apposition of tissues with active ‘lesions/inflammation’. The inside of the bulla would probably be somewhat be like the inside of a cyst so it won’t heal, and with all the movements of the lungs with breathing, the ruptured parts of the bulla would never stay apposed long enough to heal.
          Surgery is the best treatment, and according to literature, has a good long term prognostic with low chances of recurrence.
          Surgeons will usually either do partial or complete lung lobectomy. Which is probably dependent on the number, size, localisation of the bulla and the kind of equipment the surgeon has available. Quality of life is generally very good even after a complete lobectomy. Unless it’s a high performance competition dog, it’s probably not going to have any long term visible effect, it should be dogging normally afterwards.
          But, it’s still intra-thoracic surgery. That’s a pretty big deal, does have important risk both during and after the surgery. It’s probably going to need weeks of medical care and rehabilitation, depending on what type of surgery they do. Traditionnaly, they do a sternotomy to allow a full exploration of the thorax, since multiple lesions are frequent. But there has been a lot of advances in both imaging and surgical endoscopic use. I know thoracoscopic lobectomy can be done in dogs, and would have an easier recovery and less risks, but I have no idea if it would be appropriate in this case.
          But if he pulls through, he should be fine afterwards.
          Still, it’s really awesome that they are willing to go that far. They are really amazing

          I don’t have any specific literature to share with you about this topic, since it’s definitely a specialist case and not something I would ever handle. But Christina’s research option does sound good. And veterinary article can usually be found on pubmed or basically anywhere where there are human medical articles.

          • BeatriceC

            Thank you for responding! It’s often times easier for me to sift through information if I have a base line, and your response gives me enough to actually start understanding what I’m reading (and yes, the search string Christina suggested was great). The dog is their baby, so they will to practically anything to help her. I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re dipping into their IUI/IVF funds to pay for this. They’re pretty overwhelmed right now. I definitely understand that. I’m really hoping she pulls through and goes on to have a happy, healthy life, and this is just a one time thing. She really is a great dog, even if she’s a ball of never ending energy and gets into everything. That’s my one worry, by the way, is that they will have trouble getting her to rest long enough to recover. She’s an active one.

          • BeatriceC

            Just wanted to update you. The pup had her surgery yesterday and is recovering as well as can be expected. She’s expected to be in the hospital for at least a few more days, but everybody is hopeful for a full recovery.

          • sdsures

            Glad to hear it! Pets are FAMILY! <3

    • RubyRed

      Clostridium tetani (the bacteria that produces the toxin that gives you tetanus) is actually everywhere in the soil. It’s everywhere.. You don’t get it from other people or animals, it’s not contagious, you get it from soil getting into even the smallest break in the skin.

      The only reason tetanus is rare is because the vaccine is extremely effective and pretty much everyone gets vaccinated.

      Seeing as there is extremely high morbidity and high mortality, you’re actually putting your kid at risk of nearly dying (or at least suffering greatly) every time you let them play outside. So actually, the vaccine makes it a lot safer to climb trees and play (outdoor) sports.

    • Sarah

      Could we have the receipts on that brain eating amoeba low comparison please? I’ll wait.

    • corblimeybot

      Hey Brooke. In the United States, rabies affects fewer than five people a year, per the CDC. In reality it often affects even fewer people, and sometimes a year or two will go by without any reported cases. That makes it rarer than tetanus, rarer than N. fowleri (“brain eating amoebas”, since I know you can’t use Google), rarer than Vibrio, etc. It’s rare as shit.

      Since it’s so rare (thanks to an incredibly successful animal vaccination campaign and incredibly effective human vaccine), I’m sure you have no problem letting your kids play with raccoons and skunks. I’m sure you have no issue letting wild animal bites go untreated for your kid. Rabies is rare! Any other approach would be smothering your kids in bubble wrap!

    • Mishimoo

      You know what? Naeglaria fowleri IS something to be concerned about and if there were a vaccine, you can bet your arse I would get it for my family. Primary Amoebic Meningencephalitis has a mortality rate of >95%, so it really doesn’t matter how rare it is, it’s still dangerous. Your analogy is ridiculous.

    • Heidi

      You should get your kids vaccinated for the “bubble boys” of the world, such as pediatric cancer patients. They shouldn’t have to live in a “bubble” because the likes of you choose to abuse your children and others around them. That was the only way to deal with SCID back in Bubble Boy’s time. Bubble Boy has a name and it’s David Vetter.

      Don’t be surprised when your children look back at their childhood and don’t have much respect or like for you. I had parents who weren’t anti-vaccination but too wrapped up in their own lives to get me vaccinated past the initial kindergarten vaccines. I didn’t get the vaccines I was supposed to get at 12 until I was 18. They didn’t take me to yearly checkups, skipped important dental procedures my dentist recommended because my mom decided she “knew better” than the dentist. Now as an adult, I’m dealing with dental issues that are costing my husband me a lot of money that could have been prevented. I do look back and consider it child abuse. Our relationship will never be good.

      • corblimeybot

        You’ve made a good point here that I totally missed. Brooke is treating “bubble boys” like they’re rhetorical jokes, instead of people.

      • indigosky

        Not surprised Brooke is an ableist.

    • MaineJen

      Brooke: this is a horrific illness that was easily preventable. People used to get this far more often before the vaccine was available. Please refrain from commenting unless you are prepared to acknowledge actual facts. Thank you

    • Sullivan ThePoop

      I know this will be a hard concept for you to fathom, but really you just neeed to not be an idiot.

    • Warren Lauzon

      You are totally missing the point. The mother refused the vaccination, which could have prevented this. It has nothing to do with being in a bubble.

      • corblimeybot

        Always nice to see Baikinman weigh in. 🙂

    • Roadstergal

      What’s funny is that vaccines allow a kid to be safe – without being in a bubble! It’s the best of both worlds.

      Get a kid their tetanus vaccine, and you don’t need to watch them like a hawk any time you’re around dirt. You don’t need to make sure they cover up if they want to garden. You don’t need to panic over every little cut or scrape. It makes parenting _easier_.

      • Mishimoo

        It does make parenting easier, and I have to wonder if that is at least a small part of the reasoning behind some of the anti-vaxxer rhetoric.

    • Nick Sanders

      Parents that let their kids go swimming with age-appropriate safety gear are definitely being neglectful. Same with parents that let their kids climb trees or pay sports without helmets and pads. If there exists a simple, reasonable, and effective precaution that can be taken to prevent serious injury during an activity, and a parent refuses it without good justification (and feelings are not justification), then it is indeed negligent parenting. If it involves as much suffering as going through tetanus does, then it’s also abuse.

      • I think you meant “without age-appropriate safety gear.” as opposed to “with age-appropriate safety gear.”

        • Nick Sanders

          Yeah, my brain is faster than my fingers…

          • sdsures

            Mmm, caffeine. I cannot function well without it.

    • indigosky

      Hey Brooke, stop being an ableist bitch. The poor child stuck in that bubble was partially due to people like you who don’t vax. The poor young man had zero immune system and his parents wanted him to actually be able to not die from someone sneezing near him. He is not a fucking joke, he is a real person that deserves respect, not quips from your privileged perch of actually being blessed with an immune system

      I hate ableists so badly.

      • sdsures

        “I hate ableists so badly.”

        You have no idea. Me, too. Sigh.

    • The Computer Ate My Nym

      The incidence of tetanus is low because people vaccinate. Even the saner of the anti-vaxxers make an exception for tetanus because it is so horrific. The whole point of getting the vaccine is so that kids can run outside and play in the dirt without ending up dying in a particularly tortuous manner.

      Also brain eating amoebas are becoming more common thanks to global warming expanding their habitat.

    • guest

      If there was a vaccine against breaking bones from a fall and parents refused to let their children, yes, Brooke, that WOULD be child abuse.

    • You’re welcome.

    • Kelly

      Do they have vaccinations for that? There is a vaccination for this. This is why it has become so rare. Vaccinations could have saved her all of this and it is so easy and simple to get one.

      • Sarah

        It’s a shame they don’t have a vaccination for Brooke.

        • Kelly

          I agree. She is just a troll.

    • You do know that tetanus releases toxins, right?

  • Squillo

    Sigh. Another anti-vax-injured child.

  • CSN0116

    OT/ Parental Fuckup Today (not a let-my-kid-get-tetanus-level fuckup, but still)

    I came to the harsh realization today that my children are completely under exposed to and under socialized with their disabled peers. We went on a field trip with school today and many other schools were vising, among them was a school for severely disabled children. My seven-year-olds stared, bawked, and, quite frankly, asked inappropriate questions regarding the physical appearances of some of these children. I attempted to explain in a controlled, developmentally appropriate way, but they were just so taken aback. A lot of the questions stemmed from concern — Are they OK? Is he breathing? Does his arm hurt being stuck like that? Is she sad? But nonetheless…

    This is all due to a complete failure on my part to expose them to children with different abilities 🙁 They have friends with autism, down syndrome, and pediatric cancer – and know about these diagnoses – but many of these children they are exposed to do not have physically handicapping conditions readily visible from the outside, so that’s all still foreign to them. They’re clueless. And I’m embarrassed and need to work on fixing this. I don’t want them to be afraid of these children, afraid just because they don’t understand.

    What, pray, is an acceptable way to forge friendships, playdates, or other interactions with these peers? Any suggestions?

