Vexed By A Vaccination Situation!
By Mouthy Housewives on March 14, 2012
Dear Mouthy Housewives,
I am having a baby with my boyfriend in May. We live together but he also has a close-knit relationship to his exes’ kids even though he is not their father. My problem is that his exes’ kids are not vaccinated.
While, I am in control of not allowing my newborn around them until mine is vaccinated fully, I am concerned that it may be dangerous for my boyfriend to be around the two non-vaccinated children and then come home to his newborn who doesn’t have all of his shots yet.
My Kid Isn’t Getting Smallpox
Dear My Kid Isn’t Getting Smallpox,
First off, let me say I don’t envy having a newborn in the house. I’m normally a tad neurotic but when my son was born it went into serious hyper-drive. And I live in Brooklyn so you can imagine the kind of worries that went through my head! Here is a small sample:
- The lady across the street just coughed; does my son have pneumonia now?
- That woman on the subway looked a little pale. Maybe I should get my baby checked for meningitis?
- I’m pretty sure I just saw the man who was in this bus seat before us lick the window. Can Herpes germs travel through saliva in the air? Is there some sort of over-the-counter test I can buy to check this?
- My son has a rash and yesterday in the park we sat next to a kid who picked his nose. Maybe my baby now has leprosy? Or pica, that disease where the sufferer eats things that they aren’t supposed to like dirt, money, or BOOGERS???
Thankfully, it sounds like your worries are much more grounded. However, there are a few things to keep in mind. If your boyfriend is vaccinated then he won’t be bringing home any eradicated, ancient diseases. Also, because the majority of parents opt to vaccinate their children the chances that his exes’ kids will contract any type of severe illness, such as smallpox, is low.
That being said, your fears are certainly founded. It’s important to vaccinate children. Now a days for those who are more prone to worrying (like myself) many pediatricians will even offer an alternative vaccination schedule thereby allowing a child to get a smaller number of shots in a single visit, however, they will have to go to the doctor more frequently.
It sounds like you have already come up with the right answer for your family. You are the mother and if you feel uncomfortable allowing your newborn around unvaccinated children then it’s your right. And, as for your boyfriend, it’s always a good policy to make anyone--even mom and dad--wash their hands before holding the new baby.
Photo Credit: west_point.