Doc, I Swear I’m Not SIDS-ing My Kid.

This morning was Humnoy’s twice-rescheduled “6-month well checkup” appointment with his pediatrician. The first rescheduling was because I wasn’t quite ready to go in as I was still researching vaccines and copped out by saying “I had to drive my husband to work.” The second reschedule was because I had an opportunity to work some more hours – true story!

I matter-of-factly noted to the nurse that we are no longer vaccinating and she noted that for the doctor. I was so proud of how I said it because I was so nervous that I would break down and have to be super-defensive about my decision. The pretend scenario in my head went like this because I can be a little mousey:

Nurse: “Do you have any questions or concerns for Dr. _____ to answer?”
Me: “… No. WELL. *tsk* Uh, yeah. Um , we’re not doing vaccines anymore???”

Oh, what a smart marketing coy with the adorable choo-choo train!

I totally didn’t flake or come off as self-conscious! As the nurse leaves and as Humnoy pees all over the exam table, I’m having a super-proud Mommy moment as I dawdle around getting a diaper on. I still have my defense mode button turned on but only on idle. The doctor comes in and greets us like usual and is very supportive of us not vaccinating at the appointment. Sweet– defense mode button turned completely off! He goes through the medical-school-pounded checkup sayings like Humnoy should be able to eat three solid meals a day now, rice cereal should be iron-fortified, and he can have meat at nine months. I’m pretty sad he totally didn’t remember that we are doing baby-led solids. Humnoy enjoys chicken and beef, he eats bananas, pears, and sweet potatoes, and has never had mashed-up baby food like the doctor suggested. I forgive his outdated information and just listen and politely nod. He’s not being offensive so I’m not being defensive!

Doctor: “If you’re wanting to get [vaccines] later on down the road, you can just do ________ rather than ______ because I think it was ______ that caused that reaction.”

Oh, hell naw. I guess I wasn’t clear that “anymore” means to not ever. I really should brush up on geographical use of terms because I guess here that doesn’t mean what it’s supposed to mean. Anyway, I just smile and thank him for the information and say nothing more. Defense mode switched back to idle now.

Doctor: “Does he sleep through the night now?”
Me: “Well, we co-sleep so yes and no? It’s hard for me to remember because I get such good sleep.” *bragging smile*
Doctor: *checking Humnoy’s baby testicles* “Those look great— Well, as a medical professional, I will tell you that co-sleeping is not recommended because of the risk of SIDS.”
Me: *Uh, WTF?*
Doctor: *inaudible as I’m still processing* “…. co-sleeping…. for birth to 6 months… not good … he’s fine now….”

"What, really?! No needles this time, Ma?"

Oh, hell to the no! Defense mode ON, ON, ON. I shut my mouth because, after all, he went to medical school and I’m sure he nursed and co-slept with all his children. Oh, wait, he didn’t so what is he talking about? He goes on to say a SIDS death of a patient was due to the fact that the baby rolled over into a soft spot and suffocated. Since Humnoy has slept in our queen-sized bed, there has yet to be an incident near anything like the risk of SIDS. Plus, I am not shitfaced wasted when going to bed either. By this point, I’m just done with trying to “school” my pediatrician on all the research I’ve done for this child of mine and how “recommendations” are outdated and unnecessary so defense mode is just shut down to save energy.

Doctor: “He should be crawling in about a month or so. Get ready to baby-proof your house.”
Me: *giggle* “He’s been crawling for a good two months now.”
Doctor: “Oh, great. He’s such a smart boy. You have a beautiful child. Very healthy.”

Phew! Gosh, at least I’m doing something right with this 17-lb and 27-inch-long boy! 😉


23 thoughts on “Doc, I Swear I’m Not SIDS-ing My Kid.

  1. Whats the stance at schools these days when it comes to vaccinations? I feel like I should know the answer, but I don’t. Just 20 years ago when we were entering Kindergarten I know that certain vaccinations were required to attend school. However, with all the Jenny McCarthy documentaries coming more to light I’m sure thats less common. Oooor are you going to enroll him into a fancy hippie school?

    Also are you planning on keeping this doctor? Whats with him not keeping up on what you and your babe are up to.

    • It depends on the state for religious and/or philosophical exemption from vaccines. For Washington, we can choose medical, religious, or personal reasons.