    • BeatriceC

      If it helps, my boys are infinitely more patient with younger kids than with adults who should know better when it comes to people gawking at them (some of the bone growths are very obvious, and they often use mobility equipment). Their disabilities are much more minor than the children you guys saw, but even kids recognize that younger kids A. simply lack the life experience to have ever seen major disabilities and B. lack the brain to mouth filter that adults should have developed. Additionally, as their mother, I never get annoyed with kids asking even direct questions, or making statements that could be embarrassing to their own parents. I do, however, get angry at some parents’ responses. Your response was perfect. There’s no way for kids to learn if their parents don’t teach them, and you’re teaching them the right way.

      • Mel

        That’s how my sister and I have dealt with kids questions about deafness and sign language.

        Kids are curious; that’s natural.

        The parents we have the most problems with are the ones who in an attempt to keep their kid from staring manage to inflict physical pain on their offspring – like yanking their arm.

        Guess what? If you cause kids pain every time they see someone with a disability, they get more nervous instead of less nervous.

        • BeatriceC

          My older son, who’s almost an adult now (in May! How??? It hasn’t been that long!) will often times just go right on up to a kid and show off the scars and explain in kid friendly language what all of it means. Honestly that kid needs to consider going into a career involving kids. He’s just finishing up his applications for theatrical design and production programs (lighting design). Perhaps he will consider a theater with a children’s education program.

    • guest

      Because of the Jewish holidays we’ve had groups of Orthodox dancing in the street outside our windows, and the comments my children made have made me realize I’ve been negligent, too. We’ve been reading books about race, but I haven’t told them anything about religious groups yet.

      • ladyloki

        Just be careful explaining Hanukkah to them. My parents made the mistake of telling four year old me about presents for eight nights and I demanded for a month that we convert to Judaism. I mean…presents for eight nights instead of one? Of course I was thinking the equivalent of one Christmas morning appearing each of those eight nights, not one gift a night.

        • SporkParade

          And the gifts on all but the first night are socks. 😉

          • Roadstergal

            Colbert Christmas Special, Jon explaining Hanukkah in song:

            Colbert: “Are there presents?”

            Jon: “Yes, indeed, 8 days of presents! Which means one nice one, then a week of dreck…”

        • guest

          Ha! Yes, I’ll definitely be careful there.

    • Kerlyssa

      yikes. maybe get out more and specifically in INCLUSIVE settings, not seeking out disabled specific settings like you’re desensitizing your kids to fear of animals at a petting zoo. talk about people they see on tv or in books. it’s not disabled kid’s responsibility to be a teaching moment for your kid. 🙁

      • CSN0116
        • Kerlyssa

          petting zoo it is, then. try to get them not to throw the food pellets during their desensitization sessions, we Unfortunates of Nature can be of delicate constitution.

          • Mel

            Wow. I recommend you get therapy for your own health and happiness.

            I had shitty experiences with people saying dumb shit about me and my limp, my deaf twin sister, my brother who died of a birth defect and my parents for having a fourth kid AND who disappeared when we needed support AND who used us as a example of what will happen if you don’t pray to Jesus correctly.

            My response was to get a huge chip on my shoulder.

            Guess what?

            My chip on my shoulder hurt those people who hurt me in no way at all, but kept me trapped in a cycle of anger and cynicism.

            You have a right to be hurt. You have a right to be angry.

            You are going down a bad path, though, if you can’t see the difference between CNS0116’s realization that her kids are behaving in a way that makes people with disabilities uncomfortable and wanting to know how to change compared to pretending to befriend a child to make yourself feel better.

          • Kerlyssa

            I’m going down a bad path and ‘need’ therapy because I got snippy with some random homeschooler flipping me off?
            Ok. Well. Yikes.
            If carrying water for awkward moms on the internet makes you feel better about your childhood, fine. Doesn’t change my opinions any, though. She asked about how to hook up disabled play dates in order to teach her kids social manners, and it’s still kinda skeevy.
            I’ll, uh, pass along your suggestion next time I see a therapist.

      • TheArtistFormerlyKnownAsYoya

        Nice virtue signalling.

        • Kerlyssa

          as someone who has experienced ‘friends’ appearing then suddenly disappearing when their parents decided it was time to move on to a new character building experience, the only signal i have for you was helpfully already posted by CSN above.

          disabled kids are not friggin life lessons for your non disabled kids. you want to raise non shitty children? don’t model using ‘the unfortunate’ as props.

          Edit: Guess they deleted it. Pity. As a replacement for their helpful educational graphic, let me offer you a hearty fuck you.

          • TheArtistFormerlyKnownAsYoya

            You’re right, it is not the responsibility of disabled individuals to act as “props” for anyone else. If you think CSN was suggesting that, I have to disagree. It is also not the responsibility of CSN to take your anger and frustration at the way people have treated you in your life. I’m sorry you’ve been made to feel disposable, and as a prop – that’s truly awful. But CSN didn’t do that to you, and I think trying to claim victimhood status so you can bully others online is gross.

          • Kerlyssa

            Wait, is this a step up or down from virtue signalling? Trying to keep up w the moral failures that mean I need to stop talking.
            Meanwhile, asking for for advice on how to get play dates w disabled kids to socialize your own kids: still skeevy.

    • Hilary

      I think all you can really do is explain and normalize it when you encounter people that are different. My son used to be on oxygen and little kids would always come up to me and ask very concerned, “What’s wrong with him, why is that thing in his nose? Is he OK?” I explained that he was fine and the tube helped him breathe better, and they’d say “OK” and be over it. There was one time, though, that a little girl pointed to my son and started screaming. I looked at the mother to do something and she just said, “That equipment scares her.” What upset me was not even the girl’s reaction but the fact that the mom didn’t try to explain to the girl what the oxygen was or encourage her to ask me about it. The message I got (and that the girl presumably got) was that her daughter was right to be scared of my son because he had medical equipment.

      You can’t prepare a child for every kind of human difference they may encounter. Life is one long learning experience. Just don’t be a jerk, teach your kids not to be jerks and they’ll do fine.

      • SporkParade

        ^^This. The adult version of this is that my husband prefers when potential employers ask about him being visually impaired, even though it’s technically illegal, because it means that he can give them useful information instead of them just deciding not to hire him because they only have assumptions to go off of.

      • CSN0116

        Thank you for your words! What a bizarre way for that mother to act, enabling an irrational fear and more so right in front of you and your child… I’m sorry that happened to you.

        • Hilary

          Thanks. Fortunately my son wasn’t old enough yet to understand. He has a visible physical anomaly as well but most people don’t say anything. There was one woman that asked if she could have her church pray for him.

          • Eater of Worlds

            I’ve been given holy water from Lourdes and told if I drank it I would be healed.

      • Dr Kitty

        I have a patient with fewer that’s the usual complement of fingers and toes due to congenital abnormalities.
        When her child learned to count and realised that she had more fingers and toes than mummy, her response was to worry why she had extra ones, not why mummy had fewer.

    • corblimeybot

      My child has one eye and had to wait on a while for a prosthesis. We heard about every imaginable comment before the prosthesis, and she’s not even school-aged yet.

      It was never a big deal when other kids reacted to my daughter’s appearance with confusion, or fear, or even unpleasantness. We don’t judge kids for being kids. But it really mattered how their parents dealt with the situation. Most parents did fine. They’d just say comments like, “Some people are different, some people don’t have two eyes, I’m sure her doctor is taking care of her, and she seems fine.” Like Hilary said, they normalized my daughter and their kids accepted it.

      Sometimes it seemed like the kids were afraid the same thing would happen to them? I think it’s all right for parents to explain to their kid that it likely won’t happen to them, but not in earshot of the affected kid.

      On the other hand, I will likely never forget the 9 or 10 year old girl who openly mocked my toddler and threw things at her, while her dad did nothing to stop her – and in fact, went out of his way to gawk at our child himself.

      The fact that you care makes me suspect your kids will be fine after some exposure and some discussion. Thanks for being a good parent.

      • Eater of Worlds

        I was pushed down repeatedly by kids, TEENAGERS when I was 5 years old. I had leg braces and struggled to get up. Every time they pushed me down, I’d get up and they’d shove me again to watch me fall. Assholes.

        • corblimeybot

          I’m very sorry and totally unsurprised that this happened to you. Kids ain’t shit. (Well, you know what I mean. Most kids are fine, but some kids are little demons. Probably because they’re people and plenty of people are shit.)

          I vividly remember this one turd I went to high school with, who waged a persistent campaign of torment against our classmate with Down Syndrome. I really worry about my daughter having to deal with those shithead kids when she’s older.

    • Eater of Worlds

      I’m disabled, and those children asking questions were in no way inappropriate. Having that attitude, that the kids are wrong in asking, is the wrong thing, honestly. Kids need to ask questions to learn and they need the right answers without any shame to learn good attitudes towards people with disabilities. You’d be surprised at how many adults still think that things like captioned TV shouldn’t be provided at all because the deaf and HoH don’t deserve equal access, apparently.

      You forge friendships the same way you do with able bodied kids. You put them together by playing or crafts or something and they get to know each other.

  • Cody

    I really sympathize with the step-mom here. Hits a little close to home for me.

  • Therese

    Bio mom has updated the GoFundMe. She mentions that the funds may need to be used for legal fees against the step mother and for dental expenses for the girl. I don’t know how you can be worried about dental issues at a time like this…unless maybe the spasms have damaged her teeth? But she made it sound like it was pre existing dental problems: “Some of the funding will need to be used towards dental as both the bio-father and step-mother refused to pay their portion of care.” It’s just bizarre.

    Also, think how many cases of tetanus happen to children that we don’t hear about because the parents aren’t completely shameless. I was looking at my state’s health dept website and was surprised to see that there was tetanus in an unvaccinated two year old just a couple years ago. Never heard a thing about it. It seems like it would be a good idea if the media would publicize every time someone contracts a vaccine preventable disease, keeping the identity of the person private, of course. Otherwise, people end up with the impression that tetanus just doesn’t happen any longer.

