Thursday, 12 March 2009

Decisions, Decisions!

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.


Cathy said...

Hello Tracy
You know you can only do what you think is right for your child. No point in saying Yes, if deep down in your heart you really wanted to say No.
Theres a few years between her age now and 26 for them to get to right and it won't be all that long before the decision will be hers to make anyway.
Take care

Tracy said...

Nodding my head in agreement! We declined this for our daughters as well. Thankfully, we have a Christian family doctor who had to offer it, but certainly didn't push, and respected us for saying no instead of going with the flow.

We've talked to our girls about the vaccine, and about why they would be at risk if their marriage partner had been sexually active before they met. (No chance of that happening here, at least while they are in our house because they aren't allowed to date, etc.)

Now, my oldest daughter is to be married in July, and because they are both virgins, there is definitely no need for it.

Tracy said...

Let me clarify,

When I said that there was no chance of that happening here, I meant on the girls' part. Sure the guy could have been promiscuous, but we feel certain that he has not been.

Rel said...

No doubt I'll be consulting you in 12 months time :)

Beth said...

I actually had this vaccine as a 26y.o. I didn't have any of the side effects. My younger sister did have a headache after the second of the course of them, but that was the only effect she had.
Just remember, it's not just cervical cancer. The same 'bug' is also in cold sores.

Tracy said...

Consult away Rel. I'd love to have a chat with Fi too, and hear her opinion.

Beth, you're fortunate in your experience I think. Yes, I'm aware of what the vaccine protects against. It's still not something I'm comfortable with.

Tracy said...

Beth I was just thinking, quite possibly we're looking at this from two sides of the coin. It's a vastly different decision as a parent, than if a woman makes the choice for herself.

Tina ♥ said...

I'm glad my daughter is 19. I would not have liked making this decision either Tracy.