      Your Child can be exempted (excused) from immunization for medical, personal or religious reasons. However, if there
      is an outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease that your child has not been immunized against, she or he can be
      excluded from school, preschool or child care until the outbreak is over.

      It’s like a mini-vacation!

      • my kids are vaccine free and had no trouble entering public school. I had to sign a form that said I understood if there was an outbreak, my kids would be sent home. First of all, they think that’s awesome. Second, the school sends you home even if you have the vaccine and there is an outbreak

      • That’s good to know if I decide public school is for us but I’m still fighting for open-mindedness from family and friends when I mention “homeschool.” I am interested in the idea of homeschool groups when that time comes. 🙂

    • I do plan to keep him while I’m researching a chiropractor. Once I do, I will drop going to well-baby checkups because it’s totally unnecessary as a chiro will do all the physical checkups a pediatrician would. The only caveat is the price. His insurance covers pediatrician checkups and not chiropractic visits, unfortunately so it’ll be out-of-pocket. When I say “research,” I mean find out which one’s cheapest and does great work.

    • Starr, there is an underground idea (i.e., natural alternative methods of healing and health care) of wellness care through chiropractic visits that has been said to solve many of child/baby ailments like colic, fussiness, and even bed wetting. It’s the idea that birth and childhood can be traumatizing and compromises the nervous system, hence the spine, which goes through “sublaxations” and can be fixed through spinal adjustments.

  2. Since I’m lazy, I’ll let you do the research and then just copy you! I am looking for the same thing but I don’t really want to waste time and money testing out a bunch of chiropractors.

    I’m sure you know this but it annoys me that US doctors are so anti co sleeping. Research actually shows safe co-sleeping prevents SIDS. ok, off my little soap box.

    • I have gone and talked with Dr. Schneider at Houk Chiropractic and she was great. Her kids are unvaccinated, which was awesome to know! I hope to find one to fit the budget. She said she suggests a visit ($45 because our insurance doesn’t cover visits) for milestone months. Aren’t milestone months EVERY month? :-/

  3. As far as your Ped goes, ignore, ignore, ignore. You know that the benefits far outweigh the almost nonexistent risks for you. I actually (gently)got into it, once at a well-baby check, about why SIDS doesn’t happen in countries where co-sleeping/family bed is the norm. The ped acknowledged that was true, and she was much more respectful of our delayed vax schedule after that.

    As far as Chiro goes, check out Dr. Roz (Dr. Rosenberger is her name, but she goes by Dr. Roz) at Spinal and Sports Care, on Sprague, between McDonald and Pines. She specializes in women and children, and shares many of your parenting philosophy. Before I got my rebuilt neck, she was my go-to gal. I’m sad I can’t get adjustments from her anymore, but I’m happy when I can recommend her to others. If her price is right, you will love her!

    • Jessica, they most definitely are not, thank goodness. Doesn’t that alone make sense why they’re being questioned by many families? I think of it this way: If the diseases are so deadly, then why isn’t the government “requiring” it? It may be because the vaccines are not 100% effective. I just feel the risks of getting vaccines (side effects) far outweigh the “benefits.” plus, reading the inserts is scary!

  4. I Don’t have kids so my thoughts may not be truly formed but I have always been pro-vaccines. Yes, the side effects are scary but they have been tested and only a small percent of individuals experience them. You have to look at their history polio, influenza, whooping cough, chicken pox, mumps, measles these were all illness that wreaked havoc on our population and have been controlled through the standardized implementation of vaccinations. They seem abstract now because we do not deal with them on a daily basis. Doctors push them because as medical professionals they fear whats known as the red queen theory. for example each year we get a flu shot that is pretty much the same but slightly tweaked because that years flu virus is expected to be different so scientist make the best mix and send it out to the masses and it keeps the virus in check. but if every one stopped getting their shot then the virus would go completely unchecked and each generation would inherit the nastiest parts of the previous generation and thats how it reaches epidemic levels. So the red queen theory basicly states that in order for a species to stay around it must develop a better strategy with each generation (so every couple of months or less) and then those attributes are passed on and the process starts over. Vaccinations are still an effective tool that keep the numbers skewed in our favor. and ill admit that many people are fro going the vaccinations which is there right, but I feel the research behind it still too new … you cant re- write history which seems to have the better stats.