    • BeatriceC

      I get the feeling she didn’t expect to have any backlash, only people who gave her money because they felt bad for the kid. Now that the dad and stepmom are speaking out, and people like us are blaming her, she’s lashing out and trying to drum up more sympathy. Sorry. Not gonna work. The legal fees are a direct result of her failure to properly care for her kid. I honestly hope she loses custody and is forced to hand over any money raised to the father.

      • Mel

        Plus, she thinks that the step mom is the one sending “report issues” to GoFundMe.

        The stepmom isn’t the only one – I’ve never heard two bits from step-mom and I sent in a report based on my knowledge of her “educational” needs.

        Oh, and I mentioned that the cost of dog boarding isn’t really a GoFundMe concern.

        • Roadstergal

          Does she have unvaccinated dogs, too? 🙁

          • the wingless one

            Don’t most kennels require vaccinations? Wouldn’t that be something if the mom vaxxed her dog but not her kid? Ugh…

          • Roadstergal

            Kennels generally do, but Sunshine Moonbeam who runs a dog-sitting business from her house doesn’t ask, I’m sure. :

            I was horrified to find that there’s a cohort of anti-vaccine dog owners. Seriously, they don’t even vaccinate their dogs against rabies.

          • Heidi

            There’s also anti-safe, proven effective heart worm preventative people out there! Instead of opting for regulated safe medicines, they either choose to believe that a good immune system, that they think is obtained by really expensive grain free dog food or raw meat and garlic (which of course is toxic to dogs in small doses even) will protect a dog or administering black walnut hulls, also very toxic, will cure them of their heart worms. Heart worm treatment is no laughing matter and the death of the worms can cause the poor dog to die. There’s a naturopathic vet in my town. She peddles this pile to people and their poor pets.

          • Roadstergal

            Ugh, that’s unconscionable.

            And just like with anti-vax parents, it’s all so much more difficult! Heartguard in the food (chow bought in bulk) on schedule – done. Fipronil after the bath on schedule – done. It’s better for the owner as well as the dog!

          • Azuran

            And it’s even more horrible since VPD in pets are still extremely prevalent. We don’t have a vaccination rate anywhere near close to those who would be needed to provide herd immunity. The risks is very real, pets still die from those every single day.

          • kilda

            yeah. No way for THAT to end badly.

          • Mishimoo

            They’re often more concerned about the potential* risk of cancer than the very real risks of rabies, distemper, bordetella and parvovirus.

            (*I say potential because I still haven’t managed to find any studies on this, just magazine and website articles, though you might have more luck. Also, 50% of dogs over 10 end up with some form of cancer simply because they’re now living longer, just like humans)

          • Azuran

            The veterinary champions of cancers are hedgehog, The basis of hedgehog medicine is: If you didn’t find the cancer, you haven’t been looking hard enough. And yet they don’t even have any vaccine.
            Genetic is the most important factor for cancer in dogs. Whatever breed a dog is is pretty much telling me what kind of cancer it has.

            There is a risk of cancer with cats, mainly injection site sarcoma. But even the literature about that is very conflicted about what vaccines can cause it or not, and what is the actual risk (depending from the study, it goes from 1/250 to 1/30 000)
            Still, not vaccinating is a lot more risky.

          • Charybdis

            Awww…I love hedgehogs. I used to have a pair of them: Hubble and Mir. They were so stinking cute!

          • StephanieJR

            I always wanted a pet hedgehog when I was growing up. But when I learned you could actually get them, I didn’t really want one. I’m not entirely sure why, because I totally have a mental list of pets I’d have if I could ever manage it, and some of those are exotic. I did get to see baby ones once, though. They were spikey.

          • Nick Sanders

            My cousin had a pet hedgehog one. They are adorable little poo factories.

          • Mishimoo

            “Still, not vaccinating is a lot more risky.” – Exactly!!

          • RubyRed

            I’m in vet school right now and we talked about feline sarcoma a few weeks ago. They’re trying to get the name switched to “injection site sarcoma” because it can apparently happen with any injection, not just vaccines. That being said, there seems to be an increased risk with certain vaccines, so who knows?

            They’re now suggesting to us to give cats their vaccines on the limbs or even in the tail if possible, so that if a sarcoma develops the limb/tail can be amputated.

          • Azuran

            anti-vaxxers amongst pet owner is starting to be a thing as well.
            You know, since dog autism has raised so much in the past decades…

            But on a more serious note, many kennels do not require vaccination. Either because they are run by people without any actual training about animal health. Or because Money.

          • Roadstergal

            Wow, I didn’t know you could have an official dog-boarding business without proof of vaccination. The place we use asked for proof of vaccination before our first use.

          • Charybdis

            I take Lexi to PetsMart to have her nails dremeled; I had to provide the rabies vaccine paperwork from the vet the first time we went. Also, they wouldn’t touch her after the year elapsed on the first rabies vaccine until I provided paperwork proof that she had a new vaccine.

          • Azuran

            Laws could depend on where you live. Where I live, it is extremely lax when it comes to animals.
            There is no training, no licence or no specific registration required to run a kennel, be a breeder or do animal rescue. Most would have some sort of credentials, but they are not actually required.

          • StephanieJR

            I thought cats were the ones with autism? (There’s a book called ‘All Cats Have Asperger’s out there)

            What is wrong with these people? What do they think is going to happen?

          • Roadstergal

            Honestly, if a dog could be autistic, it’d be Mocha. She’s a weird dog.

            Vaccinated on the same schedule as could-not-be-more-of-a-stereotypical-dog Latte…

          • D’awww…..

          • Michael McCarthy

            wait a minute, you have 2 dogs named Mocha and Latte? I know a couple that have sisters (separate litters) named Mocha and Latte. Although in their case, Latte is the ASD (Aspbergers) and Mocha is the stereotypical dog. Weird coinkidink.

          • Roadstergal

            I guess it’s not too unusual a set of names for a tan/black and brown/white pair!

            Ya, Mocha is a runt with a quarter-blue eye – she has a little bit of shmutz in her genepool. :p https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bd7ae8f43fc94877a8f962c450c90c5ae3ffef0c4a6c260decd841b44cd31a67.jpg

          • Michael McCarthy

            Cute! Your Latte looks a lot like another dog I know named Lenny, Lenny has more white though.
            The couple I know, theirs are chiweenies (because of course calling mixed breeds “mutts” anymore is so passé). One is literally the color of mocha, the other a latte.

          • Technically, chiweenes and the like would be a ‘first cross’.

          • Michael McCarthy

            Yes, but before the “designer breed” fad began (thanks Labradoodle), any mixed breed was colloquially known as a “mutt”.

          • Roadstergal

            Every so often, we come across a dog at the park who looks so much like Latte I have to do a double-take. Never happens with Mocha. :p

            They’re nothing but mutts. I think Latte has a lot of features of one of the original bone-mouth Shar-Pei, but my husband refuses to see it. He thinks she’s more pit bull, but she lacks the broad chest and silky coat. She’s narrow-chested and a fast runner. They’re both affectionate, but Latte is typical dog – get on you and lick you to death. Mocha acts like a cat – ignores you, avoids you, then sits on you when you sit down and refuses to move.

          • Michael McCarthy

            Mocha acts like a cat – ignores you, avoids you, then sits on you when you sit down and refuses to move.

            Sounds exactly like the Latte I know. Although an 8 lb dog on your lap isn’t so noticeable. I’m guessing Mocha is 50-ish lbs?
            (Latte looks like she has some pit to me from the pic, must be a Y-chromosome bias 😉 )

          • Roadstergal

            Latte is 37lb and Mocha is 26 – they’re like 3/4 scale dogs. I can deal with Mocha in my lap, but Latte is getting a bit uncomfortable when she wants to be there (doesn’t help that she also tries to dig out my earwax with her tongue).

          • BeatriceC

            I used to have giant breed dogs. I never had them long, with the exception of one, because I always adopted them from the pound and always took one of the ones that was scheduled to be put down in the next day or so. That generally meant older dogs, and giant breeds rarely live longer than ten years to begin with.

            Anyway, Mastiffs and St Bernards tend to have this conviction that they’re lap puppies. 150 pounds of dog trying to curl up in your lap isn not comfortable.

          • Dr Kitty

            The Pyr we had when I was a child used to lie under the table at dinner time. There is not much room for five pairs of feet with 150lbs of dog under the table!

          • StephanieJR

            What is it with big dogs and laps? Our dog was happiest in my mum’s lap. My mum was not happy because he was a lab/collie mix and a greedy fat thing on top of it.

          • BeatriceC

            It’s some sort of canine law regarding inverse proportions of size and love of human laps.

          • RubyRed

            Can confirm. I have a Bernese Mountain dog mix that ‘chose us’ to adopt her by climbing into my partner’s lap (one foot at a time) when we were in the adoption office making the decision. My fella had to sign the papers with arms full of dog. She still does it, too.

          • Michael McCarthy

            The $64,000 dollar question is do you have a motorcycle with a sidecar for them to ride in? I mean, they’d be so cute with goggles and an aviator scarf.

          • Roadstergal

            You’ll laugh, but I just don’t feel comfortable taking a dog on a motorcycle. I feel like I can’t give proper informed consent, ya know? It’s not like they couldn’t get hurt in a carrier in a car, but it’s definitely safer… :/

            At least it’s an electric car. *adjusts halo*

          • Michael McCarthy

            I won’t laugh, we used to have a guy that brought his pug to the dog park in a sidecar and it seemed rather unsafe, TBH. But, Noah did look dashing with goggles and a scarf.

