In my pigeon hole at school the other day, I discovered immunisation information for my Year 7 student, Miss Sunshine. It sparked some very deep thought and a difficult decision for us.
Our children are fully immunised, according to what was available at the time they were little. This week however, is the first time when my gut feeling has been "not with my child, thank you very much".
Gardasil. This is the name of the cervical cancer vaccine, now given to girls from Year 7 and can be obtained for free on the immunisation schedule until 26 years of age. This particular vaccine scares me. I've heard of some very alarming side effects from friends. I've also done a little bit of reading online today and discovered some other information that cements my reluctance to make this decision on my daughter's behalf.
Our decision at this point is to decline the vaccine. This is a first for us but I firmly believe in following your instinct. My instinct is raising red flags all over. I'll have a little chat with Miss Sunshine and explain our decision and her responsibility in taking on this decision for herself as she gets older.