    • I also agree that history has shown improvements in better sanitation and personal health so how is it completely possible to single out that the vaccines nearly eliminate the said disease(s)? Polio is endemic in plenty of places, of course. Third-world countries like Afghanistan and Nigeria among them. I truly wonder if vaccines would decrease the disease deaths or if implementing better sanitation practices would do it? We’ll never know because that would be unethical, I think. The said diseases are transmitted by bodily, fluid, secretions contact so a simple regimen of proper handwashing, healthier lifestyle to maintain a top-notch immune system is definitely one’s own “immunization,” right?

      For example, the flu is HIGHLY recommended to those that are immunocompromised (i.e., sickly, old, etc) so it is definitely a case-by-case, vaccine-by-vaccine basis. So, what about those who are normal and healthy otherwise? I just don’t agree with how one strain of the flu can be a one-size fits all is where I’m coming from in that argument. 🙂

  5. That true, most disease are transmitted by bodily fluids. From the time we are children we are told to wash our hands after we use the bathroom or before we eat but I think the problem we face in other countries is a cultural one. America is the only nation in the world were even our poor our living considerably better than the poor of third-world countries such as Afghanistan and Nigeria and the thing we take for granted like toilet paper, hand soap, purell, mixed with a healthy diet are not the same priorities for the individuals living in those nations I would go even further to say that they are luxuries for americans. And unfortunately those citizens are at the mercy of their government who do not see it fit to implement better sanitation practices mixed with hygiene and a higher standard of living. and the technically the flu changes every year. that why some years they have vaccine shortages. it because the professionals at the CDC have to look at whats out there and guess what strain of flu they think is going to strike and they make a vaccine tailored to it then it is mass produced and sold. I remember the day our bio instructor told us that in class freaked me out so bad because they are essentially taking the like 7 most common strains of the flu putting them on a dart board and it’s the best 2 out of 3 wins. They do alter the vaccine to provide variety so the strain does not become resistant but its still scary!!

  6. My step-mother always warns me about vaccinations, especially in boys (autism). I was not completely well versed in the subject when I had my daughter so I decided to get them but just in a different pattern. They give the baby way too much at each sitting. I call it a “baby cocktail”. So I told them to spread the shots out. But I hate how the Dr’s try to pressure you and threaten that your child will not be able to attend school!!! (BS)

    btw I love your blog!!!

    • I think it’s key to find a pediatrician who is on board with your parenting beliefs! My pediatrician is super nice but is totally awkward when it comes to his outdated information 😦 Here in Washington State, parents can fill out an exemption form for personal, religious, or medical reasons once they are ready to enroll their children in school or daycare. How is it in D.C.?

  7. What a bunch of crap. Proven suffocation, by definition, is not even considered SIDS! SIDS means that there is no clear cause. Also, it’s actually bedsharing without breastfeeding that makes the practice most unsafe – It’s proven to be more dangerous than even alcohol consumption! I’m reading this post as I’m writing up my own for the co-sleeping blog carnival and really digging your site. 🙂 Good for you to sticking to your guns with your doctor! I am a strong person but I get meek in those situations as well. We are doing some vax and skipping others and I’m a bit nervous for our next appointment and bringing all of that up.

    • Hey thanks, Mama! I’m glad to see you stopped by! I’m working up on one for the co-sleeping Blog Carnival too meaning I’ll whip one up an hour before deadline, of course. Working and being a mama makes life contain less hours in the day, I’ve discovered. 🙂

      Good for you for selectively vaxxing! We did that before our current stance! I have nothing but total respect for families who educate themselves of each one!

  8. I’m so happy I stumbled upon this blog after reading about your stance on vaccinations in a comment left on another bog. I was just the same as you – it’s funny how we feel so nervous about telling a medical proffessional that we feel strongly about something.
    My health visitor told me that she strongly discouraged co sleeping because she herself knows a family whose child had died of SIDS. When I asked if they co slept she said no, so where does the association come from??

    • Thank you for stopping by and checking my site out! I wish I could remember what other blog you tracked me from but I ramble all over the interwebz…

      I was watching a kids’ show where the characters were chanting (creepy, mind you) that following doctor’s orders is how it should be. It’s the best interest for each family to make informed decisions and then tell their doctor, not the other way around. I’m thrilled to connect with like-minded families!

      I look forward to your content, once you have some up 😉

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