          • Different colours in eyes makes me suspect either some sort of herding breed in her ancestry or some breeds with tendency towards merle in there – is that possible?

          • Roadstergal

            Could be – someone in the comments a few months ago noted that Mocha has some behaviors that are more typical of a herding dog (and indeed, she tries to ‘herd’ me sometimes with heel nips).

          • Yeah…otherwise healthy or otherwise-unexplained-health-issues (which,yeah, you’ve said Mocha doesn’t have but she could theoretically have some minor issues ‘blamed’ on her runt status) makes me think of three possibilities:

            1)Dog has some herding breed in there.

            2)Dog has some Northern breeds in there (Husky).

            3)Dog has something with tendency to Merle in there.

          • Roadstergal

            I wondered about the merle, but our vet said it was more likely some herding ancestry; she’s going on three years with no vision or hearing issues. The eye isn’t fully blue – it’s just one-quarter-blue in two otherwise solid brown eyes.

          • Makes sense. Until further info, blame it on her likely having some herding ancestry then!

          • Eater of Worlds

            Dogs can be merle with no vision or hearing issues, it’s the double merle that’s a problem. And herding dogs are often merle like Collies and Corgis and Border Collies and Australian Shepherds and and and…

            Or she could just have heterochromia the way humans do, and the heterochromia isn’t limited to shepherds. But seriously, it could have just happened randomly, even if she has herding dog in her background.

          • RubyRed

            Aww they look so happy! <3

          • Azuran

            It can happen to any pet or course. Just look at his poor eyes, LOOK AT THEM sooooooo dull. Clearly he’s vaccine injured https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/1d83f20a7a50e4ac930b459ec46268540e6419102c80d843716a2b7426d8cae5.jpg .

          • Roadstergal

            Look at that face!! *wibble*

          • kilda

            yup, no soul in those eyes at all. Tragic really.

          • StephanieJR

            Oh yeah, the light has gone- I bet you he’s so injured, he’s just constantly begging for food without using his words!

            (I’m currently begging my bunny’s forgiveness after getting the quick when cutting her nails…)

          • BeatriceC

            We have a parrot twilight zone going on here. Charlotte is mad at me and sucking up to MrC. Goofy is sucking up to me and won’t have anything to do with MrC. It’s normally the opposite. Charlotte merely tolerates MrC on her best days and I can go die in a fire according to Goofy.

            ETA: Leo is napping on top of his cage. This is also weird, as that bird never stops moving during daylight hours.

          • Azuran

            Indeed he has very poor communication skills. Whenever he wants anything, no matter what it is, he just stands in the middle of the living room with this look and whimpers. Then, when you ask him what he wants, he just start wagging his tail.
            So sad, all those things he will never accomplish…

          • StephanieJR

            Well, he still looks like a good boy to me!

          • Dr Kitty

            My kitty certainly has *something*, but probably not Asperger’s.
            I have the dumbest, sweetest, most sociable cat.

            He knows when our neighbours are due to come home, and does a little circuit between 4:30 and 6pm of sitting on everyone’s front doorstep to make sure they get home ok.

            He likes to “supervise” any workmen or contractors who come to our neighbourhood- usually sitting beside their van and getting in their way as they work.

            He knows my son loves him, so he rubs against him and then lies in front of him for belly rubs, even though kiddo #2 is not exactly gentle with the stroking and petting. He has never bitten or scratched #2, despite serious provocation.

            I think spending his formative weeks in an animal shelter being picked up and petted by many, many people has had an effect on him, because he’s the friendliest cat.

            He also follows us if we go for walks (I look like the mad lady who walks her cat).

            He has a very uncatlike temperament!

          • StephanieJR

            He sounds absolutely lovely! What a wonderful cat. I sometimes wish we had a cat, but we live literally opposite the town harbour and a very busy road, so even if it was a housecat, the smell of fish would probably be too tempting.

            I’m lucky in that my rabbit is a lot more affectionate than is normal.

          • BeatriceC

            I have a bird on Xanax and Haldol, and I can’t even blame it on vaccines. Dogs, maybe, as that’s my running theory on what happened to the wing, based on her response to dogs barking, but not vaccines, since birds don’t get any.

          • Mel

            Dog autism made me laugh so hard I sprayed pop through my nose.

            Thank you! I really needed that today 🙂

            We occasionally get a farmer who decided that they don’t need no stinking vaccines because their cows don’t get *pick a bovine disease* anymore. They usually do ok for 2-3 years then have an entire age class of heifers go down with something…..

          • Eater of Worlds

            Dogs actually can have what we call autism. It’s thought to be a lack of mirroring neurons in the brain.

          • Didn’t know that.

            Knew that they could have hyperkinesis though.

          • BeatriceC

            If they ever come up with vaccinations for parrots, I will be the first in line. Like seriously, I’ll be camped out at my vet’s office waiting for them to open kind of first in line. I can’t imagine not taking care of these animals that rely on me 100% for their care and well-being.

          • Eater of Worlds

            Er, uh, dog autism is actually a thing. It’s congenital, ideopathic, nothing to do with upbringing. However, they do think that a possible cause is a lack of mirroring neurons in the brain.

            That said, it has nothing to do with vaccines. Just like human autism.

        • Sean Jungian

          Dog boarding? Is that seriously in her GFM pitch? Oy.

          And yeah, I kennel our dog every year and she’s required to be up-to-date on rabies, distemper, and bordetella. Which, of course, I keep all my pets (as well as my child and myself) up-to-date on vaccinations. Because duh.

          • Danica Walker

            Amazingly her dogs ARE vaccinated.. makes you sick huh..

    • ladyloki

      Yeah right, I hope the stepmom is screen shotting these lies. That will be fun to show court that the biomom was lying. I hope that the dad gets custody after all of this, because this POS excuse for a mother is a money grubbing liar and a child abuser.

      • Platos_Redhaired_Stepchild

        I hope Dad and Step Mom start a GoFundMe of their own for legal fees to get that poor kid away from her deranged %#^@ of a Mother!

    • Mel

      The spasms can break teeth. I hope they caught it early enough, but she could have tooth damage.

      I won’t even pretend that the biomom has any standing to sue the step-mom….

      • Daleth

        If you have a medical condition that causes tooth damage, most likely your health insurance is going to cover it. Tetanus spasms cracking your teeth isn’t a dental problem, it’s a tetanus problem.

        • Daleth

          PS wondering if (when?) this idiot mother will be sued for fraud…

    • Kerlyssa

      because it’s not rare at all. it’s everywhere. it’s not like measles which has to go human to human, so there’s infection clusters that need to be reported. basically at any given time you’re going to have tetanus vectors in your immediate vicinity, but it’s only a public health issue in aggregate because that 2 year old isn’t going to go infect their daycare. it just happens to be one of the diseases that almost everyone is immune to now because there’s a friggin vaccine with readily available and scheduled boosters. argh.

    • Danica Walker

      The dental was for a routine thing. It was $40 and we never got the bill so we didn’t pay. I did say I wouldn’t pay unless we had a copy of the bill.

  • momofone

    I don’t know how I would live with knowing my child was suffering, and that I could have prevented it. And to have the gall to present her “research” to the doctors who have saved her daughter’s life thus far?! GTFO.

    • Cactus

      Seriously. It reminds me of the episode of Glee when Kurt’s dad has a heart attack and Brittany gives them a report on hearts that she wrote in like, 2nd grade “to help your doctors.” Except not cute or funny.

      • StephanieJR

        Ooh, fellow Glee fan! (Haven’t seen the sixth season yet, though)

        I love that episode- but I got the impression that Brittany had just made the report? Which was probably the most helpful thing any of them did for Kurt; I always liked their strange friendship.

  • corblimeybot

    When (knock on wood) this girl recovers and goes on to lead a reasonably normal life, she’s going to realize what her mother did to her. Like many victims of abuse, it might take her a long time to stop believing her mother’s lies and excuses and justifications. And it’ll likely take even longer for her to allow herself to be truly angry with her mother for this abuse, because no doubt she loves her mother very much. But the day will come.

    • Former NCB Zealot

      This is so true. I am a former anti-vaxxer and my 13 yo daughter is furious with me for letting her get chickenpox. I can only tell her I’m sorry. I am embarrassed that I was so stupid, and thankful they are all vaccinated and safe now.

      • corblimeybot

        HUGS. You’re doing great now.

        To me, this lady’s abusiveness isn’t just the anti-vaxx stance in isolation. It’s also her complete shamelessness, and how she’s doubled down after her child has contracted a very serious disease. There are other problems with this mother besides being anti-vaxx; she’s also exploitative and bonkers.

      • Sean Jungian

        So glad to have you. I always enjoy hearing from people who have stepped away from the extremes of antivaxxing and NCB.

      • Laura Thompson

        My son has HPV. He is nineteen now, was sixteen when we suspect he contracted it. Every time I see those commercials for the vaccine, I want to cry. In my case, it wasn’t because I’m anti-vax whatsoever; the reason my son never got the vaccine was because I wasn’t aware it was yet available or recommended for boys, and no health professional ever advised me of this. So, I understand the guilt! All we can do is go on, make the best of it, and try to educate others.

        • Sean Jungian

          This just makes me see red. I had to ask specifically for my son to receive the HPV vaccine, and even then, when we went in to the office, the nurse said, “You know it isn’t required for boys, right?” YES I KNOW NOW STFU AND GIVE HIM THE SHOT!

