If you are a mom, then you know about the "mommy" can of worms. The topics that cause moms to judge other moms. The mere mention of these words in a group of young mothers makes your hair stand on end and your blood pressure rise. The Mommy Can of Worms: breastfeeding, cosleeping, homeschooling, circumcision and vaccines.
Today I am opening the vaccination can of worms. I will be up front and say that I vaccinate all my children and I vaccinate on time. Only one of my children has missed a vaccine. My Ella was due to receive the rotovirus vaccine at one of her checkups. She was unable to get it because it is a "live" vaccine. I was going through treatment for breast cancer at the time so the doctor thought it was best that she didn't get the shot. It was for my protection. She missed her window so she never got it.
That being said, I don't take issue with parents that choose to delay their shots. My kids don't have reactions to their shots so I choose to get them done all at once. I understand if you choose to spread them out so that it is less likely to cause a reaction in your child. If you are planning to send your children to public school, you need to have the shots completed before Kindergarten. These are the state of New Jersey's minimum requirements. The key is to find a doctor who supports your decision and will work with you.
I do take issue with parents who don't vaccinate their children and then send them to public school claiming a religious exemption.
What is a religious exemption? A religious exemption for vaccination is a written form certifying a parent's objection to vaccination for religious reasons.
If you choose not to vaccinate your children- that is your choice. I have friends who do not vaccinate but they home school their children- that does not bother me. They are the parent- they made their choice. They are still following the law. They stand by their convictions. I respect that.
The problem is that using a religious exemption can be lying.
I don't know the details of every religion. I can only speak about my own. So in this instance I am talking about Evangelical Christians. I see nothing in the Bible that states that you should not vaccinate your children. How can you claim a religious exemption? Where in our religion does it say that?
What is Focus on the Family's perspective on vaccination and immunization safety for babies?
Dr. Dobson and Focus on the Family are considered to be reputable, Christian conservatives. They make no mention of using a religious exemption from vaccines so that your child can attend school. On the contrary, they support the use of vaccines.
What is my point? It is that if you choose not to vaccinate your children, that is your choice. It is wrong to send your unvaccinated children to public school claiming religious exemption status. It is lying. Our religion does not exempt you from vaccinations. Our religion also doesn't say that you should vaccinate your children. The law says that you must. So if you choose not to vaccinate, you need to stand by your convictions for the reasons that you think are correct and homeschool your children. Sending them to public school without the vaccinations is breaking the law. Claiming a religious exemption is lying.
Some of you are reading this and your head is nodding in agreement. Some of you are boiling hot about it. Please feel free to comment on the issue. Keep the comments free of foul language. I will delete any comments that contain profanity or inappropriate language.