          Irritates the HELL out of me that the doctors at our local clinic don’t mention anything about flu vaccines, boosters, etc. when I take my son in for his routine sports physical. There should be notices ALL OVER that clinic about the benefits of vaccination. I always have to call and ask.

          • Laura Thompson

            You’re a good parent to be so proactive about the HPV vaccine for your son! My kid came down with warts or bumps or something on his groin area, and was concerned enough to see his doctor about them. When I learned it really was HPV, I about cried. He evidently contracted it from his first serious girlfriend, and why she’d never been vaccinated, I have no idea. The earlier the better, as far as getting the shot. I think they’re recommending it for kids 11-12. If I could go back in time, he’d have gotten it then, (if I could have found a doctor in the conservative Southern state we lived in at the time to administer it.)

          • Sean Jungian

            It’s a series of 3 shots and yes I think the recommended age is 12, before they become sexually active, at any rate. Which is, I think, the crux of why the HPV vaccine is so controversial – OMG if you get your child that vaccine you’re basically saying he’s a SLUT! Of course my snowflake will NEVER have sex outside of marriage with another person who is a virgin!” While I don’t advocate for my son to have an active sex life before he’s mature enough, I’m also realistic.

            That stigma is one reason there isn’t a great uptake even among girls. Like I said, our own doctors’ office doesn’t bother to advocate loudly for vaccinations, either.

            ETA I’ve said before, but I’ll mention it again: one reason I am so vigilant about vaccination now is because of the anti-vax “movement”. If I hadn’t started following their nonsense, I probably would have been very complacent and just relied on my son’s doctor to recommend vaccines when necessary. That would NOT have been wise. Now I am a stickler for getting every booster, every flu shot.

          • KeeperOfTheBooks

            I’ve also said this before, but will say it again: I very much hope, for faith-related reasons, that my kids wait until marriage to have sex. Nonetheless, they’ll be getting the HPV vax as soon as they’re eligible, thankyouverymuch, DD and DS alike. Not so much because “oh, they’ll have sex anyway” as because who the heck knows what their lives will bring? Even if they decide to wait–and I do realize that’s an “if”– well, who knows if their spouse will? Or if their spouse will have decided to, but been abused or raped? Or if they’ll be, horrible though it is for me to even think about it, abused or raped? Or if their spouse, having waited, will then get the bright idea of cheating on them some time after they get married?

          • FormerPhysicist

            Thank you!

          • An Actual Attorney

            I wish I had saved this email, but years ago when I was in college and my brother was in high school, he was supposed to give a talk at the synagogue youth group about AIDS and HIV. This would have been early 90s. He wanted to talk about condoms. The youth group advisors said no condom talk because G-d. He talked about it with my parents. Decided to say that’s what he would do, and then engaged in a bit of civil disobedience and proceeded to talk about condoms. No pun intended, but all holy hell broke lose, and there was talk of banning my brother from the synagogue, etc.

            My dad emailed me, and said he didn’t understand what all these other parents were upset about. One mom called him and said, “Do you know what your son did????” And he said “Yeah, possibly saved your son’s life.” I remember distinctly that he said “these parents would rather their children die than admit that they might not grow up to share their morals.”

            I feel that way about HPV. It’s a CANCER vaccine. Why would you say no to that?

          • Sean Jungian

            This this this! If I could upvote you 100x I would.

          • corblimeybot

            You’re a rational and thoughtful human being.

          • Ash101

            I waited to have sex til I was married (faith + personality reasons). I remember convincing a few college friends who had similar plans regarding their sex lives to please please please get the vaccine. For the same reasons you list!

          • Roadstergal

            Exactly. You can teach your kids to drive defensively – and still have them wear their seatbelts.

          • fiftyfifty1

            Hey, the good news is that in the vast majority of people, HPV eventually is booted out by the immune system. The average time from infection to “boot out” is about 3 years. It’s longer for smokers. So encourage your son to be a non-smoker and the good news is that he is very likely to be virus free sometime soon.

          • StephanieA

            I found out I had HPV when I was 22. I got the standard PAP smear when I was pregnant with my first at age 24, and no HPV.

          • Sean Jungian

            Good to know, thank you!

          • Allie

            It infuriates me that people try to turn the HPV vaccine into a moral issue. Just get the damn thing and moralize later. I’d prefer if my daughter didn’t even kiss a boy (or girl, if she’s so inclined) until she’s 30, but you can be damn sure she’s getting every vaccine going, including HPV, as soon as possible. I want her to be protected.

          • Sarah

            Kissing a girl would be ok. No risk of pregnancy and minimal risk of STI. Mine only have to wait until they’re 30 to kiss boys.

          • guest

            I was never told to get the TDap while pregnant. I saw multiple doctors and midwives, was in the hospital for four days, was reminded repeatedly to get the flu shot, and no one ever suggested it. Then I bring my twins to the first pediatrician visit and he insists I have to get it ASAP – only, you can’t get it at the pharmacy, and a visit to my doctor is a 2.5 hour round trip (at least) and it’s January and I can’t get the baby stroller up and down subway steps and there are no elevators, plus I’m recovering from a c-section and supposed to be taking it easy. Most people wouldn’t find it that challenging, but it really was for me. I didn’t get it until they were five months old, at which point they’d already had a couple of the shots themselves. It would have been *so easy* for me to do it while pregnant, but I just didn’t know.

          • Roadstergal

            That’s crazy. The nurse at my OBGYN is the one who reminded me that my TDaP was coming up to booster-time, and gave me the shot, when I was there for a pap smear. I got a warm fuzzy feeling that she’s that same way for the pregnant patients.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            When did you have your twins? I believe it was around 2010 that it was first recommended for pregnant women. Our office did give it to parents for a while, but we saw so few dads and the moms had usually had it during pregnancy. I’m glad you got it when you did, now you’ve had it.

          • guest

            2013. It was definitely being recommended, but somehow the info didn’t reach me.

          • Mishimoo

            I had to argue with an emergency doctor to receive a tetanus booster while seeking treatment for a large burn (2 years ago) since I hadn’t had one in 10 years. I did end up receiving it, but only after being stubborn and pointing out that I’m an avid gardener. My GP is still amazed and irritated that the emergency doctor tried to avoid vaccinating me, and so am I.

          • Sean Jungian

            Why is this happening, especially when vaccination has been under attack? I would think health care personnel would be encouraging everyone who walks through the door to be vaccinated, or to at least mention it as an important part of your health care.

            The one time I went to the ER in the 80s after having a nail through my heel, the doctor on duty gave me a tetanus booster, even though I wasn’t sure when I’d had my last one (I was about 20 years old at the time). That’s more what I’d expect.

          • Mishimoo

            I still don’t understand his reasoning or resistance, every doctor I’ve mentioned it to has said (paraphrased) “But a burn is an indicator for a tetanus booster, why on earth did he try to avoid doing it? That’s wrong! You did get it, right?!”

            Mind you, my husband’s nan has a similar doctor who has told her that she’s too old to need vaccines (even the flu shot!), We tried to get her to change doctors, but she decided to return to that one.

          • Sean Jungian

            Ridiculous.

          • Dr Kitty

            The current UK guidance is actually that if you have had five doses of tetanus vaccination (I.e are up to date with childhood vax) you don’t require a booster if you have a low risk injury, and if you have a high risk injury you should receive tetanus immunoglobulin regardless of immunisation history.

            Tetanus boosters are only for people who haven’t had a full course of five vaccinations with low risk injuries.

          • Mishimoo

            That makes sense!

            My parents went through an anti-vax stage, so I don’t know if I received the full schedule. I don’t remember receiving any DTaP boosters until I was 16 and they were provax again, but I do remember being tested for pertussis at 5. Nan doesn’t remember when she has her last tetanus vaccine, which is why it frustrates me because she’s also an avid gardener and I worry about her injuring herself.

          • Mel

            I had to argue to get one when I stabbed myself with the blunt eye-end of a tapestry needle so deeply that I had to pin the needle against a table and drag my hand away.

            It had been 10 FUCKING YEARS since my last booster! I knew the exact date I had my last TD shot.

            I explained that they could give me the shot OR I wanted a signed note from the doctor explaining why after a deep puncture wound and a known-to-be expired TD date the doctor refused the shot…for my lawyer to read when drafting my complaint to the hospital and the medical board. You know, on the next business day after I got my DTaP from my regular doctor. And I smiled my weirdly perky smile.

            The doctor decided to give me the shot. I thanked him.

          • Mishimoo

            That conversation would have been absolutely beautiful to watch.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            This post makes me both sad and happy. Sad, that this is happening at your clinic. Happy that I worked at an office that did do those things, e.g. vaccinate boys for HPV, give flu shots and other necessary vaccines when kids came in for sports physicals. We always started giving flu as soon as it arrive, especially to the teens and to the little ones who need two shots (first year of getting flu vaccine, ages 8 and under). We knew we wouldn’t see the teens again. They didn’t even show up at our special Saturday morning flu clinics, probably because they were so busy with sports, etc. Of course, we did see them when they got the flu!

        • LeighW

          Hopefully that changes soon. I’m not sure where you’re located but the Canadian Cancer Society is pushing on Provinces to make the free vax available to boys as well…

          https://www.google.ca/amp/www.cbc.ca/amp/1.3810804?client=ms-android-bell-ca

      • Empliau

        As the fellow parent of a teenager – mine was and is vaccinated on schedule, and she’s frequently furious with me about something. Good on you for vaccinating now. Unless she has significant sequelae, this too shall pass ….

        • BeatriceC

          I have three of the little monsters, er, I mean teenagers. Somebody is always furious at me for something.

        • Sean Jungian

          I get a lot more “resigned exasperation” than “fury’ from my teenager.

          Sometimes I think he thinks he’s the adult…

        • MI Dawn

          Well, speaking as the mother of two former teenagers, I will say that they do eventually grow up to be reasonable adults (or as reasonable as many adults are… LOL)

    • KeeperOfTheBooks

      *raises hand*
      Mother was abusive in general, and in so many ways, but only now that I’m a parent do I really recognize the chicken pox thing.
      She refused to get me vaccinated against it because Aborted Fetal OMG!!!11111 Stem Cells (never mind that the Church has, in fact, said that in the absence of differently-obtained vaccines, you can use vaccines derived from those lines), and then, when I got it at 13 years old, a) wouldn’t stay home from work and b) once I was no longer delirious but still horribly miserable and covered in pox, insisted I go back to my 3x/week homeschool co-op.
      Said homeschool co-op was located in the basement of a nursing home, yet not one of the so-called adults involved thought this might be a bad idea.
      *stabby stabby stabby*

      • Allie

        Hmm, I did have chicken pox too, but my grandma definitely didn’t refuse to get me vaccinated. We used to get vaccinated at school, and I would have gotten whatever was recommended at the time. This was in the 70’s. Was chicken pox vaccine not on the usual roster at the time? I find that hard to believe, but maybe I got it and was among the small percentage in whom it doesn’t take?

        • Sean Jungian

          There wasn’t a chicken pox vaccine until the late 80s or 90s, I think? I wasn’t vaccinated against it, and I grew up in the 70s.

          I remember being pleasantly surprised when I was told there was a vaccine for it when my son was born in 2001.

          • Kerlyssa

            yeah, developed mid to late 80s but didn’t become part of the school reqs until later. a few years too late for me, but my case was mild. few small scars, not much suffering at the time

          • Heidi

            I was born in1984 and never got the vaccine nor did I hear of any of my peers getting it. I vividly remember a lot of people being out for chicken pox.

        • Azuran

          Might depend on where you live, but it’s a recent vaccine. Where I live, it came out around the mid 90s. I got chickenpox 1-2 years before it came out. Chickenpox was still a thing that all kids had to go through when I was a kid. And chickenpox parties where still a thing.

          • Dr Kitty

            I have vivid memories of watching Return of the Jedi on video at a friend’s house while she had chicken pox.

            Of course I had an easy bout, but both my sisters ended up getting it twice- the second time as teenagers during exams, which was not fun for either of them.

        • BeatriceC

          I couldn’t find a reliable source that stated when the chicken pox vaccine came out (but granted I’m distracted.) I was pretty sure it came out in 1995 in the US, so I dug through the past immunization schedules on the CDC website. It’s on the schedule for 1995 but not for 1994, so I’m going to assume I was right and it came out in 1995.

        • Amy M

          No chicken pox vaccine until 1995.

        • MI Dawn

          The chicken pox vaccine didn’t become recommended in the US until around 1995 or so. I know because it was *just* after my children went through the frickin’ disease and I was FURIOUS that they had to suffer like that rather than get a little shot.

        • Roadstergal

          Ya, I was fully vaccinated with everything they had in the ’70s-’80s, but chicken pox wasn’t available. I got ‘natural’ immunity. : A truly sucktastic bout of uncomplicated chicken pox.

          At least I was able to skip ‘natural’ immunity to measles, mumps, diphtheria, rubella, and of course, never got tetanus despite being exposed ALL THE TIME.

      • Mrs.Katt the Cat

        On topic of chickenpox, is there a correlation between severity of initial infection and getting shingles? Because I had internal pox, allll the pox, so many pox, and am now scared of shingles. Obviously I plan to get the vaccine, but my understanding is I am not old enough yet.

        My mother was a preschool director and pregnant when I was 4. She had me sit in the office with all the poxy kids waiting on their parents for months before I finally got it. She wanted me to have it before my sister was born to protect her. I don’t remember it, but by all reports it was bad. This was before the vaccine.

        • Eater of Worlds

          My mother had chicken pox so mildly that she didn’t realize she had it at all until she had shingles when she was somewhere around 50.

          I had chicken pox so mildly that if we hadn’t been looking for it because my brother just had it, we wouldn’t have caught it at all. I had fewer than 10 pox marks. I fully expect to get it one day when my immune system is low because that is when shingles seems to strike. I have a compromised immune system to begin with, it’s just a waiting game. I might qualify for the vaccine being given earlier than 50 but I don’t know.

      • guest

        Man, my mother wouldn’t stay home with me when I got chicken pox at 13 either. (I wasn’t vaccinated because I’m too old – the vaccine did not exist.) I had a mild case, but it still really sucked. Plus, it was super lonely. I don’t know if she had a choice, though. My brother had just gotten over it and she had stayed home with him because he’s younger.

      • corblimeybot

        That’s just HORRIBLE. I wasn’t really functional until after my chickenpox lesions had pretty much cleared up! (I was a kid before the shot was around, sigh.) I can’t even imagine being forced to go to school like that.

  • Cyndi

    I shared this today as well as the step-mother’s post. There were numerous comments regarding the lack of vaccinations,as well as people saying they refuse to donate as the child has health insurance for the child, and the mother shouldn’t receive anything as she inflicted this on her child herself. Those comments were all quickly deleted, no doubt by mama. Thanks for sharing, Dr Amy.

  • Soledad Miranda

    Thanks for sharing. Unfortunately my predictions is that we will see more and more cases of preventable diseases appearing in places with low vaccination rates.

  • Irène Delse

    Poor girl! I hope she recovers fully. But it doesn’t seem like the mother learned a thing, what a nightmare.

    It’s something that Orac, at Respectful Insolence, often discusses: parents who fall for the woo and make horrible medical decisions on behalf of their kids. The people who defend these decisions generally start with a variation on “it’s their child, they have the right to do X”. But children aren’t the property of their parents, or even an extension of themselves!

    I’ve had this discussion when a dear friend of mine, who is quite woo-ish, had her first child: when you choose for yourself, you do what you want. When you choose for someone who can’t make decisions themselves, you have to choose what is in their best interests.

    • Madtowngirl

      Children are collateral damage in the anti-vax movement. It’s horrible.

    • Roadstergal

      That’s the thing, though – they honestly think they Know Better Than The Experts, and are therefore doing what is in the kid’s best interests.

      Then, when it all goes tits-up, they have two choices. Admit to themselves that they were wrong, or double-down. Like the whooping-cough mom, this mom seems to be doubling down, despite the very visible evidence.

  • Montserrat Blanco

    I hope the girl recovers.

    Please tell me that any court would grant full custody of the girl to the father and that she will get vaccinated.

    • Candi Bellotti

      Someone on another site, lives in the county and has experience with the judge, feels this is unlikely. Which is scary.

      • Montserrat Blanco

        Thank you. I will not sleep today after reading this. The only thing that might make me able to sleep again is thinking about how my son has already had his fourth dose of the vaccine (fully vaccinated for his age) and therefore him getting tetanus would be one in ten millions? I am fully vaccinated too and my last booster was about two years ago, so not concerned for myself.

      • mythsayer

        Where did you see this? I live in the same county…actually live in the same town the girl is in, and I’m an attorney. I don’t do family law but I’d be interested to see which judge they are assigned to.

        • BeatriceC

          I’m not too far south of you guys. Even in anti-vaxx SoCal, (which is not as bad as Northern California), I can’t see a judge siding with the mother after all of this. Though I really hope I’m not proven wrong.

          • mythsayer

            That’s what I figured, too. There are some REALLY crazy judges, though…I will say that. You’d be terrified at some things that go on behind the scenes (in law stuff), although maybe you wouldn’t be…I know you’ve been through some hard things. Where are you at? North county SD?

          • BeatriceC

            East County, SD. My stepdaughter and her wife were in North County until a couple weeks ago, now they’re downtown, so that might be why North County got stuck in your head. And honestly, I don’t think I can be surprised at some of the things that happen in the legal system anymore. Between my parents and their foster kids (which alone is horrifying..amazing what money and a good presentation can excuse), and my own personal stuff, plus just reading the news, It would take something worthy of a Law & Order or Criminal Minds episode to shock me.

    • Liz Ditz

      I think the poor tetanus-suffering girl is old enough to address the court, but this may vary by state. Or even by county.

  • Mel

    I read the GoFundMe page and I have an unrelated, but problematic concern.

    Remy should be covered for schooling needs by her local district as she recovers. As soon as she’s stable enough, a home-based tutor (which is a certified teacher usually) will be assigned by her district and in my state will visit at least twice a week for an hour at a time. If she has continuing needs, she would be eligible for Special Education services under either Physical or Other Health Needs (POHI) or Learning Disability (LD) services.

    Additionally, if her physical recovery interferes with schooling, physical therapy and occupational therapy can be added to her IEP (individual education plan) and be paid for (generally) by the county and district through increased funding received for Remy since she’s in Special Ed.

    Plus, her health insurance may cover some – or all – of the PT, OT, and counseling. The counseling, especially, under the Parity Act of 1996.

    Ironically, ALL of this would have been avoided by getting a low-cost shot when she was 5.

    The poor dear……

    • Candi Bellotti

      The step mother’s point. They only medical bill so far is the $250 copay. She is insured through her father. They are in California and yes, her educational needs would be met by an iep and county funding.

    • BeatriceC

      Physical therapy won’t necessarily be paid for by the school district. Actually, it might even be highly unlikely. If for some weird reason the girl’s doctors don’t recommend PT/OT, and she gets back into school, and the school itself recommends it, then the school could be on the hook for paying for it. My kids and most of my students who required PT/OT have/had services paid for through their regular health insurance or other programs. The exact details vary by district, but the school paying for it is going to be a last resort, as pretty much all districts don’t have a lot of spare cash and will go to great lengths to avoid that scenario. The hospital/homebound teachers are another matter, as those would be paid for by the district.

      That, however, brings up another point. The step-mother brings up the fact that they insisted on keeping the girl on the father’s insurance, and wouldn’t let the mother put her on Medi-Cal (California’s medicaid program, for those who don’t know). Had that happened, then yes, we’d all be on the hook for this. Given that the state has now passed the school vaccinations law, I’m wondering if it would be acceptable to require vaccinations to be eligible for Medi-Cal. In Florida, parents who are applying for public assistance for their children have to show proof of vaccinations. I’m not sure if that’s a requirement, or just a way to gather data, but I know that showing the proof is okay at least on a federal level, or Florida would have been stopped. It seems to me that it’s in the state’s best interest to make sure that any people for whom it is providing medical coverage are vaccinated, as that will reduce their overall costs.

      • Mel

        Schools will fight having to pay for PT/OT/etc., and totally prefer having the medical insurance pay for it.

        Having said that, there is a lot that parents can do to get something like that added to the IEP if they need to. With the way that the IEP process is written into law, parents have much more power than the average parent is aware of.

        The problem is that most parents believe honestly that the school district is acting in the best interest of the kid – but that’s a naive, if completely understandable, view. The district has to keep the needs of all of their special education students in view and the needs of the budget.

        Having said that, the district doesn’t have a legal leg to stand on if parents can point out that a physical disability is interfering with schooling AND the district refuses PT/OT.

        I bring this from my childhood and the childhood of my sister. I needed a shit-ton of PT and OT to be mobile and able to write. The district tried to deny both – repeatedly – but my parents knew the law well enough and were stubborn enough that they held their ground and got what we needed. It was unpleasant, but the district decided it was easier to provide services than to have to worry about going through arbitration and potentially a legal hearing…mainly because the district knew they didn’t have a legal leg to stand on.

        It’s fucked up that we don’t value education and helping students with disabilities enough to just fund it well and remove a yearly adversarial relationship between the parents and the district – but if Spawn needs something someday, I will be as crazy bitchy as my parents were and not lose a moment of sleep over it.

      • Mrs.Katt the Cat

        In Va for kids to receive assistance, they have to be vaccinated especially if school age. Any assistance as far as I can tell.

    • attitude devant

      so, mom not only fails spectacularly as a human being and a parent by failing to protect a vulnerable child, but also uses said child as a meal ticket? Niiiiiiice

      • Amazed

        The pig keeps whining for money and deleting what the stepmother has to say. Somehow, I doubt much of the money that has gone into her greedy snout this far and the ones that would keep going there will go to the people who actually insured the child.

    • sdsures

      I was suspicious, too. Although I feel horrible for this little girl’s suffering, and rage at her mother for not vaccinating her, I was unable to find any corroborating information on Remy’s story. I’d feel better about giving them money if there was independent corroboration.

  • MaineJen

    Oh I have no words for this one. I hope this poor child makes a complete recovery and gets our from under the influence of her mom’s anti-vax views ASAP.

  • Amy Tuteur, MD

    This person posting on Mothering.com claims to be the child’s mother. If so, she’s learned nothing.
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/dc014b44cfaf5f6244f97a3df02ca0bc940e60fd14042f4c5629c96e36134e76.png

  • Pat Gilliland

    Just to be clear – the poor child suffering from tetanus does not appear to be related to Heather Dexter mentioned in the opening paragraphs. Secondly, a source for the stepmother’s quote would be useful.

    That said, not vaccinating your children (without a proper medical reason)is child abuse.

    • corblimeybot
      • Pat Gilliland

        Thank you! – it was deleted (again apparently)

        • corblimeybot

          Mom really doesn’t want Stepmom telling everyone what’s up, that’s for sure!

        • Cyndi

          All the pro-vax comments were deleted.

          • Pat Gilliland

            Of course they were – nothing like being forced to acknowledge one’s responsibility for a very sick child.

      • indigosky

        I hope the stepmom is reporting the GoFundMe!

        • Allyson_et_al

          She is.

      • BeatriceC

        Stupid questions: The only comments I see are messages left by people who have donated. Am I missing something? Do I have to be logged in to see comments? I’m confused.

        • corblimeybot

          It looks like Biomom turned off the comments?

          • BeatriceC

            So that means they can’t be seen at all? Even the ones from before she turned them off? I don’t normally look at GoFundMe. Honestly, I’ve looked at it exactly once before today, and that was last week for a friend and I went there specifically to give her money. I didn’t stop to look around after I was done.

  • Sean Jungian

    6 weeks being paralyzed but aware. A horrifying nightmare I wouldn’t wish on any sentient being.

    • Spamamander

      All I could think of was “kill me… kill me…”

    • Mrs.Katt the Cat

      I was once paralyzed but aware for 3 days. Worst experience of my life. So terrifying that I refused an epidural and had a non-medicated birth (in hospital ) , just the idea of not being able to move my legs or being trapped in bed with numbness made me panicky. I decided that I didn’t want to have a panic attack while in labor.

      • Sean Jungian

        I don’t blame you. I’ve not had that experience (not beyond “night terrors” when I was younger) but it sounds excruciating in every way. I really feel for that poor little girl.

        • Mrs.Katt the Cat

          I get sleep paralysis. A tree recently fell on our roof in the middle of the night and I had to wait to move. Luckily I was looking at the crib or I would have panicked.
          Yes I agree I wouldn’t wish that on anyone and I hope she gets over this experience, physically and mentally

    • Steph858

      When a rat decided to move in to my home, I did some research on different methods of pest control; as a result of this research I put down traditional spring mousetraps instead of cheaper glue traps as the former (should) kill the rodent instantly while the latter will kill slowly via dehydration and starvation (unless the rat is ‘lucky’ enough to be discovered by me – even then, best case scenario for the rat is it’s found after ‘only’ a few hours and killed by a hammer to the head). Before doing said research I thought a non-lethal trap followed by release into the wild some miles away would be the most humane method, but apparently survival rates for relocated rodents are so low that it’s actually more humane to kill the thing as quickly and painlessly as possible than to release it to a slow death from exposure.

      I disagree with a lot of the extreme doctrines of PETA-esque Animal Rights groups; in my view, with rights come responsibilities and it’s therefore wrong to grant animals rights on or nearly on a par with those we give our fellow homo sapiens until such time as they can uphold the responsibilities which go along with those rights (as per the Social Contract). But I wouldn’t cause an animal suffering where it could easily be avoided with a little thought and care.

      Anyway, point is, I put more thought into the welfare of a rat (which, by the way, had eaten its way through a lot of my food and carpet before it was discovered) than Genna Graham Stead put into the welfare of her daughter. I would not want to see the rat I caught paralysed for 6 weeks if it could be avoided, especially not when avoiding that suffering is as easy as getting an injection. I cannot at all understand how Stead could allow her daughter to go through that.

      • Sean Jungian

        What always comes to mind when I contemplate that “aware but paralyzed” is, first of all, the inability to communicate, and what that does to your consent, and secondly (this may seem foolish) I think of how it would feel to have an itch and be unable to scratch it or to ask someone else to scratch it. To me that would be torture on a slow scale.

        If I may go OT a bit regarding rats/mice/etc: I have had mice troubles off and on during my lifetime and one product I absolutely promote without any hesitation is something called “The E-Rati-Cator” which used to be known as “The Rat Zapper”. A coworker recommended it to me many years ago and I swear by it. It’s basically a plastic case with a metal plate at the end, and operates with 4 AA batteries. The rodent walks in (you bait it with whatever, I use a piece of dog food but peanut butter cracker is good, too) and is instantly electrocuted, painlessly. There’s a little light on the top that flashes when you’ve caught something.

        I live in a very rural area so mice are an occasional fact of life, but this thing really takes care of it. I think you can only get them online. My boss also swears by them now, and his got a squirrel in their cabin that was tearing everything to pieces.

        Anyway, sorry for the commercial (I am NOT paid by the company lol) it’s just so much better and more human than most traps/poisons/etc and there’s no worry for pets or little kids.

        • Steph858

          Thanks for the tip WRT catching rats/mice. I’ve only ever had the 1 rat in the half a decade that I’ve lived at my current address (and no pest problems that I was aware of at any other properties I lived before), but I’ll keep it in mind for if another rat ever manages to sneak in,

          I can’t afford the lawyer’s fees to write up a living will at the moment, but if/when I can, it’s going to be something along the lines of ‘If I ever end up in a persistent vegetative state, or in a coma from which if I ever wake up I would be severely mentally and physically disabled, etc etc, then don’t go force-feeding me with a tube and stuffing me full of antibiotics every time I catch pneumonia; let me pass peacefully.’ I’ve made my family aware of these wishes, but similar cases where the family were in agreement that withdrawing life support was for the best still take months if not years to go through the courts before the desired action can be taken. I don’t know if a living will would speed up that process but it couldn’t hurt.

          My family and I are all of a similar mind on that, and are also in agreement in that we all want our bodies to be put to the best use possible after we’ve gone. We all signed up to the organ donor register before it became an opt-out system; I tried to get my body bequeathed to medical science in the event that my organs weren’t deemed suitable for donation but my local centre won’t take registrations from anyone under 50 because registrations have to be renewed every 10 years. And bodies cannot be donated by next of kin, power of attorney etc; only a form signed by the deceased and witnessed by someone else will do. Also, IIRC, even if all those forms are signed and sealed as per requirements, your family can still block the donation. So if you’re an apostate from a Muslim family, good luck getting your cadaver into the hands of a surgery student.

          I cannot understand why body donation isn’t an opt-out system like organ donation is. Or, if it must be opt-in for some reason (can’t think of any reason myself), at least make it like it used to be with organ donation back when that was an opt-in system; you sign a couple of forms (you could sign up when you’re 17 and no need to get them witnessed by a 3rd party), send them off in the post, get your donor card back and that’s it, you’re sorted. It’s a shame to think that if I were to die in a car accident or something before I turned 50 my body might go to waste because of pointless bureaucracy.

          • Sean Jungian

            I agree with everything you’ve said. I am also an organ donor, and as far as I am concerned, once I’m dead there’s no reason to keep anything other than maybe a lock of my hair or something as a memento. I’d prefer he just keep pictures of me, though.

        • Roadstergal

          We once had some rats come into our old house, and I tried every brand of spring rat trap they had at the local store – the rats would steal the bait and I’d come in the morning to find the traps sprung with no rats inside.

          What fixed it was when a posse of feral cats came through. We saw them scuttling around the back yard, and within two days, we saw no more evidence of rats (droppings or chewed-up stuff).

          Now that we have our dogs, we never see a rat. I saw some rat droppings in the back patio two years ago; I left the door open so the dogs had free range into the patio, and no more rat droppings.

          It might not be the _most_ humane way, but it’s a helluva lot faster than glue.

          • Sean Jungian

            This is why every farm has barn cats. Not quite feral, not quite tame, but they definitely do the job of keeping the vermin down.

          • Empliau

            Although if you feed them sometimes they get lazy. I remember a time (I lived on a farm as a child) when I took the lid off a barrel of corn and could see virtually no corn for the sea of furry bodies. We stopped feeding the cats for a few days and could once again find the corn ; )

      • Mel

        Yeah, I use the old-school spring bar mouse-traps. The mouse or rat is dead before they have any idea what hit them.

        My old school used glue traps. I’d check them every morning for trapped rodents and dispatch them with the hammer I kept in my classroom when one was caught. They’d be covered in glue, unable to move and often would have started chewing through a limb the free themselves.

        • Eater of Worlds

          I used to do research on rodents, among other things, from the wild. We were limited to using snap traps for them because those were the most humane way of killing them. I’ve pulled sick and dying cats off of glue traps and ended up having to put them down anyway. Glue traps are horrible.

    • Mishimoo

      That’s what stopped me from attempting suicide as a teenager – the thought that I could end up locked inside a non-functioning body stuck with my mother 24/7 was more terrifying than the thought of Hell.

      I feel so sorry for this poor child, what she’s going through would be an absolute nightmare and I hope that she’s being well monitored. I wouldn’t put it past her mother to cause drama by interfering with medical treatment.

      • Sean Jungian

        I’m glad you thought twice and hopefully things are better for you now.

        • Mishimoo

          Life is much better now and I’m glad I held on, but it’s something that I am pretty open about because I think there needs to be more acknowledgement of how deeply children are affected by abusive parents, even though it’s not regarded as overt abuse because “Well, they didn’t do x, y, z; so you had it pretty good!”

          • Sean Jungian

            Agreed. I am generally pretty open about my depression and anxiety problems, although both have been under pretty good control for the past decade.

            I had a deep depressive episode about 20 years ago where I, too, contemplated suicide, but 2 things always stopped me – #1 was knowing it would be my baby sister who would find my body, and not wanting to put that burden on her, and #2 similar to your thinking, I had read a short story once about a suicide having to basically re-live the last hour of his life for all eternity, over and over and over. I was superstitious enough to not want to risk that.

            I think, mostly, I was just exploring the option, and that I didn’t really want to die – after all I am still here.

          • Mishimoo

            You’re still here and you’ve got it under pretty good control; that’s a huge win!

          • Mrs.Katt the Cat

            even though it’s not regarded as overt abuse because “Well, they didn’t do x, y, z; so you had it pretty good!”

            This! I used to dream about all the help I could get if only my dad would hit me- not lose it enough to kill me, but just enough to leave a mark. Because bruises get attention, and telling teachers that your dad is threatening you, burning your things, denying medical care, etc, they just call the dad and ask. OMG, the convoluted year long punishments that would cause.

            I agree that talking to normalize awareness and how to help is great!

  • Roadstergal

    I can’t, I just can’t. The shot is so easy and safe, and tetanus is so easy to catch! The poor girl. Here life will never be the same, just because her mom thought she was Smarter Than The Doctors.

    • Roadstergal

      Also, if I’m reading the stepmom’s comment right, mom declined the vaccine that’s supposed to be administered in parallel with the IVIg. Even now, she’s Smarter Than The Doctors.

      • DrRachie

        That’s my understanding too. This is simply horrific

        • Why do I get the awful feeling that that will be sued on a malpractice argument later?

  • RubyRed

    Every time I hear about someone having tetanus I remember this picture of a soldier dying of tetanus (below). Spasms can be so intense the bones can break. WTF. I almost want to cry when I get a charlie horse. That poor kid, dad and step mom 🙁

    Horses are only slightly more affected by tetanus than humans- and we vaccinate them every year for it. I haven’t heard of any ‘vaccine injured’ horses (other than the usual rare complications), but then again they are always finding new ways to hurt themselves so maybe it’s not the best comparison…

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3c4c14d2a579f0c2888c3b5e80f2ddac93c6cc8f081a27d94b3396c7ed7e0779.png

    • Azuran

      I saw one case in a dog. Dogs are not vaccinated because they are very resistant to tetanus so it’s very rare to see it, and the dog’s case was actually pretty light.

      And yet it stayed hospitalized for a month. It’s legs where stiff and he would have spasms whenever there was noise or light. He needed a feeding tube because it was absolutely impossible to open it’s jaw. It couldn’t change position on it’s own. He was extremely pitiful and in pain the entire time.
      Full blown tetanus must be absolutely horrible

    • Spamamander

      My horse blew a an abscess at the top coronet line… immediate toxin booster “just in case”. I can’t comprehend doing less for my child!!

      • Mel

        We shoot all our cows up against tetanus and a few other Clostridium spp. One of the other strains or species causes anaerobic gas build up in the skin. I’ve never seen it, but we’ve had two cows we bought who didn’t get vaccinated. It’s a horrifying disease and we euthanize the cow as soon as we see symptoms – better that than a slow, agonizing death.

  • FormerPhysicist

    OMG. I hope she recovers fully, and the father gets custody!

    • Lemongrass

      The father is probably going to have an extremely easy time getting her vaccinated after this.

      • Roadstergal

        If the stepmom’s comment is accurate, mom is still refusing the vaccine on behalf of the daughter.

        • guest

          If biomom currently has legal right to dictate medical care right now, it’s going to take court intervention to change that. But biodad would seem to have a good case to get full control over medical decisions, if not full custody.

          • Roadstergal

            Biodad should start a GoFundMe to get a good lawyer.

          • Sonja Henie-Spinning Jenny!

            There is a “GoFundMe”; it was on Facebook under “Refutations to Anti-vax memes”.

          • guest

            I would contribute to that!

          • BeatriceC

            I could be convinced to contribute to that one.

        • Life Tip

          Does the father not get an equal say? Especially if the mom is refusing part of the treatment?

          • Roadstergal

            Hell if I know, I haven’t a clue about this legal stuff. It seems crazy to me that the girl is on the dad’s health insurance and the dad doesn’t get a say in health treatments that are _the standard of care_, but lots of things seem crazy to me.

          • SL27

            I’m an attorney, but not in California. So I don’t know exactly what the law is in California, but in my state it is pretty standard that even if the parents have joint legal custody, the parent that has physical custody gets to make the decision if they don’t agree. It is also standard for whichever parent gets better insurance to cover the child on their insurance, with the parents splitting the cost of out of pocket costs. I would definitely argue to a court that it is not in the best interests of the child to have the mother make decisions that lead to this, and that the father should therefore have custody. Sometimes the judge’s make decisions that don’t make sense, though, so no guarantees.

          • Azuran

            I dunno how it legally work. I’d guess that on a daily basis, whichever parent goes to the hospital with the kid gets to chose. If both parents are there and there is discord between the parents, probably the one with custody, and if the other one disagrees, he can probably take it to the judge.

          • Cody

            Likely not. My husband has no say even though his son’s mom is a fruit loop. He didn’t fight hard enough at the beginning because he didn’t know any better and now many years later the child in the situation is paying the price.

          • BeatriceC

            Maybe, maybe not. We recently moved one of my kids in with their father. The whole story is long and convoluted, but the short version is that for 13 years my ex-husband was absent. Once he started requesting medical records, the hospital here, as well as all their doctors required a statement from me, in spite of the fact that he provided ID and a copy of the child’s birth certificate showing he was his father, before they would send medical records to the new doctors in the state where my ex lives. Apparently after a pattern is established, they can do that, even though he’s the child’s father.

          • Danica Walker

            We hasn’t gotten to the hospital yet because it is 3hours from our house and weren’t notified of the tetanus or that she was admitted until hours later.

        • Danica Walker

          She refused the TDAP which was a recommended vaccine. She said she would only accept tetanus vaccine as part of treatment. The Drs advised tetanus was not an option it was a medical emergency but the TDAP was optional because it has other vaccines in it. Not critical to treatment but important as she will be in the hospital for so long and I’m sure her immunity isn’t going to be great.